Setting prices for baking at home

Joined May 25, 2014
I'm a professional pastry chef and I work at a restaurant. I recently got a query from a regular restaurant client, if I could make cakes for her and sell it to her directly, not via restaurant. She's a very dear client and I'm interested in doing this for her, but I don't know how to set the price. She's willing to buy any and all ingredients - so how do I determine the price for the cakes? I know how to set prices for cake made in the restaurant/pastry shop, but this is a first. Do you guys bake at home? How much do you charge?


Kitchen Dork
Joined Jun 15, 2006
Also, never sell cakes out of your home unless you are covered by liability insurance, as well as setting yourself up with local and state cottage food laws (if they exist in your area). You never know what can come back to bite you in the a**. 
Joined May 25, 2014
Checked the laws and already managed with them. But you guys raise a couple of good points. Thanks!
Joined May 16, 2009
You bring up an interesting question. Try to get a clear understand of exactly what she wants. Does she want to resell the cakes you bake, using your licensed restaurant facility as an acceptable location for producing cakes? Will she give you create for these delicious cakes? Of course this is your choice and she is a “very dear client” but the primary issue here is liability. If someone does not like a cake or has some other issue, who takes the responsibility, who is liable?

No one can tell you what to do. Ask her lots of questions and get the answers you need to make a sound decision. Are you interested in becoming a wholesale baker?

Price the cake as you normally would, what is the cost, what is the profit margin, do you want to sell at cost? Do you want to sell the cakes so you are paid for your time and labor? If she is reselling the cakes, does she want to make a big profit? Like I said ask questions, lots of questions.

Good luck,
Joined Dec 18, 2010
I'd be more concerned about the ethics of the situation more than anything. The "client" is most likely perceived by the restaurant owner as a client of the restaurant, not a client of the chef. Not coordinating the outside relationship with the owner could very well be perceived as client theft, and cause not just a conflict of interest but rightful grounds for termination.
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Joined Jun 23, 2015
I agree with BrianShaw and Buba.  I would fire any employee who bypassed my business with my customer.  I would also put the word out on the local network about this person.
Joined Jul 28, 2001
It is just unethical. If you want to have a business, then start one.

Over the years I've had some Pastry Cooks and Bakers circumvent my business and do things on their own for customers they met when coming into

my bakery. This type of thing always seems to make it back to where you met the customer.

  I understand why you're thinking about doing this.

I have had numerous retail and wholesale customers approach employees. I'm not sure where you reside, but there is usually a network between Pastry

people in the area. It always gets back to the business owner, usually it's the client, it's nerve wracking trying to fly undercover. Like when somebody from the restaurant

sees you coming out a wholesale club with 50lbs. 0f sugar or flour.

Hope you make a good decision and especially find out if your client knows about the ethics of a deal like that. If they do, then think how ethical they will be with you.

I think that would take this client our of  "the very dear" catagory.                                 
Joined Jun 27, 2012
If you want to have a business, then start one.
This is what it comes down to IMO.

Most places here in the US would have a non compete clause in the contract but if you did not sign one then (again IMO) quit your day job and go build your own business and let the customer follow you.

Altho (this is what I learned from my divorce lawyer) can you really ever trust someone who approaches you in this manner?

Just like a cheating spouse you can never be absolutely sure that he/she won't always be looking around for greener pastures.

If it was me?

No pan mentioned, when it comes down to it, this is a very small world.

I have a solid rep and friendships that go way back to the (well let's just say a very long time lol).

If I am in a pinch I know I can drop a dime and have backup (or a reservation ;-) within an hour (prolly won't be the old arthritic contact but fer sure a kid or grandkid will come and collect my chip :)

Joined Feb 14, 2016
Hi Mimi

If possible..Could you kindly share a blank non compete clause contract. I would love to use it .
Joined Jun 27, 2012

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