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Business Idea: BBQ Catering Business

Outdoor grilling season, once a Memorial Day-to-Labor Day tradition, is becoming a yearlong menu staple for a growing number of Americans. . / Credit: Hamburgers on grill image via Shutterstock

Are you a grilling guru? A barbecue artist? If so, why not turn your love of cooking into a small business?

Even though a recent report from the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association (HPBA) shows that 85 percent of North Americans own their own grills, that doesn't mean those folks want to cater their own backyard parties.

Barbecue caterers are called upon to heat up just about any outdoor event, including corporate picnics, family parties, fairs, carnivals, sporting events and weddings. So if you want to turn your passion for grilling into a business, now is the time to get cooking!

There are several things to consider in starting a barbecue catering business. First of all, you need to pin down what goods and services you'd like to provide. If you have a regional specialty, such as Cajun- or Texas-style barbecue, you may want to focus on just that kind of food. Try to pick a specialty that customers in your area will want to request.

The barbecue business is a great place to let your creativity run wild. Not only can you spice things up with lots of interesting recipes, you can also choose from dozens of different towable grills. There are as many different grills available as there are barbecue sauces in Texas. 

As with any small business, you'll need to create a business plan before embarking on your grilling adventure, in order to set financial goals and determine the earning potential of a barbecue catering business.

With far less overhead than is involved in opening a restaurant, mobile catering is a great idea for those who want to get started quickly. Once you've obtained the necessary licenses and purchased the appropriate equipment, you can have your business up and running faster than you can flip a hamburger.

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Elizabeth Peterson

Elizabeth writes about innovative technologies and business trends. She has traveled throughout the Americas in her roles as student, English teacher, Spanish language interpreter and freelance writer. She graduated with a B.A. in International Affairs from the George Washington University. You can follow her on Twitter @techEpalermo or .

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