If you are a wiz in the kitchen, there are hundreds of custom chocolate items you can create and sell. Collect a variety of candy molds or learn how to sculpt chocolate into assorted shapes. You can then market your talents, selling made-to-order chocolates for any occasion or holiday. You can limit customers' choices to monthly specials, such as chocolate snowflakes and snowmen in January, hearts and roses in February and so on. Create a brochure or catalog showing options and encourage interested shoppers to inquire about personalized candy to meet their needs.
You are not limited to chocolate candy all by itself. Fudge is a favorite treat, and can translate into a booming business. If your fudge has been called "to die for," whip up a few batches in various flavors, such as peanut butter and chocolate or rocky road and double chocolate. Wrap up small but professional-looking packages and visit local gourmet and gift shops to see if they would be interested in carrying your wares. Offer to start out on consignment so the business has nothing to lose.
Think about other chocolate treasures you make that get rave reviews from friends and family members. Chocolate-dipped plastic spoons or chocolate scones and biscotti might appeal to local coffee shops. Visit business complexes with a basket of chocolate muffins, cookies, and cakes wrapped in individual servings in the afternoons to tempt office workers chained to their desks yet craving an after-lunch goodie. Gift baskets are appreciated year-round and make a great home based chocolate business idea. Load attractive baskets with assorted chocolate candies, cookies, fudge, and even chocolate-flavored coffees.
Of course, if you are making and selling food products, you must abide by laws and regulations regarding food safety and handling. Your local Chamber of Commerce can point you in the right direction. Further, make sure you charge enough for your products to cover your expenses so you make a profit.
Photo credit: sxc.hu/Bartek Ambrozik