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What Are The Monthly Expenses For A Bakery?

Nick PerryAuthor

Running a bakery business comes with a unique set of expenses that need to be carefully managed to ensure profitability.

From the initial small business startup costs to ongoing operating expenses, understanding and controlling these expenses is vital for the success of your bakery business model.

In this article, you’ll learn about common bakery expenses and see tips on how to control costs and boost bakery profit margins to improve your bakery’s financial health.

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Bakery Business Plan Template

Use this free bakery business plan template to easily create a great business plan that organizes your vision and helps you start, grow, or raise funding for your bakery.

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Understanding new bakery startup costs

When opening your own bakery, it is crucial to have a comprehensive business plan in place, including a breakdown of expected startup costs.

Here are some key considerations for business owners regardless of the type of bakery you’re opening.

Kitchen equipment and supplies: The cost of bakery equipment such as ovens, mixers, refrigerators, proofers, freezers, and display cases can vary greatly. It's important to research and budget for these costs upfront.

Renovations and interior design: Depending on if you’re going into an existing bakery location or a new build-out, renovations and interior design may be necessary. This could include countertops, flooring, lighting, signage, and seating areas.

Licenses and permits: Bakery businesses require various licenses and permits, such as health department permits, food service licenses, and fire safety inspections. These fees can add up, so it's important to budget for them.

Inventory and ingredients: You'll need to budget for initial inventory and ongoing ingredient costs. This includes flour, sugar, butter, yeast, and other baking essentials based on your menu items.

Controlling ongoing bakery expenses to protect profit margins

After the initial startup costs, bakery owners must focus on managing ongoing expenses to improve profitability.

Here are some common ongoing expenses to be mindful of.

Costs of goods sold (COGS): The cost of ingredients for the baked goods you sell can significantly influence your bottom line. It's crucial to source raw materials and ingredients from reliable suppliers at competitive prices. Building relationships with suppliers and purchasing in bulk can often lead to cost savings.

Labor costs: Staffing needs for operating a bakery can include pastry chefs, bakers, assistants, cashiers, and other staff. This average cost can be a significant portion of your expenses. Carefully manage your team's schedule and consider cross-training employees to optimize labor costs.

Monthly rent and utilities: Bakery businesses have a fixed location, so storefront rent and utility costs are consistent ongoing expenses. Negotiating favorable terms for lease agreements — often based on total square footage — and finding ways to reduce utility costs can help lower these expenses.

Marketing and advertising: Promoting your bakery is crucial for attracting customers. However, marketing expenses can add up quickly. Consider strategies with low marketing costs, such as social media marketing efforts and collaborations with local businesses or influencers, to maximize your budget.

Packaging and supplies: Bakery items require suitable packaging, including boxes, bags, and labels. These costs should be factored into your pricing strategy to avoid cutting into your profits.

Inventory management: Proper inventory management is essential for calculating estimated costs. Keep track of your inventory levels, minimize food waste, and regularly evaluate your menu to identify items that are not selling well.

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Opening a Bakery Checklist

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Controlling bakery expenses

Controlling bakery expenses is essential for long-term success. Here are some tips to help you manage your expenses effectively.

Budgeting: Develop a detailed budget that includes estimated costs for fixed and variable expenses. Refer to your budget regularly to ensure you stay on track and make adjustments when necessary.

Supplier relationships: Build strong relationships with your ingredient and supply vendors. Regularly review your contracts and negotiate better terms or discounts based on your business volume.

Automation and technology: Consider investing in baking equipment that can optimize productivity and help reduce labor costs. The same goes for utilizing a point of sale system (POS) that is integrated with online ordering, catering and events, inventory management, order tracking, and sales analysis to make data-informed decisions.

Waste reduction: Minimize food waste by accurately forecasting demand, monitoring expiration dates, and implementing portion control measures. Analyze waste trends to identify areas for improvement.

Training and cross-training: Well-trained employees can contribute to cost savings by increasing efficiency and reducing errors. Cross-train employees to be versatile, allowing for better scheduling and coverage during peak times.

Take control of bakery expenses to optimize for profitability

Running a successful bakery requires careful management of expenses to ensure profitability.

By understanding and optimizing both startup and ongoing bakery expenses, you can improve your bottom line. By budgeting, controlling ingredient costs, managing labor expenses, and implementing technology, you'll be well on your way to operating a financially successful bakery.

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DISCLAIMER: This information is provided for general informational purposes only, and publication does not constitute an endorsement. Toast does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of any information, text, graphics, links, or other items contained within this content. Toast does not guarantee you will achieve any specific results if you follow any advice herein. It may be advisable for you to consult with a professional such as a lawyer, accountant, or business advisor for advice specific to your situation.