How To Start An LLC For Catering Business? Free Guide 2023

How To Start An LLC For Catering Business (1)
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You started your catering business to provide delicious food with fresh ingredients at weddings, professional events, and other services. But this business requires financial planning as well as clients to serve. That’s why you may be interested in forming a catering LLC.

But how do you start a catering LLC? What kind of expenses are involved? And how will becoming a catering LLC impact employees and customers? We created this guide to answer those questions and more.

Keep reading to learn how to form your catering LLC by the time your next wedding, brunch, reception, or professional service venue contract arrives.

Read More: Best Registered Agent Services 2023

What Is An LLC For A Catering Business?

A catering LLC  is one way to structure your business as a caterer and owner. It’s an alternative to sole proprietorships and corporations that may help you save money while you protect your employees and yourself from legal liability.

You can form a catering LLC regardless of the events that you’ve served most often. You don’t need a full commercial kitchen or event employees in order to create this business structure, either. We’ll tell you more about the expectations you should have as a caterer and owner before starting a catering LLC throughout the rest of this guide.

Pros & Cons Of Using An LLC For Catering Business


Turning your catering business into a catering LLC can bring numerous benefits to your company. For example, your catering LLC will protect your personal money and assets from financial seizure if the company fails. You’ll be able to continue serving guests at anniversaries and house parties without having to worry about putting your personal funds at risk.

Forming a catering LLC could also bring some tax benefits and flexibilities to your business that may help you access more services for businesses and serve your customers more effectively without going overboard on costs.

Finally, creating a catering LLC should also help increase the credibility of your business. Whether it’s right or wrong, many clients look will look at your site to see if you have an official business before hiring you. Forming a catering LLC can satisfy that inquiry and may help you get hired for more weddings, services, and other business events that can lead to lasting relationships.


Forming a catering LLC can be a smart way to enhance your business and gain more liability protection before your next event, such as a wedding reception, insurance conference, or community party. But there are some downsides you should be aware of.

Most importantly, forming a catering LLC will cost money. You will have to pay a filing fee and potentially annual service fees as well, which may leave you with less to spend on food, events, service workers, and meals, in general.

Turning your passion business into an LLC that you’re the owner of may also make it more difficult to prepare structural changes to the business. For example, if a family member wants to specialize in a certain role or leaves the catering LLC, you may need to hire professional services to ensure the process is handled correctly without putting your job or rent funds at risk.

Should You Start An LLC For Your Catering Business?

How To Start An LLC For Catering Business (2)

Choosing the right business structure can be important as the food and fresh ingredients you serve a wedding or other catering event. So, should your service evolve into a catering LLC?

The answer depends on whether the benefits you’re creating are worth the costs that you pay for them. For most family and non-family catering companies, the costs of having an LLC prepared typically will be worth paying.

LLCs give you more financial protection so you can focus on your delicious food and event planning service instead of worrying about liability. You also typically get enhanced credibility when forming a catering LLC, which could help you get hired for the next wedding, service, or eating event.

LLCs usually only cost a few hundred dollars at most to create and your annual fees will often be minimal as well. You’ll have less to spend on supplies and every plate that your guests eat at the venue, to be sure, but the cost will likely be less than the price of basic appetizers or a few rolls and decor on your menu.

How To Start An LLC Catering Business

When designing a homemade plate from scratch, you have a lot to think about. Will my guests like the chicken? What complements it? Will any guest request a specialty menu?

Starting an LLC is much easier than all that. If you can cater a meal and serve great food at a catering event, you should have no problem forming this type of business structure.

To do so, you should follow these steps:

  • Go to your secretary of state’s website to find the LLC formation form
  • Fill out the form with your life and business details, then pay the required filing fee and submit it to the state
  • Wait for the delivery to take place then forward any additional requested documents to the state
  • That’s it! Once you have approval, your LLC will be formed. You may just need to continue paying annual fees to keep it active after being served with the completed paperwork.

That being said, you may still want to consider hiring a professional service that can forward the right forms to you and help you complete them. There’s more information on that in the next section.

Top 2 LLC Services

Hiring a professional service will give you support with the LLC formation process. That way, you can focus on serving food at your next catering event instead of trying to figure out things like business insurance while planning the meal that your guests will eat or getting an employee to set up the venue.

If you’d rather focus on serving chicken and putting together appetizers for brunch than forming an LLC, these two companies may be worth considering.

ZenBusinessNorthwest Registered Agent
AwardBest OverallMost Affordable
Price$0 – $299 + state filing fees$0 – $225 + state filing fees
DetailRead Review Read Review

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ZenBusiness specializes in LLC formation just like you specialize in creating the perfect homemade menu for your next guest or house party. They do it all so you can focus on your catering job. You can even get help with things like taxes, accounting, and insurance when you use ZenBusiness.

Northwest Registered Agent

Northwest Registered Agent is another solid option that you can use to form a new LLC catering business. They charge a bit less than ZenBusiness for most catering LLC formation packages but don’t quite offer as many services. It’s like a catering company that has great food and an affordable price but less of it on the plate than what ZenBusiness offers.

How To Maximize Benefits For An LLC Catering Business

Using a professional service is never a bad idea if you want to maximize your LLC catering business benefits. These services give you step-by-step assistance and provide ongoing business support after the LLC is made to make your job easier.

It will also be important to think carefully about your new LLC’s structure, just like you’d think carefully about when to place one guest next to a different guest. It can be hard to change your LLC’s ownership once you set it up, so be sure to think critically about it before proceeding.

Finally, it may also be a good idea to prominently display the fact that you have an LLC in your marketing material. People want to buy food from business entities they feel are reputable. Although you’re the same person whether you have an LLC or not, the extra distinction could help to potentially convince a few event organizers to choose your catering company over one of the alternatives they’re looking at.

Final Thoughts

If you run a catering business, you want to be able t focus on your food and event preparation. When you’re planning what to serve to a picky guest at a wedding, you don’t also want to be thinking about how to cater to the perfect business structure.

That’s why hiring a professional service can be so valuable. They allow you to focus on your next meal and the guests eating it instead of worrying about finding the perfect structure for your goals, employee, and community.

But it’s also easy enough to start one of these businesses on your own if you feel like you can add that task to your plate. Our website has many state-specific LLC formation guides that you can follow if you want step-by-step instructions unique to your situation.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a catering LLC?

A catering LLC is a specific type of business structure that you can use to run your business. It’s an alternative to sole proprietorships and corporations that could offer the right benefits for your goals.

Should I form a catering LLC?

That answer depends on how highly you associate the benefits of having an LLC. You will have to pay your state a one-time filing fee and, probably, ongoing annual fees, which can be as high as a few hundred dollars. If that’s too much for your plate, then another option may be a better alternative.

What are the benefits of an LLC for a catering company?

Forming an LLC gives you personal liability protection while running your business. If your food makes someone sick of your guest has a meal that doesn’t agree with them, you won’t be held personally liable in the event that the business fails as a result.

Do I need insurance after forming an LLC?

It’s always a good idea to have insurance when running a food business. But there are no specific insurance requirements for LLCs that differ from other structures.

How much does it cost to turn my catering business into an LLC?

The answer depends on the state you’re filing in. Each state sets its own prices for LLC formation filing fees and ongoing annual fees. But these are almost always going to be under a few hundred dollars each.



Bizreport - Kellan Jansen
Kellan Jansen, BA
Business Writer
Kellan works with businesses of all sizes to help them achieve their growth goals and has won several awards for his work in the space. He is especially focused on the fields of business finance and the developing cryptocurrency industry, regularly writing about both for audiences across the globe.


Kristina Knight-1
Kristina Knight, Journalist , BA
Content Writer & Editor
Kristina Knight is a freelance writer with more than 15 years of experience writing on varied topics. Kristina’s focus for the past 10 years has been the small business, online marketing, and banking sectors, however, she keeps things interesting by writing about her experiences as an adoptive mom, parenting, and education issues. Kristina’s work has appeared with, NBC News,, DisasterNewsNetwork, and many more publications.

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  1. U.S. Small Business Administration. Choose a business structure. Choose a business structure. Published 2022. Accessed May 17, 2023.
  2. IRS. Limited Liability Company LLC | Internal Revenue Service. Published 2019. Accessed May 17, 2023.
  3. Homepage. ZenBusiness Inc. Accessed May 17, 2023.
  4. Registered Agent | Corporate Guides | NW Registered Agent. Northwest Registered Agent. Accessed May 17, 2023.



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