Selling Hot Tamales
By Eric Hammer
Ever heard the term "theyre selling like hot tamales?"
Whether you have or you havent, its undeniable that
hot tamales are a big business in the United States. The wraps,
made from a kind of corn husk and filled with a variety of different
fillings are cheap and easy to eat. They are also popular with
Americans who enjoy spicy and or Mexican food meaning that they
can be sold to lots of people.
Those who are most successful selling hot tamales do so with
their own family recipes which they keep a closely guarded secret.
However, it is also possible to sell ready made hot tamales which
are frozen and then reheated by you, either in a truck you sell
them out of or even door to door at offices.
In fact, one of the most popular ways to get started selling
hot tamales is to make them at home and then bring them to offices
during lunch hour, where you can sell them to people in the office.
If you do this on a very small scale, i.e. as a side business
where you sell them to coworkers, you can usually get away without
any licensing (though you do open yourself to the risk of a lawsuit
if someone gets sick eating one). However, in general, youll
need to get the right licenses to do this.
How Much Can You Make?
Hot tamales tend to sell like, well, hot tamales. They are
a popular food and relatively inexpensive to prepare. Most places
that sell them charge about one or two dollars a piece for the
tamales and they sell several hundred a day at the minimum. Keep
in mind however that this is a gross sales figure, not a net
income figure. You have to figure in the cost of making them,
transporting them and paying for licenses, taxes and all the
other things that go with running a business.
If you are very successful, you can expect to make a good
living from it (some people who started small now run networks
of stands where their hot tamales are sold and have become millionaires
from it), however for most people this is either a middle class
living or just barely a living.
Ways to Make More | Related Opportunities
Other foods go naturally with the sale of hot tamales. Consider
selling soft drinks, tacos, salsa, guacamole and all manner of
other Mexican style foods as part of your business.
If hot tamales are not your thing but the idea of selling
food on the street or at offices appeals to you, think about
something you do enjoy making that you could sell. Its
just as easy for example to start a business selling sushi or
roast beef sandwiches as it is to start a business selling hot
Another great idea when trying to differentiate yourself in
selling hot tamales is to look into obtaining certification from
various groups. For example, you may want to try selling organic
hot tamales and obtain certification for selling organically.
Or you can sell kosher or halal hot tamales, thus ensuring an
audience with observant Jews or Muslims who will not have many
other options if they want to eat hot tamales (note: neither
Jews nor Muslims eat pork, so pork filled hot tamales will be
out of the question if you go this route).
Qualifications / Requirements
It goes without saying that youll need to know how to
make hot tamales. Or, at the very least youll need to know
where to purchase them wholesale and then have the equipment
to reheat them. Youll also want to obtain a food handlers
license as well as insurance against liability in case someone
gets sick from eating your food.
Keep in mind as well that you will need to arrange for city
and state tax licenses for a business and you will have to collect
sales tax (or figure the sales tax into your price).
Start by scouting locations to sell the tamales. Think about
where there are lots of offices. These may be a good place to
start selling your hot tamales as many office workers will find
them to be a great food to eat quickly before they rush back
to the office. If you work in an office, start small by making
some and offering them for sale at the office. See if your coworkers
enjoy them. Then you can move on to selling to others.
eHow: How to Sell Hot Tamales exactly
what it sounds like, this article offers some good, practical
advice on getting into the business.
New America Media: Selling Hot Tamales is a Thriving
Business in Los Angeles More encouragement than practical
advice, this article tells you why hot tamales are selling like
Texas Tamale Warehouse If you dont know how
to make hot tamales or you dont want to be bothered but
do want to sell them, consider buying them from this wholesaler.