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"Kazi ni Kazi." Popular Snack Businesses That Pay Well in the Streets of Kenya

Many people love taking snacks each and every day. Snacking has been part of our lifestyle for a long time now. In Kenya, we enjoy different snacks that are offered on our streets every day. These snacks have been sown into our culture and to some people, it is hard to live without having a piece of them.

It is therefore no surprise that these snacks have provided good business ideas for unemployed Kenyans. Snack businesses are the thing today, and they continue to take over SMEs and small establishments on our streets. Here are ten common snack businesses that pay well on Kenyan streets.

Boiled Eggs

Colloquially referred to as 'mayai pasua,' this snack has been on the Kenyan streets for a while now. Irresistibly delicious, boiled eggs are not only healthy but they also fetch traders good value for money.

One egg currently goes for Sh.30, with a serving of kachumbari, tomato or chilli sauce. It is a business worth starting. A set up capital of Sh. 10,000 is enough to get the business running.


Popularly called njugu karanga, groundnuts are good sources of protein. They have also been linked to providing men with sexual energy. A servng of groundnuts on the streets goes for as low as Sh10. It is a cash intensive business which can fetch great returns in popular residential areas. It can earn a trader as much as Sh.500 a day.

Roast Maize

Walking along the streets of your local town, it is hard to miss a vendor selling mahindi choma. Maize is the staple food of Kenya, it is therefore no wonder that roast maize is such a vibe. A maize roasting business is not expensive to start and maintain. It only calls for charcoal, a steady supply of green maize cobs and a strategic position for the business. Other vendors sell both boiled and roast maize.

Sesame seeds

Sesame seeds, or as many Kenyans call them I, is another delicious snack on Kenyan streets. However, a steady supply of sesame seeds is quite hard to find. Sesame seeds, tiny oil-rich seeds, are prepared and packaged into tiny balls sold for as low Shs.10. They rae rich n protein and have medicinal benefits. As a businessperson, once you get over this challenge, the business is well-paying.


Mutura is made by encasing a mixture of minced pieces of cow or goat meat, tripe, and cooled blood that's been flavored with onions, salt, pepper, and chili.

The sausage is then roasted over a charcoal stove until it achieves a golden brown. Very sweet and nutritious, mutura requires expert preparation and hygiene to keep customers coming. Profits vary on the number of customers.

Smokies and sausages

Besides boiled eggs, sausages and smokies are also great choices with sauce and kachumbari. Each goes for around Sh.30 but require a good setup capital. Another combnation that is popular is called smocha, which is a combination of smokies and chapitis.

Sugarcane and Sugarcane juice

For as low as Sh10, you can enjoy a piece of sugarcane on the street. With a capital of Sh.2000, a vendor can acquire a wheelbarrow and initial stock. It is a very cash intensive business which does well on the street. On the other hand, sugarcane juice is popular alingsde fruit juices. If you lik trying new drinks, it could be your best taste in a long time.


Samosas are usually sold alongside sausages and boiled eggs. There is also a variety, with samosas made of meat balls, green grams and potatoes.

Ice cream

On hot afternoons, ice creams serve to cool our throats from the hot air and scorching sun. A piece of ice can be sold for as low as Sh.10. It is a business that thrves around recreational areas like parks, beaches and swimming pools. A capital of Sh.1000 can set up the business, with the potential of growing.


Selling beverages has increasingly become popular, especially with the incoming cold weather. Hawkers selling tea, coffee, porridge etc are usually a common sight in the evenings and mornings. A cup of beverage goes for as low as Sh.10 and can fetch as much as Sh.500 per day. The beverages are sometimes sold alongside accompaniments like mandazi, chapati or cookies.

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