Fast food restaurants that accept EBT?! It’s true, folks. This is fresh from the fact-checker and fully updated for 2022! If you’ve ever wondered if you can use your EBT benefits at fast food restaurants, the answer is yes… but only in certain circumstances.
Since the option to offer a Restaurant Meal Program is left to the states, we’ve researched each state to find out if YOU can use your food stamps at local restaurants!
There are restaurants that accept EBT in all states!
Papa Murphy’s accepts EBT in all states! Most take-and-bake pizzerias accept EBT. They don’t actually count as “restaurants” because you have to take the food home to cook it! In some cases, some pizzerias will cook the take-and-bake pizza on site for an extra cash fee.
Starbucks locations within grocery stores may accept EBT. According to a Starbucks customer service representative, “Starbucks, as policy, does not accept food stamp cards for payment at its company-operated stores. However, some of our licensees, particularly those within grocery stores, may accept these for payment.” In late 2022, many in-store Starbucks franchises are updating their payment system to prevent these payments.
The Restaurant Meals Program allows restaurants to take EBT.
The Restaurant Meals Program is part of the federal food stamps law, but the federal government left it up to the states to decide whether or not to participate. As a result, only a few areas have fast food restaurants that accept EBT.
If you live in a participating area, you must meet program requirements in order to use your food stamps at restaurants. The Restaurant Meals Program is only offered to those who are unable to make their own meals at home because they are elderly, disabled and/or homeless.
That’s an important rule: you must be disabled, homeless, and/or elderly in order to purchase restaurant meals with EBT.
“What restaurants accept EBT near me?”
If you’ve tried to find fast food restaurants that accept EBT near you, look no further! We’ve found a list of all participating restaurants in all participating areas, and we’ve organized it alphabetically for your convenience.
It is important to note that because these are franchised restaurants, where even the same chain restaurant can be owned by different people, not all locations of the same restaurant will accept EBT cards. It is also important to call before you go to the location to make sure they have not recently changed their policies.
Alabama doesn’t offer the Restaurant Meals Program but they DO offer U-Pick Strawberry farms at certain locations, like Burks Farms in Fairview, AL. They also have, $5 spay/neuter pet surgeries, and dollar doubling programs at Farmers’ Markets in multiple locations.
Alaska offers museum discounts, Farmers’ Market Nutrition Programs for WIC and SNAP program members, as well as seniors and more. Unfortunately,.. but no Restaurant Meals Program.
Arizona offers the Double Up Food Bucks program for SNAP recipients when they use their EBT cards at participating Farmer’s Market locations. $1 spent with the EBT Quest card gains an extra $1 to spend on SNAP eligible fresh food and produce at the market.
Arizona also allows disabled, elderly, and homeless SNAP recipients to participate in the Restaurant Meals Program. These customers can use their EBT cards to purchase prepared meals at participating restaurants and retailers. It is important to note that only specific restaurants in specific locations participate in the Restaurant Meals Program, but don’t worry. We’ve got you covered.
As of June 2022, eligible clients can use your SNAP benefits at over 300 fast food restaurants in Arizona. Only certain locations participate, so it’s important to check this list to make sure the location near you is participating.
- 47 Ave Food Store Inc.
- Angies Lobster
- Blue Seas Express
- Burger King
- Burger Shoppe
- Butler Subway Cafe
- Captain Tony’s Pizza
- Carl’s Jr
- Chavelas Water and Ice Cream Eatery
- Chix N Mex
- Churchs Chicken 955
- Classic Cooking Academy
- Dairy Queen
- Diamond Creek Restaurant
- Domino’s Pizza
- Dorsey B’s Fish and Fixins
- Eat Fresh Mexican Food
- El Pollo Loco
- Fat Sub
- Figami Asian Fresh
- Firehouse Subs
- Harris & Smith Coffee Company
- Helpings Cafe and Market
- Hungry Howie’s
- Jack in the Box
- Jimmy and Joe’s Pizzeria
- Krispy Krunchy Chicken
- La Perla Sports Cantina
- Latino Restaurant
- Lenny’s Burger
- Love Hawaiian BBQ
- Maskadores Taco Shop
- NK Gyros
- Paradise Mexican Food
- Rags Real Chicken and Waffles
- Rally’s Hamburgers
- Senor Sushi
- Smoke Dem Bones BBQ
- Speedy Street Tacos
- Sue Soul Food Heaven
- Sylvia’s La Canasta
- Sylvia’s Off The Grill
- Taco Bell
- T and Y Hawaiian BBQ
- Tasty Box
- Uncle Sam’s
Arkansas allows you to use food stamps at farmers’ markets and community supported agriculture (CSA) programs, but not restaurants. Arkansas has the Double You Dollars program that allows you to get $2 worth of groceries for every $1 spent with your SNAP/EBT card at different Farmer’s market locations.
California has officially changed their Restaurant Meals Program to be statewide! Instead of each county deciding for themselves, the state has now streamlined the process into one statewide program. You can still find a county-by-county list of restaurants that accept EBT in California by clicking here!
Restaurants that accept EBT include:
- Burger King
- Carl’s Jr.
- Church’s Chicken
- Del Taco
- Domino’s Pizza
- Great Steaks
- Jamba Juice
- Pizza Hut
- and more!
Colorado offers some amazing discounts on museum admission (including a $10 per YEAR family membership to WOW! Children’s Museum) and other benefits… but they do not have any fast food restaurants that accept EBT.
Connecticut offers free and cheap museum admission deals and other benefits… but they do not offer the Restaurant Meals Program.
Delaware will give you a State Parks Pass for $10, pro bono legal services and other discounted memberships… but no fast food with your EBT card.
Florida offers admission to museums for free or $3. Discounted cell phone and internet service is also available. The limited version of the Restaurant Meals Program was only available to the homeless residents of Alachua county, but this program has since been discontinued.
Georgia invites you to explore free museums, enjoy organic food deliveries and more… but the state does not offer a Restaurant Meals Program.
Hawaii allows disabled, homeless or elderly SNAP recipients and their spouses can use their benefits at fast food restaurants that accept EBT. Information about this program is incredibly limited. I was only able to find a reference to it in this Hawaii.gov document.
Idaho does not offer a Restaurant Meals Program but they do offer other benefits, like discounted spay/neuter service, weatherization assistance and discounted museum programs!
Illinois has a Restaurant Meals Program that launched in late Spring 2022. This program is only active in Dewitt, Franklin and Cook Counties. Participating restaurants must be located in the 60619, 60620, 60628 and 60617 zip codes and meet other eligibility criteria. The program will continue to roll out in new areas over time. As of this update, they have not released a list of restaurants that accept EBT but you can view the flyer here.
Indiana offers lots of museum discounts, discounted YMCA memberships and more… but no Restaurant Meals Program. Instead, SNAP/WIC/EBT cardholders can use their card to shop at participating farmers’ markets.
Kansas will double your dollars at farmer’s markets, provide recreation scholarships and more… but they do not have any fast food restaurants that accept EBT.
Kentucky doesn’t offer the Restaurant Meals Program but they do have a Double Up Food Bucks, or Double Dollars, program at participating farmers markets that match your purchase dollar for dollar! They also provide a discounted museum experience!
Louisiana doesn’t have fast food restaurants that accept EBT through the Restaurant Meals Program, but they do offer museum discounts, CSA coop discounts and more!
Maine offers museum discounts, free farmer’s market produce via their Maine Harvest Bucks, and more to EBT card holders… but they don’t have fast food restaurants that accept EBT.
Maryland participates in the Restaurant Meals Program as of 2020! There are ongoing pilot programs in a few Maryland counties while they consider expanding the program statewide. The state is currently seeking more restaurants to participate and has not released any formal list.
Massachusetts is in the process of launching it’s new SNAP Restaurants Meals Program in 2022. Restaurants are invited to apply through August 31, 2022 and the program will be available to clients in late 2022. Massachusetts also has some excellent programs for EBT recipients! You can get a 50% discount on fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as discounts at over a dozen museums, participate in the Healthy Incentives Program and more!
Michigan previously discontinued their Restaurant Meals Program but has recently brought it back. There are currently three restaurants in the program so far and they are openly encouraging more restaurants to participate. Michigan also has the Double Up Food Bucks program that allow people who qualify for their Bridge Card to get double the fruits and vegetables up to $20 a day. You can still get more than 10 museum discounts (including FREE memberships to Great Lake’s Children’s Museum) and more!
Minnesota offers great museum discounts and discounted YMCA membership, but no fast food restaurants that accept EBT. Minnesota does, however, offer their Market Bucks program, which will match SNAP and EBT customers dollar for dollar (up to $10) from SNAP approved fruits and vegetables at participating farmers markets.
Mississippi doesn’t have fast food restaurants that accept EBT, but they do offer museum discounts and the Double Up Food Bucks program at participating farmers market and grocery store locations.
Missouri just passed legislation in May of 2022 that will allow them to build their own Restaurants Meals Program. This will allow seniors, disabled people, and homeless people to purchase hot food at fast food restaurants that accept EBT. There is no information on how this program will run or which restaurants will participate, but we will keep you posted. Missouri will also allow you to take free college classes and they have the Double Up Food Bucks program, which matches your purchase of vegetables and fruits up for $25.
Montana will double your money at community farms with their Double SNAP Dollars program, which will match your SNAP or EBT purchase (up to $30) of fresh fruits and vegetables at participating farmers’ markets. Montana will also, provide museum discounts and more… but they do not have fast food restaurants that accept EBT
Nebraska offers sliding-scale medical and dental services, free museum memberships and more! However, they do not have any fast food restaurants that accept EBT. They do have the Double Up Food Bucks Program for residents who receive SNAP benefits. This program will match your purchase of fresh fruits and vegetables double for double (up to $20) at participating farmers market locations.
Nevada Division of Welfare and Supportive Services states, “SNAP benefits can be used by the elderly and their spouses, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients and their spouses, and homeless households to purchase meals at approved restaurants, congregate eating sites, and from meals on wheels.”
However, we still have not been able to find a complete list of restaurants that accept EBT in Nevada. Nevada also does not have a well established Double Up Food Bucks program for SNAP and EBT cardholders.
New Hampshire can help you save money on your power bill, provide discount veterinary care and more… but they do not have any fast food restaurants that accept EBT. New Hampshire offers the Double Up Food Bucks program, where you can earn a dollar for every dollar spent (up to $10 per day) on fresh fruits and vegetables at participating retailers.
New Jersey can help EBT cardholders take care of their pets cheaper… but they do not have any fast food restaurants that accept EBT. What they do have are farmers market locations that participate in their Good Food Bucks program. This incredible program allows EBT and SNAP cardholders to get $1 for every dollar they spend on fresh fruits and vegetables with seemingly no limit to the amount your can buy.
New Mexico provides free museum memberships, Double Up Food Dollars programs and more… but no fast food restaurants that accept EBT
New York has passed a law in support of the Restaurant Meals Program as of November 2021. Restaurants are still invited to apply to participate in the program, but there has been no new news about when the program will fully be rolled out. This post will be updated when details become available. In the meantime, New York also has the Double Up Food Bucks, which can give you an extra dollar for every dollar you spend (up to $20) on fresh fruits and vegetables at participating locations.
North Carolina get free fishing licences and discounted museum entry… but NC doesn’t offer an RMP program.
North Dakota offers help with prescriptions, energy costs and more… but they won’t let you buy restaurant meals with that EBT card.
Ohio offers discounts at nearly a dozen museums, YMCA discounts and more… but no restaurants that accept EBT.
Oklahoma offers other EBT benefits but no fast food or restaurant purchases.
Oregon has some of the best EBT benefits we’ve found. They’ll even let you book concert tickets for $5! however, they still won’t let you use your food stamps at restaurants.
Pennsylvania offers EBT cardholders dozens of museum discounts. They even have discounts for minigolf and carousels! Unfortunately, they still won’t let you buy restaurant meals with your food stamps card.
Rhode Island residents who are age 60+, disabled or homeless (living in a shelter, halfway house, or even staying temporarily with someone else) can use their EBT benefits at certain participating restaurants.
In 2022, the list of Rhode Island fast food restaurants that accept EBT include 10 Subway locations at the following addresses:
- 962 Cranston Street, Cranston
- 719 Westminster Street, Providence
- 583 Elmwood Avenue, Providence
- 579 Atwells Avenue, Providence
- 2 Kennedy Plaza, Providence
- 614 Pawtucket Avenue, Pawtucket
- 483 Clinton Street, Woonsocket
- 310 Broad Street, Central Falls 2
- 58 Post Road (Walmart), Westerly
South Carolina offers $2 tickets to the Philharmonic, museum discounts and other deals… but no restaurant meals program.
South Dakota offers museum discounts, free u-pick strawberries and potentially even property tax discounts for EBT cardholders! Unfortunately, they do not authorize restaurant purchases for food stamps.
Tennessee offers some great deals with your EBT card, including a $25 per year family membership to Adventure Science Center in Nashville! However, they won’t let you use your food stamps to buy food at restaurants.
Texas offers discounts at Houston Zoo and five other venues with your EBT card. Although they have other perks, they do not offer a RMP.
Utah doesn’t offer a Restaurant Meals Program but they do offer museum discounts and other perks to those with EBT cards!
Vermont offers seasonal fuel assistance and other benefits to those with EBT cards… but they do not have a restaurant meals program.
Virginia has adopted the Restaurant Meals Program as well!
In a memo from the Virginia Department of Social Services dated July 2021, it was revealed that “Virginia SNAP households that include at least one member who are 60 or older, permanently disabled or experiencing homelessness would have the ability to purchase prepared meals using their Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card at approved restaurants.”
It is not clear if this program has officially launched. It appears that the state is still looking to hire a program coordinator (as of October 2021) and I cannot find a participating state list yet.
Washington has many discounted museums. Take-and-bake restaurants like Leonardi’s and Figaro’s will bake your pizzas for you for an extra non-EBT dollar. However, no other restaurants are authorized.
West Virginia EBT cardholders can visit Spark! Imagination and Science Center for FREE and enjoy other benefits… but they can’t buy food at restaurants.
Wisconsin has great museum discounts, CSA programs and other deals… but no RMP.
Wyoming has some epic farmer’s markets programs that will double your money and even give your children free money to spend! However, they don’t have any fast food restaurants that accept EBT.
Can EBT be used at Restaurants?
Usually, EBT cannot be used at restaurants unless your state participates in the Restaurant Meals Program. According to the USDA, “You cannot use your Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card at restaurants to purchase hot food or food intended for immediate consumption unless your State participates in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Restaurant Meals Program (RMP) that serves the elderly, disabled and/or homeless and you are part of this target population.”
What is the purpose of the Restaurant Meals Program?
The United States Department of Agriculture has reached out to me personally about this article. They confirmed that there are fast food restaurants that accept EBT but they want to stress the purpose of this program.
(The) Restaurant Meal Program has been an option for states — state run, state contracted, state administered — since the 1977 Food Stamp Act. The decision to establish a restaurant meal program is made entirely at the state level.Aaron Lavallee, communications coordinator for the USDA Office of Communications
Most importantly, the ONLY people who qualify are the elderly, disabled, and homeless, as this provision is intended to assist people who are unable to prepare meals at home or in a traditional kitchen setting.
Since 1977 the decision to establish a restaurant meal program has been made by only a handful of states and because of this participation is very low.
How can I bring this program to my area?
If you would like to see fast food restaurants that accept EBT in your area, contact your local lawmakers! You can easily find your elected officials on USA.gov. As we said before, this option has been available to states since 1977 but is very rarely used.
To help you, we’ve drafted a sample message below. You can copy and paste it, if you’d like – just be sure to change the names!
Dear [Elected Official],
Since 1977, the federal Food Stamp Act has given states the ability to enact the Restaurant Meals Program. This program allows vulnerable and at-risk populations, such as the homeless and elderly, who cannot cook meals for themselves at home. Through this program, these specific, qualifying individuals are allowed to use their food benefits to purchase affordable meals at select restaurants such as Subway. For more information about this program, you can visit LowIncomeRelief.com (https://lowincomerelief.com/fast-food-restaurants-ebt/).
This program has been successfully adopted in Arizona, California, Florida, Hawaii, Michigan, and Rhode Island. However, it is not yet available in our state.
Please take action to introduce the Restaurant Meals Program in our state.
Keep me posted about any responses you receive! I’d love to see fast food restaurants that accept EBT in all states for those who need them!