Can You Use EBT at Taco Bell? Restaurants That Accept SNAP
The information in this article is current as of February 9, 2022.
If you participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), you may be wondering if Taco Bell accepts your Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card.
Using your EBT card at Taco Bell depends on where you live and if you’re eligible. Taco Bell takes EBT at specific locations in Arizona as part of SNAP’s Restaurant Meals Program (RMP).
This article takes a closer look at which fast-food restaurants—like Taco Bell, McDonald’s, KFC, Subway, and more—accept EBT.
Additionally, SNAP participants can now purchase eligible groceries with their EBT card online at stores such as Aldi, Amazon, BJ’s Wholesale Club, Stop & Shop, and Walmart due to the pandemic.
What Is SNAP’s Restaurant Meals Program (RMP)?
The first thing you need to know is that SNAP’s Restaurant Meals Program is a state-run program. The pandemic forced the government to make a lot of changes. As of February 2022, only a few states and counties allow eligible SNAP participants to purchase food at restaurants. Hopefully, more states will continue to get involved.
Cooking and preparing food can be very challenging for some people. As a result, hunger is a severe problem in America. SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) helps 9.5 million families and children to buy food.
Not everyone has a full kitchen or the proper cooking utensils and food prep tools. Depending on your situation, preparing a meal might not be possible. For example, some folks may not have access to hot water or a stove.
What if you have a disability or painful arthritis that makes it harder to cook for yourself? That’s why the Restaurant Meals Program is so important.
The goal of the RMP is to allow qualifying SNAP recipients to purchase hot food, prepared food, or “food intended for immediate consumption.” This lets folks use their EBT cards to buy items such as rotisserie chickens, sandwiches from delis, and food from participating restaurants.
EBT benefits can also be used by SNAP households experiencing homelessness. In addition, the program allows you to purchase meals at a discounted price from restaurants participating in the RMP.
Which States Participate in the Restaurant Meals Program (RMP)?
Depending on the state or county you’re in, your EBT card can be used at certain restaurants. Your state and county must participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Restaurant Meals Program (RMP).
As of February 2022, the states that actively participate are:
- California counties participate in the Restaurant Meals Program:
- Alameda County
- Fresno County
- Los Angeles County
- Mariposa County
- Monterey County
- Orange County
- Riverside County
- Sacramento County
- San Diego County
- San Francisco County
- San Luis Obispo County
- Santa Clara County
- Santa Cruz County
- Siskiyou County
- Tehama County
- Illinois counties participating in the Restaurant Meals Program:
- Dewitt County
- Franklin County
- Cook County
- *Zipcode areas include 60619, 60620, 60628, and 60617
- Rhode Island
New York is working to gain acceptance into the program. So, stay tuned if you live in those states and are a SNAP recipient!
Who Is Eligible for the SNAP Restaurant Meals Program?
Check with your state’s requirements, but typically, the Restaurant Meals Program serves qualified SNAP recipients in participating states or counties who meet one of the following criteria:
- Are experiencing homelessness and does not have a fixed or regular nighttime residence
- Are age 60 or older- this can include spouses, or
- Are disabled – this can include the spouse of the disabled individual if the two are the only SNAP participants
Which Fast Food Restaurants Take EBT?
Take and bake pizzas are available for purchase with an EBT card at most Papa Murphy’s restaurants. Papa Murphy’s can be found in 37 states.
According to Papa Murphy’s website, “The majority of our independently owned franchises are set up to accept SNAP EBT as a form of in-store payment. Currently, like most retailers, we are unable to accept SNAP EBT for online purchases, but we hope this program expands so that it’s an option in the future.”
Many convenience stores such as 7-11, Sheetz, Wawa, and more accept EBT. Check this helpful SNAP Retail Locator to find participating restaurants or stores near you.
From Hungry Howie’s to various Taco Bell locations in Mesa and Phoenix, the state of Arizona has an abundance of popular fast-food restaurants that accept EBT. This document includes an extensive list last updated in September of 2021.
To purchase meals, EBT recipients are to do the following.
- Look for participating restaurants displaying the official Restaurant Meals sign on restaurant doors or windows. Ask their Eligibility Worker for a list of participating restaurants.
- Purchase breakfast, lunch, and dinner from participating restaurants using their Golden State Advantage (EBT) card.
- Get a receipt for each meal purchase showing the meal cost and Golden State Advantage (EBT) CalFresh benefits account balance.
More than 1,500 restaurants In Los Angeles County participate, including many chain restaurants. However, not all locations accept EBT. So be sure to check here before taking the time to visit.
- Burger King
- Carl’s Jr
- Del Taco
- Domino’s Pizza
- Jack in the Box
- Kentucky Fried Chicken or KFC
- Papa John’s
- Pizza Hut
- Popeye’s Chicken
- Wing Stop
Maryland is new to the Restaurant Meals Program and still ramping up its participating restaurants. Visit the state’s official website for the latest updates.
Like Maryland, Michigan is also working on getting its list of restaurants ready for eligible EBT cardholders. But, again, check the state’s official website for details.
Those who qualify in Rhode Island can look for the “Fork & Knife” logo displayed on restaurant doors or windows. This indicates that EBT is welcome for purchases.
As of December 2021, Federal Hill Pizza Restaurant in Providence, along with the following Subway restaurant locations, participate in the RMP program:
- 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
- 258 Post Road (Walmart), Westerly
Take and bake pizzas are available for purchase with an EBT card at Papa Murphy’s in Newport News. Specific Subway locations may also accept EBT. Currently, there aren’t many details about Virginia’s RMP. Check the Virginia Department of Social Services website for more information.
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