Does Mcdonald’s Take Ebt? (how It Works, Locations + More)

People who are on EBT might be looking for some fast-food options and wondering if McDonalds accepts EBT as a form of payment.

Below, below you will find the answer to your questions about McDonald’s and EBT!

Does McDonald’s Take EBT In 2022?

McDonald’s provides a restaurant meal program in some U.S. states in order to provide free food for those who otherwise would have to spend their benefit on food. The program may be available only to those who receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and/or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. In other states, the restaurant meal program is available to everyone who qualifies.

However, this can get complicated when you want to make the choice of whether or not to take cash or to use EBT.

Does EBT Work at McDonald’s?

You can only use your EBT cards for the purchase of food in certain states and there are some exemptions but it is best to check with your state to see where your can use your EBT card.

Because the program is only available to those that are homeless, disabled or elderly and need assistance obtaining food, it is not available to those who are not homeless, disabled or elderly.

Currently, only Arizona and California have the fully implemented Restaurant Meals Program. Florida and Rhode Island have a reduced meal program in place. Other states are still looking into the idea.

Can You Use TANF Benefits to Purchase McDonald’s?

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), which is the federal program we use to help those in need of cash assistance, can be used to purchase food at McDonald’s.

I can’t remember but it feels like I’ve been given a bit more money than my friends because the state gives extra to us.

Withdraw money from an ATM to the nearest grocery store to feed yourself, as well as pay for your rent or even buy fast food.

What Forms of Payment Does McDonald’s Take?

McDonald’s offers various payment options to their customers. The following are just a few to choose from: cash, Arch gift cards, Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover cards.

McDonald’s allows you to make payments with Apple Pay using the app.
McDonald’s allows you to make payments with Google Pay using the app.

What Can SNAP EBT Benefits Be Used to Purchase?

While you cannot use your SNAP EBT card at McDonalds they will still accept them. They are helpful to purchase authorized food items from variety of stores including:

The government is also in talks with other food retailers including the Big Mac’s chain of fast food restaurants.

What Can’t You Purchase With a SNAP-Only EBT Card?

Alcohol, animal fur, body piercings, cigarettes, fireworks, guns and ammunition, tobacco, and weapons.

Where Can You Use Your EBT Card?

A variety of quick-service and fast-food restaurants are not allowed through SNAP EBT, but there are a number of grocery stores that you can purchase food from with EBT benefits.

You can add items to your own FoodShare box by using a debit or credit card and shopping at a retail store that allows you to use your EBT card.

Can You Use EBT at Any Fast-Food Restaurants?

Unfortunately, your bank cannot use your EBT card to make purchases anywhere unless your state participates in the Electronic Benefits Transfers Program.

In a statement to Business Insider, a McDonald’s spokesman explained that it does not take SNAP benefits because they have a “longstanding program with the USDA that prohibits us from accepting SNAP benefits at McDonald’s restaurants” and that the company is “committed to supporting food assistance programs like SNAP.”

The article quotes many other fast food restaurants that do not accept SNAP benefits.

It’s always a good idea to check the rules for EBT in the state where you live, since each state sets their guidelines for which EBT assistance program that is offered.

Who Qualifies for EBT?

The rules on who qualifies for EBT vary a little bit by state, but generally speaking, anyone that is living within 100% to 130% poverty level and is a legal immigrant, asylum seeker, American citizen, or refugee can sign up. Most of the states are only giving food stamps to families and not individuals, but they can still be eligible for public housing as well.

If you qualify for benefits, how many months you qualify for depends on various factors like income, household size, and household composition.

The government determines your eligibility and your taxes for you, and if it finds that your status has changed, it will send you a tax letter and give you an opportunity to correct the situation.

EBT food stamps or “welfare” in the United States are really the modern equivalent of the breadline, and those who are hungry and not able to provide for themselves are the people who get that handout at the grocery store.

If you want to know about the next steps of the program, you can check out this article about how the government is moving forward with it, and this article about how EBT has been extended to the restaurant industry.


It’s generally prohibited for an individual to purchase food items using SNAP benefits. However, if you receive benefits through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), you can often use them at a McDonald’s or fast food restaurant.

If you are getting cash through TANF then you could go to an ATM and get cash. It would allow you to get fast-food.

The new rules require the restaurants to let people in to the food court regardless of their citizenship. They are only allowed to stay about thirty minutes and can only order food from the McDonald’s, Burger King, Pizza Hut or KFC.

In order to have the most affordable and effective approach to helping our community, the program operates under the assumption that the current meals programs have been a success.

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I have always been a shopaholic. A lot of times my questions went unanswered when it came to retail questions, so I started Talk Radio News. - Caitlyn Johnson

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