Does McDonald’s Take EBT/ Food Stamps? (FAQs+Locations)

Does McDonald's Take EBT

McDonald’s offers some of the most beloved food items. And that raises questions about some specific payment methods.

For instance, food stamps and EBT cards are eligible for food items. The question comes because this option is available for food and groceries.

But does McDonald’s take EBT? Here is a detailed guide on this subject to answer all your questions!

Does McDonald’s Take EBT/ Food Stamps?

Unfortunately, most McDonald’s locations do not take EBT cards or food stamps as of 2023. 

SNAP benefits are limited to only a few essential food items. That includes dairy products, grains, nutritious cereals, snacks, etc.

It is not under the SNAP program to cover fast foods. That is why most McDonald’s items are not eligible.

However, some locations do allow this payment method in which the state participates in the Restaurant Meals Program (RMP). You can use an EBT card to pay for a few items at McDonald’s.

Can I Use EBT Cash Benefits at McDonald’s?

No, you can not use your cash benefits on most items at McDonald’s.

SNAP benefits are only allowed at McDonald’s if you are part of RMP or TANF programs.

What are these? Well, RMP is the Restaurant Meals Program. It is for disabled, older, and homeless people to get quality food.

The TANF is the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. As the name suggests, this program is for a limited period to assist families with financial issues. It is eligible for pregnant women and children under 18 years of age.

You can only avail of EBT/SNAP benefits if you are part of any of these 2 programs.

What McDonald’s Locations Take EBT?

You can only use an EBT card at McDonald’s locations in Arizona and California.

Not even all locations in these two states allow SNAP benefits. It is better to contact your nearest McDonald’s diner beforehand.

Generally, this payment method is only available for in-store purchases. That means you can not use it on the McDonald’s application.

That said, here is a list of McDonald’s that accept EBT in California:

  • Alameda
  • Los Angeles
  • Santa Cruz
  • Orange
  • Monterey
  • Riverside
  • Tehama
  • Sacramento
  • Fresno
  • Siskiyou
  • Santa Clara
  • Mariposa
  • San Diego
  • San Luis Obispo

Here is a list of McDonald’s that take EBT in Arizona:

  • Globe
  • Gilbert
  • Show Low
  • Avondale
  • Safford
  • Bullhead City
  • Holbrook
  • Chandler
  • Quartzsite
  • Cave Creek
  • Glendale
  • Phoenix
  • Mesa
  • Snowflake
  • Pinetop
  • Parker
  • Fort Mohave
  • Maricopa
  • El Mirage
  • Tuba City
  • Kayenta
  • Lake Havasu
  • Kingman
  • Scottsdale
  • Payson
  • Tempe
  • Springerville
  • Winslow
  • Surprise
  • Window Rock
  • Tucson

Does McDonald’s Drive-thru Take EBT?

Only a select McDonald’s drive-thrus takes EBT in California and Arizona.

We have mentioned the list of counties accepting SNAP benefits in Arizona and California. Only these 2 states accept EBT as a payment option in McDonald’s.

If they accept SNAP benefits in-store, the high chances are that they will take it at drive-thrus, too.

But you can also reach out to your nearest drive-thru. It will give you a clear idea of whether they allow EBT.

Does McDonald’s Accept Food Stamps?

McDonald’s only accepts food stamps in select states.

Food stamps are the same as SNAP benefits. They are not accepted in all states for fast food. Arizona, California, Virginia, Michigan, and Maryland are some states that take food stamps.

Some McDonald’s locations in Rhode Island and Illinois will also take this payment option. But it can vary depending on where you live.

Does McDonald's accept Food Stamps

What Food Can You Buy at McDonald’s With Food Stamps?

You can buy only a few items at McDonald’s, including bread, soft energy drinks, protein shakes, and cold sandwiches.

The SNAP program does not allow buying items that are hot at the point of sale. Hence, most part of the McDonald’s menu is excluded by this eligibility point. You can still buy:

  • Cold Sandwiches
  • Salads
  • Ice Cream
  • Cookies
  • Brownies
  • Soft energy drinks and beverages (Pepsi and Red Bull)
  • Protein Shakes
  • Yogurt
  • Cheese
  • Filtered Water
  • Crushed Ice
  • Protein Shakes
  • Fruits
  • Cereals
  • Bread

What Food Can’t You Buy at McDonald’s With Food Stamps?

You can not buy any hot item, including burgers, at McDonald’s with food stamps.

Other than the products mentioned in the previous section, all other items are not eligible for SNAP at McDonald’s. SNAP strictly excludes hot items from its program.

Additionally, you can not buy cleaning supplies, pet food, alcoholic beverages, medicines, and tobacco with food stamps.

Are There Any Fees for Using Food Stamps at McDonald’s?

Luckily, there is no additional fee for using food stamps at McDonald’s.

It is important to note that this payment method is not available at most McDonald’s eateries. The ones that do allow it only take it for limited items.

So, there are no extra charges for using food stamps at McDonald’s.

Does McDonald’s Accept TANF Benefits?

Yes, McDonald’s accepts TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) benefits.

However, one must have a registered card. That is only awarded if you are completely eligible for the program. This assistance is for pregnant women and children under 18.

You can read all about the program and its benefits on the government’s website. In short, it is accepted at most McDonald’s locations.

Check the following blogs for more EBT queries:

To Wrap Up

And that brings us to the end of this detailed guide on food stamps and EBT at McDonald’s.

Although this payment method is not available in most fast-food locations, you can still use it in some states. We have mentioned all the names in this guide to help you pick a McDonald’s near you.

To make it easier, you can search on the internet for “McDonald’s near you.” It will help you find the nearest location to your address.

Furthermore, you can contact the nearest restaurant to ask whether they take food stamps or not. If they do, it’s good for you, as you can make the most of your EBT card.

Annie Rondeau
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I'm Annie Rondeau, a writer and content creator for QueryBoomer, where I specialize in providing insightful reviews about brands, stores, products, and retailers. Whether you're searching for information on the latest trends, products, or companies, my articles are the go-to resource for accurate and reliable information. I hope you find my content helpful in your quest for information about brands and products.

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