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Which Restaurants Accept EBT in California?

Which Restaurants Accept EBT in California

Are you searching for a way to make your EBT payments work for you?

These benefits are designed to help low-come families make their budgets stretch further. They are intended to allow people to purchase basic grocery staples like milk and bread.

However, there are sure to be times when you simply don’t have the time to cook a full meal. However, finding a restaurant where you can use your electronic benefit transfer card can sometimes be a challenge. 

However, it can be done, so let’s find out which restaurants accept EBT in California.

About the CalFresh Restaurant Meals Program

This program is designed to give people living below the poverty line access to fresh and tasty food. People who qualify are issued a card, which can be used to purchase food from participating restaurants. This is ideal for people who are unable to prepare and cook their own meals for various reasons.

Addressing hunger…

The Restaurant Meals Program is designed to help people who may be at high risk of chronic hunger. CalFresh EBT cards are issued to eligible people, and these cards can be used at authorized restaurants. This helps to ensure that people who are unable to prepare food or don’t have appliances can receive support. 

Initially, the Restaurant Meals Program was launched in 1978 to help elderly and disabled people who qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. These SNAP benefits are usually used to purchase and prepare groceries from supermarkets. However, the Restaurant Meals Program provides additional support for people who are unable to do this. 

Eligible people include those who are:

  • Homeless
  • Aged sixty or over
  • Disabled
  • The spouse of a qualifying person

Participating Restaurant Chains

CalFresh Food benefits can be used at any of the participating eateries in California. And even if you are just visiting California alone or with your family, you can still use your card.

Here are some of the major chains where you can use your card to purchase food. 

Burger King 

This popular fast-food chain boasts branches all over the state. The burger chain runs regular promotions, which can make benefits stretch further. While the menu is mainly focused on burgers and fries, there are also options for vegetarians. 

Burger King 


This chain makes it easy for people on benefits to still eat relatively healthily. Subway offers salads, wraps, and freshly prepared sandwiches. Plus, the Sub of the Day promotion helps to make budgets stretch just a little further. Customers can choose to pack salad onto their subs to make them extra filling and nutritious

Taco Bell 

This Mexican-inspired fast food chain was launched in California, and there are numerous locations across the state. EBT cardholders can take advantage of a wide range of tasty and hearty meals here. Additionally, there are plenty of options for people with dietary restrictions, and it is possible to order extra vegetables. 


This fried chicken fast food restaurant offers fried chicken buckets designed to feed a whole family. There are also special deals to take advantage of to make budgets go further. Side dishes like mashed potato and coleslaw are very filling and help to balance out the fried chicken and sandwiches. 

Domino’s Pizza 

This popular pizza chain often offers buy-one-get-one-free deals. And one of the great things about pizza is that the leftovers can be enjoyed the next day. There are numerous toppings to choose from, as well as side dishes and other options. 

Domino’s Pizza

Jack in the Box 

This is one of the oldest fast-food chains in the United States, and all branches accept EBT. Jack in the Box is famous for putting a unique spin on classic fast food favorites like sandwiches and burgers. The sauces and sides are particularly tasty, and there is always something new to try. 


Diners can enjoy all the classic American fast food dishes at this chain. Rally’s is particularly known for its fries, which are cut thick and come heavily seasoned. There are usually deals and special offers to take advantage of, and it pays to order extra and share.  


This fast-food diner chain is the perfect place to order breakfast while on the go. Denny’s serves breakfast around the clock and is known for offering large portions. Customers who are on benefits are often treated to extra food free of charge to help provide greater value for their money.

But it’s not just for breakfast…

The company also offers entrée platters for lunch or dinner, which are perfect for sharing. Other popular menu items include burgers and sandwiches. It’s worth looking out for promotional offers and taking advantage of the regular deals on large orders. 

Jamba Juice 

This company proves that fast food can be both healthy and delicious. Jamba Juice offers fruit and vegetable smoothies, protein-packed meals, and fresh juices. This helps to make sure that people on benefits have access to healthy and satisfying food

Jamba Juice 


This company is famous for its NOLA-style fried chicken, which comes with Cajun and Creole-style side dishes. There are more than 3,500 locations across the United States, including several hundred in California. The heavily spiced breaded chicken baskets are large enough to feed several people. Especially when accompanied by hearty side dishes. 

Popeye’s classic red beans and rice provides a healthier alternative to fried food. Portions are hearty, and there are often deals to take advantage of. EBT card customers are often treated to an extra buttermilk biscuit or two by sympathetic staff. 


Another popular fast-food chain, Wendy’s can be found throughout the state at numerous convenient locations. While the company’s burgers are simple, they can be bulked up by hearty side dishes. People with a sweet tooth can also indulge in thick and creamy milkshakes. 

Those who use the Wendy’s app to order meals are often treated to free side dishes. Food can then be collected or delivered to a suitable location free of charge. This helps people on a very tight budget get more for their monthly allowance. 

Pizza Hut 

People who are looking for a hearty meal can order a huge pan pizza with a thick and dense crust. There are numerous locations across the state, and the company also offers free delivery. There are often deals on large orders, and leftover food can be saved for the next day.

But there’s more…

Pizza Hut also offers discount vouchers, which can be used in conjunction with benefits cards. With a huge range of pizza toppings to choose from, there is something to satisfy every craving. The company also offers large salads, hearty pasta dishes, and a huge selection of side dishes. 

Papa Murphy’s 

This innovative fast-food chain makes its pizza dough from scratch and allows customers to get creative. They can customize their pie any way they want and take their pick from a huge selection of toppings. Fresh toppings and sauces help to take the company’s pizzas to the next level.

The gourmet vegetarian pizza comes with a huge selection of vegetables as well as a choice of sauces. Plus, Papa Murphy’s offers reward points on all orders, which can be redeemed for free food. And yes, even people who are on benefits can earn points every time they order pizza and side dishes. Customers are also treated to exclusive deals and offers on their birthdays. 

El Pollo Loco 

This family-owned Mexican-Californian fusion chain is famous for its citrus-marinated grilled chicken. The chain is particularly popular among lovers of authentic Mexican cuisine. The focus is on fresh ingredients and hearty family-style meals.

There is plenty at El Pollo Loco for people of all tastes and dietary restrictions to enjoy. Diners can enjoy freshly prepared salsa, rice, beans, fresh tortillas, and family-style grilled chicken. There are also single chicken dinners large enough to stretch to a couple of meals. The California-style bowls and salads are also ideal for people who want to get their vegetable fix. 

Carl’s Jr. 

After starting out as a single humble hot dog stand in 1941, this family restaurant chain quickly expanded. Carl’s Jr. was founded in California, and there are now numerous locations across the state. The company is best known for its hearty charbroiled burgers, which are made to order.

Our recommendations?

The breakfast burritos are particularly large and filling and come loaded with a large selection of fresh ingredients. Then the breakfast combo meals are also popular among people who want a quick refuel. This was also the first chain in America to offer CBD-infused burgers, while the plant-based burger is particularly popular.

Now that you know which restaurants accept EBT in California…

What About Other Places You Can Use Your EBT Card?

You might also be wondering, Does Walgreens Accept EBT, WIC, and Food StampsCan You Use EBT on DoorDashDoes Target Take WICDoes Safeway Take EBT, or maybe you want to know How To Use Affirm at Walmart? Search for any low-income questions you may have on our site! 

Are you constantly struggling to make ends meet?

Or does finding a job seem out of reach? If so, we can offer many useful resources to help you get on your way. Starting with our in-depth guide to the Benefits of Having a Job, as well as, How to Get a Pay Stub or How To Get Your W-2 From a Previous Employer so you can claim a tax refund.

Desperately seeking employment?

We’ve got you! Get answers to, Should I Apply to the Same Job TwiceDoes Family Dollar Pay Weekly, and more!

Lastly, any lack of education you might worry about should never hold you back. Read about High-Paying Medical Jobs You Can Do With Little Schooling, or check out our feature on the Top High Paying Jobs Without a Degree in 2023!

Worried about the pressure of working full-time?

Then why not browse these Top Easy Jobs That Pay Well to see if there’s maybe something for you here? We also highly recommend looking into What Is A Gig Economy because low-income earners can also join this movement!

Ok, back to today’s EBT benefits in California discussion…

Which Restaurants Accept EBT in California – Final Thoughts

If you’re out and about with your family or trying to hold down two jobs, preparing food can be a real challenge. Fortunately, a large number of restaurants in California accept EBT. So, working out which chains accept this payment method in advance can save you a lot of time and trouble.

Most of the top chains offer affordable family deals that EBT cardholders can take advantage of. This helps to make it possible to treat your family to a delicious eat-out meal. Menu items range from full meals to snacks and sweet treats, and using this payment method is quick and easy.

Happy EBT-friendly restaurant experiences!

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