What Can I Buy with SNAP / EBT? What Can’t I Buy with EBT?

EBT card is meant for families who want to buy food items in stores across the US under the SNAP program. If you are having an EBT card then, you should know what you buy and what you can’t buy. Having an EBT card enables you to purchase food products when you face financial difficulties. However, you need to know the eligibility and other things before applying for the card. This, in turn, gives ways to get food items from an approved SNAP store that will help accomplish goals. 

Here are some things you can buy with an EBT card.

  1. Groceries 

With an EBT card, you can buy all types of grocery items from a food store. You can even order them online because most stores will approve the transactions as soon as possible. A majority of online stores accept EBT cards enabling you to get groceries at your doorsteps to save time. Apart from brick-and-mortar stores, leading online stores such as Amazon also approve EBT cards while ordering grocery items.

  1. Cakes and gift baskets

You can now buy cakes and gift baskets with an EBT card. However, make sure that the gift backs cover food items that come under SNAP. Before buying gift baskets, you should know whether you can order them from a store. It is wise to check the details with the USDA website that will help you make a better decision.

  1. Seeds and plants

USDA enables SNAP beneficiaries to purchase seeds and plants with EBT card to produce food items. On the other hand, you shouldn’t buy live animals with a card and the purchase of some seafood are also strictly prohibited. However, you can buy meat, poultry, fish, and dairy products under the SNAP program. EBT card even lets you purchase snack foods, non-alcoholic beverages, bakery items, bread, and cereals.

Here are some things you can’t buy with an EBT card.

  1. Non- food grocery items, diapers, and personal hygiene products 

You can’t buy non-grocery items, diapers, and personal hygiene products with an EBT card while visiting a store. Since the SNAP program aims at providing food for people in need, you can buy only food products. 

  1. Pharmacy items and alcoholic beverages 

You can’t buy pharmacy items such as supplements, vitamin products, and drugs with an EBT card. It is also not accepted in bars when you want to buy alcoholic beverages such as wine, beer, champagne, etc. Moreover, you shouldn’t use the card to make purchases at liquor shops and wineries.

  1. Cigarette and tobacco products

EBT card strictly prohibits the purchase of cigarette and tobacco products. If you break the rules then, your card will get disqualified from benefits.

  1. Prepared foods 

You shouldn’t use EBT cards in places that make prepared foods, hot foods, and foods for immediate consumption. Instead, you can buy food items for preparing them in a gas station or other places. Some states allow you to buy restaurant foods when you are not able to make your meals due to physical disabilities, lack of storage facilities, aging, etc. 

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