Best Surprising Things You Can Buy with EBT

Best Surprising Things You Can Buy with EBT

Do you know that you can use EBT cards to buy several surprising things?

Well, EBT cards are just like debit cards provided as a part of the SNAP program, and participants can use them in grocery stores to buy groceries. There are many things that you can buy using an EBT card, and you will be amazed to know what those are.

What is EBT?

The Supplement Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is an effective government program started by the US government to help low-income families fight hunger. Through SNAP, low-income families will get credits on their EBT cards to buy food from different retail stores for free.

The government issues EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer) cards through the SNAP program. It is issued based on the individual’s income, household, and resources. Using this card, you can shop for groceries in retail stores across the US. The main goal of the SNAP program is to provide nutritious food to low-income individuals and families.

The United States Department of Agriculture manages it. They have stringent guidelines to ensure that the money is spent only on nutritious food. Having this card with you allows you to buy groceries without cash.

You can use this card in grocery stores, farmers’ markets, food trucks, grocery stores, and online to get food delivery.

15 Surprising Things You Can Buy with EBT

15 Surprising Things You Can Buy with EBT

Following is the list of 15 surprising things that you can buy with this EBT card –

Gift baskets

During the holiday times, you would like to buy gift baskets to gift your loved ones. This can be purchased with an EBT card.

However, there should be at least 50% or more food items in the basket. If baskets meet this criteria, they are eligible under the SNAP program.

On the flip side, if you buy a basket only filled with toys, then this won’t be eligible to be purchased using an EBT card.

Vegetable seeds

The low-income families need to buy fresh fruits and vegetables to stay healthy. Using the EBT card, they can buy nutritious food without worrying too much about money.

They can buy vegetable seeds for a small price and plant them in their garden to grow vegetables. This saves a lot of money for them and lets them grow vegetables and fruits throughout the year.

Hunting as well as fishing equipment

Another surprising item you can buy using the EBT card is fishing and hunting equipment. These are the non-food items.

However, this benefit can only be reaped by families who stay far away from the retail stores so that they can go hunting or fishing to get food. The items purchased with this card cannot be used for commercial purposes.

Birthday cake

Everyone deserves to celebrate their birthdays and have a birthday cake. You can buy a birthday cake with food stamps or an EBT card.

However, you need to choose a cake with minimal decoration. A cake with less decoration and fewer candles can be purchased using the EBT card.

Restaurant meals

You cannot buy meals from the restaurant using EBT cards directly. However, the state runs the Restaurant Meals program, allowing individuals to use EBT cards to buy food from eateries and fast-food centers.

However, this can only be done by the homeless, elderly, and disabled.


Another surprising thing you can buy with an EBT card is lobster. This falls into the category of live animals, yet you can buy this as part of the SNAP program.

Though buying a lobster is a luxury, this card allows you to buy it.

Packaged tea and coffee

The EBT card does not allow you to buy hot beverages. However, there is a workaround for this.

You cannot use the SNAP EBT card to buy coffee or tea from retail or restaurants, but you can buy the packaged tea and brew it at home. The packaged tea and coffee products include ground coffee beans, Keurig cups, creamer, and tea bags.

Certain types of energy drinks

If you want to consume caffeine, there are a few energy drinks that you can buy using the EBT card. The energy drinks would be classified into two types, one is for food products, and the other is for supplements.

You can check the labels, and if you find a lot of nutrients in the drink, you can buy this for free using this EBT card.

Low carb bars

You would want to consume low-carb bars when you are on a diet. These protein bars, especially the Atkins or meal bars, can be purchased using EBT cards.

You can buy these bars to eat healthy food and lose weight. These are considered a substitute for meals to lose weight within the budget.

Dairy products

Various dairy products can be purchased using the EBT card. These food items are a great source of getting fiber for the body.

You can buy various products using this card, including cow milk, almond milk, and other dairy products. You can also use this card to buy butter, cheese, dairy, coffee, yogurt, and whey protein powder.

All types of snack items

It might be surprising that you can buy a long list of snack items using an EBT card per the approved list released by the USDA. This includes the snack items such as marshmallows and marzipan.

A few other snack items you can buy are cakes, doughnuts, muffins, pastries, pies, ice creams, candies, chocolates, churros, scones, custard, and so on.

Items from the farmer’s market

You can go to the farmer’s market and buy their cultivated products using this EBT card. You can look for the nearest farmers market to the place and go and buy fresh fruits and vegetables and other food items.

Cooking wine

You cannot use this card to buy alcoholic, low-alcoholic, or non-alcoholic beer, liquor-filled chocolates, etc. However, cooking wine, as well as wine vinegar, can be purchased using this card.

Bottled water

You can buy bottled water using an EBT card in any US retail store that accepts EBT as a payment method. There are a few areas where the tap water is not fresh and cannot be consumed. Therefore, you can buy water using this card.

Meal replacement shakes

Many people love to consume shakes instead of eating a meal due to illness or when they are on a diet. However, the SNAP EBT card only lets you buy shakes rich in minerals and vitamins. Only foods with rich nutritional value are eligible to be purchased using this card for free.


Can I buy protein powder using the EBT card?

Yes, you can buy protein powder with EBT, and these products must have a nutrition label. However, you can’t buy items labeled as supplements with an EBT card.

Can I purchase baby formula with the EBT card?

The baby formula comes under dairy products, so you can buy it using an EBT card. You can buy other products using this card, such as baby snacks, juices, cereals, and so on.

Can I buy lobsters using the SNAP EBT card?

It might sound surprising, but you can buy Lobster with an EBT card.

What can I buy with the EBT card at Walmart?

Walmart is the biggest retail store in the US, and you can buy different food items from Walmart that SNAP approves. Walmart can be a good choice for low-income families to buy all the required items as they can get everything cheaply and with bigger discounts.

Can I buy dog food using the EBT card?

You cannot buy pet food using the EBT card. However, you can buy food for people and feed the same to the pet. You can buy beef bones and tuna fish to feed your pet.

Can we buy alcohol with an EBT card?

You can’t buy alcohol or alcoholic beverages with an EBT card.

ww newsletter

Subscribe to Email Updates :

About the author

William Smith

William Smith is a dynamic editor at World-Wire, covering a wide range of topics including health, technology, travel, and events. Known for his ability to simplify complex subjects, he engages readers with his insightful FAQs and articles. His diverse expertise has earned him accolades, including the "Excellence in Diverse Journalism" award in 2022.

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment

Hide picture