Can You Buy Alcohol With EBT Or Food Stamps? Solved (2023)

Last Updated on November 5, 2023 by Lydia Martin

The pandemic-relief-era situation of today’s society is ending. It will be a miracle if needy families have low-income relief to snap purchases like the EBT card system.

With these food stamps, purchasing food items is not a problem anymore.

But can you buy alcohol with an EBT card? To know the extent this snap benefit could be purchased, read on.

Is It Possible To Buy Alcohol With EBT Cards? 

Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mexican

No, it’s not possible to purchase alcohol with EBT cards. It is explicitly stated that food stamps have a purchase limit and may only be used at certain store locations. You cannot use it to buy wines, beer, or any alcohol. 

The EBT cannot be used in alcohol shops, gaming or gambling venues, or adult entertainment establishments.

Why EBT Food Stamp Cards Can’t Be Used

EBT cards and food stamps cannot be used because they are restricted by the government.

You cannot use it as a low-income relief when buying any alcoholic beverage, cigarettes, vitamins, or medicines containing any supplement facts or even live animals. 

Non-food items such as pet food, house cleaning supplies like toilet paper, and cosmetics are also prohibited [1].

It is similar to any debit card, typically used to purchase but cannot be used to withdraw cash since it’s linked to SNAP accounts.

What Happens If You Try To Buy Alcohol With EBT?

EBT Card

You might face penalties if you try to purchase alcohol with EBT food stamps in grocery supermarkets. 

It could not automatically block your card and purchases, but it will automatically arrange a hearing to know whether or not you broke the regulation.

Penalties could be serious if you ignore this restriction.

Either you need to pay back the cost of the money spent on restricted items, or you can lose your SNAP food stamps benefits from three (3) months up to two (2) years.

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What Can You Buy With It?

Dairy Products with EBT food stamp

You can use EBT food stamps to buy any food for the household.

This includes everything you can eat, from bread to cereals, snack foods, dairy products, meat, and fish—fruits and vegetables to seeds and plants to grow food.

But it cannot be used when buying an alcoholic beverage or any food that will fall with alcohol, such as liquor-filled chocolates and dealcoholized wine.

However, cooking and vinegar wine are eligible items because they can be used as cooking ingredients. 

Find out if you can be a bartender at 18 here.

Are There Liquor Stores That Accept EBT? 

Tequila Reserva 1800 Silver

No, there are no liquor stores that accept EBT. The government will not allow EBT food stamps in alcohol shops.

They have mandated location restrictions to prohibit purchasing in that kind of adult entertainment establishments.

However, major grocery stores like Walmart and Target will accept your EBT for qualified food purchases.

Some drugstores, like CVS and Walgreens, will also accept EBT to purchase eligible food items. But can you already buy alcohol on your 21st birthday?


Can you buy non-alcoholic beverages with EBT?

Yes. As per the USDA, you can buy non-alcoholic beverages with EBT. 

Can you only buy food with EBT?

Yes, you can only buy food with EBT. Technically, EBT cards are like food stamps, so items that are not food are unqualified. 

Final Verdict 

You cannot purchase alcohol with your EBT food stamp benefits. This food stamp might look like a debit cash card but has many restrictions and can only be used to purchase food items.

Living on a low income doesn’t have many choices. So, this kind of low-income-relief access benefit can boost one’s monthly allocation. You can pay for qualified items with the card, but the rest comes from your pocket. 



Pat Strunk

Pat is our resident expert when it comes to bourbon and traveling. His impeccable writing skills and sales background are perfect for his copywriting specialization. He’s a brand storyteller who has worked for the biggest retail brands and business personalities. When he goes out to relax or celebrate some small wins, Pat never ceases to grab a bottle of Buffalo Trace. For him, this classic Kentucky bourbon whiskey is perfect for slow sipping. Contact at [email protected] or learn more about us here.

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