Last Updated on February 5, 2023 by James McAllister

By: James McAllister


Are you looking to shop for protein powder, and wondering if you’re able to pay for it using EBT, SNAP, or other food benefits?

This is an excellent question. Protein powder can be ingested like a food, and can even act as a substitute for a meal. But will EBT cover it?

In this article, we’ll go over everything that you need to know!

Can You Buy Protein Powder With EBT / SNAP / Food Benefits?


Yes and no. Some protein powders can be purchased with EBT, where as others cannot.

You are able to buy protein powder that is classified as a food, but not protein powder that’s classified as a supplement. This is because EBT and other similar programs are designed to be used to purchase non-prepared food only.

Thankfully, there’s an easy way to tell whether or not a specific protein powder can be purchased with EBT or not, which we’ll share in a moment.

Keep in mind however that the store you’re shopping at may make a difference.

For example, you are more likely to find protein powders that are classified as foods at grocery stores or even large retail chains like Walmart.

At supplement, vitamin or bodybuilding stores, it may be more common to find protein powder that is sold as a supplement.

So, keep this in mind when choosing where to shop for protein powder!

How To Know Whether Your Protein Powder Is Classified As A Food, Or Supplement

Did you know that there’s an easy way to tell whether or not a certain brand or package of protein powder can be purchased using EBT?

It’s true! In fact, you don’t even have to ask a store employee for assistance, or search online. All you have to do is flip the protein powder around, and look at the label on the back.

If the protein powder is being sold as a food (and thus is eligible for purchase using SNAP / EBT / food benefits, then it will have a large ‘Nutrition Facts’ label on the back.

If the product cannot be purchased with EBT due to being sold as a supplement, it will say ‘Supplement Facts’ on the back instead.

So, the label alone is enough to know whether or not that specific protein powder can be purchased using food benefits!

Fun Fact: Energy drinks go through the same thing as protein powder – some of them are categorized as foods, and some of them are categorized as supplements. Looking at the label on the can helps for this too!

Can You Buy Protein Bars With EBT?

Fortunately, the answer is yes!

Most protein bars can be purchased with EBT, as can many protein shakes. This is because they are considered to be a food product, rather than a supplement.

Of course, the same test applies. If you look at the label on the back of a protein bar and see that it says ‘Supplement Facts’ rather than ‘Nutrition Facts’, unfortunately it won’t be eligible for purchase with EBT or SNAP.

However, most protein bars don’t fall into this category.

So, if you need your protein but the store doesn’t carry eligible protein powder, then purchasing protein bars can be a great alternative.

Although protein bars tend to be a bit more expensive per gram of protein, the fact that you can pay for them using EBT makes them a great option if you qualify for benefits.

Can You Buy Creatine With EBT?

Unlike protein powder, there are no circumstances in which you can buy creatine or creatine powder with EBT.

This is because creatine powder is always considered to be a supplement, thus making it ineligible to be used with SNAP and other food benefits.

The same holds true for other weightlifting supplements, like glutamine or fish oil.

That being said, some protein bars also have creatine in them. In these instances, it’s possible that you can purchase protein bars containing creatine with SNAP, that may have the same dosage that you’d get by taking it in powdered form.

However, you’ll need to check for the label on the bar to know whether or not it’s eligible.


Protein powder can often be purchased with EBT, SNAP or food stamps. However, this isn’t always the case.

If the protein powder is classified as a food (and has the ‘Nutrition Facts’ label on it), then it can be purchased with EBT. However, it’s classified as a supplement it cannot.

I hope that you’ve found this article helpful. If you have any other questions about protein powder or food benefits like EBT or SNAP, please ask them using the comment form below.

Wishing you the best,

– James McAllister

About the author 

James McAllister

James is the owner of He started his first blog at the age of 11, and has since gone on to start several successful businesses. In total, these businesses have sold hundreds of thousands of units and have touched millions of lives. Here on, he shares his knowledge that brought him to where he is today. If you want to connect with James, follow him on your favorite social networks!

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