Can You Buy Soap With Food Stamps?

10 Surprising Things You Can Buy with Food Stamps YouTube


When it comes to food stamps, there are a lot of rules and restrictions that come with using them. One question that often comes up is whether or not you can use food stamps to buy soap. In this article, we’ll explore the answer to that question and go over some other important information about food stamps.

What Are Food Stamps?

First, let’s start with the basics. Food stamps are a government program that helps low-income individuals and families purchase food. Participants in the program receive an EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer) card that they can use to buy groceries at participating stores.

What Can You Buy with Food Stamps?

There are certain restrictions on what you can buy with food stamps. For example, you cannot use them to buy alcohol, tobacco, or hot prepared foods (such as a hot deli sandwich). However, you can use food stamps to buy a wide variety of food items, including fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy products, and bread.

Can You Buy Soap with Food Stamps?

The answer to this question is a bit more complicated. In general, you cannot use food stamps to purchase non-food items, such as soap or household cleaning products. However, there are some exceptions to this rule.

States with Soap Exemptions

Some states have exemptions that allow food stamp recipients to purchase soap and other non-food items with their EBT card. These exemptions are typically put in place to help families who cannot afford basic hygiene products.

Examples of States with Soap Exemptions

– California – Connecticut – Hawaii – Illinois – Michigan – New Jersey – New York – Pennsylvania – Rhode Island

How to Find Out If Your State Allows Soap Purchases

If you’re not sure whether or not your state allows the purchase of soap with food stamps, you can contact your local SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) office. They will be able to provide you with more information about your state’s specific rules and exemptions.

Other Important Information about Food Stamps

It’s important to note that food stamps are not a permanent solution to food insecurity. The program is designed to provide temporary assistance to those in need. Additionally, the amount of benefits you receive will depend on a number of factors, including your income, household size, and expenses.


In summary, while food stamps cannot typically be used to purchase soap or other non-food items, there are some exceptions in certain states. If you’re unsure about your state’s rules, contact your local SNAP office for more information. Remember, food stamps are meant to provide temporary assistance, and there are other resources available to help you get back on your feet.