SNAP, formerly know as Food Stamps, helps Minnesotans with low incomes get the food they need for nutritious and well-balanced meals. The program provides support to help stretch your household food budget. It is not intended to meet all of your household's food needs. It is a supplement.
If you are approved for SNAP, you can use your benefits at many stores, farmers markets and senior dining sites.
Income and assets
SNAP eligibility depends on your household's income. Most types of income are counted. There are many deductions from income that are allowed under SNAP. A county worker can give you more information on income limits and deductions.
Households with an income at or below 165 percent of the federal poverty guideline that have also received the Domestic Violence Information Brochure (PDF) will not have an asset limit for determining benefits. You can print the brochure from the link provided or ask for it at your county or tribal office. Then, just tell your county worker that you have received the brochure.
This screening tool (PDF) asks a few questions to help you find out if you may qualify for SNAP. The screening tool only estimates your eligibility. The only way to know for sure if you qualify is to complete the application process.
You may receive food benefits quickly if your household meets one of the following criteria, even if you had SNAP in another state during the month of application:
Households with monthly gross income less than $150 and liquid assets less than $100
Migrant or seasonal farmworker households that have low income and $100 or less in liquid assets
Households in which the combined monthly gross income and liquid assets are less than their monthly housing costs and the applicable standard utility deduction, if applicable.
The amount of benefits you get is based on your income, expenses and the number of people in your household. If approved for the program, you will get an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card. It is like a debit card. Each month, your benefits will be credited to your EBT account.
During the month, you use your card to purchase food at stores that display a poster or sign that reads: "We Accept EBT." Grocery stores and convenience stores must sell a variety of foods to be approved to accept EBT. The card also may be used at authorized sites for Meals on Wheels and congregate dining. Many farmers markets also accept EBT.
When your benefits begin depends on the date the county receives your application through mnbenefits.mn.gov or the first page of the paper application. The county cannot decide if you will get benefits until you complete the entire application and provide required verifications. You will also need to complete an interview with a county worker.
For some emergency situations, you could get benefits within five working days of your application.
We frequently review how counties and tribal nations interact with people applying for and receiving SNAP benefits and would like feedback on your most recent contact with a local county agency or tribal nation. Your feedback provides valuable information to improve SNAP services across the state.
You can contact any of the following agencies directly to file a civil rights complaint:
The Minnesota Department of Human Services, Equal Opportunity and Access Division, prohibits discrimination in its programs because of race, color, national origin, creed, religion, sexual orientation, public assistance status, age, disability, sex (including sex stereotypes and gender identity) or political beliefs. Contact the Equal Opportunity and Access Division directly only if you have a discrimination complaint:
Minnesota Department of Human Services
Equal Opportunity and Access Division
P.O. Box 64997
St. Paul, MN 55164-0997
651-431-3040 (voice) or use your preferred relay service
The Minnesota Department of Human Rights prohibits discrimination in public services because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or public assistance status. Contact the Minnesota Department of Human rights directly:
Minnesota Department of Human Rights
Freeman Building, 625 North Robert Street
St. Paul, MN 55155
800-657-3704 (toll free)
711 or 800-627-3529 (MN Relay)
In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, it's Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, religious creed, disability, age, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.
Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.