Food & Nutrition

Washington Basic Food Program

2 min read

The Washington Basic Food Program (formerly called the Food Stamp Program) helps you and your family buy food needed for good health. You can buy food from most grocery stores and other retailers that sell food. If you meet the program guidelines, you will get a special debit card (called an EBT Card). The EBT card comes with a certain amount of money already on it to pay for food. The amount of money you get on the card may depend on three things:

  • household income from all sources (earned and unearned) such as money you get from a job, Social Security, SSI, or interest
  • how many people live in your household
  • where you live

You can use the card at most grocery stores, certain senior centers, and some meal delivery services such as Meals on Wheels. It works just like a regular debit card. You buy your groceries using the card and the cost is taken out of the total amount on the card. More money is put on your EBT card on a monthly basis.


How do I apply?

To apply for the Basic Food Program, you can print and fill out a state application or apply online. Call your State Hotline at (877) 514-Food (3663) (in-state only) or (877) 501-2233 to see if you can apply by phone.

If you are receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, the state has created the Washington State Combined Application Program (WASHCAP) to make it easier for you to apply for the Washington Basic Food Program.

Frequently Asked Questions

Am I eligible?
What are the citizenship guidelines?
Can I use my Basic Food benefits to buy groceries online?

Get Help from a Benefits Enrollment Center

Start Enrollment or Ask Questions

A Benefits Enrollment Center (BEC) can offer you personal, one-on-one assistance as you navigate program eligibility and look to apply. With support from the National Council on Aging (NCOA), the BEC can help you apply for an enroll in all of the benefits you may be missing out on.

Green Path

Toll-Free: 1-800-794-6559

Website: support@benefitscheckup.org

Get Help from a Benefits Enrollment Center

Start Enrollment or Ask Questions

A Benefits Enrollment Center (BEC) can offer you personal, one-on-one assistance as you navigate program eligibility and look to apply. With support from the National Council on Aging (NCOA), the BEC can help you apply for an enroll in all of the benefits you may be missing out on.

Green Path

Toll-Free: 1-800-794-6559

Website: support@benefitscheckup.org

See What Key Benefits Programs You May Qualify For

BenefitsCheckUp can help you assess whether you can get help from programs before you apply. Answer questions anonymously to find out if you may be eligible for key benefits programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Medicare Savings Programs, Medicaid, Medicare Part D Low Income Subsidy (LIS) - Extra Help, among others.