Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Frequently Asked Questions

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) helps you pay for food. It is a county-run program that is supervised by the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) and is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

There is no difference. SNAP used to be called Food Stamps (and was also called Food Support for a while). Now, it doesn’t give out actual stamps anymore and instead uses an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, which is like a debit card.

You will get an Electronic Benefits Card from SNAP. It looks and works like a debit card. No one at the store will know that you are on SNAP when you check out.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is for people who can’t afford to pay for food. Most households have to meet income limits in order to qualify for the program.

Your household doesn’t have to meet the income limit for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) if:

There is no asset limit for SNAP. You can own as many assets as you'd like and still qualify for SNAP (assuming you meet all other program requirements).

How the income limit works depends on whether there is a disabled or elderly family member in the household:

  • If there is, the family must meet a net income limit.
  • If there is not, the family must meet a gross income limit.

For more detail about these limits, read SNAP: Eligibility.

The amount you get depends on your income, the number of people in your household, and your deductions. Your monthly benefit could range anywhere from $23 for a single-person to $1,751 for an 8-person household.

Personal Care Attendants do not have to be included in the household when you apply for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

You can apply for SNAP online at MNbenefits or by filing a paper application. Contact your county or tribal human services office for more information or call one of the SNAP hotlines:

  • Twin Cities: 651-431-4050
  • Outside Twin Cities: 1-800-657-3698
  • Minnesota Relay (TTY): 1-800-627-3529

Each month, you will get your benefits automatically in an account that is linked to an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card, which is similar to a debit card. You can use your benefits at any grocery store that accepts Minnesota’s EBT card. These stores will have posters or signs that read: “We Accept EBT.” The EBT card may also be used at Meals on Wheels and congregate dining sites.

Learn more