Oklahoma Food Assistance
Food Stamps * Food Banks * Food Pantries * Soup Kitchens * WIC
School Meals * Special Milk * Summer Food * Senior Nutrition
In the State of Oklahoma, there are many sources for help with food. The Oklahoma Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), food banks, food pantries, and soup kitchens are all helping residents in need to cope with hunger and food insecurity.
ON THIS PAGE
Learn more about
SNAP benefits a.k.a. Food Stamps.
Who is eligible for SNAP benefits (Food Stamps) in Oklahoma?
How to apply for Oklahoma Food Assistance?
How does Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) determine eligibility?
Approved! When and how do I get the Food Stamps benefits?
How much Food Stamps benefits do participants receive per month?
How and where to use Food Stamps benefits?
Food Stamp (SNAP benefits) in Oklahoma
Oklahoma Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), or the Food Stamps Program as it is known by the public, is a federal program that provides grants to the States for purpose of reducing hunger and malnutrition in all eligible households across the nation. SNAP helps provide healthy food to qualifying low-income families with children, elderly or disabled in each State of the USA, including Oklahoma. Learn more about SNAP.
It is important to know that the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program is a federal entitlement program funded by U.S. Government grants. Any U.S. Citizen, even some legal alien residents, will get free food assistance as long as they meet the SNAP eligibility guidelines. In other words, there is enough Supplemental Nutrition Assistance for every American that qualifies.
In Oklahoma, the SNAP is known as Oklahoma Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamp Program) and is administered by the Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS). The Federal Government pays 100% of Oklahoma Food Stamp Benefits with federal grants appropriated for SNAP. The SNAP federal grants also pay a share of the Oklahoma SNAP administrative cost.
According to the Oklahoma Department of Children and Family Services, “The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) serves as the first line of defense against hunger.”
Approx. of the total Oklahoma population received Food Stamp Benefits in 2018
Recipients in June, 2018 of Food Stamps (SNAP) Benefits in Oklahoma
Recipients in June, 2017 of Food Stamp (SNAP) Benefits in Oklahoma
Who is Eligible for SNAP (Food Stamps) in Oklahoma?
The eligibility rules and benefit amounts in Oklahoma, like in other States, are based on a limited income, limited liquid resources, household size, and other requirements, some of them specific to each State. Most eligibility rules are determined by regulations issued by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Food and Nutrition Service.
The federal law allows States some flexibility when implementing SNAP on a State level. State agencies can adapt some of the food assistance program rules in order to meet the needs of the eligible, low‐income local populations.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program is designed for individuals and families with limited income resources, who compose a household, and purchase and prepare their meals together for home consumption.
For the purpose of the SNAP, certain people must be included in one household account even if they purchase and prepare meals separately. Husbands and wives of any household member, their children under age 22 when living together, plus children younger than 18 who are dependents of an adult household member are all considered as a part of one household formation.
In Oklahoma anyone with limited income and resources may apply for food stamps but, in general, to qualify for Oklahoma SNAP (Food Stamp) Benefits you must meet the following basic eligibility requirements:
- Oklahoma Resident – must be a U.S. Citizen or a legal resident with SNAP eligible non-citizen status;
- Work Requirement – unless exempted, each able-bodied household member who is 16 to 60 year old must be registered to work, and accept a suitable employment offer;
- Resource Limit – no limit on categorically eligible, otherwise, applying for SNAP benefits households, as per federal guidelines, must have countable household assets limited to $2,250 or less ($3,250 or less for households containing a member who is disabled or 60 years of age or older)
- Income Limits – Income limits eligibility depends on household size and composition. Households with no elderly or disabled individuals must meet both gross and net income limits. Households with elderly or disabled individuals must meet only the net income limits. Gross income includes wages, salaries, commissions, dividends, child support, self-employment income, unemployment compensation, social security benefits, and others.
See the table for Maximum Monthly Income allowable for SNAP benefits eligibility in the State of Oklahoma as per household size: Most Oklahoma residents may be automatically or so-called categorically eligible for SNAP benefits if they already participate in other means-tested assistance programs. Getting any benefits funded by federal grants from the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash assistance, or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), for example, can make the applicant for SNAP benefits categorically eligible, thus bypassing the standard income eligibility and asset eligibility rules. Please, contact your local OKDHS for more details on SNAP categorical eligibility.
Quick Eligibility Check
Use this Pre-Screening Tool to find out if you may be eligible to get Oklahoma SNAP benefits (Food Stamps).
The screening allows interested in getting Oklahoma food stamps to provide some basic information and find out if they are potentially eligible for benefits.
If you use this Pre-Screening Tool you will be notified immediately on the screen if you qualify after completing the questionnaire. This is pre-screening information, and you still have to make an application at your local Oklahoma DHS office.
Even if you are unsure whether you would qualify you still may be eligible for SNAP Benefits and you should still apply.
The Department of Human Services is the agency in Oklahoma that can make the final determination regarding your SNAP application in this State and grant you benefits.
To figure out, before applying, if you'd qualify for food stamps benefits in your state you have to consider the following:
- Your Household size: How many people you live and buy food with? Count:
- anyone you live with and buy and make food with
- children under 22 years old and,
- elderly 60+ and disabled that you make food for.
- Your Income: How much money does your household make? This includes both:
- earned income - the money you make from jobs and
- unearned income - cash assistance, Social Security, unemployment insurance, child support, etc.
Who counts as a member of the household for SNAP eligibility?
In general, anyone who lives with you and you buy food with counts a member of your household.
Your children under 22 of age count as household members, even if they buy and make their own food.
But your tenant, for example, or your adult children that are over 22 of age do not count. They are not counted in the household number for the purpose of food stamp benefits qualification.
The elderly age of 60+ and disabled people count as household members if you buy and make food for them, or you buy and make food together. If they live with you, but they buy and make food separately, they do not count as household members.
See the updated table below for this fiscal year's income limits and monthly benefits (allotments).
What is the gross and net income limit that qualifies you for food stamps?
SNAP Max Income for Food Stamps
Oct. 1, 2019, through Sept. 30, 2020
(130% of poverty)
(100% of poverty)
|Each additional member||+$479||+$369||+$146|
Source: USDA, SNAP Income Eligibility Standards
What are Maximum Oklahoma SNAP (Food Stamps) Benefits?
If approved, the Oklahoma SNAP benefit amounts depend on the household size and the amount of their net income. USDA has maximum SNAP benefit limits per month per household size. Check the table what are the maximum food stamp monetary amounts a household can get. The dollar amounts of the food stamp benefits are called allotments.
How to Apply for SNAP Benefits (Food Stamps) in Oklahoma?
To apply for SNAP benefits in Oklahoma download and print the Request for Benefits application form offered by the OKDHS.
The same application form can be used to apply for Child Care Subsidy, Health Care Coverage – SoonerCare (Medicaid), and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program which offers cash benefits to qualifying families.
More than one assistance program in an application is a common practice by a lot of the States since most of the people in need of food stamps are likely to be in need of cash and other assistance and services.
Applicants for SNAP in the State of Oklahoma have the right to file an application in person, through an authorized representative, by fax, by mail, or online. The SNAP application may be submitted to any Oklahoma local County Human Services Center.
If you are to file a paper application for Request for Benefits – just fill out all required information on the application and mail or turn it in any local County Human Services Center.
If you do not have all the information that is needed to complete the SNAP application, provide as much as you can – but you must include your name, address, social security number, and your signature for the OKDHS office to accept it. All required information and its verification can be provided later at the interview or upon request.
If you are eligible, your SNAP Benefits will start from the date the DHS receives your application. However, if you provide more information, it will help DHS determine your eligibility more quickly.
The application process includes a SNAP eligibility interview and information verification. After you have submitted your application, the OKDHS office will contact you to set up an interview and verify the information on your application. If you are elderly, disabled individual, or unable to go to the office due to a hardship, call the OKDHS to request your SNAP eligibility interview conducted over the phone.
At the interview, you will meet with a DHS worker who will go over the information on your application and verify the required supporting documentation and proofs. You will also receive information from the worker or other staff about job requirements/opportunities and your responsibilities.
Within 30 days of the interview, if eligible, you will receive a notice stating how much food assistance benefit and for how long your household is eligible for before a review of the case is due, along with reporting requirements.
The SNAP benefit amount depends on the household size and its net income – that is all countable income minus all allowable deductions.
If Oklahoma DHS finds you eligible for SNAP benefits, you will be entitled to receive food stamps from the date your signed application was received.
Oklahoma SNAP applicants also have the option to apply for SNAP benefits online using OKDHS Live! – the Oklahoma State Online Application System that enables users to apply for Food Benefits, SoonerCare (Medicaid), Child Care, and other State programs and services.
Oklahoma SNAP Benefits Approval, Rules, Proofs Required
The OKDHS has to verify the provided information and interview you before determining if the household is eligible for SNAP Benefits.
Here is a list of what the OKDHS requires you to bring to the interview:
- Proof of identity, such as driver license or school identification;
- Social Security number or card for everyone who wants benefits;
- Proof of citizenship for everyone who wants benefits;
- Proof of legal status for anyone who is not a U.S. citizen and wants benefits;
- Proof of income for everyone living with you, such as pay stubs or award letters;
- Proof of all resources, such as bank accounts, car titles, or land; and
- Proof of your need for child care, such as your work or school schedule, and the name of the place you want to use to care for your child.
Additional information and proof may be required depending upon your situation. In case you are not able to provide all the information during the SNAP application interview, you will be given time to provide the required proof.
Applicants for SNAP benefits in Oklahoma should get a response within 30 days from the date they submitted their application to the OKDHS office. When start getting food stamps benefits, households must report any changes in their situation in a set period of time in order to assure their participation in the Oklahoma Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
Under the simplified reporting option, households are required to report changes in income between certification and scheduled reporting periods when total countable income rises above 130% of the poverty level or when work hours change for able‐bodied adults without dependents.
SNAP regulations require all non‐exempt household members to comply with work requirements. Work requirements include registering for work, not voluntarily quitting a job, and accepting a suitable employment offer. As per federal SNAP guidelines, individuals who fail to comply with SNAP work requirements without good cause are ineligible for program benefits and disqualified from SNAP for certain periods of time, depending on how many prior instances of non‐compliance there have been.
The law limits the SNAP benefits to 3 months in a 3-year period for all able-bodied adults between the ages of 18-49 without dependents, who are not working or participating in a work program for at least 20 hours each week.
As part of the SNAP federal grant assistance requirements, each State has to offer employment and training (E&T) program to its SNAP benefits recipients. Participants in such programs, where available, can get adult education, vocational training, job skills training for specific jobs, and work experience via short-term unpaid work assignments.
The main goal of the work requirement is to help the food stamp recipients get jobs, reduce or eliminate their dependency on the government benefits.
In Oklahoma, the OKDHS is responsible for assisting and directing persons in E&T activities which enable them to achieve or maintain economic self-support. Registration for E&T, employment-related evaluations and assessment, employability planning, counseling, job development, and job placement are areas where Oklahoma SNAP beneficiaries can get help.
Approved! When and How Do I Get the SNAP Benefits?
Oklahoma SNAP provides the benefits via the Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) system. The monetary benefits of the Oklahoma SNAP benefits are transferred to the accounts of qualified beneficiaries and are accessible through an Oklahoma EBT Card – The Access Card, which is issued to anyone approved for SNAP benefits. The Oklahoma SNAP Benefits are deposited into the recipients’ accounts each month following the Benefit Issuance Schedule.
Benefits are made available from the 1st to the 10th of every month, based on the last digit of the client’s SNAP case number:
Case numbers ending in: 0 -3 = benefits available on the 1st of the month
Case numbers ending in: 4 -6 = benefits available on the 5th of the month
Case numbers ending in: 7 -9 = benefits available on the 10th of the month
If you have any question regarding your EBT Account or EBT Card call Oklahoma EBT Customer Service: 1-888-328-6551
How and Where to Use the SNAP Benefits?
When approved, Oklahoma SNAP beneficiaries will get Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards – The Access Card. The monetary benefits of the Oklahoma SNAP are transferred into the accounts of qualified beneficiaries and are accessible through Oklahoma EBT Cards. Households and individuals can use their EBT cards and spend the benefits like cash at any Oklahoma grocery stores and farmers’ markets that are authorized by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to accept SNAP (food stamp) benefits.
Check the Oklahoma Food Stamps Stores near you that are authorized to take EBT cards for the purchasing of SNAP-eligible food items. Eligible food items are any food to be eaten at home by people, including baby food, non-alcoholic beverages, and seasonings. Seeds and plants to grow food for your own family’s consumption are also allowed to be purchased with food stamp benefits. You cannot buy non-grocery items with food stamp benefits, such as cleaning products, pet food, paper products, alcohol, or tobacco.
I Need Food Assistance Now. It is an Emergency!
Some households may get Expedited Services – that is getting Food Stamp Benefits within 7 calendar days if your household has less than $150 in monthly gross income and liquid resources (cash, checking or savings accounts) of $100 or less; or your rent/mortgage and utilities are more than your household’s combined monthly income and liquid resources, or a member of your household is a migrant or seasonal farmworker. In order to get expedite assistance, if you qualify for it, provide all the required information and proof as soon as possible. Call 1-866-411-1877 for more information on Oklahoma Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
Oklahoma Food Assistance Program
Find more about the Oklahoma Food Assistance Program
Search for Food Assistance by County and Town
Food Banks in Oklahoma
Oklahoma food banks play an important role in the overall Oklahoma food assistance effort to end hunger and food insecurity throughout the State of Oklahoma.
Their main objective is to collect food from various sources like wholesale organizations, grocery stores, and farms who have food in excess and are willing to donate.
Food banks then, sort, store, and distribute donated food to local soup kitchens, shelters, and food pantries.
The Food Bank Association of Oklahoma is such a non-profit organization that works to alleviate hunger in Oklahoma.
Oklahoma Food Banks
Food Pantries in Oklahoma
Food pantries offer food directly to people that need it and who have the means to cook it. They usually receive food from local food banks and in turn distribute it to low-income individuals and households at no cost.
Food pantries are typically located in facilities where received food can be stored and handled in a safe and sanitary manner.
Each food pantry serves a designated local area and most of them require prior registration and approval before food can be distributed to a particular individual or a family.
Soup Kitchens In Oklahoma
Soup kitchens serve cooked meals on-site to needy people at no cost. Like food pantries, they normally receive their food from local food banks.
Soup kitchens take care mostly of homeless people and people who do not have the means to cook for themselves.
They require storage, cleaning, and cooking equipment as they have to do food preparation, serving, and cleaning after the meals.
Food pantries are typically located in facilities where received food can be stored and handled in a safe and sanitary manner.
WIC Program in Oklahoma
Oklahoma Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides healthy foods, breastfeeding support, nutrition education, health care referrals to Oklahoma pregnant women, new mothers, infants, and young children during times of important growth.
School Meals in Oklahoma
School meals in Oklahoma are offered mainly through the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program.
The Oklahoma school meals programs make nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free meals available to school children each school day in the year.
School meals nutritional standards are based on the recommendation from the Institute of Medicine and the U.S. Government and teachers have reported that students perform better in class if they get regular meals.
Children getting school breakfast also had significantly reduced absence and tardiness rates, according to a Tufts University study.
Special Milk Program in Oklahoma
Oklahoma Special Milk Program offers milk to children in schools, childcare institutions, and eligible camps. Any child in a school or institution that participates in the Special Milk Program can get milk.
Schools may elect to offer free milk to low-income children. In order to qualify for Oklahoma Special Milk, the child must be a resident of the State of Oklahoma.
Summer Food Program in Oklahoma
Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) is another Oklahoma food assistance program that provides free meals and snacks to help low-income Oklahoma children get nutritious meals in the summertime.
The Summer Food Service Program is a federal program that provides grants to local sponsors who want to combine a food service with a summer activity program.
The funding provided by SFSP ensures that Oklahoma children in low-income areas continue to receive nutritious meals during long school vacations when they do not have access to school lunch or breakfast.
Senior Nutrition in Oklahoma
Oklahoma Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) provides low-income seniors with special checks to buy fresh, nutritious fruits, vegetables, and herbs from authorized farmers’ markets. To qualify for Oklahoma senior nutrition special checks, the applicants must be 60 years of age or older and their gross household income must not exceed certain limits.
An application must be completed for each person in the household that wants to apply for the SFMNP benefits. Once approved, each beneficiary must reapply every year to continue participating in the Oklahoma Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program. Learn more about how the senior nutrition program works.
Sources: State Agencies, FNS, USDA