The best credit cards for restaurants

Whether you’re the type of person who likes to linger over a three-course meal or buy takeaway food at the end of a long day, you deserve to be rewarded for spending at your restaurant.

Here’s our list of the best rewards credit cards for restaurant-related purchases in 2022, broken down by the feature that identifies them best.

Best credit cards for restaurants
Best credit cards for restaurants

Capital One Savour Cash Rewards Credit Card: Best for Overall Value

Reward rate: 8 percent return on purchases from Vivid Seats (through January 31, 2023); 4 percent return for dining and entertainment; 4 percent back on popular streaming services; 3 percent back at grocery stores; 1 percent back for all other purchases

Welcome bonus: $300 cash bonus after spending $3,000 in the first three months of card membership
Annual fee: $95
Capital One Savour Cash Rewards credit card has been a favorite of the Bank for some time thanks to its reward structure. You’ll get a 4% cash refund for popular dining, entertainment, and streaming services, all for a $95 annual fee. According to the Capital One website, the dining category includes purchases at cafes, bars, fast food chains and more.

Welcome rewards require a higher spending threshold, but you’ll make more money relatively doing so with a $300 cash bonus after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months. In addition, travel lovers will not have to pay foreign transaction fees when spending abroad and you can redeem your cash refund bonus for checks, Gift cards and more.

Citi Custom Cash Card: Best for Flexible Refunds

Reward rate: a 5 percent refund (up to $500 per billing cycle, then 1 percent) for your top eligible spending portfolio per billing cycle; 1 percent cashback for all other purchases
Welcome bonus: 20,000 ThankYou points – worth $200 in cash refunds – after spending $750 on purchases in the first three months
Annual fee: $0
Instead of having a fixed bonus portfolio, Citi Custom Cash® has a unique value proposition: You can earn 5 percent cash of up to $500 per billing cycle (1 percent later) on the qualifying category you spend the most. includes restaurants (though not third-party catering), making it a leading candidate.

Depending on your budget, it may make more sense to save citi custom cash for other types of purchases. For example, you can earn 5% in a category like groceries or home improvements if you spend more on those deals in a month. That said, this feature makes Citi Custom Cash a versatile option. You can make a lot of money from eating for a month and then choose to cook at home the next month and still earn rewards in other categories.

Chase Sapphire Priority Card: Best for Travel Cards For Restaurant Rewards

Reward ratio: 5X points for travel purchased through Chase’s Final Rewards; 5X points on Lyft Rides (through March 2025); 3X points for dining (including eligible delivery services), selective streaming services, and online grocery purchases (excluding Target, Walmart and the wholesale club; 2X points for the trip are not booked in advance through Chase’s Final Reward; 1X points for all other purchases
Welcome rewards: Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months since opening the account
Annual fee: $95
Chase Sapphire Preferred® card is a staple in the travel credit card industry for reasons: low annual fees, valuable reward rates, and flexible redemption options make it a great card for both beginner travelers and seasoned professionals. Chase Sapphire Preferred is now even more valuable to everyday consumers. Previously, it offered 2X points when eating, but now it gives back 3X points.

Cardholders also have access to DoorDash DashPass for a free year if they activate by December 31, 2024. The card also rewards online grocery purchases at a rate of 3 times, so you’ll earn the same rate of increase when cooking yourself. And if you’re looking to turn your dining money into mileage, then Chase Sapphire Preferred is an effective way to do just that.

American Express yellow card: Best for super-spenders

Rewards rate: 4X reward points for members on restaurant purchases (including takeaway food and door-to-door delivery), Uber Eats, and purchases at U.S. supermarkets (when making up to $25,000 per year, followed by 1X points); 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or via American Express Travel; 2X points when renting a car through American Express Travel; 1X points for all other purchases
Welcome Rewards: Earn 60,000 Membership Reward Points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases within the first six months of Card Membership
Annual fee: $250
If you’re not afraid to pay an annual fee, then the American Express® Gold Card is one of the best credit cards for dining and it can prove especially useful for travelers around the world. You’ll earn 4 times The Membership Rewards Points for eating at restaurants, in addition to the card also offering a dining credit of up to $120 ($10 per month) when making a qualifying purchase at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly,, Milk Bar, and select Shake Shack Location (registration required).

Cardholders can also receive up to $120 of Uber Cash annually ($10 per month and will expire at the end of the month) which can be redeemed for Uber rides or Eat orders. You just need to make sure that your Amex Yellow Card is linked to the Uber app to automatically receive Uber Cash monthly.

Amex Gold comes with a $250 annual fee, but you can almost refund it all by making the most of dining credits and Uber Cash. In addition to dining privileges, the card offers a number of travel-related benefits, including no foreign transaction fees and various travel protections for luggage, car rentals, and more.

US Bank Cash + ® Visa Signature® Card: Best to Buy Fast Food

Reward rate: 5 percent cashback for eligible purchases in your two options categories (up to $2,000 for combined purchases per quarter, then 1 percent); 2 percent refund for a daily item (including restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations, and EV charging stations); 1 percent back for all other eligible purchases
Welcome bonus: a $200 bonus after you sign up online and spend $1,000 on eligible purchases within the first 120 days of opening the account
Annual fee: $0
Those who love fast food, rejoice. With the Bank of America’s Cash + ® Visa Signature® Card, you can choose fast food as a category to earn a 5% cashback cashback of up to $2,000 for combined purchases per quarter (then 1%). Better yet, you can still earn rewards for buying other dishes — the card also has the option to choose the restaurant as a daily category, so you’ll earn 2 percent back for all restaurant purchases.

In addition, the welcome bonus has a fairly reasonable spending threshold as you can earn a $200 bonus after making $1,000 in qualifying purchases in the first 120 days of card ownership. Furthermore, there is no minimum reward redemption amount, and you can withdraw cash from your reward at any time for a statement credit, a deposit to your savings account or U.S. Bank check, and more.

Chasing Unlimited Freedom: Best for Free Food Delivery

Rewards rate: A 5 percent refund for a trip purchased through Chase’s Final Rewards; 5% back when going to Lyft (until March 2022); 3 percent return to eating (including takeaway services and qualified delivery services); 3 percent return when making a purchase at the pharmacy; 1.5 percent return for all other purchases
Welcome bonus: Earn an additional 1.5% cash on the initial refund rate of all purchases (up to $20,000) in the first year (incentives through Bankrate)
Annual fee: $0
Chase Freedom Unlimited® is a great money-back credit card option to earn rewards for purchases related to dining and food delivery as you’ll earn 3% back. In addition, you’ll get a free DoorDash DashPass subscription for three months, which comes with unlimited delivery for orders over $12, all of which have a $0 delivery fee. If you don’t unsubscribe after the end of three months, you’ll automatically be enrolled in DashPass with a monthly discount of 50% (usually $9.99 per month) for the next nine months (must be registered by March 31, 2022).

If you’re looking for a card option that can also earn rewards on non-category purchases, then Chase Freedom Unlimited is one of the best options with a 1.5% cashback rate for all other purchases.

Platinum cards from American Express: Best for luxury cards with dining perks

Rewards rate: 5X points when spending up to $500,000 on direct airfare, flights and prepaid hotels booked via American Express Travel (each calendar year); 2X points when renting a prepaid car via American Express Travel; 1X points for all other purchases
Welcome reward: 100,000 points after you spent $6,000 on a purchase in the first six months
Annual fee: $695
® American Express Platinum cards are renowned for their luxurious benefits and for good reason. Bonus points for Amex members are a great currency to use for frequent travelers. And while the $695 annual fee may look intimidating, the card is fully equipped with credits and statement perks that make this fee worthwhile. For restaurant-related perks, this includes up to $200 uber cash per year ($15 per month, plus $20 in December),

can be applied for rides or delivery from Uber Eats.

Unfortunately, Amex Platinum recently removed the privilege associated with its most eye-catching restaurant. It used to offer a whopping 10X points per dollar at eligible restaurants worldwide during the first six months of card membership (when making purchases of up to $25,000). But keep an eye out — maybe they’ll bring a similar offer in the future.

How to choose a restaurant credit card

Now that you’ve had the opportunity to review the best credit cards for restaurants, it’s time to determine which ones fit your lifestyle and spending habits. You’ll want to consider:

Annual fee

When considering a restaurant credit card, determine if you’re afraid to pay an annual fee. There are plenty of free credit card options annually for dining-related purchases if you want to avoid being charged, but you’ll usually get higher reward rates and greater overall perks with annual fee cards.

Fixed ratio to rotating category

Do you prefer set-it-and-forget-it bonuses with credit cards or do you prefer to select, track and activate rotating bonus categories? Restaurant credit cards can be in either form and the right choice for you depends on how you answer the question above.

You’ll also want to consider the card limit (if any) on the reward level you can earn each quarter or annually. Both flat-rate category cards and rotating cards can come with limits, but they are more common in cards with rotating categories.

For example, the combined spending limit of the Bank of America + Visa Signature of $2,000 per quarter in the 5 percent category may be too low for those who spend a lot. Once you reach the limit, you’ll only earn 1% cash on your purchases. In this case, a fixed rate card can help you make more money in the long run.

Redemption options

The card’s reward redemption options determine how you can use the number of points, refunds, or miles you’ve earned. Before deciding on a restaurant credit card, it’s important to double-check to make sure you can redeem the rewards of the card in any way that best suits your lifestyle.

Most cards offer redemption options in the form of refunds, credit statements, checks, gift cards, goods or travel, but some cards have more limited options. If you don’t make high levels of spending related to dining with specific sellers, it’s best to find cards with more flexible redemption options.

The bottom line

If you spend a lot on dining out, takeaway purchases, and delivery, then getting a reward card gives you more for spending in those categories. Before choosing, remember to keep in mind your annual fees, spending habits as well as the type of rewards and perks you care about the most. That way, you’re sure to get the right card for you.

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