Sunday, May 16, 2021
Arts + Culture Culture A guide to free food in San Francisco

A guide to free food in San Francisco

If you or a neighbor are experiencing food insecurity, here's a list of resources that can help.


If you or someone you know is experiencing food insecurity in San Francisco right now, immediate help is available, including programs that are open to everyone. (Many programs are also looking for volunteers.)

Most prominently, the SF-Marin Food Bank has launched 19 weekly Pop-Up Pantries in various San Francisco neighborhoods. Visitors to the Pop-Up Pantries will be asked how many people are in their household and will receive an average of 30 pounds of food, made up of mostly fresh fruits and vegetables, plus rice, a protein such as eggs or frozen chicken and a canned item. No advance signup or identification is required.

Families who have been severely impacted by COVID-19 can order a complimentary Che Fico Family Meal that feeds two to three people at Che Fico. Make an appointment online to be given a specific time slot to pick up the meal; you can indicate whether you’d like a vegetarian or omnivorous meal.

Tuesdays are now Pay It Forward Tuesdays at the two locations of pizza parlor Fiorella. Thanks to a partnership with the Bi-Rite Family of Businesses, 100 free meals are given away at each Fiorella location weekly to employed or recently laid off health care, grocery and restaurant workers who can provide proof or current or recent employment in these fields. Choose from pizza (margherita, mushroom, or pepperoni) or pasta (cacio e pepe or pomodoro); both are served with a seasonal Bi-Rite salad. Place an order for pickup at the Polk Street location by calling 415-829-7097⁠ or the Clement Street location by calling 415-340-3049.

San Francisco’s free breakfast and lunch restaurant Martin de Porres House of Hospitality is still providing free meals to the community, though the dining room is closed so the organization is offering one daily bagged, mostly vegetarian or vegan meal to-go.

Glide continues to offer the Daily Free Meals Program with no eligibility requirement or forms to fill out. The church also serves breakfast to seniors, families and adults with disabilities at 7:30 a.m. every morning.

The Food Pantry is serving pre-bagged groceries every Saturday starting at noon, for residents of 94107 and 94110 zip codes.  No registration or identifications needed. The address is 500 De Haro Street—and they are looking for volunteers who have not been exposed to COVID. Call 415-255-8100 for more info.

North Beach Citizens offers a weekly Community Food Pantry on Wednesdays from 10:30am to 12:30pm for San Francisco residents who live in participating SROs and have identification and a rental receipt.

The city-sponsored Great Plates Delivered SF mostly delivers up to three free meals per day to eligible seniors over 65, although some who are aged 60-64 with certain underlying health conditions will also qualify. The program is income-based, serving seniors who earn less than $74,940 in a solo household or $101,460 in a two-person household. Call (415) 355-6700 for help, with support available in multiple languages.

Project Open Hand has a Community Nutrition Program for seniors and adults with disabilities that offers daily meals as well as seven-packs of frozen meals for pickup at various locations (onsite delivery to your car is also available). Call (415) 447-2335 for more info on eligibility.

Finally, Food Not Bombs celebrated 40 years this month. You can check their schedule here for pop-up service in San Francisco and beyond.

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