All the free food deals in March 2019

Let's all be honest: by the time March rolls around, everyone's ready for spring flowers, warmer weather, and longer days. Fortunately, March is happy to oblige most of the time, especially when it's welcomed with a particularly rough patch of weather. (In like a lion, out like a lamb, after all.) The winter can be long and rough no matter where you live, so do you know what helps to make everything better? A free lunch, treat, coffee, or dessert. Fortunately for you, we have the heads' up on some of the best deals that you'll want to mark on your calendar.

This month, some of the country's biggest fast food chains are getting ready for spring with some amazing deals. So get ready to put away your winter boots, and celebrate the part of your family that's Irish (even if you don't have any). And — on that note — don't forget to grab your annual Shamrock Shake, along with these great deals.

Hardee's

Hardee's is in the middle of launching a brand new coffee, and customers are the ones who are going to benefit from their celebration.

The coffee is a 100 percent Arabica blend called Rise and Shine, and along with the coffee, they're promoting the sale of a YETI Rise and Shine coffee mug. (The first 100 people to purchase the mug will get an extra bonus, says Business Wire — they'll be a part of an exclusive mug club, and score free coffee for a year.)

For anyone who misses out on being the first in line for those pretty neat reusable mugs, there's still free coffee to be had. Until March 10, customers can stop by a participating Hardee's, order any item, and get a free cup of their new blend, specially chosen to pair with breakfast items and be a wake-you-up-right sort of cup. Hardee's might remind some customers of the 1980s (their mug club is a throw-back from that time), but they're hoping that this, along with their foray into offering reusable, environmentally-friend mugs, might help introduce them to a new generation. Will it?

IHOP

If pancakes are one of those things you just don't get to eat as often as you'd like, be sure to take advantage of IHOP's awesome offer, available only on Tuesday, March 12. Why March 12? Because it's Free Pancake Day, and that's a day we can all get behind.

Stop by any IHOP, and you'll get a free short stack of Original Buttermilk Pancakes. That's a pretty good incentive, but they're also giving you another great reason to stop by before April 14, and while it doesn't have anything to do with free food, it's worth mentioning.

IHOP has partnered with a guest chef for the spring: his name is Brody Simoncini, and he spent the first months of his life undergoing multiple surgeries at Boston Children's Hospital. This year, the 6-year-old chef has created the Oreo Oh My Goodness pancake stack for IHOP, and part of the proceeds from the sale of his pancakes go to charity. They're buttermilk pancakes filled and topped with Oreo cookie pieces, cupcake icing, and whipped cream, and it doesn't matter how old you are, that sounds delicious.

Tim Hortons

It's that time! Tim Hortons is running their annual Roll Up the Rim to Win contest, and you'll have to get there quick. According to their official rules, it's scheduled to end on March 13, or whenever they run out of their promotional cups. (It's also worth noting that it'll be running for longer in Canada, as their FAQ notes it's scheduled to officially come to a close on April 17.)

There are a few big prizes up for grabs this year, including a Jeep Compass 4x4. While the odds of winning that aren't great, your odds of scoring some free food are very, very good. They're giving away a ton of free coffee and donuts, along with thousands of pre-paid gift cards.

They also note that prizes are equally distributed across all eligible cup sizes, so there's no need to feel like you have to get that extra-large coffee in hopes of scoring some free stuff.

McDonald's

McDonald's always has something going on when it comes to free food, but most of the time, you're going to need to download, order, and pay through their app, then pick up the food at your chosen location. It saves you standing in line at least, right?

This month, they're giving you the perfect opportunity to do something nice for a group of friends, family, or coworkers. All month — all the way until March 31 — you can order 5 McCafe beverages through the app and get one free. (It's up to you who you give the freebie to and whether or not you tell them it didn't cost you a dime.) If you just want one for yourself, you can get $1 off any single beverage.

If you're looking for a quick lunch, McDonald's also has another great deal for you (which is also through their app). All month, you can order a medium or large fry and get any size soft drink for free. Not bad, right?

Carvel

Who doesn't love an ice cream sundae, especially now that the weather's getting warmer and spring is on the horizon? What if we told you that every Wednesday, Carvel has a special going on where they're encouraging you to bring a friend along for some free stuff?

Just stop by Carvel and order a classic sundae. (That's ice cream, syrup, whipped cream, and a cherry on top.) Then, you'll get another one for free! The deal is only good on these classic sundaes and doesn't extend to their other menu items, but that's OK, right? There's no apps involved and no coupon codes, no jumping through hoops needed. Just show up, order, and whether or not you bring a friend… actually, that's not even needed. No one will tell — some days are just double sundae sorts of days.

It's also worth noting that they have an email club, and you can sign up for all kinds of delicious deals delivered right to your inbox.

Applebee's

Applebee's is going to be celebrating St. Patrick's Day all month long with their special of the month, and if you like bright, colorful, and full of flavor, this one's for you. Their $2 Absolut Rainbow Punch is a bright green glass of goodness, filled with Absolut vodka, green apple, ginger, lemon, and topped by a candy rainbow. It sounds delicious, sure, but please remember to drink responsibly!

Applebee's has a couple other things going on this month, in an attempt to lure back some of the customers they've lost in recent years. In addition to their offer of two entrees and an appetizer for just $20, they're also trying to encourage people to think of them as more than just a sit-down restaurant. Order via their app or online, and you can stop by, park, and pick up your order with their Carside To Go service. Right now, you'll get $5 off your order for the first time you use it, and let's face it: we all have those days we just want to pick up a quick dinner on the way home from work, and this might be a great opportunity to give Applebee's a try.

Chili's

If it's been a while since you've been to Chili's, there are some seriously good deals on offer during the month of March, and they might just what it takes to get you back in the door.

First, March's $5 Margarita of the Month. Not surprisingly, it's the Irish-themed The Lucky Jameson, made with Jameson, Lunazul Blanco Tequila, Triple Sec, and Fresh Sour. (That's in addition to their Presidente cocktail, which is also just $5 with the purchase of their Chili's Specials.)

They're also hoping to entice parents to make them a regular destination for dinner out with the family, and you'll have to work a little bit for this freebie. Sign up for their My Chili's Rewards program this month, and you'll get offers — via email or text — for a free kids' meal with the purchase of an adult entree. Kids will need to order off their Pepper Pals menu (where they'll find things like burgers, grilled cheese, and pizza), but you know that's what will make them happy anyway, right? Why not get it for free?

Cumberland Farms

Cumberland Farms always has some great freebies on offer, and March is no exception. Getting something free with a purchase is always a good thing, but even better is that if you're trying to make healthier choices, they're going to help you out with that this month.

Purchase a bottle of Smartwater or Vitaminwater, and you'll get a free bag of Cumberland Farms Harvest Snacks or a cup of yogurt. You can also grab a bottle of Poland Spring water or a 12-ounce Red Bull, and get a free bag of Cumberland Farms Farmhouse Trail Mix or nuts. Those aren't bad deals, right?

If you're looking for something with a little more crunch, how about a free bag of Cumberland Farms Farmhouse Pretzels or Popcorn? You'll get it with the purchase of a bottle of Polar Seltzer, Canada Dry, or Dr. Pepper. And if coffee is your thing, you can get a free coffee with the purchase of a king-size KitKat or Hershey's with Reese's Pieces.

Village Inn

The Village Inn isn't just known for their food, they're known for their oh-so-delicious pies. And those pies are amazing: this month, they'll be featuring their Mint Brownie Blast and their White Chocolate Cherry Dream, alongside their other options like the Caramel Pecan Silk Supreme Peach Lattice, Country Apple, and Lemon Meringue.

But let's be honest: pies are one of those things that are tough to get right. If you're not sure about whether or not the Village Inn's pies quite take the cake, head out there on a Wednesday. Why? Because that's Free Pie Wednesday, when customers can get a free slice with any dine-in purchase — all day, at any time between 10 a.m. and 10 p.m., with no coupon or code needed. The offer is only good on classic fruit pies and feature pies, but that's what you were going to order anyway, isn't it?

Domino's

Do you love pizza? Do you eat it regularly? Of course you do, and that's what makes Domino's Piece of the Pie Rewards program so cool.

Here's the deal. Download the app, and sign up. Then, every time you have a pizza between now and April 28, just take a picture of it. It doesn't even have to be from Domino's! It can be any pizza, even one you made yourself, it just needs to be enough of a pizza that the app's software recognizes it as having crust, sauce, and cheese. You'll get 10 points for every pizza, and once you hit 60 points you can redeem them for a free medium pizza (via CNBC).

Domino's stresses that they're not collecting any data, and the app can't actually tell where a pizza came from. But they also say the entire program is mainly to get people using their app, and as 60 percent of their business already comes through that way, it's safe to say that's going to get higher thanks to this super-fun program that ends with free pizza.

Hungry Howie's

Hungry Howie's is also trying to push people toward online ordering, and this month, they have a pretty good deal going for customers who do place their order through their web site. Just order a regular-prize, large, 1-topping pizza, then use the code "MEDIUM1" and you'll get a medium 1-topping pizza for just $1. Not bad, right?

If you just want a single, large pizza, you can get a 2-topping pie for just $7.99 with the code "LG799". Neither of these deals has an end date, so get 'em while you can.

While you're ordering, sign up for their Howie Rewards program. Every time you place an order and make a purchase you'll get points you can redeem for free food. Right now, the deal is that 60 Howie Points will get you a free medium pizza (although that's subject to change). There are no substitutions allowed, but you can still pick your crust type and flavor, and that's why Hungry Howie's is a slice above.

7-Eleven

There are thousands of 7-Eleven locations across the U.S., so the chance this might be your go-to gas station is pretty high. Even if you go there every so often, you should definitely sign up for their 7Rewards program. Just download the app, and start earning points for some serious rewards.

Some foods and snacks are worth more points than others, but even if you just get coffee or soda there, it's totally worth it. Buy six cups and your seventh one is free, and if there's anything that can make your day better, it's free coffee. And don't forget, 7-Eleven takes their coffee seriously, offering everything from iced cappuccino to a 100 percent Colombian Rainforest Alliance Certified Coffee. Hot coffee? Iced coffee? Cold brew? How about cinnamon topping, mini marshmallows, and syrups?

They have it all, and if you haven't been there in a while for their coffee, it's about that time, isn't it?

Taco Bell

Taco Bell might be a bit of a guilty pleasure, but you'll feel less guilty when you get a free drink with your order… right? We thought so!

Here's the deal: you'll need to have a Taco Bell account for this one, but you can just sign up on their web site. (And, as with other rewards programs, they totally make it worth your while with exclusive offers available only to members.) Then, place an order either online or via the Taco Bell app, and you'll get a small Pepsi Zero Sugar for free.

You'll have all month to redeem this one, as it doesn't expire until April 4. (And, as if you need more of a reason to place your order with Taco Bell for at least a few lunches this month, it's also worth noting that they've now partnered with Grubhub to make all your wildest dreams come true… as long as those dreams include Taco Bell delivered right to your door, and isn't that everyone's dream?)