23 Popular Restaurants With Birthday Specials

What's better than getting a lil' something special for your birthday? While you may expect gifts from family or friends, what about a tasty surprise from your favorite chain restaurant? Turns out, quite a few popular food franchises will reward you with free or discounted eats when your big day rolls around. The catch: You'll likely have to let them know about your birthday ahead of time by signing up for their loyalty program or club. Sure, that might mean you get a few more marketing emails in your inbox, but isn't the hassle of clicking "unsubscribe" worth it when you're chowing down on some free (or at least cheap) tacos, ice cream, wings, and more?

Check out all of these popular restaurants with birthday specials, ranging from free food and drinks to heavy discounts. Pick out your favorites and sign up ahead of your bday — or sign up for all the options and put together a free feast for the big day. We won't judge.

Auntie Anne's

Join Auntie Anne's Pretzel Perks program and enjoy a bevy of benefits. So long as you sign up for the program before your birthday arrives, you'll receive a coupon for a free pretzel that can be used on your birthday or during the next 14 days. Otherwise, you can earn free pretzels throughout the year. For every 250 points you earn in the program, you get one free pretzel. 

Each $1 you spend at Auntie Anne's equals 10 points earned, so you have to spend $25 at Auntie Anne's to earn those 250 points. However, as soon as you sign up for the program, you get an additional free pretzel after your first purchase of $1 or more. What's not to love?  You can register for the Auntie Anne's Pretzel Perks program on the Auntie Anne's website and then keep track of your points on the Pretzel Perks app.

Baskin Robbins

Ice cream is a must on any birthday and Baskin Robbins is here to help ensure your sweet tooth is satiated — both on your big day and every day. Join the Baskin-Robbins Birthday Club to receive a free single scoop of ice cream on your birthday. Signing up does require that you have a BR account, but you're not required to opt-in to the email program or to download the BR app in order to participate (though, if you do, you'll get extra deals, coupons, and special offers, plus the ability to order ice cream right from the app). 

Baskin-Robbins is one of the handful of restaurants that extends its birthday specials to the under-18 crowd — anyone 13 or older can sign up. Once you join, you'll receive a birthday coupon for your free scoop via email. You can also create a family account, and then add up to four family members' birthdays. That way, everyone in the fam receives a free scoop.

Ben & Jerry's

Don't have a Baskin-Robbins in your neck of the woods? No worries. You can still get your birthday ice cream fix with a stop at your local Ben & Jerry's. If you become a Ben & Jerry's Flavor Fanatic, you'll likewise receive free ice cream on your birthday. Your birthday offer is delivered via email on the first day of your birthday month and is valid for the entire month, so it's a super-flexible option if you're planning on being otherwise busy on your actual birthday. 

Just don't wait until the last minute to sign up. You won't qualify for a birthday offer if you enroll within 24 hours of the first day of your birthday month or at all during your birthday month — you'll have to wait all the way until the next calendar year to get your offer. Even with those terms and conditions, the Flavor Fanatic program is still worth joining if you go to Ben & Jerry's often, as members receive 10% discounts on all qualifying purchases, all year long.

Buffalo Wild Wings

If your taste buds prefer more savory options to sweet, opt for the Buffalo Wild Wings rewards program. The Blazin' Rewards program offers you free wings on your birthday. Unfortunately, it is only a snack-size serving of wings, but the birthday coupon is valid for your entire birthday month.

Otherwise, the program gives you access to special, members-only offers throughout the year and you'll receive 100 points for every $10 spent at Buffalo Wild Wings locations. You can use your points that you've accumulated to redeem a variety of prizes, not just free food. Buffalo Wild Wings merchandise and even tickets to sporting and other various events are up for grabs.

You can sign up for the Blazin' Rewards program on the Buffalo Wild Wings website, the Blazin Rewards app, or on an in-restaurant tablet. Only adults 18 years of age or older are eligible for the program.

Checkers and Rally's

Whether you go to Checkers or Rally's, the experience and the menu are pretty much exactly the same. Such is the case with the restaurants' rewards program, Checkers & Rally's Rewards. You can use your account at both restaurants and redeem your birthday gift (which is typically a free menu item) at either. 

Actually receiving your birthday offer, however, isn't as cut and dry as it is with some of these other restaurants. For example, you aren't allowed to opt out of the restaurant's marketing communications and your account must show at least one purchase within the last 12 months. In other words, if you dip out of the marketing emails and haven't made a purchase in a while, you're not going to receive that sweet, sweet birthday treat. But it does offer another major perk. First time Checkers & Rally's Rewards members will immediately snag a free classic Mother Cruncher chicken sandwich or Big Buford burger just for signing up.


Chili's is also serving up delicious birthday treats on your big day. If you join My Chili's Rewards, you'll receive a free dessert item on your birthday. Choose between Chili's famed molten chocolate cake (with that gooey chocolate center and melty vanilla ice cream) or the chain's skillet chocolate chip cookie, which is drizzled in hot fudge and served piping hot. Both are exactly the kinds of indulgent treats you want to enjoy on your birthday.

Joining My Chili's Rewards will also earn you free chips and salsa as well as free non-alcoholic drinks every single time you visit a Chili's location. Other benefits include in-restaurant WiFi access, one-tap reordering, and your choice of rewards options (from free delivery to free food), when you've accumulated enough points. Just note that this is one of the restaurant rewards programs that requires you to be at least 18 or older to join.


Chipotle Rewards offers its members a birthday treat, though apparently the chain wants to keep the gift a surprise. The birthday reward isn't specified in the reward program's terms and conditions and the website simply notes, "we won't forget you on your birthday." 

So what exactly will you get?

A 2019 Tweet from Chipotle revealed that members will receive free chips and guacamole after a $5 purchase. Recent posts on Reddit seem to confirm that this is still the case. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that you cannot select your birthday freebie via the app, though one Redditor who claims to work for Chipotle suggests asking the manager for the comped chips and guac when you pick up your order.  

Beyond your birthday, you'll get free chips and guac with your first Chipotle purchase as a rewards member. You will also earn points through the program (10 for every $1 spent) that can be exchanged for free food.  


Start your birthday off on an extra sweet note with the signature offering from Cinnabon (because, yes, cinnamon rolls absolutely are the best birthday breakfast). Unfortunately, Cinnabon isn't going to give you a free cinnamon roll on your birthday; you'll have to buy that on your own. What they will give you, however, is a free cold brew to wash it all down. All you have to do is join the Cinnabon Rewards program.

Other benefits include a four-count of Cinnabon Bon Bites just for signing up; 10 points for every $1 you spend with Cinnabon, with each classic roll redeemable for 250 points; and extra points-earning opportunities when you do things like refer a friend to the program. Just note that you will want to sign up for the program via the Cinnabon Rewards app (available both in the App Store and via Google Play) in order to receive that four-count Cinnabon Bon Bites sign-up reward.

Cold Stone Creamery

Just like Ben & Jerry's and Baskin Robbins, Cold Stone Creamery offers a sweet ice cream treat for its loyal followers, too. At Cold Stone Creamery, if you join My Cold Stone Club Rewards, you'll get a birthday buy one, get one coupon. The BOGO coupon is loaded into your rewards account seven days before your birthday and then you can redeem it any time in the next two weeks (so up until seven days after your birthday).

Otherwise, the program allows you to earn one point for every $1 you spend at Cold Stone Creamery locations. For every 50 points you earn, you receive a $5 reward coupon to use on your next purchase (though the reward coupons do expire in 90 days, and you can't use a $5 reward coupon and your BOGO birthday coupon on the same purchase).

In terms of birthday offers from ice-cream chains, Cold Stone Creamery's offer is perhaps the least appealing, but if you're a Cold Stone fan, it's still worth checking out.

Einstein Bros. Bagels

If you're already signed up for the Einstein Bros. Bagels eClub, you may assume that you're enrolled to receive your birthday surprise from this bagel joint — but hold up. You actually won't receive anything special on your birthday unless you're signed up for the chain's Shmear Society Rewards Program, which is a separate program requiring a separate sign-up. However, if you do go through the trouble of signing up, you'll receive a free egg sandwich on your birthday, plus a free bagel and shmear (with a purchase) just for registering. The free birthday egg sandwich offer is valid for 14 days after your birthday.

Otherwise, you'll earn two points for every $1 spent at the restaurant and you can use those points to redeem free menu items. The menu items that you can pick from for your points redemption vary, though, and all of your points expire after six months.

Jack in the Box

Jack in the Box offers a range of ways to earn free food, and not just on your birthday. However, if your birthday is coming up, you will receive a coupon for two free tacos if you're a member of The Jack Pack, the chain's newly revamped loyalty program. You'll want to sign up via the Jack in the Box app, after which you'll receive 25% off your first post-sign-up purchase. From there, you receive one point for every $1 you spend on the app. After you spend $40, you'll get some free food, such as fries or a Jumbo Jack. 

If, though, you're not keen on downloading yet another app to your phone, you can also sign up for emailed and texted offers on the Jack in the Box website (just load the page — you can't miss the pop-up prompting you to give your info), which will give you immediate access to coupons for free foods, ranging from a five-piece pack of mini churros to two free tacos with any purchase.

Jersey Mike's

Jersey Mike's gets props for offering one of the most substantial birthday bonuses on our list. Rather than a coupon for a free appetizer or dessert, or a mere coupon for a discount or buy-one, get-one item, Jersey Mike's will give you a full sub for your birthday. All you have to do is join the My Mike's email club.

Beyond the free birthday sandwich, though, the Jersey Mike's rewards program is a little more complex than some of the others on our list. You earn "Shore Points" with each purchase, and the amount of points earned differ according to your menu item. Kids' meals are worth three points; mini subs and breakfast sandwiches are worth four; regular subs, wraps, and sub tubs are worth six; and giant subs are worth 12. Then, when you want to redeem your points, you need 48 points for a mini sub; 72 for a regular sub, sub tub, or wrap; and 144 for a giant sub. That's a lot of math.

Jimmy John's

If there's not a Jersey Mike's in your area, no worries. You can still potentially get your submarine sandwich fix on your birthday at Jimmy John's. Unfortunately, the sandwich chain is a little hush-hush as to what exactly that birthday surprise entails and also is somewhat non-committal about whether or not you'll actually see that surprise at all. In the Jimmy John's Freaky Fast Rewards program FAQs, the chain simply notes, "Frequent Freakers may [emphasis ours] earn a surprise reward on their birthday." The Jimmy John's Terms & Conditions aren't really clear on the matter, either. However, an out-of-date promotions page indicates that Freaky Fast Rewards members earn a free sandwich on their birthdays and the Jimmy John's Reddit page notes that members should receive an email the week of their birthdays with the ability to redeem a free sandwich.

Your best bet? Just sign up for the program ahead of time, take advantage of the free sandwich you get with your first order after signing up, and then wait to see if you do get that free sandwich on your birthday. After all, you have nothing to lose and a free sub to gain.

Krispy Kreme

Who doesn't love a piping hot donut from Krispy Kreme? Get both a free coffee and a free donut at Krispy Kreme during your birthday month (via The Spruce Eats) after you sign up for Krispy Kreme Rewards. You'll receive an email with the details of your birthday offer and the offer is valid all throughout your birthday month. 

Otherwise, after you register for the rewards program via either the Krispy Kreme app or online, you'll get a free donut just for signing up. You'll later earn one credit every time you purchase a donut and you'll get a free donut after you acquire 12 credits. The Krispy Kreme Rewards program is also separated into "tracks" so you can receive the same items that you buy most often, for free; the more single donuts, coffee, specialty coffees, and dozen donut boxes you buy, the closer you are to redeeming whichever of these you buy most.

Moe's Southwest Grill

"Welcome to Moe's!" If the sound of that phrase sends your foodie heart pitter-pattering, then you need to sign up for Moe Rewards. Much like Jersey Mike's, Moe's Southwest Grill offers a pretty admirable birthday bonus — a free burrito on your birthday, every year. You do have to sign up online or download the program's app in order to participate, but you get a free cup of queso for the download. For every $1 you spend at Moe's, you'll receive one Moe Rewards point. After you earn 100 points, you'll receive $10 in credit to spend at Moe's, however you like, making this definitely one of the easiest-to-redeem rewards programs featured on this list. 

The program is open to everyone ages 13 and up and, in addition to earning points, as a member of Moe Rewards, you'll also receive special offers that you wouldn't otherwise — whether it's your birthday or any day of the year.

Panera Bread

The MyPanera program comes with a wealth of benefits including a free birthday treat every year. While Panera Bread isn't quick to divulge what exactly the birthday surprise is, an older Facebook post from the brand indicates that the birthday treat changes up depending on the year and the user. Panera asked followers what their favorite birthday treats have been since joining MyPanera and followers reported back with a range of free items including You Pick Two combos, bagels, pastries, and soup.

Otherwise, members receive a free pastry item for joining, free delivery after a month of membership, and even a free three-month trial of Audible Plus. You also have the option to upgrade to a MyPanera+ coffee subscription, wherein you receive unlimited coffee for $9 per month. To join, go to the MyPanera page and either sign up with your email address or Facebook account.

Pizza Hut

The Hut Rewards program from Pizza Hut sadly will not earn you a free pizza on your birthday — but it will give you another free treat, which is reason enough to sign up. While, much like with Panera, the freebie differs from year to year and user to user, the current offer includes your choice of an order of breadsticks or cinnamon sticks with a $5 minimum purchase (via Best Rewards Programs).

The program gives you two points for every $1 you spend at Pizza Hut and then you can redeem your points for free menu items, which start at 75 points for an order of breadsticks. In addition to your birthday reward, Hut Rewards program members also receive access to extra discounts and offers that aren't available to the general public. Anyone ages 16 and up can become a member, but those ages 16 or 17 must have a legal guardian's permission.

Red Robin

We applaud those restaurants that choose to give their loyalty members actual, full-size entrees as their birthday surprise. Red Robin thankfully falls into this category, offering Red Robin Royalty loyalty members a free burger for their birthdays. There are a few stipulations, though. You only receive the free birthday burger reward if, upon signing up, you provided your email address, phone number, and birthday, and then you validated your phone number and subscribed to receive marketing emails or text messages. If you do all this, though, you'll also get access to other special offers, such as a "buy nine, get a tenth item free" reward and a $20 credit that is offered after making certain purchases in five visits over five weeks.

Want your kids to be able to join in on the fun, too? Children and teens under 18 years of age are also eligible to receive free birthday burgers from Red Robin. All you have to do is register your child's birthday in the Teens/Kids Club (found in your Red Robin Royalty account) and then chain will email you a Birthday Burger coupon prior to their birthday.


You had to assume that Starbucks would show up on this list. The ever-popular coffee chain is coming in hot with all the great benefits you can reap from joining the Starbucks Rewards program. On your birthday, you'll get a free drink or food item of your choice, but beyond this, members can also receive free coffee and tea refills, and redeem earned points (or "Stars," as they're called) for items like specialty drinks and tumblers. 

Just note, to qualify for the birthday free drink or food item, you need to make at least one prior Star-earning transaction. You earn one Star per dollar spent when you pay for an order using cash or credit card; two Stars per dollar spent when you pay for an order using a digital Starbucks Card or gift card; and three Stars per dollar spent when you pay for an order using the Starbucks Rewards Visa Card.


Love 'em or hate 'em, mall food court favorite Sbarro is here to deliver (at least more than Pizza Hut) when it comes to your birthday. Forget the free breadsticks, because Sbarro gives members of its Slice Society loyalty program actual free pizza on their birthdays. All you have to do is sign up on the website and await the bounty offers from the pizza chain which include emailed coupons and promotions. 

This loyalty program is as straightforward as it gets, with no points, credits, or "stars" to earn or redeem. But you will get free pizza when you sign up (specifically an XL NY slice with the purchase of a beverage) and then free pizza on your birthday. And while the Sbarro Slice Society page doesn't specifically mention that the birthday gift is actually pizza, a 2020 Facebook post from the brand does confirm that members receive free birthday slice coupons.


Here is yet another sub chain that is delivering free birthday surprises. But if you were a member of Subway's Eat Fresh program in the past, you may be disappointed with its successor, the Subway MyWay Rewards program, at least where your birthday is concerned. While the Eat Fresh program gave you a free, fresh sub on your birthday, the MyWay Rewards program only gives you a free cookie (via Best Rewards Programs).

Debuted in 2018, the Subway MyWay Rewards program was intended as a revolutionary new loyalty program created with the end user in mind, but the feedback was primarily that the program was "confusing," with a tokens system that requires you to spend a lot of money in order to get anything for free (as much as $150 to get one comped sandwich, according to Mashable). However, if you're just using the program for its birthday surprises and exclusive deals, versus earning tokens, you'll likely still find the value.

TGI Fridays

One of the few sit-down, casual dining restaurants that offer birthday surprises, TGI Fridays offers a near-identical birthday gift as Chili's, with a free birthday dessert for all Fridays Rewards members. You also, like at Chili's, will get free chips and salsa with every dine-in visit as a Fridays Rewards member.

Unfortunately, much like with Subway's MyWay program, it's pretty difficult to earn other free food at TGI Fridays. You get one point for every $1 spent on food and drinks and you can start redeeming points after 30 points earned, but that'll only get you one non-alcoholic beverage. For any actual food, like a free dessert, you'll need at least 50 points. Earning something like a free entrée requires at least 125 points, or $125 spent during past visits.

Still, you can't go wrong with a free birthday dessert, like TGI Friday's Cinnabon caramel pecan cheesecake or Carlo's Bakery rainbow cake, so it's worth signing up just benefit, even if you don't actually earn or spend any points in the future.


Lastly, if you're craving some birthday wings and you're nowhere near a Buffalo Wild Wings, try Wingstop, where you'll receive a free birthday gift after you sign up to be a member of The Club. (The gift is a free order of fries, though, so you'll still have to go to BWW for your free wings.) 

You can sign up to join The Club via email, Google, or Facebook. This loyalty program is incredibly easy to use, too, as you're not going to be earning points or working with any tricky redemption system. Instead, you'll just enjoy the occasional promotional or marketing email in your inbox. You'll also, according to Wingstop, receive access to a faster check-out process (likely when ordering online), as well as exclusive "flavor" events. Oh, and just for signing up, you'll receive a free order of fries then, too. So, if you have a local Wingstop, you have very little to lose by registering.