Does Starbucks Allow Outside Food? (Don’t Make These Mistakes)

If you plan on going to Starbucks to get some work done or just hang out, you might be wondering: does Starbucks allow outside food?

So, do you know whether it’s acceptable to bring food into Starbucks or what mistakes you should avoid? If not, keep reading to learn what I’ve discovered while researching this topic!

Does Starbucks Allow Outside Food In [currentyear]?

Starbucks does allow you to bring outside food into its establishments, but you cannot bring any other drinks into Starbucks in [currentyear]. Additionally, you’ll need to purchase something while you’re in the store if you bring your own food, and you also cannot bring large items, so it has to be less than 6 inches wide and 12 inches long.

Do you want to know the specifications for bringing food into Starbucks, such as if the food item has to be wrapped a certain way? If so, continue reading below to find out the answer!

What Are the Starbucks Policies for Bringing in Outside Food?

If you want to bring outside food into Starbucks, you’ll need to follow the policies that Starbucks has put into place so you don’t get into trouble, which include:

  • Food will need to be either in a container or wrapped in clear wrapping
  • The container cannot be more than 6 inches wide by 12 inches long
  • Must be a small or modest amount of food and not a whole entree
  • Cannot be a drink of any kind
  • You must purchase an item while inside of Starbucks (drink or snack)

Does Starbucks Allow Outside Drinks?

As per the Starbucks policy, you cannot bring any outside drinks into the establishment, even if you’ve brought a drink in your own cup from home and not a cup from a restaurant.

Furthermore, if you’re caught bringing a drink into Starbucks, then an employee will likely say something and ask you to dump the beverage if you’d like to stay inside the store.

Is It Rude to Bring Outside Food to Starbucks?

It’s generally thought of to be in poor form if you bring outside food items into Starbucks, but if you have a child that you’re bringing food in for, then it’s more accepted.

Further still, if you’re going into Starbucks and ordering a drink, then there is nothing wrong with stopping at a local store and purchasing a donut or other item to go with your coffee.

Could I Be Asked to Leave Starbucks for Bringing Outside Food?

Could I Be Asked to Leave Starbucks for Bringing Outside Food?

Most of the time, Starbucks employees won’t say anything to you if you bring in outside food as long as it falls within the acceptable outside food policies.

For example, if you bring in a couple of muffins from a local store to eat with your coffee, employees won’t say anything, but if you bring a hamburger and fries, then they may.

Therefore, to prevent a situation where you’re asked to leave because of the kinds of food you’ve brought into Starbucks, you should try to stick to the rules and only bring in small items.

How Long Can You Sit in Starbucks?

Starbucks has no time limit on how long you can stay in a store or outside on the patio, as customers are allowed to be there for as long as they want.

However, you may be asked to leave if you’re still in Starbucks when the store is beginning to close, but otherwise, you can sit in Starbucks all day if that’s what you want to do.

Can I Bring My Lunch To Starbucks?

You’re allowed to bring your lunch to Starbucks as long as the food item follows the guidelines and is a small amount and not a huge meal, such as one taco or one small salad.

Furthermore, whatever lunch you bring into Starbucks must not contain a drink or any item that is similar to a drink since those items are prohibited for customers to bring into the store.

What Is the Cheapest Thing to Order at Starbucks?

If you bring in outside food, you may want to order the cheapest thing, which would be the short brewed coffee or a hot tea which will cost you about $2.45.

What Are the Rules at Starbucks?

As a customer at Starbucks, you’re expected to follow specific rules while you’re inside of Starbucks hanging out or working, including:

  • No sleeping
  • No alcohol use
  • No drug use
  • No abusive language
  • No smoking
  • No harassing employees or other patrons
  • No racial slurs or gestures
  • No hate speed
  • No trimming your nails inside of the store
  • You cannot watch porn on your device
  • You cannot watch or listen to loud music
  • You cannot be disruptive to other customers or employees
  • No soliciting
  • Stealing isn’t tolerated
  • You cannot violate any health mandates or laws
  • No bringing outside food larger than a small amount

To learn more, you can also read our posts on whether or not Starbucks has free WiFi, what coffee does Starbucks use, and how does Starbucks make cold foam.


Starbucks does allow outside food inside of its locations, but the food must only be a small amount and cannot be in a container bigger than 6 inches by 12 inches.

Additionally, to bring outside food into Starbucks, you’ll be required to order something from the establishment, or else you could be asked to leave. However, you cannot bring any outside drinks into Starbucks.

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Marques Thomas

Marques Thomas graduated with a MBA in 2011. Since then, Marques has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Marques is also the head writer and founder of

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