10 Realistic Ways to Get Paid to Eat

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Calling all food lovers! Yes, you can actually get paid to eat food.

With the word “foodie” becoming more mainstream throughout blogs, YouTube, and social media, it has never been easier learning how to get paid to eat.

From fast food to gourmet restaurants, imagine being able to eat your favorite meals and getting paid to do it! 

Some of these taste tester jobs don’t require you to have a special degree or experience. You can simply download an app or get started with a company or service right away.

So, if you are a natural foodie at heart, keep reading! This post will outline some of the best ways you can get paid to eat.

Let’s dive in!

10 Realistic Ways to Get Paid to Eat: The Best Taste Tester Jobs

1. Become a Food Critic

One of the more obvious taste tester jobs is becoming a food critic. 

Becoming a food critic allows you to get paid to eat at different restaurants, food trucks, and hotels. 

You typically need a specific set of skills to land this job as you will be required to taste a wide variety of different foods and then write an honest review on the overall meal, the atmosphere, and the service you receive from the workers. 

But, if you are able to find a food critic job, you will be paid handsomly for it. Some even make over $100,000 per year. 

Keep in mind that these jobs have a lot of competition and will be difficult to find if you are just starting out. You will also need a Bachelor’s degree in writing such as English, journalism or communication to be considered for this type of position.  

This is a photo of a food critic taste testing

2. Find Food Tester Jobs

Another great way to get paid to eat is to become a professional food tester. (Sounds great, right?

Food tester jobs typically require you to have an open mind when it comes to food. You should also be able to recognize certain tastes, smells, and flavors. It’s also important that you don’t have any food allergies before seeking out this type of job as well.

Required levels of education vary, however, most taste tester jobs require a Bachelor’s degree in food science or other related fields. Once you have a related degree, it is fairly simple to learn how to become a taste tester on your own.

Food tasters typically work for one specific company. They help to develop new products by tasting a wide variety of different ingredients, flavors, drinks, and recipes. 

The best part about this position is that you can choose to work either part-time or full-time. You can also expect to make between $30,000 and $60,000 per year as a professional food taster. 

3. Become a Restaurant Mystery Shopper

Mystery shopping is becoming a very popular side hustle these days. 

Some restaurants, food trucks, bakeries, and other food establishments want to make sure their businesses and workers are meeting quality standards. In this case, they will hire a mystery shopping Agency to pay a mystery shopper to complete certain tasks regarding the business. 

This is where you come in!

For example, mystery shoppers might need to order take out or visit the restaurant to interact with the staff and eat the meal that was prepared. 

Some other tasks might include taking photos or videos of the restaurant, sending in your receipt, or recording an interaction with the staff. 

Then they will be required to explain their experience in detail and provide feedback on what could have been different. It’s like being under-cover! 

Please note that this type of work will not provide any hefty paychecks. Most of the time you will only be paid a small amount to complete these tasks. But you almost always have your meal and drink completely paid for by the agency.

You might even get to stay in a hotel for a night completely for free!  

And unlike some other jobs, this type of work does not require you to have a degree. You can simply sign up, get approved, and start working on tasks. 

Here are some of the best mystery shopping websites: 

This isn’t the best type of job if you are looking to earn a full-time income, but it can definitely pay for a few meals per week.

This is an image of someone taste testing food

4. Get Paid to Eat with Cashback Apps

Want to get paid to eat at restaurants? Sounds like a dream!

Yes, there are apps out there that will actually help you get paid to eat out. All you need is a smartphone or tablet and you can download any of these apps for free.

Here are some of the best apps to help you get paid to eat out: 


get paid to eat out with Dosh

Dosh is a cashback app that allows you to earn 5-10% at certain restaurants. 

To get started, simply download the app and create and account. Then, once you link your debit or credit card information to your account, you can start earning cash back immediately. 

The app will show you all the participating restaurants in your area on a map. Once you eat at one of these restaurants, your cashback will automatically be deposited into your Dosh account to be transferred after you earn $15 or more. 

You can also use the app to earn cash back for retail and online shopping as well as at participating hotels. 

This app is available for both IOS and Android. 


Get paid to eat at restaurants with Seated

If you are looking to get paid to eat out, Seated is one of the best reward dining apps out there. 

This app rewards you just for making reservations at a restaurant right through their app. All you need to do is download their free app, create an account, and then start reserving!

After you are done with your meal, simply take a photo of the receipt and upload it to the Seated app. You can earn up to 30% off your entire bill, even at more elegant restaurants. 

Then you can redeem your rewards and earn money to use at places like Uber, Airbnb, or Amazon. 

This app is available for both IOS and Android. 


This is the Yelp logo

Surprisingly, Yelp has a cashback service where you can earn 7-10% cash back for dining out at participating restaurants.

To find participating restaurants near you, go to the app and type “cash back restaurants” into the “Find” bar at the top. Then you will be able to see each restaurant and how much cashback they offer. 

Make sure to pay for the meal with the card that you have on file with Yelp to receive cash back.

The Yelp app is available for both IOS and Android. 


Get paid to eat out with Gambeal

Gambeal will give you cash back so that you can get paid to eat at restaurants. 

After you have had your meal, you can upload your receipt through the app and then review your experience to receive cashback on your meal purchase. 

Once your Gambeal account has $20 or more, you can cash out and have the money deposited into your PayPal account.

Keep in mind that this app is only available through IOS. 

5. Get Paid to Eat on Camera

Getting paid to eat on camera definitely isn’t for everyone, but is a great option to get paid to eat online. 

This is a newer trend from Korea called Mukbang

During a Mukbang, a person eats a very large meal while talking to and interacting with an online audience.

These videos are either live broadcasted through Facebook or Instagram, or they are recorded as videos to put on Youtube. 

This is definitely an interesting way to get paid to eat, but you can get paid to eat on camera if you have a large enough audience. Your pay will strongly depend on how many people watch your videos and how often you do this.

get paid to eat

6. Become a Food Blogger

Becoming a food blogger is one of the best wais to get paid to eat! 

This method takes some time to build up, so don’t expect to start a food blog and make money overnight. But if you stick with it and keep going, within 6 months to a year you can be making a few thousand dollars per month.

It’s not unheard of for some bloggers to make $10,000 or more per month with their blogs. 

Food bloggers get paid to eat by promoting food-related products and earning an affiliate commission as well as with sponsorships from food companies. They can also be sent free food-related products to try so they can write a review for their readers. 

All you need to do is set up your blog, write posts consistently, and then promote your articles on social media to start gaining traffic. 

get paid to eat

7. Get Paid to Eat by Testing Frozen Meals

If you are someone who consistently shops in the frozen food section at the grocery store, this option might be for you. 

Some frozen food companies will pay people to taste test their frozen meals. This is to make sure the meals taste right and are good enough to be sold on shelves. 

This is more of a part time gig, but can be a fun way to get paid to eat. 

If you think this type of job would be a good fit for you, try searching for different frozen meal taster jobs in your area. 

8. Join Food-Based Focus Groups

Taking part in focus groups can be a great source of side income on its own. But did you know that there are food-based focus groups as well?

A paid focus group takes place when a market research company pays people to give their opinions on specific products and services. 

Some of these research companies hold food-related focus groups to have a group of people try different foods and provide their feedback. 

Although this is more of a side gig rather than a career, you can make up to $200 per hour just for trying food and giving your opinion! 

9. Become a Recipe Tester

When a chef, restaurant, or food blogger puts out a recipe, they might hire a few recipe testers to test out the recipe first.

Recipe testers are typically given a list of ingredients and instructions on how to make the recipe from home. After they make the recipe, they will fill out a form or survey explaining how easy the meal was to make, how much time it took, and if they would make it again.

Then they get paid! 

If becoming a recipe tester sounds appealing to you, start by signing up for America’s Test Kitchen’s Community of Recipe Testers to start completing unpaid recipe making tasks. 

Once you have some experience, you can then start to approach food bloggers, restaurants and food scientists to get paid to test their recipes. 

This is a great way to meet new people while getting paid to eat! 

10. Become a Chef

The last (and most obvious) way to get paid to eat is to simply become a chef. 

Chefs typically have to attend culinary school for about a year to be able to land a job. 

But if cooking or baking is your passion, becoming a chef is a great option. And you will be able to get paid to eat an abundance of delicious meals!

You can even make a decent salary if you end up working for a high-end restaurant or even opening your own restaurant. 

This is an image of a chef trying food

The Bottom Line on How to Get Paid to Eat

With the number of different ways to make money these days, it should come as no surprise that you can get paid to eat.

Whether you want to turn this into a profitable side hustle or a long-term business idea, you have quite a few options to get paid to eat food! 

If you are passionate about this type of work, try signing up for some of the apps and companies above. You can take it one step further and start a food-based career. 

I would love to hear from you! Have you tried any of these options listed in this post? What are some of your favorite food tester jobs listed above? Let me know in a comment below! 

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Get paid to eat