free birthday food 2015 edition

It’s time for my yearly FREE BIRTHDAY STUFF ROUNDUP! I managed to try a few new things this year (hooray) and I missed out on a few other good ones but I’ll list all of my findings in this post. If you have any new suggestions please, please, please let me know – I love to find new birthdays every year! Let’s start the roundup!

Murrieta’s Mexican Restaurant


We used this coupon for Jake’s birthday. This way we could start the birthday celebrations early since his birthday is at the beginning of the month and mine is at the end. Murrieta’s is a Mexican restaurant down in Bonita across from the golf course. We went here way back in 2010. The place looked exactly the same but with Halloween decorations everywhere.


Our complimentary chips and salsa were decent enough for Jake and T to order multiple baskets.


Since the three of us were sharing the meal, we decided to order the El Comal for 2 ($19.95 + $6 for two people). It came with a little bit of everything – carne asada, chicken, shrimp, veggies, tortillas, etc. Sadly just about everything on here was overcooked. The shrimp were a bit rubbery and the chicken was very dry. The carne asada was halfway decent.


Just about all of the onions on the very bottom were burned. The food is cooked on here way too long and then starts to overcook while it hangs out on the super hot pan. So sad. Maybe they made the pan TOO hot this time. 


We also ordered the Pollo Murrieta which is their version of fried chicken. The chicken is flattened out and then fried. The skin was extra crunchy but sadly – again – suffered from overcooking. This chicken was drier than the other one!


The food was pretty meh here – maybe we just ordered the wrong things this time around? The fried chicken was the free item from this meal.

Murrieta’s Mexican Restaurant
5170 Bonita Rd.
Bonita, CA 91902
(619) 479-8024
Birthday coupon: Buy one get one free, up to $15 | Valid for 20 days after your birthday
Sign up at iBirthday Club


As a member of the Godiva club, you’ll score a $10 off $10 coupon – basically, free stuff! Not a lot is worth $10 right on the dot though so they’re basically hoping you’ll spring for a little extra. Jake had a coupon, I had a coupon PLUS I had a spiffy gift card that was sent to me over the summer (but I’m a dork and forgot to use it until now).


The chocolate bars totally fit the bill for the coupon – 3 large bars for $10. Jake got three of these to use for his birthday coupon.


As for me, I got a couple of truffles (the pumpkin one was a bit too sweet for me).


And the three of us shared a Godiva soft serve cone in one of their ultra fancy waffle cones dipped in chocolate and then covered in praline almonds (!!!!). We got the dark chocolate + vanilla bean swirl after having a little sample of it. I loved the combination of the two flavors together, which is weird because usually I do not like to mix flavors. But the dark chocolate soft serve tasted so nice paired with the slightly sweeter tasting white chocolate vanilla bean.

Really the winner was getting the soft serve in this freakin’ praline almond cone. The cone was actually my favorite part!

I’m a dork and I don’t remember how much the soft serve cost us. But I bet you could get one of these plus a couple truffles for your birthday coupon!


I also tried these Godiva Crunch Bars. I haven’t opened the pretzel ones yet but the caramel crunch bars are DELICIOUS. It’s got the same praline almonds on top that were on the side of the waffle cone.


We also got some chocolate dipped macaroons that were pretty decent. Not shown: I also got a Nut Lovers Truffle Flight. We spend the gift card well, I think.

Birthday coupon: $10 off $10 or more | Valid during the month of your birthday
Join the Godiva Rewards Club
* Disclaimer – I received a $50 complimentary gift card to try extra Godiva stuffs.

Waba Grill

Jake and I shared a lunch at Waba Grill for the first time a few weeks ago. And then we went again the week after. And then we went again the week AFTER that. I think we were a little addicted for awhile there. I joined their Five Stars rewards program and discovered they have birthday deals! For Waba Grill, you get a free side dish for your birthday. The sides listed on their menu is like, avocado or rice or something but I asked for a side of veggies instead and that was my free item.


Steamed veggies! This little bowl is full of cabbage, broccoli, and sliced carrots. On the receipt this was listed as $5 off.


Jake, T and I shared two of the short ribs plates, one with white rice and one with brown rice. The short rib plate is the most pricey item on the menu at $12.99 but we really enjoy the flavor of the beef and the nice char that’s on the meat. Free veggies for the wine!

Waba Grill
Birthday coupon: Free side dish | Received one week before birthday, valid for two weeks
Join through the FiveStars app

El Torito

I got the El Torito coupon again after missing out on it last year! Jake didn’t get it this year so I might have forgotten to sign him up for the new program they have. Oops.


Complimentary chips and salsa.



I decided to get the Sizzling Enchiladas ($11.99) for my free birthday lunch this year. They really did come out sizzling like fajitas! The enchilada tasted pretty darn good, my only compliant was that the chicken tasted a little too salty. I liked getting the grilled onions and veggies along with my fajita.


I managed to have enough leftovers to have a second meal for dinner that night. Hooray!


I treated myself to an iced tea. I’m so nice to myself.

El Torito
Birthday coupon: Free entree up to $12.99, no other purchase required. Valid for entire month of your birthday.
Join the El Torito E-Club


In the past, IHOP’s deal was for anything of equal value to their Rooty Tooty Fresh n’ Fruity pancakes. Last year it was limited to only Rooty Tooty (but maybe I didn’t read it right) but I asked and this time around it’s good for any of their pancakes (minus the combos). Hooray, I wouldn’t have to subject myself to fruit filled pancakes!


I got the Harvest Grain and Nut pancakes ($9.29) instead of those Rooty Tooty pancakes. I’m still bummed the free birthday coupon is restricted to ONLY pancakes (it would have been a good free lunch) but I won’t complain too much. Free is still free, even if I have to get up early to go get it.

The Harvest Grain and Nut pancakes are made with oats, almonds, and walnuts giving them a nice nutty flavor. They’re decent enough for pancakes. Not the best pancakes ever, but not horrible.


I managed to eat one and half pancakes plus a bit of coffee and took the rest to go. I intended to save it for later but ended up giving it to a homeless man outside who asked me for change. 


Woo, pancakes!

Birthday coupon: Valid for one order of Rooty Tooty Pancakes from regular menu OR one order of Our World Famous Pancakes from our regular menu, excluding all combos. | Received one week before birthday, valid for two weeks. No other purchase required.
Join the Pancake Revolution 

Noodles & Company


Noodles & Company’s free birthday coupon hasn’t changed over the years – it’s still worth any free bowl with no other strings attached (hooray). Noodles & Company has a location over in UTC which isn’t far from my office so it’s easy to go get my free bowl of noodles. I went really early (11AM) to avoid the mad lunch rush at UTC. 

I got the Bangkok Curry bowl with steak. It had a nice light coconut curry sauce with lots of veggies and bits of steak mixed in. The noodles were a bit overcooked and slightly on the mushy side, but the coconut curry had a nice flavor with a small kick of spice. 


I got the regular sized bowl to maximize the value and only ate half of my bowl. The rest I took home and had for dinner again that evening! Extra maximization, my friends.

Noodles & Company
Birthday coupon: Free bowl of noodles. No other purchase required.
Sign up for Noodlegrams



The Rubio’s free birthday coupon has changed slightly – but this time for the better! Previously the coupon was only good for up to $7 but now it’s good for specific items – any Coastal Trio, two taco plate, a burrito, salad or a bowl. 


I picked the Chipotle Ranch Salad with Shrimp ($8.29). You can’t see all of the shrimp in the photo above, but there were a few more shrimp hiding out underneath the leaves. The chipotle ranch dressing was nice and flavorful and I liked the bits of tortilla strips in the salad. I got an extra side order of chips and ate them with that little scoop of guacamole that’s hanging out in the corner.


Woo free lunch! 

Birthday coupon: Good for any Coastal Trio, two taco plate (excluding mix & match), burrito, salad or bowl. No other purchase required.
Join the Rubio’s Beach Club

Jamba Juice


Jamba Juice is another new coupon for me this year and for your birthday Jamba Juice will treat you to a free birthday smoothie. It’s good for any small sized smoothie which is a sweet deal considering a lot of the smoothies are in the $5 range.


The guy making my smooth “accidentally” gave me a larger sized smoothie which I thought was sweet. 


Yup, I got a crazy green smoothie. 


Specifically the Kale-ribbean Breeze which has kale, mango, passion fruit, greek yogurt, and chia seeds. This is one of the less sweet smoothies and I found it to be quite yummy. 

Jamba Juice
Birthday coupon: Free medium smoothie. Received one week before birthday. Good for one month.
Join Jamba’s Insider Rewards

Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern


On my actual birthday, Jake and I took Maya with us down to Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern for a little bit of brunch. They have a nice dog friendly patio right on the harbor AND they have a pretty sweet birthday deal – $25 off your bill! You don’t have to buy anything specific to get the deal and it’s just taken right off the top.


I spied the Prime Rib Benedict ($18) and that sounded yummy to me. The only thing I didn’t notice was that it’s served with Béarnaise sauce instead of Hollandaise which gave it a different taste – I didn’t like it as much without Hollandaise. 


Jake was the winner that day when he ordered this interesting take on Chicken and Waffles ($18). The waffles are made with malted ale and are on the softer side. I didn’t enjoy eating the waffles alone but it tasted really good paired with the fried chicken, the thyme gravy, and just a touch of maple syrup. 


We fell in love with the thyme gravy and thought it tasted wonderful with the juicy, flavorful chicken (which was, surprisingly, a very moist chicken breast).


They also brought out a complimentary dessert for my birthday which had warm, yummy chocolate chip cookies and vanilla ice cream. 


Maya got to enjoy a little of the whipped cream.


In hindsight we could have just ordered one entree and an appetizer but we were a little excited to be eating brunch. Plus the birthday comp helped us to try out a couple of extra things on the menu.

Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern
(Multiple Locations in CA)
4990 N Harbor Dr
San Diego, CA 92106
Birthday club: $25 gift. No additional purchase required. Received at the beginning of birthday month. No expiration date listed.
Join the JFAT Club

The Works


This is another one of the iBirthday Club free birthday coupons and this particular one is Jake’s (though I still have mine waiting to be used).


This coupon is one of the best free birthday coupons from iBirthday Club since you get a WHOLE PIZZA. Not just a slice. But the WHOLE THING! 


Jake decided to get the pizza with ricotta and onions (a cheese pizza is $14 and toppings are $1.75 each, giving a total value of $17.50). We got this after brunch since it was the last day Jake could use his coupon and we took it home so T could have some lunch after doing homework.


The crust was very much on the soft side – but if you reheat a slice in the toaster oven it’ll get nice and crunchy which is how I like it!

The Works
5608 Mission Center Rd. Suite 901
San Diego CA 92108
Birthday coupon: One free two topping pizza. No additional purchase required. Received on birthday. Valid for twenty days.
Join the Works Birthday Club

Nothing Bundt Cakes


Since we drove right by it getting the pizza from The Works, I was able to score a little bundlet ($4.49) from Nothing Bundt Cakes with one of my free birthday coupons. 

Nothing Bundt Cakes
Birthday coupon: One free bundlet. Received one week before birthday. Valid for two weeks.
Join the Nothing Bundt Cakes Circle

Cafe 21


For my birthday dinner, we went out to Cafe 21 on Adams Ave. I prefer the Adams Ave. location since parking is much easier! 


We arrived just a few minutes before happy hour ended (3-6PM every day). They have $5 tapas during happy hour and we decided to share this dish of warm potato chips with prosciutto and cheddar cheese. The side salsa came in a tiny cast iron skillet! 


Jake and T shared the Turkey Burger ($15) for their meal. I don’t remember trying it, actually, but Jake thought it was a bit on the dry side. The french fries were excellent though. 


For my birthday dinner I got the Azerbaijani Kabob Platter ($29) which had a lovely presentation. The kabob platter came with steak, lamb sausage kufta, and chicken skewers over rice pilaf with house bread and three different sauces. 


Each meat had a really nice flavor and seasoning, each a little different from the other. I liked the char on the chicken and steak and the lamb sausages were very tender. My favorite sauce was the white one – do I remember what that sauce is? I surely don’t, but I remember it gave a good extra kick of flavor to the delicious meats. 


In addition to dinner our waitress was nice enough to bring out dessert for my birthday! She actually said, “I’ve got chocolate cake for you if you want it!” and well… yeah. Just twist my arm, eh? This was their warm flourless chocolate cake with raspberry sauce and a side of vanilla ice cream. I dug that they separated the ice cream and cake, though I totally ended up eating them together. The chocolate cake was really gooey and warm – almost like a brownie. Really yummy!


Oh baby, look at that birthday discount! Awww yeah! Cafe 21’s birthday offer is still the best one since you can use it on any item with no additional purchases. They’re so generous! 

Cafe 21
Birthday coupon: One free entree. No other purchase necessary. Valid month of your birthday.
Subscribe to Cafe 21 mailing list to get a free birthday coupon

Jersey Mike’s


After dinner at Cafe 21, we stopped by Jersey Mike’s so I could get my free regular sub. I ended up getting a regular sized club sandwich and just got it plain with no lettuce or condiments on the sandwich. That way the sandwich could stay fresh so I could have it for lunch the next day. Jersey Mike’s is a tricky coupon since you HAVE to use on the day of your birthday. Ordering the way I did let me take advantage of getting the sandwich without having to eat it on the same day.

Jersey Mike’s
Birthday coupon: One free regular sub + 22oz fountain drink. No other purchase necessary. Valid ONLY on your actual birthdate.
Join the Jersey Mike’s Subs email club

I estimate my free birthday coupon savings this year to be around $150, which is really not too shabby AT ALL. WOOOO. 

Other Free Birthday Coupons

Here are some other coupons that are available that I didn’t get to use this year.

Andres Restaurant: BOGO up to $10

Baskin Robbins: Free Scoop or Soft Serve

Brother’s Family Restaurant: Free meal up to $10 (no other purchase required)

Brugger’s Bagels: Free Bagel with Cream Cheese at Bruegger’s Bagels

Bruski Burgers & Brew: Free dessert with entree purchase

Burger Lounge: Free dessert

Cafe Japengo: Free Dessert at Cafe Japengo 

Cucina Basilico: Free appetizer

The Cupcake Store: One free cupcake

Dairy Queen: BOGO Blizzard at Dairy Queen

Dickey’s BBQ Pit: 50% off pulled pork sandwich with purchase

DZ Akins: Free dessert with purchase of $10.95 or more

Fuddrucker’s: BOGO 1/3 lb. burger at Fuddrucker’s

Gino’s Pizzeria: BOGO on any meal (they have cheesesteaks & pizza!)

Giovanni’s Restaurant: BOGO up to $10

Intermezzo Espresso Bar: BOGO breakfast

Lightnin’ Jack’s BBQ: Free meal up to $8 (no other purchase required)

North Park Sushi: BOGO on $10 or more

Pomegranate Restaurant: Bring 2 friends and get a free meal + a shot of vodka

Poway Fun Bowl: 2 free games of bowling

Pummaro Pizza: Free dessert with paid entree

Rita’s: One Free Italian Ice at Rita’s 

Schlotzky’s Cafe: Free Small Sandwich at Schlotzky’s Cafe

Sprinkles: One Free Cupcake

Stein’s Pub: BOGO up to $10

Troy’s Greek Restaurant: BOGO up to $10

There are TONS of other birthday clubs if you head on over to iBirthdayClub – not that I think all of them are worth it, but it might be worth it just to see what the offers are. The iBirthdayClub coupons all arrive on your birthday and most of them are good for at least 20 days after your birthday – but be sure to check the fine print! A lot of of the BOGO coupons above are from iBirthdayClub and aren’t the best but might be good for a discount.

16 thoughts on “free birthday food 2015 edition

    1. YAY birthdays! i’m actually considering planning AHEAD of time to make use of more free food coupons this year. i can totally see Faye doing it though… she might like spreadsheets even more than me!

      hehe, i loved that whole pizza from The Works last year! that was probably the BEST ibirthday deal I found last year!

      1. Hi Lynn – Yeah, if I had planned better I probably would have used more but I feel I used a very good amount, haha. I felt like my birthday snuck up on me this year!

  1. Ugh I wish there was a Godiva near me. Looks like the only one in Charlotte is temporarily closed but I can’t find any of those bars online. Because those definitely look right up my alley.

  2. Great roundup! Cafe 21 is one of my favorites because they don’t have a limit on the price for the free entree. Lots of new ones this time…I’ll have to get cracking on those for my bday next year, ha ha!

  3. Hi Mary! Free birthday meals are the best. I went to Firehouse Subs on my b-day this past year, they give you a free sub, but don’t forget your ID. Hodad’s does a free burger on your birthday, too!

    1. I was to lazy to go to Firehouse but I didn’t remember Hodad’s! We went there for T’s birthday and I forgot about that freebie! Thanks for the tip.

  4. Awesome birthday roundup! What a foodie adventure! I always get birthday emails for Benihana but I never go haha. Too lazy. But I do go for the Baskin Robins soft serve, my fav 🙂

    Now I need to look into these birthday coupons! Thanks for sharing.

    1. The Benihana coupon used to be so good! I don’t like they changed it to only be used Monday through Thursday though. Oh well, plenty of other good birthday coupons to use ?

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