Free Birthday Food 2016 Edition

Welcome to my annual list of free birthday food! Every year for my birthday I try and use as many free coupons as I can to let you guys know what the good birthday deals are and what you can pass on. I’m excited I managed to find a few new free birthday food deals this year. Please note that these deals mostly apply to the San Diego County area though a few of them are national deals.

Let’s get started! 

Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern

Free Birthday Value: $25
Received: 3 weeks prior to birthday
How to redeem: Print out the email
How to sign up: JFAT E-Club

I think that the free birthday food coupon you get from Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern is the best deal out there. You get $25 off your receipt and there are NO required purchases to redeem your coupon. Jake and I went for brunch again this year and our bill was $25 ON THE DOT. The only thing we paid for was the tip for our waitress (we always tip on the full total of the bill before the discount).


Chips and blue cheese sauce. I was surprised Jake even wanted this since he’s not a blue cheese sauce fan. We both enjoyed this though – crispy warm chips!


Of the dishes we tried last year, we preferred the Chicken and Waffles with Thyme Gravy. It’s a lot of food and we opted to share it. We made sure to ask for extra thyme gravy this time so we could slather it all over our chicken.


After brunch, our waitress offered to give me a complimentary “birthday” portion of their cookies and ice cream dessert which I gladly accepted. The cookie is freshly baked and tasted wonderful with the cool ice cream and warm chocolate sauce. 

Cafe 21

Free Birthday Value: Any 1 item (variable – ours was $19)
Received: 2 weeks prior to birthday
How to redeem: Mobile
How to sign up: Join Cafe 21’s Mailing List

Probably the next best free birthday food coupon is this one from Cafe 21 which is good for any one item on their menu. Many of the items on their dinner menu are in the $18-$25 range so you can maximize the value depending on what you order. No other purchase is required for this birthday deal. 


Jake and I started with a cheese sauce platter thing which was really delicious. 


For some unknown reason we each got our own Grass Fed Burger which also had short ribs on top of the burger. We could have easily shared this one to bring the cost down – but oops, we didn’t. Funny, too, since we both just ate half our burgers and T got the leftovers (he was at his high school’s football game).


At Cafe 21, our waiter also brought out a complimentary warm chocolate cake baked right into a cast iron skillet. They separate the ice cream from the warm dessert so you can control how much cold stuff you want with your hot stuff. I loved the raspberry sauce on top of the chocolate cake which helped to cut a bit of the sweetness. 

The Works Pizza

Free Birthday Value: One free large 2 topping pizza ($19)
Received: On day of birthday
How to redeem: Print email
How to sign up: The Works Birthday Club

This free birthday food coupon for The Works Pizza has been a stellar deal and actually we used Jake’s coupon (I still have mine printed out) to redeem. You get one free large 2 topping pizza which has a total value of $19 ($15 for the pizza and $2 for each topping). You are not required to make any other purchases, but Jake bought a salad and breadsticks for us to share. 


This is a generous sized pizza! We got it topped with ricotta and meatballs. The pizza is a bit softer than I like it, but it’s a pretty decent pie.

El Torito

Free Birthday Value: Any item up to $12.99
Received: Beginning of birthday month
How to redeem: Print or mobile
How to sign up: El Torito’s E-Club

I’m happy to report that El Torito’s free birthday food coupon has been the same for a few years now. For your birthday you score any item up to $12.99 with no other purchase required.


You also get complimentary chips and salsa with your meal which increases the value in my eyes.


I sprung for a $13.99 item this time around – the cheesy enchiladas in sour cream sauce were too hard to resist. Totally worth the extra buck. 

Brother’s Family Restaurant

Free Birthday Value: $10
Received: Day of birthday
How to redeem: Print email
How to sign up: Brothers Birthday Club

This free birthday food coupon has been on my list for awhile and I finally managed to use it this year. The value is $10 off the top and if you’re eating alone you could really use this one to your advantage since no other purchase it required.


Jake and I went to Brother’s Family Restaurant to share some breakfast. We got the Big Brothers 3 plate ($10.49) plus a side of hash browns ($2.49) and a coffee ($2.10). If you come here make sure you get the Grandma Jennie’s pancakes – they are killer!  


Free Birthday Value: Any Coastal trio, two taco plate, burrito, salad, bowl or enchiladas
Received: 5 days prior to birthday
How to redeem: Print or mobile
How to sign up: Beach Club

Rubio’s free birthday food coupon has had minor adjustments over the years – mostly limiting you to certain items on the menu. There are still a great number of things to choose from and you should easily find something to your tastes with this flexible coupon.


I opted for a shrimp taco platter ($8.99) that came with beans and chips. The tacos has crispy cheese, avocado, and bacon on top of the tacos! I feel like these did not used to come with chips but rice instead. Maybe the default sides changed but you can still ask for rice? I didn’t check, I just got it as is. 

Jersey Mike’s

Free Birthday Value: One free regular sandwich + drink ($8.75 + $1.99)
Received: Day of birthday
How to redeem: Print coupon
How to sign up: Join Email Club

I almost didn’t look at Jersey Mike’s free birthday food coupon this year. In past years the Jersey Mike’s coupon has been redeemable ONLY on your birthday so I wasn’t even going to bother to look at it since we went to Disneyland for my birthday and wouldn’t be able to use it. Luckily I looked at it anyway because the free birthday coupon is now good for an ENTIRE YEAR. Whoa. 


With that coupon you get an regular sandwich for free plus a drink. I went with my usual order – the Club Supreme #9 ($8.75) and got iced tea ($1.99) for my drink. Awesome deal and awesome change to this previously hard-to-redeem birthday coupon!


Free Birthday Value: Free pancakes ($10.49)
Received: One week prior to birthday
How to redeem: Print email
How to sign up: IHOP eClub

Ahh, I remember the days when IHOP let you pick anything off the menu that was equal or lesser value than the Rooty Tooty Fresh n’ Fruity. But those days are gone. You can now only get pancakes and you cannot upgrade to a pancake combo (I asked). 


You are, however, not committed to getting the Rooty Tooty thing. Instead I got the Harvest Nut n’ Grain pancakes which has a slightly higher value at $10.49. All of the other pancakes are under $10. The only thing is that these pancakes disintegrate while you’re eating them. I’ve never seen pancakes fall apart quite that badly. They can barely stay on the fork for some reason.

Regal Cinemas

Free Birthday Value: One free small popcorn ($6.59)
Received: Day of birthday
How to redeem: Provide Regal Club card at Concession Stand
How to sign up: Create a Regal Crown Club Account

This is a new one! If you’re a Regal Crown Club member they’ll load up a free small popcorn onto your card. All you have to do is redeem it at the concession stand. Easy peasy and you’ve got 30 days to use it.


You have the option to upgrade the size, too, if you want. A small was just fine for me. I redeemed this one last weekend when we went to go see The Accountant. 

Dickey’s BBQ

Free Birthday Value: One free pulled pork sandwich ($6.50)
Received: One week prior to birthday
How to redeem: Mobile
How to sign up: Big Yellow Cup Club

I actually got two different free birthday food coupons from Dickey’s BBQ. One was through the iBirthdayClub and the other was through the Big Yellow Cup Club. Definitely sign up for the Big Yellow Cup Club because the iBirthdayClub coupon sucked (it was for 50% off a sandwich when you purchase another sandwich – uber lame). 


The sandwich comes with just pulled pork on a toasted bun. They have 3 different kinds of BBQ sauce to flavor up your sandwich. It was a decent sandwich. Nothing mind blowing. 


BUT… you also get free soft serve ice cream at Dickey’s which is another little perk. 

Hard Rock Cafe

Free Birthday Value: Buy One Get One Free (our discount was $27.50)
Received: Beginning of birthday month
How to redeem: Via email or app
How to sign up: Hard Rock Rewards

Normally I do not use the BOGO birthday coupons because they’re usually not worth it. But we had a Hard Rock cafe gift card and the BOGO so I figured… eh, why not. 


The Cowboy Ribeye Steak ($33.95) sounded so good to me that day… but man, I don’t think you should order steak at the Hard Rock Cafe. This steak lacked a lot of flavor. I’d stick with burgers at Hard Rock for any future visits. 


The free item for this visit was Jake’s BBQ sampler platter at $27.50. Meh.

Burger Lounge

Free Birthday Value: One free milkshake ($5.95)
Received: One week prior to birthday
How to redeem: Mobile
How to sign up: Become a Lounger

The awesome thing about getting a shake at Burger Lounge is they give you the “extra” milkshake in that metal container so it’s kind getting two shakes in one order! 


You can pick vanilla or chocolate. I always love vanilla shakes. You know what else I love? Dipping french fries into my milkshake (or ice cream). I love the salty-sweet combination! 

Jamba Juice

Free Birthday Value: One free small smoothie or 12oz juice (mine worth $4.99)
Received: 1 week prior to birthday
How to redeem: Enter phone number at store
How to sign up: Jamba Insider Rewards

I like the Jamba Juice deal because it’s easy to redeem. Just tap in your phone number for a fruity, cool, and yummy birthday treat. 


Nothing Bundt Cakes

Free Birthday Value: One free bundlet ($4.49)
Received: 1 week prior to birthday
How to redeem: Print or Mobile
How to sign up: Join E-Club (next to the social media links at the top left)

This is another pretty steady free birthday coupon – a free bundlet for your birthday!


I picked the White Chocolate Raspberry bundlet this year. It took me a few days to finish this off since it’s a pretty good size. The raspberry helped break up the sweetness of the cake with a but of fruity tart flavor.

The Cupcake Store

Free Birthday Value: One free large cupcake ($3)
Received: Day of birthday
How to redeem: Print email
How to sign up: The Cupcake Store Birthday Club

I consider this to be another “good” free birthday food coupon since no other purchase is required. You just get a free cupcake with no strings attached! 


I got a large Nutella cupcake. There was a bit of chocolate filling inside the vanilla based cake. Wish the cake had a complimentary hazelnut flavor to go with the nutella. 

Bruegger’s Bagels

Free Birthday Value: One free bagel with cream cheese ($2.49)
Received: 1 week prior to birthday
How to redeem: Print email
How to sign up: eClub


Pumpkin bagel with cream cheese was my bagel of choice. I was boring and just got regular cream cheese, too, but you can choose any combination of bagel and cream cheese for your free birthday bagel. 


Free Birthday Value: Free 3oz (it is $0.45/oz) or $1.35
Received: 1 week prior to birthday
How to redeem: Via rewards card, mobile app, or email
How to sign up: Yogurtland Real Rewards

Here’s another new free birthday coupon for this year! 


The nice thing about the Yogurtland deal was that I still had a complimentary deal from when I signed up for the card and I was able to stack the sign up promo plus my birthday coupon together. I only paid $0.32 cents for this cup of yogurt! I went a little crazy on the toppings which is what I think weighs the yogurt down so you pay more. Sneaky.

Total free birthday food coupons value for 2016: $187.07

More Free Birthday Food Coupons

Here are a few other free birthday food deals that I did not get to use this year:

  • Godiva – $10 off a purchase of $10 or more. 
  • Firehouse Subs – Free sub on your birthday (show ID – I assume this is the same though I haven’t used it)
  • Noodles & Co. USED to give you a free bowl of noodles for your birthday but they changed it so now you just get a free crispy treat. LAME.
  • Rita’s Italian Ice – Free ice. This expired on my birthday so it was tough to use it. 
  • The Boathouse Restaurant has one night per month where they celebrate birthdays and offer a free Prime Rib dinner with purchase (appetizer, drink, dessert, etc.)
  • Cinnaholic – $5 off your next purchase and it expires 2 months later so I should definitely be able to use this one soon!
  • Sprinkles Cupcakes – free cupcake, good for 4 days past your birthday (but I still didn’t get a chance to use it, too busy this year)
  • Schlotzsky’s – free small sandwich (with purchase of chips + drink)
  • Poway Fun Bowl – 2 free games of bowling
  • Panera Bread – free bakery treat (loaded onto your My Panera card)
  • Starbucks Coffee – free drink (must have a Starbucks card)

There are a TON of clubs to sign up for on but I’ve found that the majority of them are BOGO coupons or free desserts. I only use a few of these and pretty much ignore the rest. 

If you have a birthday deal that I don’t know about or missed please let me know! I’m always on the lookout for new free birthday food coupons! 

6 thoughts on “Free Birthday Food 2016 Edition

    1. Hi Faye – Yeah, I started redeeming early this year and Jake and I had two weekends full of going around to getting free stuff, haha. If you plan it right you can really maximize the freebies. 😀

  1. Loved reading about your birthday freebies Mary.

    I just got my first ever birthday freebie email from Burger Lounge.

    Says I get a free milkshake with no purchase necessary.
    Do I have to dine in or can I get my milkshake to go?
    Also, when does it expire? End of he month?

    Please advise.


    1. Hi Louise! You don’t have to dine in – you can take the milkshake to go. I rechecked the email I got and I didn’t see an expiration date on it, but I would assume it’s good for your birthday month. You can always call Burger Lounge and ask to confirm though! Happy birthday!

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