The 7 best credit cards for restaurants and takeout of 2021

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When you pay with one of the best credit cards for restaurants, you can earn rewards whether you’re dining out, grabbing take-out or ordering delivery.

Here are our picks for the top seven dining rewards credit cards of 2021.


Card Best for
Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card A night out
American Express® Gold Card Restaurant credits
Chase Sapphire Reserve® DoorDash
Platinum Card® from American Express UberEats
Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card No annual fee
Chase Freedom Unlimited® Everyday cash back
U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa Signature® Card A night in

Best for a night out: Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card

From our partner

Here’s why: The Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card is a great cash rewards credit card for a night out, with bonus rewards for both dining and entertainment.

If you’re hitting the town, you’ll appreciate earning 4% cash back on dining and entertainment. You’ll also earn 2% back at grocery stores and 1% back on all other purchases.

But there’s a $95 annual fee to consider. If you don’t think you’ll spend enough in the bonus categories to earn at least the cost of the annual fee, check out the Capital One® SavorOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card instead. It doesn’t have an annual fee — but it offers a lower 3% cash back rate on dining and entertainment.

Check out our in-depth review to learn more about the Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card.

Best for restaurant credits: American Express® Gold Card

Here’s why: The American Express® Gold Card offers a potential $240 in restaurant credits each year.

First, the card features up to $120 in dining statement credits, dished out as monthly statement credits of up to $10 when you order from a handful of places, like The Cheesecake Factory or through Grubhub.

You’ll also get up to $10 in Uber Cash each month, which you can use on Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S. Plus, you’ll get 12 complimentary months of Uber Eats Pass when you use your card to start a subscription in 2021. The service gives you $0 delivery fees and 5% off orders over $15 at eligible restaurants.

Even if you don’t use the credits, you’ll earn four Membership Rewards® points per $1 spent on dining purchases, including food delivery services.

The big drawback is the card’s $250 annual fee. But it’s much easier to make the most of the card if you use the restaurant credits.

Here’s our full review of the American Express® Gold Card.

Best for DoorDash: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

From our partner

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

From cardholders in the last year

See Details, Rates & Fees

Here’s why: The Chase Sapphire Reserve® features up to $120 in DoorDash credits. That includes a $60 DoorDash credit in 2020, plus another $60 in 2021.

You’ll also receive a complimentary DashPass subscription, which could make you eligible for free delivery on certain orders.

Beyond that, you’ll get three points for every $1 you spend on dining, which includes food delivery services. You’ll also earn a $300 annual travel credit, and after that, you’ll get three points for every $1 you spend on travel purchases. You get one point per $1 spent on all other purchases.

But you’ll have to decide whether these rewards and other perks outweigh the $550 annual fee.

Check out our review of the Chase Sapphire Reserve® to learn more.

Best for UberEats: Platinum Card® from American Express

Here’s why: The Platinum Card® from American Express features up to $200 in Uber Cash annually, which can be used on UberEats orders in addition to Uber rides.

Cardholders can also receive 12 complimentary months of Uber Eats Pass when they use the card to start a subscription in 2021. The service comes with $0 delivery fees and 5% off orders of more than $15 at eligible restaurants.

Of course, you’ll have to consider the Uber benefits in the larger context of the $695 annual fee.

With that in mind, it’s probably best for frequent travelers. You’ll get a $200 airline fee credit, access to world-class airport lounges and complimentary elite status at Hilton and Marriott hotels.

While there’s no bonus category for dining, you can earn five points for every $1 you spend on prepaid hotels and flights booked through American Express on amextravel.com or directly with the airlines — though there’s an annual earning cap of $500,000 spent on flight purchases. You’ll earn one point per $1 spent on all other purchases (and on flights after that cap kicks in).

For more information, check out our review of the Platinum Card® from American Express.

Best for no annual fee: Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card

From our partner

Here’s why: For those who prefer not to pay an annual fee, the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card offers three points for every $1 you spend on dining.

You can earn three points per $1 for other everyday purchases too, like …

  • Gas
  • Rideshares and local transit
  • Travel
  • Select streaming services

Learn more in our full review of the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card.

Best for everyday cash back: Chase Freedom Unlimited®

From our partner

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

From cardholders in the last year

See Details, Rates & Fees

Here’s why: The Chase Freedom Unlimited® gives you 3% back on dining, which includes restaurants, takeout and eligible delivery services.

But you’re not limited to food purchases with this card. You’ll also get …

  • 5% back on travel bookings made through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 5% back on grocery store purchases (excluding Target and Walmart) on up to $12,000 spent during your first year
  • 3% at drugstores
  • 1.5% on all other purchases

What’s more? The annual fee is $0.

You can learn more in our review of the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, or check out member reviews of the Chase Freedom Flex℠ if you live a more spontaneous lifestyle.

Best for a night in: U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa Signature® Card

Here’s why: The U.S. Bank Altitude® Go Visa Signature® Card is perfect for a relaxing night at home.

You’ll get four points for every $1 you spend on dining, which includes not only dining out at restaurants, but also ordering in for takeout or food delivery. You’ll also earn …

  • Two points per $1 spent on grocery store purchases (in person or delivery), on streaming services and at gas stations
  • One point per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases

When you combine that with the $15 annual streaming credit, you have the makings of a great night in.

Another plus: The annual fee is $0.

Learn more about our picks for the best U.S. Bank credit cards.


How we picked these cards

Not all rewards or cash back cards offer bonus rewards on dining, so that was our first filter. Then, we narrowed down our picks by considering the annual fees, additional cardholder benefits and the value of the rewards.

For example, the Citi Prestige® Card didn’t make the cut, even though at first glance it seems like a good fit with its bonus rewards for restaurant purchases. Its $495 annual fee is offset by an annual $250 travel statement credit, which puts it in line with the American Express® Gold Card.

But the American Express® Gold Card won out because it also offers bonus points at U.S. supermarkets, and you can use the statement credits (up to $10 each month) for delivery with Grubhub or Seamless.

How to make the most of dining rewards cards

A dining credit card should fit into your routine and offer valuable rewards when you dine out, but you don’t want to feel pressure to eat out more often. While family dinners and date nights might involve a restaurant, if you’re focused on saving money, buying groceries to cook at home is often the way to go.

With this in mind, consider how a card with an annual fee might affect your dining habits — particularly if the fee is several hundred dollars. If you think you might dine out more often than you’d like simply because you get 3% to 5% back in rewards, you may be better off with a card that offers a slightly lower rewards rate and no annual fee.

In either case, you can maximize your rewards by also registering your card with a dining rewards program. Once registered, you can earn points, miles or cash back at select restaurants by using your registered card to pay. Plus, you get these rewards in addition to your credit card rewards.


About the author: Tim Devaney is a personal finance writer and credit card expert at Credit Karma. He’s a longtime journalist who prides himself on being a good storyteller who can explain complex information in an easily digestible wa… Read more.