Commissioner of Revenue Meals Tax Guidelines
These guidelines are designed to provide guidance to restaurants and other businesses where meals and alcoholic beverages are sold to the public for immediate consumption on or off the premises. Examples of places in which meals are sold include, but are not limited to: cafeterias, coffee shops, taverns, restaurants, dining accommodations, private and public clubs, convenience and grocery stores, caterers and delicatessens.
Please note that the 4% tax on meals and beverages is levied in addition to the State Sales Tax. The burden shall be upon the seller of the food and beverage to maintain records detailing taxable receipts and non-taxable receipts.
- All sandwiches, hot or cold
- All hot foods
- All non-factory sealed beverages, fountain drinks, hot or cold coffee, hot chocolate, milkshakes and floats regardless of whether they have a lid
- Frozen or chilled factory-packaged single serving sandwiches, burritos and the like, marketed and sold in a food establishment that provides a heating device
- Salads that are packaged or prepared in containers affixed with lids or tops ready for immediate consumption
- Alcoholic beverages sold in restaurants, drinking establishments, festivals, receptions, sporting events and other similar events
- Grocery items that are pre-packaged or measured in large quantities not suitable for immediate consumption
- Salads in factory-sealed packages that are considered to be for additional home preparation
- Salads (such as potato, macaroni, chicken salad or coleslaw) sold by the pound and not for immediate consumption on premises
- Frozen seafood sold by the pound at an establishment that provides employee-operated steam cooking at no additional charge when the item is not to be consumed on the premises
- Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, in factory-sealed containers, sold for off-premise consumption
- Beverages alone
- Snack food: Chewing gum, candy, popcorn, nuts, and unopened prepackaged cookies, donuts, crackers, potato chips and other items of essentially the same nature and consumed for essentially the same purpose.
- Any combination consisting entirely of beverages, grocery items or snack foods
See examples of certain business types.