Blog / February 16, 2024 / Jeff Stumpf / UPDATED March 18, 2024

Tips on Securing a Food Handlers License in Houston

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    Ready to grow your restaurant business in Houston? Before getting started, it’s important to ensure that your restaurant is adhering to the local licenses and permits required. This first starts with a food handlers license.

    To obtain a food handler’s permit in Houston, Texas, you must complete a certification course within a specified timeframe of employment. This course can be completed either online or in-person, and it covers essential food safety topics such as good hygiene practices and how to avoid cross-contamination. The certification is valid within the City of Houston and the State of Texas, and it must be renewed periodically. The cost for the certification course is minimal, and the process can be completed through the Houston Health Department or the Texas Department of State Health Services.

    Here are a few simple steps to get started with food handlers license in Houston:

    1. Complete a Certification Course

    • Purpose: This course is required to obtain a food handler’s permit. It trains employees on food safety, including good hygiene practices and how to avoid cross-contamination.
    • Estimated Cost: $12.53 – $12.86
    • Instructions: You can complete the course online through the State of Texas accredited training or in-person at the Environmental Services Division, located at 7411 Park Place Blvd. Registration and prepayment are required for all classes. You can register by phone at 832-393-5100 (Monday – Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.). After registering, you will be emailed payment instructions.

    2. Apply for the Food Handlers License

    • Purpose: After completing the course, you need to apply for the permit to legally handle food in Houston, Texas.
    • Estimated Cost: No additional cost mentioned.
    • Instructions: You can apply online, in person, by mail, or by email. For online applications, complete the online registration form and select a preferred class date. For in-person applications, visit the Environmental Permits Office at 8000 North Stadium first floor (77054). For mail applications, complete the application and mail it to the address on the application. For email applications, complete the application and fax it to the Environmental Permits Office at 832.393.5208.

    Useful Information Source Links:


    How Long is the Food Handler’s Permit Valid For?

    The permit is valid for 2 years.

    How Soon After Employment Do I Need to Complete the Certification Course?

    You need to complete the course within 60 days of employment.

    What Are the Office Hours for In-Person Applications?

    Office hours are from 7:30 AM to 4:00 PM.

    What is the Processing Time for the Permit?

    The processing time is up to 30 days.

    What Forms of Payment are Accepted for the Certification Course?

    You can pay by money order, business check, cashier’s check, credit or debit card (no personal checks or cash accepted).

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    DISCLAIMER: This information is provided for general informational purposes only and the content does not constitute an endorsement. CloudKitchens does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of any information, text, images/graphics, links, or other content contained within the blog content. We recommend that you consult with financial, legal, and business professionals for advice specific to your situation.


    Houston Health Department. Food Safety Certification.

    Houston Public Works. Food Handler Certification.

    Texas Health and Human Services. Licensing of Food Handler Training Programs.