[[quoteright:140:[[Webcomic/{{PHD}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/phdfoodasbribe_9622.png]]]]
[[caption-width-right:140:[[http://www.phdcomics.com/comics/archive.php?comicid=1396 Hard to say no when you're a]] StarvingStudent.]]
->''Free lunch'' every day. ''Now, that may not seem like a big deal, but think about: Lunch is '''awesome.''' If Charlie Manson brought me a free lunch every day, I'd at least listen to his sales pitch on forehead swastikas. "I don't think it's for me, Charlie, but keep talking, this is ''delicious!''"''
-->--''Series/LastWeekTonightWithJohnOliver'' [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQZ2UeOTO3I on]] drug reps

Sometimes, things can get tough. You might be TheLoad or the CowardlyLion. Your FiveManBand really wants you to go into the AbandonedHospital or to stand up to TheBully for the first time, but you find yourself incapable of going. What you need is the proper motivation. But would it be [[OnlyInItForTheMoney for cash]]? For [[SmoochOfVictory a kiss]]? No? Then perhaps you would do it for food.

Food can be a very powerful motivator for some people. All you have to do is offer them a burger, or a french fry, and they're like putty in your hands. Sometimes, the food used can be anything, although, typically, it's [[TrademarkFavoriteFood one treat in particular]]. And sometimes, depending on the situation, one will not be enough. You'd have to offer them the whole box. For animals, bribing them can be just as easy as offering them the food their species [[StockAnimalDiet is known for eating]]. And if you ever come across a cop you just can't buy your way out of a ticket from, try offering him a [[DonutMessWithACop donut]].

Compare DeliciousDistraction, which is when food is used to distract, and IWasToldThereWouldBeCake, and ThroughHisStomach and TastesLikeFriendship, when food is used to cement a relationship. Can be invoked with TrademarkFavoriteFood. Contrast DeniedFoodAsPunishment. Can possibly be thrown to invoke a GoFetch situation.

* Used in various ads for Klondike Bar. "What would you do for a Klondike Bar?"

[[AC:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* Ryuk and apples in ''Manga/DeathNote''.
* In ''Manga/KOn'', the band uses cake and other sweets to motivate [[GeniusDitz Yui]] to join the band, practice, and study.
* In ''Anime/AngelBeats'', [[TheBigGuy Matsushita]] will do just about anything for meat udon.
* Fancy tuna for Haruhi in ''Manga/OuranHighSchoolHostClub''.
* In ''Manga/AChannel'', Run's mother promises her all the Kobe beef she can eat to motivate her to study harder and apply to a better high school.
* Hana of ''Manga/MyHeavenlyHockeyClub''. Just about any food will work, if there's enough of it.
* Horo from ''LightNovel/SpiceAndWolf'' can usually be bought with apples, but will occasionally demand fancier foods (most notably, the honey-pickled peaches that are considered a delicacy in the city they are currently visiting)
* ''Manga/KoufukuGraffiti'' is about the social experience of food, so there're a few examples:
** Generally speaking, Kirin, being ObsessedWithFood, can easily be bribed with food.
*** In episode 4, Ryou, wanting Kirin to stay with her at the following weekend despite having no CramSchool, proposed cooking a full-course Chinese meal. Kirin's parents won by the counter-offer of a dinner at a three-star Chinese restaurant.
*** In episode 11b Kirin had a fight with Shiina. So when Shiina offered to share her lunch with Kirin, Kirin refused, saying she has her pride. After Shiina announced the lunch was cooked by [[SupremeChef Tsuyuko]], however... Kirin comes back.
** Used in the next episode preview skit at the end of episode 6. Kirin and Ryou are still in their bath towels while doing the singing, but Ryou is hiding just off screen. Kirin then pulls out a popsicle and throws it at her to get Ryou to come. Unfortunately her towel falls off as she jumps at the popsicle, and Kirin leaps towards her in an attempt to cover her.

* The ''TabletopGame/{{Munchkin}}'' card game has a card called "Bribe the GM with Food." It serves as an instant level-up. As does "Pay For The Pizza."

* In ''ComicStrip/BeetleBailey'', Beetle can get Sarge to excuse him from ''anything'' with four simple words: "my mom's homemade cookies".
* One case where food is offered as ''payment'' happens in ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'' where Charlie Brown offers to trade players with Peppermint Patty's team, offering Lucy for Marcie. When Lucy complains that he was robbed, Charlie Brown disagrees, saying that he got the better deal because Patty included a pizza. (He was more right than he imagined. When Patty realizes what a terrible player Lucy is, she wants to call the deal off; Charlie Brown tells her, "I already ate the pizza...")

* Hobbes is easily bribed to do something with [[TrademarkFavoriteFood tuna]] in ''Fanfic/CalvinAndHobbesTheSeries''.
* Played with in the fifty-ninth chapter of ''Fanfic/KyonBigDamnHero''. After Kyon and most of the girls in the Brigade teleported to Yuki's PocketDimension for some training Hanyuu instantly assumed they went somewhere to do "naughty things" and ran off to inform Rika, only to be stopped by Kuyou buying off her silence with cookies. Funnily enough, the "bribing" part only happened in [[SweetTooth Hanyuu]]'s head as Kuyou only wanted to [[TrademarkFavoriteFood share some of her cookies with her]].

[[AC:{{Film}} - Animated]]
* The protagonist of ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'' is motivated to do great deeds and work his butt off in training... for food.
* In ''WesternAnimation/AGoofyMovie'', Max paid his friend Bobby with spray cheese to assist him in hijacking a school assembly.

[[AC:{{Film}} - Live-Action]]
* ''[[Film/HomeAlone Home Alone 3]]'': The brother's parrot only plays along with the scheme if you have TWO crackers.
-->"''Double, or nothing''"
* In ''Film/StrangeBrew'', Bob and Doug [=McKenzie=] successfully bribe the secretary at Elsinore Brewery for information by using a donut: "Perhaps one of THESE would refresh your memory?" She gives them a little information, but holds out for another before giving up the full scoop.
* In ''Film/TheMatrix'', Cypher betrays the resistance so he can get plugged back into the Matrix. One of the reasons he does this is so he can enjoy the virtual food in the Matrix without knowing it isn't real. The Agent offering him the deal is treating him to a steak dinner in the Matrix at the time.

* [[Literature/TheDresdenFiles Harry Dresden]] is known to secure the loyalty of the Wildfae with pizza. It started as a simple quid pro quo: Pizza for information. Now they're his own [[{{pun}} little]] personal volunteer army.
* In the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novel ''Discworld/NightWatch'', the narration mentions that the Ankh-Morpork City Watch has been reformed to the extent that they don't accept bribes, except donuts and beer.
** In ''Discworld/UnseenAcademicals'' Glenda Sugarbean gets in to see Vetinari ''twice'' by doing this to the palace guards.
*** Though they had been instructed to take all bribes offered, bring the people in question to a waiting room, and then lock it until Lord Vetinari decides what to do with them. Unfortunately they also dispose of any food bribes afterwards in fear of poison, which in this case even Lord Vetinari considered a crime against good cooking.
* [[Literature/VorkosiganSaga Miles Vorkosigan]] is known to use [[SupremeChef Ma Kosti's]] cooking to bribe people, though this tends to lead to half-joking threats to kidnap her.
* Literature/StephaniePlum is often bribed by her mother by food. Seeing as how she is a very good cook and Steph is often broke, it is a very powerful motivator. When regular food just won't do, [[IWasToldThereWouldBeCake cake]] will usually seal the deal.
** In one book former hooker Lula has witnessed a murder but is reluctant to go to the police station to make an official statement. Joe finally gets her to go by promising to buy her a bucket of chicken and a Carvel ice cream cake.
* In the TimDorsey novel ''Orange Crush'', a lobbyist considers the food and drink he provides at campaign functions to be part of the lobbying, with the impact being about ten cents on the dollar (A free meal worth fifty dollars provides as much influence with a politician as a $500 donation to his campaign).
* In ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets'', at the beginning, Uncle Vernon is trying to seal a business deal by inviting a potential client to dinner.

[[AC:{{Live-Action TV}}]]
* ''Series/ICarly'': Sam can be bribed with food for a variety of reasons. Once, so that she'd leave resident ButtMonkey Freddie alone for a while, and earlier in her life, so that she'd be someone's boyfriend. Both times, the food in question was {{bacon|Addiction}}.
* Kel on ''Series/KenanAndKel'' would do anything for a bottle of orange soda.
* Used with Schultz on ''Series/HogansHeroes'' regularly.
* ''Series/PowerRangersRPM'': In "...And Action", the cast gives the viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the show without actually breaking character. Ziggy has to [[GeniusSweetTooth offer Doctor K sweets]] to get her involved.
* ''Series/TheAmandaShow'': Amanda's stalker Penelope Taynt tries to bribe Barney the security guard so she can sneak into Amanda's show. After failing to bribe him with money and jewels, Barney finally gives in when Penelope gives him a Pizza. A very nice slice of Pizza.
* ''Series/KamenRiderOOO'': While [[TokenEvilTeammate Ankh]] genuinely does need [[TheHero Eiji]] to get [[PlotCoupons Cell and Core Medals]] from enemy Greeed and Yummies, he is frequently bribed into good behaviour with [[TrademarkFavoriteFood icy poles]].
* In ''Series/{{Psych}}'' episode "Shawn Interrupted", Shawn needs to get a possibly-insane character in front of a hidden camera in the hospital library, so he uses a bowl of Skittles to do it since he's already seen that they're his TrademarkFavoriteFood.
* ''Series/LawAndOrderSpecialVictimsUnit'': Stabler and Benson once use food to get a starving girl to start talking about a murder suspect.
* In one ''Series/LawAndOrder'' episode, the detectives convince a pair of streetwalkers to share any information they might have concerning the episode's case by offering them free doughnuts and coffee for breakfast.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. Buffy and Cordelia are shamelessly pandering for votes for the Homecoming Queen. One contestant offers a cookie only for Buffy to barge in front of her and hand out large cupcakes. Cordelia then appears handing out baskets of chocolates, taking the cupcakes and throwing them in the trash.

* In ''VideoGame/LostSoulsMUD'', this is the most pleasant way of getting past Kerberos, the three-headed dog guarding the fiery portal from the cave of Tainaron to the River Tethys.

* The {{Kappa}} is a fearsome monster that likes to eat human entrails and blood. One way to survive an encounter with one is to offer it the one treat it enjoys more than human flesh: cucumbers. Offering a kappa a cucumber inscribed with your name on it will earn you your safety and maybe even the kappa's friendship.

* In Literature/TheBible, Jacob was able to get his brother Esau to sell his birthright for a bowl of stew.

* In ''Theatre/TheBirds'' by Creator/{{Aristophanes}}, the promise of a meal of roasted poultry is enough for Heracles to give away the sceptre of Zeus to the birds, thus ceding them the rule over the world.

* In ''VideoGame/{{Portal}}'', you are meant to be motivated by [[TheCakeIsALie cake]].
* In ''VisualNovel/{{Tsukihime}}'', Shiki regularly uses curry bread to get [[{{Meganekko}} Ciel]] to talk to him.
* The original ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZelda'' features this in the seventh dungeon, as you have to buy a bait to pass a particularly hungry Moblin enemy.
* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOrigins'': Your companions have different ways of getting past the guard to the Circle Tower. Morrigan or Shale will scare the living daylights out of him, Leliana will regale him with stories, and Sten... will offer him sweets (that he stole from a fat kid "for his own good"). Truly, Templar discipline is to be feared. It's less funny when you learn the guard is an example of what lyrium does to the brain.
** Later on, when choosing a champion to fight for you in a Trial by Combat, you can try to choose your dog. Arl Eamon is quick to point out that the dog's loyalty could be bought with a ham bone.
* In ''VideoGame/PaperMario'', an [[BossInMookClothing Anti-Guy]] guards a chest with a very useful badge in Chapter 4. You could try to tough it out and beat him in a straight fight, or you could just bring him some Lemon Candy in exchange for the badge.
* All of the ''Videogame/QuestForGlory'' games have this trope.
* To make friends with the Apple Kid in ''Videogame/{{Earthbound}}'', you have to give him a food item.
* Maybe it counts more as "bait" than a "bribe", but ever since Honey was introduced as an item in ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' in Gen IV, it can be used to attract Pokémon. In Gen VI, it can even be used to attract Pokémon Hordes.

* In ''Webcomic/DominicDeegan'', Oracle for Hire, Garrit demonstrates why the testimony of talking animals isn't admissible in court by bribing Spark to change his story about Bumper in one story arc.
--> '''Spark:''' I saw nothing. Bumper sucks. Gimme fish.
* In ''Webcomic/GeneralProtectionFault'', Trudy Trueheart obtained a stockpile of advanced alien weapons by bribing an Alien Overlord... with cheese. Apparently, Earth is the only place in the galaxy where cheese is made, and their attempts to synthesize it (see: cattle mutilations) have so far failed.
* In ''{{Webcomic/Freefall}}'', [[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff1600/fc01552.htm Sam explains the use of donuts to Florence]] for easing the way into a bureaucracy's building.
** Clippy [[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff2500/fc02431.htm attempts this]] with Florence, but she is shown to have ''much'' higher moral standards than everyone else in the comic (including at least four of the humans).

* ''Franchise/ScoobyDoo'': Perhaps the TropeCodifier. Scooby Snacks have been used in nearly all incarnations of the show to motivate Shaggy and Scooby into going into some creepy places. See the theme song to ''WesternAnimation/ScoobyDooWhereAreYou''.
-->''And Scooby-Doo, if you come through,''\\
''Then you can have yourself a Scooby Snack!''\\
''That's a fact!''
** In one of the more modern cartoons, Scooby and Shaggy think ahead and bring their own Scooby Snacks so they can't be persuaded this way. Unfortunately, Fred is still one step ahead of the two of them, because they didn't think to bring milk.
** Parodied in ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'', where Bender retracts his limbs and head into his body. Leela tries to coax him out with a beer. "Would you do it for a Bender-snack?"
* ''WesternAnimation/JohnnyTest'': Dookie will do anything for steak.
* On ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'', when those evil Canadians came to take Ike back from the Broflovskis after rescinding the adoption he refused to get in their car, until they offered him chocolate.
* ''WesternAnimation/JackieChanAdventures'' this apparently partially[[note]]The fact that he was almost killed when his old boss, Valmont, ordered him to fight Shendu had something to do with it, too[[/note]] precipitated Tohru's HeelFaceTurn.
** It's actually based on a BrickJoke two episodes earlier. Jackie tries to convince Tohru that working at Section 13 would be better and states that every Tuesday is Donut Day. He then [[IronicEcho repeats this statement]] when confronted with the Chans.
* A few episodes of ''WesternAnimation/CliffordTheBigRedDog'' showed that Mac refused to listen to what Jetta wanted him to do, unless he was offered a Tummy Yummy as motivation.
* ''WesternAnimation/EdEddNEddy''
** In the episode "Honor Thy Ed", Kevin says he will give Eddy a jawbreaker if he and his friends go in the abandoned house. However, Kevin backs out of the promise a few minutes later and sucks on it after the kids see Ed fake being strangled.
** In "Three Squares And An Ed", Eddy implies that Jonny would do anything for granola, in this case, dressing up like a leprechaun to distract Jimmy, who was guarding a grounded Ed.
* Used a couple times in ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic''. Twilight is faced with this several times throughout "Ticket Master" by her friends in attempts to gain an extra ticket to the Grand Galloping Gala, but Twilight manages to turn away the bribes each time despite stating several times how hungry she is. Pinkie Pie also uses this against Spike in "Party of One" as part of her PerpSweating sequence.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheGrimAdventuresOfBillyAndMandy'': Billy's dad Harold accepts fried food in exchange for fake doctor's notes to get the boys out of gym class.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Recess}}''
** The main six try to bribe Brittany A. to give her sister, Ashley A.'s diary back, by using candy. It doesn't work.
** In another episode, the Ashleys bribe T.J. with candy to get him to hang out with them after realizing he found a $100 bill.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfTheGummiBears'' episode, "My Kingdom For Pie", Duke Igthorn tries to bribe [[BigEater Tummi]] with a feast in order to find Gummi Glen.
* In Smurfette's origin episode in ''WesternAnimation/TheSmurfs'', Smurfette tempted Greedy with a scrumptious smurfberry cake into opening the village dam gate so she could flood the village back before she was changed into a real Smurf.
* ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible'': The closing scene of "Emotion Sickness" shows Drakken frantically running and dodging plasma blasts from a [[EmotionBomb Moodulator-enraged]] Shego. He tries yelling various apologies and pleas to calm her down, concluding with "I'll cook you dinner!"
* * In the first half of the ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes'' cartoon "Prince Violence", Yosemite Sam has a pink elephant helping him try to break into Bugs' fortress; however, with each failed plan, Sam [[MeanBoss yells at the elephant and occasionally clubs him]], eventually telling him to get lost so he can do it himself. After a few more failures, Sam finally manages to get in, only to find that the elephant is working for Bugs now and chases Sam away with a club. It's then revealed that Bugs is convincing him to work for him by [[LiteralMetaphor paying him with peanuts.]]
* In the ''WesternAnimation/{{SpongeBob SquarePants}}'' episode "Band Geeks", Squidward organizes a band by setting up fliers all over town, promising free refreshments. At the first meeting, Mr. Krabs asks "When do we get the free food?"

[[AC: RealLife]]
* {{Fancy Dinner}}s have long been a way to smooth the waters of diplomacy. In fact in the British Diplomatic service it used to be a requirement to have a high tolerance for liquor. At times expensive food or drink was used as a bribe. A wine bottle might save face for instance when money is insulting. After all the spy you want might be a traitor but he wants to be known as a [[ManOfWealthAndTaste cultured]] traitor.
* Cory Montieth mentioned that the choreographer for ''Series/{{Glee}}'' uses candy as a bribe so that they can keep working.
* Napoleon supposedly once faced an enemy army that was ill-supplied. He promised them food if they joined his army. It worked!
* Animal trainers are fond of using this trope.
* Bonobos (a type ape related to the chimpanzee) have been observed exchanging food for sex.