A homeless man who stole three bottle of Jack Daniels to sell for food in Retford had been waiting six months for a benefits claim, a court heard.
Shane John Hulls, 27, of no fixed abode, admitted stealing the spirits, worth £75, from Asda, on Wharf Road, on December 12, last year.
He was caught when security tags went off and he told police he planned to sell the booze to buy food, said Robert Carr, prosecuting.
Morgan Hogarth, mitigating, said Hulls had been waiting for six months for his Employment Support Allowance to be processed.
He has an appointment for his claim on February 16, said Mr Hogarth.
Mansfield magistrates heard he was given a community order with a drug requirement order in December and had been engaging well.
He was given a 12-month conditional discharge and was ordered to pay a £20 victim surcharge on Wednesday.