This study aimed to analyze public policies aimed at rural women, from the perspective of gender mainstreaming. We performed a bibliographic research with semi-structured interviews with women farmers who were part of public policies, such as the Food Acquisition Program (PAA), Brazil’s School Feeding Program (PNAE) and Brazil without Misery (BSM), in the municipality of Paula Cândido/MG, in the southeastern region of Brazil. Results showed that the gender perspective was contemplated in the analyzed public policies, since, in the perception of the women, there were no difficulties in accessing the programs, in addition to allowing the reconciliation of productive activities with domestic work. They consider that the participation in social movements and, mainly, the action of the extension workers of EMATER were facilitator elements of this process. Therefore, gender mainstreaming is associated with the human aspects of the programs, which direct land use and influence the marketing process, income generation and female independence. The major difficulties are excessive bureaucracy and irregularities in payments for the offered products. There is a limited perception about gender mainstreaming, requiring more integrated and sustainable actions, for equal social opportunities, in all policy decision-making processes.