Whether you prefer pickup or delivery, grocery shopping from your couch is the way to go.

By Mary Claire Lagroue
Updated January 18, 2021
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.
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It's 2021. Ordering groceries straight to our doors (at least some of the time) is no longer just a convenience. It's a way of life. But with all of the online services out there — not to mention options for pickup, same-day delivery, and shipping — choosing the right one for you could take as much time as a trip to the actual grocery store. Uh, no thanks. We've noted the pros and cons of standout places to buy groceries online so you can find the one that fits your needs.

Amazon

If you've already invested in an Amazon Prime membership, consider its grocery delivery services another major perk. Depending on your location, you can use Amazon's site or app to shop Amazon Fresh and Prime Now. Amazon Fresh's selection includes familiar brands and a whole gamut of food, from produce to meat and seafood to frozen meals. Meanwhile, Prime Now lets you start an order at Whole Foods, offering basically everything you'd find in the health food chain's brick and mortar.

  • Membership: Amazon Prime for $119/year
  • Delivery Cost: $5 delivery for orders under $35
  • Availability: Delivery and pickup in select cities
  • Pro: No extra cost for Prime members
  • Con: Not available to all Prime members due to location

Boxed

Boxed offers a ton of shelf-stable bulk goods, complete with a private label brand called Prince & Spring. Plus, you can shop a selection of Costco's Kirkland Signature line without a membership. For produce and foods with an expiration date, such as seafood, eggs, and frozen meals, an Express Grocery option is available in select areas.

  • Membership: Free, with the option of a $49 annual fee for free shipping on all orders
  • Delivery Cost: $7 for orders under $49 (minimum price for free shipping depends on the region)
  • Availability: Delivery across the continental U.S.
  • Pro: Easy returns with prepaid labels
  • Con: Orders take one to three days to ship
PhotoAlto/Sigrid Olsson
Credit: Getty Images / PhotoAlto/Sigrid Olsson

FreshDirect

FreshDirect boasts a huge selection of food from brands you're probably familiar with. You can filter products by several criteria. Think top-rated, local, organic, kosher, gluten-free, family size, and sale. You can also shop plenty of pre-made foods, such as guacamole, Thai-style chicken salad, and mashed sweet potatoes.

  • Membership: Free, with the option of a $129 annual fee for unlimited free deliveries
  • Delivery Cost: $6 to $8 for most locations, with a $30 order minimum
  • Availability: Delivery to East Coast only
  • Pro: Same-day delivery in as little as 60 minutes
  • Con: Prices tend to be higher on FreshDirect than in stores

Hungryroot

Receive nutritious groceries each week plus practical recipes to use them in — essentially meal kits. Hungryroot tailors deliveries to your dietary preferences, and it offers healthy versions all the categories you'd find in a grocery store. The smallest package includes groceries for three meals, which each serve two, plus the option to add snacks and sweets. Menus change every month, and you can customize your order with à la carte picks.

  • Membership: Weekly subscription starting at $60 per week
  • Delivery Cost: $7 for orders under $70
  • Availability: Delivery across the continental U.S.
  • Pro: Includes pre-cut produce and pre-made sauces for convenience
  • Con: Less flexibility than true grocery delivery services

Instacart

With Instacart you can shop a selection of stores near you. Examples include CVS, Costco, Aldi, Kroger, and Sprouts Farmers Market. Once you've placed an order at one of those stores, a personal shopper will pick up the groceries you ordered and deliver them to your door. You can also opt to pick up your groceries yourself if you prefer. Some locations offer same-day delivery, which can mean as little as a one- to two-hour wait.

  • Membership: Free, with the option of a $99 annual fee for Instacart Express
  • Delivery Cost: Starting at $4; free deliveries on orders over $35 with Instacart Express
  • Availability: Delivery and pickup in all 50 states
  • Pro: Minimum order cost of $10 is relatively low
  • Con: Prices tend to be higher on Instacart than in stores

Misfits Market

Misfits Market delivers boxes of fresh organic, non-GMO produce at a notable discount: up to 40 percent off the prices you'll find in stores. It sources misshapen produce that's too "ugly" for grocery store standards (such as carrots with bumps and nubs) but tastes just the same. This subscription-based service gives you some say in choosing produce, and you can add nonperishable goods like grains to your order, too.

  • Membership: Weekly to bi-weekly subscription starting at $22
  • Delivery Cost: $5.50
  • Availability: Delivery in select states
  • Pro: Relatively inexpensive organic food
  • Con: Selection depends on availability

Stop & Shop

If you live in the Northeast and frequent Stop & Shop, you can virtually browse the supermarket's aisles and order groceries with its delivery and pickup service. If you're a planner, you'll enjoy creating shopping lists on the site, shopping its meal kits, and scheduling deliveries in advance. That said, some locations only offer pickups.

  • Membership: Free
  • Delivery Cost: $7 and up or $119/year for for $7 credit on deliveries with a PodPass
  • Availability: Delivery and pickup in certain regions
  • Pro: Schedule deliveries during certain time slots for discounted shipping
  • Con: Minimum order cost of $60 is relatively high

Shipt

Shipt lets you shop certain stores in your area, such as Costco, Meijer, Publix, and CVS. It's also the only online grocery service that brings Target goods right to your door. Like Instacart, Shipt delivers through a personal shopper who tracks down your groceries at the store. Communicating with your shopper is easy with Shipt, and you can even make a note of what your shopper should do if items from your list aren't available.

  • Membership: $99/year or $14/month
  • Delivery Cost: $7 for orders under $35
  • Availability: Delivery in select areas, with pickup available in some
  • Pro: Speedy, same-day delivery available during store hours
  • Con: Prices tend to be higher on Shipt than in stores

Thrive Market

Thrive Market describes itself as "Whole Foods meets Costco prices." It offers tons of healthy nonperishables, as well as frozen meat, seafood, and pre-made meals. Thrive caters to a number of diets, and it's easy to choose products that meet one or more of these diets. Think organic, vegan, paleo, ketogenic, raw, and gluten-free. Its selection of foods approved for the Low-FODMAP Diet and the AIP (autoimmune protocol) really sets it apart. Bonus: The cost of a membership goes toward a free membership for a low-income family.

  • Membership: $60/year
  • Delivery Cost: $6 for orders under $50
  • Availability: Delivery across the continental U.S.
  • Pro: Healthy foods and non-toxic personal care products at discounted prices
  • Con: Limited selection of perishable foods

Walmart Grocery

With Walmart Grocery, you can easily browse products through categories like peak season produce, organic, kosher, canned goods, and best sellers in your area. You can also shop a selection of items for holidays and other events. For example, the "Game Time" section includes game day essentials for making burgers, wings, and more.

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