December 4, 2022

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Online grocery shopping is an incredibly convenient way to shop while avoiding crowded aisles and rogue shopping carts in the parking lot. Though it’s not for those who want to pick their own fruit or get the double coupon discount on pasta, shopping for your groceries online is a great way to save time if you’re willing to relinquish some control. 
Of course, you should expect to pay a bit more than you would if you shopped yourself. Most online grocery stores and delivery programs include subscription costs, delivery fees, and the option to tip your shopper or driver — which we suggest you do. Some services have steeper fees than others, but all are convenient ways to get what you need. 
In our guide to the best online grocery stores, we break down all the costs, how the services work, and more, to ensure your produce and pantry items arrive fresh and in a timely manner. Learn more about how Insider Reviews tests and researches kitchen products and services.
Best for shopping local: Instacart
Instacart partners with local grocery and convenience stores in your area, doesn’t require a membership to shop, and is available in most ZIP codes throughout the country.
Best for bulk items: Boxed
Boxed delivers bulk items at discount prices without a membership fee and the delivery fee is waived for all orders over $49.
Best on a budget: Walmart
You can get the same low prices with Walmart Grocery as you’ve come to expect with the big-box store.
Best for Amazon Prime members: Amazon Fresh
Access to AmazonFresh is included with your Prime membership, and you’ll get free delivery on grocery orders over $50.
Best for organic groceries: Thrive Market
If you prefer organic, Thrive Market has a huge selection of snacks, pantry staples, and more.
Best for sustainability: Misfits Market
Misfits Market offers an easy-to-navigate site with a broad array of sustainably sourced and organic grocery items.
Best online Asian market: Umamicart
Umamicart is a fast, affordable, user-friendly grocery delivery service specializing in Southeast Asian, East Asian, and Asian-American produce and products.
Instacart partners with local grocery and convenience stores in your area, doesn’t require a membership to shop, and is available in most ZIP codes throughout the country.
Pros: Shop via your local grocery store, no membership required, most widely available grocery delivery service
Cons: 5% service fee, delivery fees go up at more popular times
Instacart is the industry leader in grocery delivery, serving 85% of households in the United States. Its far reach is due to its strategy of partnering with local grocery stores, so you can shop the stores you already trust and patronize.
To start, you simply enter your ZIP code and your e-mail address. From there, you select the store you want to shop from — I had 29 options to shop from in my Brooklyn neighborhood including Fairway, Shop Rite, and even non-grocery stores like Petco, CVS, Walgreens, and Target.
With Instacart, your order will be handled by one of their shoppers who goes to the store, shops for your items, and then delivers them to you the same day. You’ll be able to chat with your shopper while they at the store and discuss any replacements or refunds for out of stock items in your order. 
You’ll find many of the prices on Instacart are the same as in store, but expect to pay a 5% service fee, a delivery fee (starting at $3.99 and increasing for faster delivery), and a tip to your driver. If you’re a frequent Instacart user, we recommend the Instacart Express membership; it’s $99 for the year, but gets you free delivery and no service fees and will pay for itself if you place at least two orders a month. 
Read our full review of Instacart.
Boxed delivers bulk items at discount prices without a membership fee and the delivery fee is waived for all orders over $49.
Pros: No membership required, prices match or beat big-box bulk stores like Costco
Cons: Doesn’t sell perishable items like produce 
When you think of bulk grocery shopping, big-box membership-oriented stores like Costco or Sam’s Club probably come to mind. But if you’re looking to buy in bulk, save while doing it, and avoid membership fees, Boxed is here to make that a reality.
You’ll find all your favorite brands in oversized quantities at wholesale prices. Its private brand, Prince & Spring, also offers household essentials for excellent value and quality. 
Insider Reviews freelancer Holly Johnson used Boxed to order staples for her family, and she was thrilled to find such low prices. She wrote, “Using Boxed for bulk supplies lets me keep my grocery orders to a minimum while getting good prices on the staples my family loves. I know because I have taken the time to compare pricing for bulk purchases at Costco and Amazon, and Boxed is comparable or better most of the time.”
Small and handy perks, including free samples with your order, a group ordering feature, and a convenient reorder feature, also make shopping easier. Be on the lookout for frequent coupon deals. 
Keep in mind that Boxed only sells non-perishables at this time. 
Read our full Boxed review.
You can get the same low prices with Walmart Grocery as you’ve come to expect with the big-box store.
Pros: Prices are the same as in-store, no service fees beyond the $9.95 delivery, free pick-up option, free delivery for Walmart+ members
Cons: Can only schedule for same-day or next-day delivery, can’t see delivery availability until after you fill your cart
While many grocery delivery services charge a premium on products, Walmart’s prices remain consistent whether you’re buying in-store or online for delivery or pick-up, making it the most budget-friendly choice for grocery delivery.
Through Walmart Grocery’s online portal or mobile app, you can search for and select groceries from all aisles of the supermarket, from dry goods to frozen pizza to milk, eggs, and produce. A Walmart employee will go through the store and put your order together for you, scanning each item as they go to ensure you get everything you paid for.
Upon checking out, you’ll select whether you want to pick up your order from a local store or have it delivered to your home. You can choose traditional front-door delivery, or Walmart’s new InHome program, where an employee actually enters your house and puts your groceries away for you. The InHome program is expanding, but is currently available in certain markets and only for Walmart+ members.
You can choose one-hour time slots for delivery on your desired day. If you need your order within two hours, select stores have an Express option at checkout. 
Read our comparison of Amazon Prime and Walmart+ here.
Access to AmazonFresh is included with your Prime membership, and you’ll get free delivery on grocery orders over $50.
Pros: Free access with Amazon Prime membership, free delivery over $50, Whole Foods 365 products available, can order through Alexa 
Cons: Must be a Prime member to order (unless using EBT)
Not to be confused with Prime Pantry where you can bundle non-perishables and household goods in order to qualify for Prime shipping, AmazonFresh is a standalone service and Amazon’s answer to the digital grocery stores like Walmart Grocery and Instacart. Unlike Prime Pantry, AmazonFresh allows you to order produce, dairy, meats, and other perishable items on top of pantry staples and dry goods.
You’ll have to be a Prime member to access AmazonFresh, so if you’re not already paying the $139 annual fee for Prime, you might be better off checking out the other grocery delivery services in our guide. You can also sign up for a free 30-day trial to take advantage of AmazonFresh as well as more than 20 other benefits.
The interface looks exactly like you’re shopping on Amazon — because you are. Scroll through carousels of categories like produce, meat, and snacks, or use the search bar at the top of the page to find exactly what you’re looking for. Each item has a quick-add button that places the item right in your card. Because Amazon owns Whole Foods, you’ll also be able to order Whole Foods’ 365 brand from AmazonFresh.
If you prefer organic, Thrive Market has a huge selection of snacks, pantry staples, and more.
Pros: Makes it easy to shop according to diet, makes natural and organic foods more accessible
Cons: Membership required, no perishable foods available
Thrive Market is one of the few grocery delivery service in our guide that requires a membership to shop — $60 for the year or $9.95 for a monthly membership — but the service guarantees you’ll save enough to make up the cost. If you don’t save $60 in a year, they’ll credit the difference towards your next year of membership. Orders under $49 have a $5.95 shipping cost. 
Thrive Market sells natural and organic products at wholesale prices — an average of 25 to 50% cheaper than what you’d find in stores. When you sign up for a membership, you’ll take a short quiz that helps it determine your shopping preferences, and from there it will begin to curate a selection of products it thinks you’ll enjoy. They can be found in the “My Aisle” section of the site, or you can search and shop for the things you usually enjoy, though you won’t find brands like Doritos or Coca-Cola on these virtual shelves.
Thrive Market is great for those with dietary preferences. You can sort and shop according to diets like keto, paleo, and vegan, so you don’t have to worry about looking up the ingredients of every new product you might want to try.
One downside is the inability to shop for fresh produce and other perishables. Your grocery box is packed and shipped through the mail, unlike other grocery delivery services that hand-deliver your goods. The exception is that you can buy boxes of meat for shipment, but only in large quantities such as six cuts of beef, chicken, or seafood. You can also buy whole turkeys or hams. If you do buy meat, it’ll ship frozen and separately from your nonperishables.
Read our full review of Thrive Market here.
Misfits Market offers an easy-to-navigate site with a broad array of sustainably sourced and organic grocery items.
Pros: Reliable and safe delivery, flexible delivery date, a large selection of primarily organic and sustainably sourced products
Cons: Limited weekly shopping window, membership required, items can sell out quickly
Misfits Market focuses on providing sustainable and ethical groceries that might have otherwise gone to waste due to surplus inventory, cosmetic imperfections, or other reasons.
It’s free to sign up for Misfits Market, but the weekly delivery plans start at a $35 minimum order. When you sign up, you choose the day you want your groceries delivered. Then, during a 3-day window before shipping, you pick from the available items to meet the minimum order. Your order is skipped automatically if you don’t meet your plan’s minimum during the window.
Misfits Market carries drinks, snacks, milk and milk alternatives, proteins, fruits, vegetables, herbs, and more. The company focuses on sourcing from pantry brands with sustainable values.
Insider Reviews’ Connie Chen tried Misfits Market and was impressed by the seamless ordering process and affordable offerings. Her order arrived on time in recyclable packaging, and the contents were fresh, cold, and secure. She recommends ordering as early as possible during your shopping window because items sell out quickly.
Read our full review of Misfits Market.
Umamicart is a fast, affordable, user-friendly grocery delivery service specializing in Southeast Asian, East Asian, and Asian-American produce and products.
Pros: Curated collections, selection of new and classic Asian brands, fast delivery, intuitive site navigation
Cons: May not have as much variety as a local Asian market, some produce is pricier than other places, minimum order requirement
Umamicart was launched as a convenient way for shoppers to get their favorite Asian produce, proteins, and other products. It’s especially great for people who don’t have convenient or regular access to an Asian specialty market.
Umamicart has a $30 minimum on all orders, and you get free shipping on orders of at least $49. The online grocer delivers to most states and is constantly expanding, although not all products are available to the whole service area. Visit the site and plug in your ZIP code to find out what’s available in your area.
The shopping experience is pretty similar to other online grocery stores with products organized in categories and departments, including pantry, vegetables, snacks, seafood, and more. You can browse curated lists, such as Southeast Asian pantry, staff picks, and other themes. The site also has recipes to inspire meal ideas.
Insider Reviews’ Connie Chen tried Umamicart and loved it. She appreciated that it was just as discovery-friendly as visiting a store in person while cutting down on her shopping time. Her order arrived quickly, and the items were packed safely and tasted great.
Read our full review of Umamicart.
I’ve used FreshDirect on and off for the past few years, and I’ve always been happy with their user interface, product selection, and customer service. For next-day delivery, you’ll have to order by either 6 p.m. or 11 p.m. the night before, depending on the time slot you select, but you can also schedule a delivery up to a week out. There’s a flat $5.99 delivery fee on all orders unless you sign up for DeliveryPass which entitles you to unlimited free delivery. A 6-month DeliveryPass, which costs $79, gets you free delivery and allows you to reserve delivery time slots in advance. There’s also a $39 option to access free delivery and reserved time slots from Tuesday to Thursday.
FreshDirect didn’t make our top picks because of how geographically limited the service is. It’s only available in certain areas of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, and Washington, DC. 
Here’s our full review of FreshDirect.
The service formerly known as Peapod now has you shopping directly from the Martin’s, Stop & Shop, and Giant websites. Choose the local store closest to your region, and then sign in with your Peapod account information, which will let you access your past orders and rewards points. Each store has slightly different service fees, so check directly with your preferred store. 
It was once again geographic limitations that kept Peapod out of our top picks, as it’s only available only in the Northeast. 
Shipt and Instacart are very similar. Both services are widely available geographically and allow you to shop from local stores with the help of a personal shopper who will pick up and deliver your goods. Unlike Instacart, Shipt requires a membership to shop — $99 annually, or $10.99 a month. It also partners with fewer grocery stores than Instacart, which is why it loses out to Instacart for the best place to buy groceries online from your local stores.
Costco has long been the go-to store for bulk shopping, and you don’t have to be a member to shop its offerings online. Non-members are subject to some fees that members can avoid like a $3 delivery fee for orders over $75 and up to $15 on orders under $75. There’s also a 5% non-member surcharge on all orders.
One major downside to shopping at Costco online is that they really only sell non-perishables and household goods like paper and cleaning products. Boxed is similar to Costco in that it offers bulk items at prices comparable to Costco — no membership required and no surcharges. Boxed also offers perishable items, so it’s a better one-stop shop than Costco.
Like Misfits Market, Imperfect Foods sells items that would normally get tossed from grocery stores. We tried it and enjoyed its selection and the quality of the items. However, we found Misfits Market had a better ordering process and a wider selection of goods. Imperfect Foods was recently acquired by Misfits Market, and we expect to see the two services combine in the future.
Hungryroot is a great option for plant-based meals and supplies. We tried it and found its like a meal delivery kit and grocery delivery wrapped into one. On the site you can find recipes and quickly order all the ingredients needed to prepare them. You’ll find a mix of prepared foods, produce, and pantry staples. However, the options are more limited than some of the other picks on our list. 
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Disclosure: Written and researched by the Insider Reviews team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we may get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our partners. We may receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at reviews@insider.com.

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