Sometimes the cut and quality of meats packaged at grocery stores are tough and overpriced. A meat delivery service can not only give you a wider selection of items ranging from grass fed beef to ground beef, but it also gets delivered right to your door. If you’re worried about the low quality from shopping online, you won’t go wrong with these options below.
We start off with ButcherBox, which takes a more unconventional approach to delivering the meat you want. True to the name, ButcherBox provides customers with boxes of various meats. You can pick from an all-beef box, the beef and pork box, beef and chicken box, or pick from a mixed box or custom box.
The custom box is our meat experts’ choice because of the amazing assortment and quality you get within. You can get delicious 100& grass fed beef, free range organic chicken, pork and a variety of seafood. All the food is safely packaged, frozen, and delivered straight to your door in an insulated and sustainable box.
Crowd Cow is another amazing company that offers meat delivery services and seafood too. Aside from being high quality, Crowd Cow meats and seafood are sourced from the best producers and are 100% carbon neutral. You will not be ingesting any hormones or antibiotics if you go with this meat delivery service.
What sets Crowd Cow apart from other online meat delivery services are their refusal to use mechanical tenderizing, chemicals or colorants. They are also dedicated to regenerative agricultural practices and humanely raised meats.
Crowd Cow also features the coveted wagyu beef. You have your pick between Japanese wagyu or American wagyu, whatever your taste buds prefer.
Snake River Farms is a great meat delivery company that specializes in beef and pork. They proudly feature American wagyu and kurobata pork. Under the wagyu section you can find dry-aged steaks and dry-aged ground beef in the form of patties. Filet mignon, sirloin steaks, rib eyes and flank steak are all within your grasp with this online meat delivery service. (Learn all about grilling filet mignon here!)
The pork options feature hand-curated bundles along with pork chops, ham, and other specialty items. One thing is for sure, Snake River Farms only deliver high-quality meat cuts. Pick your plan and get your package shipped out overnight. Delivery only takes FedEx up to 2 days!
One thing that really attracted our meat lovers to FarmFoods was the 100% grass-fed beef options and the free delivery over a certain amount.
One other thing was the variety FarmFoods meat delivery offers. You can find beef, pork, lamb, seafood and chicken. FarmFoods focuses on sustainability, and even the bits of ground beef is grass fed - nothing but the best.
FarmFoods is the opposite of Snake River Farms in the sense that they are the best meat delivery option for variety. There are pages after pages of options to choose from and even wholesale options.
Porter Road is a life-changing online butcher shop that allows you to sit at home and place your order. Porter Road filters through buzzwords to guarantee the best quality an online shop can offer. Each of the fine meats is hand cut in their facilities, resulting in tender texture and a difference you can taste.
They offer bundles or your choice of chicken, lamb, pork and beef. Better than free-range chicken, the options offered by Porter Road are pasture-raised. You can find chicken breasts, whole chickens and even chicken stock. The same goes for the other types of meats they are pasture-raised over free-range.
The best meat delivery services will offer quick shipping in eco-friendly packaging and give consumers a wide selection. What else should you look for? Our culinary team has outlined the most important features below.
Already prepped for cooking? You can also see our list of the best steaks for grilling.
The first and foremost consideration our team members look in online meat delivery services is the selection. Filet mignon, pork chops and chicken breasts are quite common and very easy to find, but if you’re looking for heritage pork, good USDA prime beef, special stuffed pork loin, beef tallow or foie gras and wild boar, you may need to look harder.
Don’t worry, because our team has provided the best online meat market - FarmFoods. Whether you’re going for very basic grocery-store type of meats or exotic options, the quality and how the animals were raised are the primary factors, which brings us to our team’s next point.
How transparent is the online grocery store with how their quality meats are sourced? Yes, a lot of them say the meats are raised humanely, and they support agricultural sustainability but is all this true?
Our experts warn our readers not to fall for simple words but to actually look for proof. A lot of the best meat delivery services on our list offer information about their sources and the farms they work with. To make sure you’re not contributing to a larger carbon footprint, we suggest giving this information a good read. Any online butcher shop worth its salt will also provide a guarantee that backs up their quality.
We know hot dogs and smoked meats can probably keep longer than fresh-cut steaks, but a good meat service will make sure the meats stay fresh during and even a little after delivery. If the meat delivered is spoiled, damaged, or just in poor overall quality, the companies should offer some sort of compensation.
Our meat experts say that understanding what certain terms mean will make it easier for consumers to determine if buying meat online from a certain provider is necessarily the best thing.
The definition of organic farming will vary worldwide, so the standard for organic meats in the states may differ from Europe. However, in general, the definition of an organic food is one that is sustainable, and conserves and supports biodiversity and balance in ecology. In other words, our team recommends organic meat over the alternative, which is one raised on hormones and antibiotics.
Remember to always look for proof or certification to make sure the Australian lamb you’re so fond of or the milk-fed pork or even meat sticks came from organic sources.
You then have three other very common terms - free-range, cage-free and pasture-raised. These terms can refer to any quality meat, such as ground beef, heritage breed pork, chicken breast, and game meats.
Pasture raised means the animals are raised outdoors, with a lot of space and access to nature and sunlight for a vast majority of their lives. Many people confuse this term with free-range, which means the animals are given some time during the day to experience the perks that pasture-raised animals get.
Free-range animals are not guaranteed to live the majority of their lives outside. Then you have cage-free, which means the animals are not in cages, but that doesn’t mean they can have access to the outdoors. As you can see, the best one recommended by our team is pasture raised.
A big difference between meat delivery and your local grocery store is a dedicated service that offers complete transparency.
If you have ever tried to purchase pasture-raised beef or pasture-raised pork among other meats from an online service, you may have noticed that some products arrive frozen, while others are fresh and packaged in vacuum-sealed packages. Is there a difference and should you care?
To be perfectly honest, our culinary team says it doesn’t impact the meat quality much, so there isn’t a big difference in that department. The reason for the difference in packaging is that frozen meats is kept longer, so retailers may choose to use this method in order to keep the meat fresh for longer journeys across the country.
Which should you pick? Our team says people who go for wholesale purchases or are just looking to stock up their freezers for long periods should go for the frozen options. You can be sure the meat will stay fresh for a long time so you won’t have the pressure of needing to cook it by a certain time.
On the other hand, our experts recommend the vacuum-sealed fresh versions for people who order weekly or just for once special occasion. This way, you can get meats already thawed out so it won’t cut into your cooking time. Since you will be consuming the meat right away, it won’t matter how long the meat keeps, as long as it stays fresh during transport.
The shipping and wait time while your order is processed is a big consideration for many consumers, and we totally understand why. The best services will ship the day of or overnight, depending on when your order is placed.
Unlike with clothing, the environment will impact the quality of the meat if it isn’t packaged correctly or if the elements get to it over time. For this reason, you want things to start moving as quickly as possible.
The actual delivery itself should take anywhere from 1 day (if you’re closeby) to 4 days. The retailer should specify how long the delivery will take on their website, so be sure to check that out.
Once your organic antibiotic-free meats arrive, make sure to place them into cold storage as soon as possible, unless you’re planning on cooking them on the day.
Just in case you’re not at home, make sure you ask the retailer how they ensure the freshness of the meat just in case the package is sitting outside for a few hours. There are companies that utilize dry ice that will keep your chicken breast or ground meat fresh for a few hours.
All of the butcher shop services our team has included deliver within the continental US. Some exclude services to Hawaii and Alaska, and we understand that because shipping will take much too long, and the freshness of the meats will be compromised.
The pricing is also a big deal when it comes to shifting your purchasing practices. If you can find a local butcher that offers competitive pricing, then why go for beef, pork, lamb and poultry from one of our chosen retailers?
We will be honest and say that the pricing isn’t always cheaper, but because some of these companies do not have a physical store, some money is shaved off from the price per pound since rent doesn’t factor into it.
One thing online places offer that some in-person stores do not is exotic options. Instead of boring ground pork, or boneless pork chops that you can get from the grocery store, you can have your pick of premium cured meats, which can last up to a year, and access to venison, yak and rabbit if that’s up your alley.
The delivery isn’t really a consideration when we’re looking at pricing because many services offer free shipping overall, or at least free shipping over a certain amount.
Our team of chefs remind readers that it’s always a better deal price-wise if you go with wholesale services and buying in bulk. We understand that this isn’t an option for everyone, as the limited freezer space and mouths to feed come into play, so make sure you do shop around to look for the best deals.
Speaking of deals, many online meat shops offer sales, discounts and deals from time to time as well as gift card options so keep an eye out for those as well.
(Omaha Steaks did not make it to our list, but we reviewed the service as well, in case you're wondering!)
No, it is not necessarily cheaper to order meat online. What dictates the price is the type of meat you’re purchasing, in what amount, and whether shipping costs are factored in. Generally, purchasing in bulk from online meat shops will be cheaper than in-person butchers.2. Is it cheaper to go to a butcher?
No, it’s not always cheaper to go to a butcher. While they are more specialized than grocery stores, you can often find the same meats such as ground pork and steaks in both online meat deliveries and butcher shops. What can make a difference is the overhead for store rent, which can increase the meat prices.3. Is it safe to buy meat online?
Yes, it is very safe to buy meat online - if you know what to look for. Any company can claim they are sustainable and organic, but is it true? The key is to do your due diligence, see if the company offers proof and look at how transparent they are with their practices.
Our top pick for the best meat delivery is ButcherBox. The company offers a good amount of variety with premium cuts as well. You can pick different boxes with dedicated types of meats, mixed boxes, or customize your own. ButcherBox is sustainable in their sourcing, promising grass fed animals that are pasture-raised without any hormones or antibiotics.
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