The lake is frozen and the Magnificent Mile is packed with eager shoppers. Winter is here in Chicago and the long hibernation of it’s residents begins. Grocery delivery peaks in the winter months due to the cold, traffic conditions, and general laziness. Thankfully Chicago has many grocery delivery options to choose from so you can avoid trudging out in the cold. We break down the top grocery delivery options in Chicago.
Chicago has a wide selection of grocery stores and most of them either deliver through services or by themselves. Amazon also has a strong grocery presence in Chicago as well. Not without delay, here are our top grocery delivery options in the Chicago area!
1. Amazon Fresh
Amazon Fresh delivers groceries directly to your door. The selection includes some whole foods items, but generally its much more mainstream items than the Whole Foods offering (which is also delivered by Amazon).
They offer free 2 hour delivery if you have Amazon Prime on orders over $35 with an optional tip amount. You can choose between attended – where they hand it directly to you – or unattended – where they just leave it at your door. It’s also important to note that they do sell alcohol but you will need to select attended delivery.
Amazon Fresh delivers to Chicago, but primarily to more populated areas in the city itself… if you live in the suburbs you’re likely out of luck. You can check out the delivery areas on their main page on Amazon.com.
If Amazon Fresh delivery is not available in your area, Amazon’s Whole Food’s delivery may be available (more on that later).
Instacart offers delivery or pickup to over a dozen stores in the Chicago area, including Aldi, Marianos, Jewel Osco, and H Mart.
Delivery cost is $3.99 for orders over $35 and you can usually get groceries delivered in a few hours, but this can vary based on availability. The pickup windows are in two hour time slots but you can also select ASAP and it will delivery when the first shopper is available.
Pickup is another option and it will save you $2, so it only costs $1.99.
Instacart Express is an option for heavy users. This is a subscription service that costs $9.99 per month or $99 per year and it eliminates the delivery fee.
Another important item to note is that sometimes prices on Instacart are higher than in store to cover the cost of shoppers, so you are certainly paying for the convince.
Walmart now has grocery delivery options! You can choose pickup or delivery. Both of these options are available for most of the Chicagoland area.
Pickup availability is pretty open you can choose 1 hour time slots. Pickup is free.
Delivery availability is a little more sparse so you may need a day to select a time slot. Delivery cost varies, but we see most slots are $9.95 with some other slots at $7.95. Walmary Grocery also has unlimited free delivery (called Grocery Unlimited) for $12.95/mo or $98 per year. They are currently offering a free 15 day trial.
Target also offers same day delivery in the Chicago area using a service called Shipt, which they purchased in 2017. Shipt offers a free 4 week trail which includes unlimited free Target deliveries for orders over $35. After the trail you can pay $14 per month or $99 for a year of free deliveries from Target and other Shipt stores (more on that below).
Target also offers some good deals which are exclusive to same day delivery. You can check them out at Target’s grocery page.
Additionally, you also have two other options when it comes to pickup. You can order groceries and pick them up in the store, or you can order them through the Target App and have them brought out to your car. Both of these options have no minimum orders or additional expenses other than the price of the products.
5. Whole Foods (VIA Amazon)
Coupon: Save $10 off $50! (new customers only)
After Amazon purchased Whole Foods in 2017, we knew that Whole Foods delivery was in the works. Currently Amazon offers Whole Foods delivery to most areas around their Whole Foods stores. This can be a good option for those who are not in the Amazon Fresh delivery zone.
Delivery is available for free for orders over $35 with a prime membership. The fee is $4.99 for orders under $35. There are time slots available throughout the day but it can be as quick as two hours.
Recently Whole Foods also started offering pickup in 1 hour time slots. This service is free for orders over $35 and $1.99 for orders under $35.
Shipt is a grocery delivery service similar to Instacart. There are various grocery stores available in the Chicago area on Shipt, including CVS, Jewel Osco, Petco, Office Depot, and Target.
Delivery costs $10 per order, but you can buy 3 “Shipt Passes” for $9 per delivery, or 5 for $8 per delivery. There is also an unlimited option for $99.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to tip for grocery delivery?
Yes. All grocery delivery services have the option to tip and most of the time it’s automatically added to your order. You have the option to lower or eliminate the tip if you choose.
Can I order alcohol?
Yes. Most stores that carry alcohol also delivery it with the service. You will need to choose attended delivery or pick up so the delivery person can check ID.
Is grocery delivery more expensive than shopping in store?
Yes. For most services such as Shipt and Instacart there is an upcharge many grocery items. Adding the delivery fee and tip, the convenience of grocery deliver can be upwards of 20% more than shopping in the store yourself.
Chicago Specialty Grocery Delivery
Local Meat and Dairy
Chicago is surrounded by some of the best farmlands for meat and dairy in Wisconsin and Indiana. There are tons of local farms that offer grass fed meat and dairy that delivery to Chicago. You can check out that list here.
CSA’s and farm shares are plentiful in Chicago, especially in the summer. You can check out Chicago’s vegetable delivery services here.
This one is crucial for keeping yourself entertained or productive. Headphones for jamming or listening to podcasts and a portable charger for keeping your mobile devices charged. Sometime flights have the USB port, but you can’t always count on them to be functioning… Yes, I’m serious. Pack headphones, a portable charger, and your cord just in case.