With the world going online, there are even fewer reasons to source meat from your local grocery stores.
Meat delivery services such as ButcherBox make it easy and affordable for customers to browse leisurely and have everything conveniently delivered to your door at a fairly reasonable price.
To understand if ButcherBox is really worth it, we have tested the company over a couple of months, comparing the prices, sustainability, and flavor to our local grocery finds.
The main focus was on whether ButcherBox is worth the money compared to our local grocery finds.
ButcherBox and Grocery Store Prices Compared
ButcherBox meat is available in five types of boxes, one of which is customizable while the others are curated.
The Classic Box, offering 8–11 lbs, costs $137, while the Big Box, offering 16–22 lbs, costs $253. The custom box is slightly more expensive but offers more meat.
- Custom box: Offers free choice of the available menu.
- Mixed box: Curated option from all menu items.
- Two meat boxes: Receive either the beef and chicken box or the beef and pork box.
- All-beef box: Composed of all beef.
The prices at the supermarket all depend on where you shop. For example, a 2.1lb ribeye steak from Walmart costs $24.82, which would be around $14 per pound. At Kroger, it is $12.99 per pound.
ButcherBox's delivery service works out slightly more expensive per pound, but you have to take the sourcing and quality into consideration.
Grocery Stores vs ButcherBox: Key Differences
The main difference between ButcherBox and grocery stores is how they work. ButcherBox is a subscription-based service that provides only meat, while supermarkets sell everything from cleaning supplies to fruits to drinks.
While ButcherBox is all online, a local grocery store typically needs to be shopped at in person.
While this makes it easier to view the meat before you buy, there will be next to no information available on the sourcing, additives, etc.
So, even though you can make a great bargain in your local grocery, you never really know where the meat came from.
Comparing Other Features Head to Head
1. Meat Selection
ButcherBox offers 60 cuts of free-range organic chicken, grass-fed and grass-finished beef, sustainably-sourced seafood, and humanely-raised pork.
Some items are available depending on the stock and season; others such as the grass-fed ground beef are available all year round.
Items available at ButcherBox include:
- Boneless pork chops
- Skinless chicken thighs
- Breakfast sausage
- Ground pork
- Whole chicken
- Wild-caught salmon
- Sirloin steaks
- Salmon burgers
Grocery shopping can be hit or miss when it comes to meat. There are not guaranteed to have the same cuts every day; with some selling out or not available at all.
When shopping at my local supermarket, I find it quite difficult to find the cuts or meats I am looking for.
Depending on the store, you may find:
- Pork butt
- Steak tips
- Chuck roast
- Chicken wings
- Chicken drumsticks
- Boneless pork loin chops
2. Meat Sourcing
The great thing about ButcherBox is that they are very transparent with its sourcing practices. All meat is sourced from family farms that ensure high-quality meat with no added hormones or antibiotics.
The free-range chicken has earned a grade 3 GAP (Global Animal Partnership) which means all chickens have the best environment possible.
The pork from ButcherBox is humanely raised, as is the 100% grass-fed beef. Seafood is sustainably-sourced in seas around the US .
“Our hogs are fed an all-vegetarian diet and are raised with traditional, sustainable farming methods.”
When buying meat from a supermarket, you will rarely find in-depth information about the sourcing, other than if something is free-range or grass-fed. Because of this, it is hard to know the true quality of the meat. Some can be sourced from the local farm and others are nondisclosed.
ButcherBox currently ships to all US states, excluding Hawaii and Alaska. All deliveries include free shipping, no matter how much or how little you order. Deliveries will typically take 2 - 5 days to arrive after shipping.
According to ButcherBox, all deliveries should stay cool on the doorstep for up to eight hours due to the dry ice and insulation included .
Some supermarkets may have online shopping, but if you are visiting your local chain, they most likely do not offer delivery. If your selected store does have delivery, there is a high chance it will not be free.
It is also quite rare that supermarkets take a lot of care when it comes to how recyclable their packaging is.
Who Offers Better Prices: ButcherBox or Grocery Stores?
Both ButcherBox and grocery stores are great options for sourcing meat at a reasonable price.
That being said, the winner for this round still has to be ButcherBox, due to only sourcing quality meat from trusted sources.
What’s more, free shipping is an added bonus, especially if you’re on a budget but want to have a quality meal.
This meat delivery service only deals with humanely raised meats that have been fed a natural diet and are allowed plenty of space to thrive.
Due to this, their meat is tasty, sustainable, additive-free, and most importantly, available for any budget.