Whole Foods Delivery Review – Quick and Easy Grocery Drop Off

Grocery delivery services like Whole Foods delivery are becoming increasingly popular for busy people who want to save time shopping. With Whole Foods delivery, you can get all your groceries and household essentials delivered right to your doorstep in as little as 1 hour.

In this comprehensive review, we will take an in-depth look at Whole Foods delivery service, including how it works, available delivery windows, product selection and prices, order minimums, delivery fees, tipping, packaging, user experiences, and more. Read on for the full scoop to see if Whole Foods delivery is the right online grocery option for your needs.

How Whole Foods Delivery Works

Whole Foods has partnered with Instacart to offer grocery delivery in as little as one hour from almost all of its 500+ stores across the U.S.

To get started, you simply:

  1. Go online to www.Instacart.com or open the Instacart app.
  2. Enter your zip code to find the nearest participating Whole Foods locations.
  3. Start adding groceries from Whole Foods to your digital cart.
  4. Select a one-hour delivery window (or opt for the soonest available time).
  5. Check out.
  6. Wait for your delivery to arrive within your selected time frame.

So the process is very quick and painless compared to having to go to the store and shop yourself. The website and app are user-friendly with sections and filters to easily find all the Whole Foods products you need.

Whole Foods Delivery Hours

One of the major conveniences of Whole Foods delivery is that it offers quick 1-hour time slots, as well as expanded windows up to 2 weeks in advance for future deliveries. This makes it easy to get both last-minute essentials as well as plan your longer-term grocery shopping.

Same-Day/1-Hour Delivery

For ultra-quick delivery, you can receive your Whole Foods order in just 1 hour if you order at least $35 worth of groceries. Available hours for 1-hour delivery windows are store dependent, but generally include:

  • 8am to 10pm on weekdays
  • 8am to 9pm on weekends

As long as you order at least 1 hour ahead of time, there should be a delivery window available.

2-Hour Delivery

If the next 1-hour time slot is full, 2-hour delivery windows are also available as the second quickest option. Great for a meal solution later in the day.

Scheduled Delivery

Not in a rush? You can also select a delivery window up to 2 weeks in advance when your schedule permits to lock in a time. This is convenient if you will be busy for dinner or out of town.

Scheduled times also open up more time slot availability if same-day is full.

Whole Foods Delivery Order Minimums

One thing to keep in mind with Whole Foods delivery is that there is a minimum order amount to get free delivery with an Instacart Express membership (more details below). Here are the order minimums:

  • 1-hour delivery: $35 minimum
  • 2-hour delivery: $35 minimum
  • Scheduled delivery: No minimum

Reaching the $35 minimum is easy to do for a full grocery run. But you have some flexibility to make a smaller order if needed for scheduled delivery.

Whole Foods Delivery Areas

Whole Foods offers delivery in most major metro areas across 40+ states where there are participating store locations. Some of the top cities with the most Whole Foods delivery coverage include:

  • New York, NY
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • Chicago, IL
  • Washington, D.C.
  • San Francisco, CA
  • Seattle, WA
  • San Diego, CA
  • Las Vegas, NV
  • Portland, OR
  • Phoenix, AZ

And many more cities big and small. Be sure to enter your zip code on Instacart to see if Whole Foods delivery is available in your area.

Whole Foods Delivery Prices

One of the most frequently asked questions about Whole Foods delivery is whether the prices are higher than shopping in store.

The answer is Whole Foods delivery matches the in-store pricing for all products. However, you do have to factor in service fees from Instacart on top of your grocery bill.

Here is a pricing breakdown:

  • Product cost: Same as Whole Foods in-store prices
  • Service fee: Starts at $3.99-$7.99 based on store location
  • Delivery fee: Starts at $3.99 for orders $35+ (higher fee for orders under $35)
  • Tips: Optional 5-10-15% tip for driver
  • Instacart Express fee: $9.99 per month waiver for delivery fees

So your total will be higher than just the cost of groceries. But the time savings may be worth it for many. Read on for more details on Instacart pricing and fees.

Whole Foods Delivery Fees

As mentioned above, while Whole Foods sets the base prices for groceries, Instacart adds on delivery, service, and membership fees. Here is the full breakdown of what extra fees you can expect:

Delivery Fee

This covers the cost of having your order delivered to your door. Whole Foods delivery fees are:

  • 1-hour delivery: $3.99 for orders $35+
  • $6.99 for orders under $35
  • 2-hour delivery: $5.99 for orders $35+
  • Scheduled delivery: $6.99 for orders $35+

So you will save money by meeting the $35+ order minimums for quicker delivery.

Service Fee

This accounts for picking and packing your order. Service fees vary by location but are typically between $3.99-$7.99.

Instacart Express Membership

Instacart offers an Express membership plan for $9.99 per month that waives all delivery fees over $35. This can add up to big savings for frequent users rather than paying a per delivery fee. You still pay service fees but get unlimited free delivery.


You have the option to add a tip for your delivery driver. Recommended amounts are 5%, 10% or 15% of your order total. But tips are optional.

So in summary, your total Whole Foods delivery cost will consist of:

  • Grocery order total
  • Service fee
  • Delivery fee* (waived with Express)
  • Optional tip

Overall the fees are quite reasonable compared to restaurant delivery apps and worthwhile for the convenience of groceries to your door. But savings can be maximized by tips like meeting order minimums and using Instacart Express.

Whole Foods Delivery Packaging

One concern people have sometimes about grocery delivery is whether items will stay fresh and intact during transit.

But Whole Foods delivery accounts for this through proper packaging in multiple ways:

  • Insulated grocery bags – Orders are packed in sealed insulated bags to maintain temperature.
  • Cold packs – Frozen and refrigerated items are packed with cold packs as needed.
  • Fragile item protection – Breakable goods are carefully protected with packaging materials to prevent shifting and damage.

So you can expect your cold, frozen, and fragile groceries to arrive still properly cold, frozen, and protected.

Whole Foods Delivery Product Selection

A major benefit of Whole Foods delivery is access to thousands of natural, organic, and specialty grocery products. You can get all the same selections as offered at your local Whole Foods store shelves from baked goods, dairy and eggs, frozen foods, pantry staples, alcohol, household essentials, and more.

Some delivery product highlights include:


  • Fresh fruits and veggies
  • Salad mixes and greens
  • Herbs and cut vegetables

Dairy & Eggs

  • Milk, cheese, yogurt, butter
  • Free-range eggs
  • Plant-based milk and dairy

Meat & Seafood

  • Butcher cuts of beef, pork, chicken
  • Organic poultry
  • Sustainable wild caught seafood
  • Ready to cook meats


  • Breads and baked goods
  • Desserts and sweets
  • Ready to eat sides and meals

Pantry Items

  • Pastas, grains, canned goods
  • Oils, vinegars, condiments
  • Snacks, bars, chips
  • Beverages, coffee, tea

Frozen Foods

  • Pizzas, prepared meals
  • Ice cream, fruit
  • Vegetables and sides

Household Essentials

  • Paper products
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Pet food
  • Baby products

And much more. You have access to Whole Foods’ entire product selection for a complete grocery experience.

Alcohol Delivery

Many grocery services don’t allow alcohol delivery, but Instacart makes it easy by delivering beer, wine, and spirits from Whole Foods right to your address (where regulations allow).

You just need to meet two requirements:

  1. Enter your date of birth at checkout to confirm you are of legal drinking age.
  2. Be available to present your ID matching your Instacart account name during delivery.

Then you can add a 6-pack of craft beer, nice bottle of wine, or all the fixings for cocktails to your delivery order. Just note that additional taxes and ID checks apply to alcohol delivery orders.

Prescription Delivery

In addition to all your grocery and household needs, you can even get prescriptions delivered through Whole Foods via Instacart.

Just upload your prescription info when checking out. Then the pharmacy will reach out for any follow up details needed to fill your script.

Your medication will arrive safely packaged along with the rest of your order. Super convenient when you can’t make it to the pharmacy!

User Reviews of Whole Foods Delivery

Curious what other customers have to say? Overall Whole Foods delivery reviews are quite positive:

  • Convenience – Most agree ordering online and getting Whole Foods groceries brought to your home is super convenient and a huge timesaver.
  • Fast delivery – One hour windows make it easy to get same day items when needed. Scheduled times also work well.
  • Quality packaging – Food arrives properly cold, frozen, and protected. Items are bagged logically.
  • Missing items – Occasional reports of small missing items. But Instacart refunds you quickly.
  • Prices – Some sticker shock from delivery fees if you aren’t prepared. But in-store prices for groceries makes it affordable.
  • Customer service – Strong marks for prompt issue resolution if any problems come up.

So most agree the extra fees are worthwhile for the level of convenience and timesavings of Whole Foods delivery vs shopping yourself.

Whole Foods Delivery Pros and Cons

Like any service, there are tradeoffs to consider. Here are the main advantages and disadvantages of using Whole Foods delivery:


  • Timesaver compared to shopping yourself
  • Quick 1-hour windows available
  • Scheduled delivery in advance
  • All Whole Foods products to choose from
  • Good packaging protects items
  • Instacart Express waives delivery fees
  • Easy alcohol delivery process
  • Prescription delivery option too


  • Order minimums apply for faster delivery
  • Delivery areas are limited based on stores
  • Added fees vs in-store prices only
  • Need to be available for alcohol ID check
  • Occasional missing items and stock issues

But for most, the convenience factor outweighs the extra fees and occasional hiccups.

Is Whole Foods or Amazon Fresh Delivery Better?

If you have access to both Whole Foods and Amazon Fresh grocery delivery, which is better? A few key differences:

  • Product range – Whole Foods has a much larger selection of natural, organic, and specialty items vs Amazon Fresh more conventional selection.
  • Amazon Fresh membership – Requires $14.99/month membership vs Whole Foods just pay per order or Instacart Express.
  • Order minimums – Amazon Fresh requires $35 minimum only for scheduled delivery while Whole Foods requires for all 1-hour/2-hour orders too.
  • Timeslots – Amazon Fresh has more limited delivery windows available than expansive Whole Foods options.

So in summary, Whole Foods beats Amazon Fresh for quick delivery, better product selection, lower cost without a membership, and more flexibility.

Frequently Asked Questions about Whole Foods Delivery

Still have some questions about placing an Instacart Whole Foods delivery order? Here are answers to some of the most commonly asked questions.

Does Whole Foods accept EBT for delivery?

Yes, EBT (Electronic Benefits Transfer) cards are accepted for Whole Foods delivery orders to pay for eligible grocery items through Instacart. Simply select EBT as your payment method during checkout.

Can you get discounts on Whole Foods delivery?

Yes, Instacart offers several ways to save on Whole Foods delivery:

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  • First time customer discount
  • Express membership for free deliveries
  • Credits and coupons when available
  • Pickup orders waive most fees

How much is the tip for Whole Foods delivery?

Tips are optional but recommended. You can choose 5%, 10% or 15% of your order total. Many customers tip 10-15% for good service.

What happens if Whole Foods runs out of my item?

Your shopper will contact you to see if you’d like a replacement item. If not, Instacart will issue you a refund for any out of stock items.

Can you return groceries to Whole Foods from delivery?

Yes, items can be returned to your local Whole Foods store for a refund just like an in-person purchase. Simply bring your receipt.

Is there a gift card option for Whole Foods delivery?

Yes! You can purchase an Instacart e-gift card from $25-$500 to give the gift of Whole Foods delivery. Great for birthdays or holidays!

Is there an advantage to ordering direct from Whole Foods?

No – the prices, selection, and shoppers are the same whether you order from Whole Foods directly or via the Instacart app/website, so user experience is comparable.

Is Whole Foods Delivery Worth It?

At the end of the day, is the cost and effort of Whole Foods delivery worthwhile, or should you just head to the store yourself?

For most shoppers, the time savings of delivery outweigh the small fees. It just depends on your priorities.

If you want to…

  • Save money: Shop in-store yourself.
  • Save time: Use Whole Foods delivery.
  • Try new items: Delivery allows you to easily discover new products.
  • Stock up: Delivery lets you order heavy items and cases easily.

So if time is of the essence, Whole Foods delivery provides a convenient solution to keep your pantry stocked and skip the hassle of wandering store aisles.

The quick 1-hour windows, easy alcohol ordering, and bonus of prescription delivery makes it a helpful option for busy people. While the fees add up, take advantage of tip like order minimums and Instacart Express to maximize savings.

In the end, only you can decide if the tradeoff of time vs money makes sense for having your groceries arrive at your door. But for most shoppers, Whole Foods delivery is a worthwhile indulgence for the huge convenience it provides.

Try out an order today and see for yourself!

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