10/14/18

Amazon Prime Now: Grocery Delivery in Pittsburgh–a Review

Amazon Prime now delivers Whole Foods groceries to your front door in Pittsburgh, PA.  We love grocery delivery, so put in an order right away to try it out.

(You need Amazon Prime to use this service.  If you are not a member, you can sign up here for a free 30 day trial.  There is discounted Prime membership if you have a Medicaid or EBT card here.  Students also get cheap Prime and a free 6 month trial here.)

Ordering is simple.  Go to the Prime Now website, make sure your zip code is correct (upper left corner), and then search for grocery items at Whole Foods.  Bulk foods, like oatmeal, are available too, which can save you money.

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Click “Add”, and when you are ready, go to Checkout in Prime Now, and choose your delivery address and payment method.

Then choose a grocery delivery time.  Our Prime Now options included 1 hour delivery windows, with a $4.99 delivery fee, or 2 hour delivery windows with free delivery.  (You may have to order $30+ total to get the free delivery option?).  There were only options to order 1 day ahead.  Like we ordered Saturday, and only had options for delivery on Saturday or Sunday.

There is an option to add a driver tip.  The suggested (optional) tip for our $60 order was $6.  If you choose to tip, it is part of your credit card total, no cash is exchanged with the driver.  There is also the choice to change your tip after delivery.

I choose grocery delivery between 8:00-10:00 am on Sunday.  Here is what happened with our Amazon Prime Now order:

  • 6:05 am.  Get text that my grocery order is being prepared.  (This woke us up!  Next time, we’ll silence the phone.)
  • 6:18 am.  Text that Fuji apples are out of stock at Whole Foods, with a link to choose a substitute
  • 6:47 am.  Get text that my grocery order is ready
  • 9:12 am.  Text that my Prime Now order will arrive soon.  With a cool link that allows me to see the vehicle location.
  • 9:16 am. Driver arrives and hands off 5 bags of Whole Foods groceries.
  • 9:20 am.  Get text that my order has been delivered.

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We got five paper bags (all strangely marked “baby”; the driver said every order gets a keyword).  They were labeled with Amazon Prime Now, not Whole Foods.  Everything was packed well.  For instance, frozen items were packed together. Produce was bagged in plastic bags.  We were happy with the quality of the produce and expiration dates on the dairy.

Overall, it was a great experience, and we are glad that Amazon Prime and Whole Foods are offering delivery.  Just remember that you’ll start getting many texts a couple hours prior to dropoff – silence your phone if you’ll be sleeping or in a meeting.

*Everything discussed here was ordered with our own money; Amazon and Whole Foods have nothing to do with this post.

11/26/17

Where to Order Thanksgiving Dinner 2017

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To save time this Thanksgiving, you can order fully-prepared Thanksgiving dinners for take-out.  Just place an order, schedule a pick-up time, then heat, and eat.  Most of these take-out dinners include a main dish and sides, some include rolls and dessert.

Here’s where to order Thanksgiving dinner in 2017 (click each for more info):

Thanksgiving Dinners from Restaurants

  • Boston Market.  Take-out turkey or ham dinners. Offers Thanksgiving catering too. Restaurants open on Thanksgiving (in 28 states)
  • Buca di Beppo.  Turkey dinners to-go.  Open on Thanksgiving. (in 26 states)
  • Cracker Barrel.  Turkey and ham dinners to-go. Restaurants open on Thanksgiving (in 43 states)
  • HomeTown Buffet, Old Country Buffet, and Ryan’s. Take-out dinners with sides and pie (in 30 states)
  • Luby’s. Turkey, ham, or prime rib take-out dinners. (TX, OK, AR)
  • Marie Callender’s.  Complete dinners, including dessert and coffee. Restaurants open Thanksgiving Day. (western US)
  • Mimi’s CafĂ©.  Turkey dinners for Thanksgiving take-out. (in 23 states)

Thanksgiving Dinners from Grocery Stores

  • Bashas.  Take-out turkey or ham dinners.  (AZ)
  • Bi-Lo. Turkey dinners to-go.  (in GA, SC, NC, TN)
  • Food City.  Turkey and ham dinners including sides.  (GA, KY, TN, VA)
  • Fresh Market.  Turkey dinners.  Unique dessert options at additional cost. (eastern US)
  • Gelsons.  Many to-go dinner options. (Lost Angeles area)
  • Giant.  Turkey or ham dinners for 4-6 people. (in MD, VA, DC, DE)
  • Hannaford. Ham or Turkey Thanksgiving dinners. (in ME, NH, NY, MA, VT)
  • Harris Teeter. Turkey, ham, or prime rib dinners. (in in GA, SC, NC, TN, VA, FL, MD, DE, DC)
  • H-E-B. Turkey or ham dinners. (TX)
  • Hy-Vee.  Dinners for 4+ people. (in IL, IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, SD, WI)
  • Ingles.  Thanksgiving take-out. (in AL, GA, NC, SC, TN, VA) 
  • Kroger. Turkey dinners to-go. (in appx. 34 states)
  • Marley Spoon.  Turkey dinner ingredients – you do the cooking (mail-order) 
  • Price Chopper. Turkey and ham dinners with pie.  (in CT, MA, NY, NY, PA, VT)
  • Publix. Turkey dinners. (in AL, FL, GA, SC, TN)
  • Raley’s. Turkey or ham prepared dinners. (CA; includes Bel Air and Nob Hills stores)  
  • Save Mart. Turkey or ham dinners with side dishes. (in CA, NV)
  • ShopRite. Turkey or ham options. (in CT, DE, MD, NJ, NY, PA)
  • Sprouts.  Turkey and ham dinners for 2 to 8 people. (in AZ, CA, CO, GA, KS, NM, NV, OK, TX, UT)
  • Stop & Shop.  Ham or turkey dinners to-go. (CT, MA, NH, NJ, NY, RI)
  • Wegmans. Turkey and ham dinners, including pre-carved options. (NY, PA, NJ, MD, MA, VA)
  • Weis. Whole turkey and turkey breast dinners to-go. (DE, MD, NJ, NY, PA, VA, WV)
  • Whole Foods.  Regular, organic, vegan, and gluten-free Thanksgiving choices.  (national)
  • Winn-Dixie. Thanksgiving turkey dinners (in FL, AL, LA, GA, MS)

If you can’t get to the store, you can cobble together Thanksgiving dinner from Amazon's offerings, delivered to your door.

Though they don’t offer complete pre-cooked dinners, Aldi and Trader Joe’s have Thanksgiving foods at decent prices.

Wherever you decide to order, hope everyone has a delicious Thanksgiving dinner in 2017.

11/15/17

Wegmans Thanksgiving Dinners 2017

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Wegmans is preparing fully-cooked Thanksgiving dinners for take-out in 2017.  First place an order and schedule a pick-up day, then simply heat, serve, and eat on Thanksgiving Day.

You can order at your local Wegmans grocery.  Or you can also order online.

Here are example 2017 Wegmans Thanksgiving dinner menus.  (Options and prices can vary between stores – confirm with your local store when ordering.):

Hand-Carved Turkey Thanksgiving Dinner, serves 6, $119.00. Includes:
  • Pre-carved Half Turkey with 1 Drumstick and 1 Wing, 6-7 lbs
  • Gravy, 24 oz
  • Herb Stuffing, 2.5 lbs
  • Seasoned Green Beans, 1.5 lbs
  • Roasted Butternut Squash, Spinach, and Craisins, 1.5 lbs
  • Mashed Potatoes, 2.5 lbs
  • Cranberry Orange Relish, 16 oz
Large Hand-Carved Turkey Thanksgiving Dinner, serves 12, $219.00.  Includes:
  • Pre-carved Whole Turkey, 12-14 lbs
  • Gravy, 48 oz
  • Herb Stuffing, 5 lbs
  • Seasoned Green Beans, 3 lbs
  • Roasted Butternut Squash, Spinach, and Craisins, 3 lbs
  • Mashed Potatoes, 5 lbs
  • Cranberry Orange Relish, 16 oz

Ham Thanksgiving Dinner, serves 10-12, $140.00.  Includes

  • Spiral Sliced Glazed Ham, 7-8 lbs
  • Asparagus with Lemon Zest, 3 lbs
  • Roasted Butternut Squash, Spinach, and Craisins, 3 lbs
  • Potato Gratins, 12 individual portions
  • Harvest Salad 
  • Cranberry Orange Relish, 16 oz

Some Wegmans also have Thanksgiving Dinners with turkeys that are not pre-carved.

Plan about 1 to 3 hours to reheat these dinners on Thanksgiving day (3 hours is for the larger dinners).  You will get reheating instructions with your dinner.

We also have a list of other stores where you can order Thanksgiving dinners.

Happy Thanksgiving 2017 to everyone.  Thanks to Wegmans for helping with the food.

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