Butcher Box Review 2024: Unboxing, Prices, & Taste Test

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ButcherBox is a delivery service that ships quality meat and seafood straight to your door every two, four, six or eight weeks. You can choose from four pre-configured packages, or design your own combination of free-range organic chicken, grass-fed beef, crate-free pork and wild-caught seafood. 

For this ButcherBox review, I subscribed to test the meat quality and to see whether it’s possible to save money by using the service.


ButcherBox delivers humanly-raised meat via a recurring subscription. The sign-up and ordering process is quick and easy, in part because they have a somewhat limited selection of cuts to choose from. All of the meat we tried was delicious, and the price was slightly less than comparable cuts at our regular supermarket.

  • Custom boxes provide complete control over order contents.
  • Pausing or canceling the service is easy and fee-free.
  • A la carte items can be added to any order.
  • All products are organic and raised humanely.
  • Fully customizing deliveries costs more money.
  • There is a five-day delivery window instead of one certain delivery date.
  • There is no seafood option for curated boxes.
  • Meat and seafood products are the only grocery items available.

How ButcherBox Works

ButcherBox is a subscription service that allows users to select their cuts (if they opt for a custom box), or to be surprised by what ButcherBox chooses for them (if they opt for a curated box). A la carte options can also be added to any order.  

Curated boxes come in four varieties: 

  1. Beef only.
  2. Beef and chicken.
  3. Beef and pork.
  4. Beef, chicken and pork.

A small curated box offers 8.5 to 11 pounds of meat (about 24 meals worth), whereas the big box provides 16 to 22 pounds (about 48 meals). Custom boxes offer a bit more meat, with 9 to 14 pounds in a small box and 18 to 26 pounds in a big box. You can pause or cancel your deliveries at any time without a fee.

Both of my shipments were received within my expected delivery window. The shipper varies with your location and could be FedEx, UPS, LSO, GLS or other local carriers.   

Types of Meat Available on ButcherBox

ButcherBox assures that all of their meats are responsibly raised. All of the beef products are organic, antibiotic-free and hormone-free.

Additionally, all ButcherBox beef is grass-fed and grass-finished, meaning that the animals were raised (either in the United States or Australia) exclusively on pasture (i.e., grasses, legumes and other forage) for their entire lives.

This practice is generally considered more humane and arguably results in healthier meat products with higher levels of nutrients and more flavor than meat from grain-fed animals. 

Similarly, ButcherBox claims its other products are humanely sourced. The American and Canadian pork is vegetarian-fed and crate-free, and most have heritage-breed ancestry known for rich marbling, tenderness and deep flavor. The poultry (also from the U.S. or Canada) is free-range and organic, and the seafood is wild-caught from various regions in the U.S.

I had the following options to choose from during my testing period:

  • Beef: bavette, tenderloin, brisket, bottom round roast, burgers, chuck roast, sirloin cap, Denver steak, eye round roast, filet mignon, flank steak, flat iron steak, ground beef, London broil, New York strip roast, New York strip steak, steak tips, ranch steak, ribeye (roast or steak), sirloin steak (or tips), stir fry beef and tri-tip.
  • Chicken: drumsticks, wings, tenders, boneless/skinless thighs and breasts, thighs, or a whole chicken.  
  • Pork: baby back ribs, bacon, pork chop or butt, breakfast sausage, ground pork, loin roast, tenderloin, and St Louis pork ribs.
  • Seafood: whole lobster or tails, scallops, and sockeye salmon.
  • More: leg of lamb, turkey, bison, chicken nuggets and sausage.

ButcherBox Cost

ButcherBox’s cost structure is fairly straightforward, and shipping is free. 

Small Box$1468-11 lbs24 meals*$169 9-14 lbs6 cuts30 meals*
Big Box$26916-22 lbs48 meals*$30618-26 lbs12 cuts60 meals*
* Each meal is a six-ounce portion

Is ButcherBox a Good Deal?

The price structure above equates to a cost between $5.10 and $6.08 per six-ounce portion.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Average Retail Food and Energy Prices, the average cost of six ounces of chicken breast in the U.S. (during the same month that the costs above were calculated) was $1.65, while six ounces of sirloin steak cost the average American $3.98.

Looking at average U.S. prices (i.e., disregarding cut type and how the animal was raised), ButcherBox is significantly more expensive. However, when compared to prices for similar cuts of meat at a typical supermarket, the prices are more closely aligned.

For example, we recently tested Anycart, a grocery delivery service that lets you order from your local supermarket without price markups. For the purpose of comparison, I created a mock Anycart order with the items most similar in type, size and quality to the items in my ButcherBox order.

The chart below outlines the prices of each item, as well as the total cost the order of each platform.

ButcherBox vs Anycart

After adjusting for varying product sizes, the price I paid ($189), was slightly less than I would have paid for the closest products from my local grocery store via Anycart ($207.70).

My ButcherBox Experience: Meat Quality, Taste and Delivery

The contents of my first ButcherBox order.
The contents of my first ButcherBox order.

Everything I received was frozen solid and there were two partially full bags of dry ice tucked into the box.

I’ve tried every product and each was delicious. More impressively, my family (including my kids), also tried everything, and there wasn’t a single thing that they didn’t like. 

What I Ordered

I planned my first order, a small curated box, to arrive the week before a holiday. I wasn’t sure what I’d receive in the box so I added (free) bacon, sausage, and even a holiday ham. 

What I Made

Our holiday breakfast included what was potentially the most flavorful, mouth-watering bacon I’ve ever had. While it’s tough to beat bacon, the apple gouda sausage was also exceptional. The sweet and savory balance and smooth texture contrasted well with the crispy bacon. I added some eggs and chocolate chip pancakes and had a pretty happy household.

After a few hours, we tried the glazed, boneless ham. ButcherBox included the glaze, making the prep work simple. After adding some veggies and a pineapple casserole, we were set.

Over the next few weeks, I used my ButcherBox ingredients to make ground beef tacos, spicy chicken drumsticks, a garlic chuck roast, grilled chicken, chicken nuggets and cheesesteaks. 

Each dish I attempted left me pleasantly surprised. While I’d like to think my success had something to do with my expertise in the kitchen, the reality is that this was my first attempt cooking chicken drumsticks, and I can count the number of times I’ve cooked a steak on one hand. (I’m not exactly Martha Stewart.)  

The success of these various dishes — the tender, succulent steaks, and the juicy, flavorful chicken — was undoubtedly due to the superior meat quality.

While I’ll stop short of saying it was a culinary experience to remember for all time, I will say it was nice to make a series of meals that weren’t met with a single complaint from my very picky housemates.

Is ButcherBox Worth It?

I spent more on ButcherBox than I would have had I purchased my normal products at my local bulk discount store. However, the value of the meat extends beyond its price tag. My family and I were able to enjoy exceptional quality and taste while also supporting ethical and responsible practices in the food industry. 

The simple ordering process also saved me time; since I purchased a curated box, I didn’t even have to choose my own cuts.

Based on my cost comparison, I would have spent as much money (or more) purchasing similar products from my local grocery store. So if you’re focused on purchasing sustainably sourced meat products, I believe ButcherBox is worth it.

ButcherBox Reviews and Consensus

What Negative Reviews Say About ButcherBox

Concerns that have been expressed in other online reviews center around:

  • Delivery. Some customers reported issues with late deliveries or packages that arrived in poor condition. My orders were received within my shipping window.
  • Quality. There have been reports of customers receiving items that did not meet their quality standards. My orders were received fully frozen and contained meat of the highest quality.
  • Service. A few reviewers have indicated that it was difficult to get a response from customer service. I reached out to ButcherBox via online chat three times to confirm a few facts for this article, and received a response within one minute each time.

What Reddit Says About ButcherBox

After searching through various Reddit threads, the consensus (which I agree with) is that the ButcherBox meat quality is excellent, but users are unlikely to save money on groceries by using this subscription service.

ButcherBox vs. CrowdCow

While both are online meat delivery services, ButcherBox and Crowd Cow have a few distinctions in their offerings.

  1. Crowd Cow is primarily an online marketplace where customers can select and purchase specific cuts of meat on a one-time basis or through a subscription. There is an order minimum of $99, and users must spend $149 to receive free shipping. ButcherBox does not offer the option for a one-time purchase, though users can cancel and restart the service at any time.
  2. ButcherBox emphasizes the responsibly-raised aspects of their offering while Crowd Cow goes a step further by providing information about the farms where each product originates. (Not all Crowd Cow beef is grass-finished, however.)
  3. ButcherBox’s subscription model may elevate the cost of individual cuts of meat. For example, the box price is the same whether you choose all chicken or all steak; that would certainly not be the case when purchasing those items individually at a grocery store. In contrast, Crowd Cow charges by the type and cut of meat.

Learn more in our Crowd Cow review, and check out our other organic meat delivery service reviews for additional options.

ButcherBox FAQs

Where can you find current ButcherBox promos and coupons?

You can get $50 off your first box automatically when you sign up using this link.

Where does ButcherBox ship orders from?

Orders ship from ButcherBox’s fulfillment centers across the U.S. The products are sourced from the United States, Canada and Australia.

Does ButcherBox offer kosher or halal options? 

No, ButcherBox does not currently offer kosher or halal options.

Does ButcherBox offer organ meat, such as beef liver?

No, ButcherBox does not currently offer organ meat, such as beef liver.

Is it hard to delay or cancel ButcherBox?

Users can easily delay a shipment or cancel their subscription. When I tried to cancel my box, ButcherBox gave me free bacon as an incentive to stay subscribed. When I delayed my order by a week, ButcherBox offered me a free 16-ounce pack of sausage to move the billing date back to the original date. My second attempt to cancel earned me $3 bacon for three months. 

ButcherBox Review: Our Final Verdict

ButcherBox costs more than the average meat sold in the U.S., but the price I paid was on par with similar cuts and quality from my local grocery store. For customers seeking responsibly-raised, high-quality meats, ButcherBox offers a convenient (and delicious) service. 

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Vanessa Zeigler
Vanessa Zeigler is a freelance writer and editor focused on personal finance and time management. She has an MBA from Duke University and is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP). She writes about frugal-living techniques, side hustles, product testing, selling on Etsy and eBay, and using money-making apps. Connect with her on LinkedIn, Upwork and Etsy.

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