Best Food Delivery App: DoorDash, Uber Eats, Postmates, Or Grubhub?

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The best food is a meal you didn’t have to cook… or is it?

Recently, we had a reader ask about which food delivery app is best, whether you’re ordering your favorite dinner in the comfort of your home or ordering a quick lunch in the office. Since I’ve had a bad experience with food delivery in the past, I felt the best way to answer our reader’s question was to try them all fresh for myself!

To give these services the real test, my plan was to order the same meal, from the same place… and all at the same time of day.

various sandwiches and soup with panera bags sitting on kitchen counter

What is a food delivery service?

These are convenient apps that allow you to search nearby, local restaurants and fast food that will deliver whatever meal you order right to your door! In most cases, you can search the food you want by name, menu item, or specific cuisine if you’re new to the area.


Here are the top 4 restaurant food delivery app services I tried:

1. GrubHub

panera sandwich sitting on

iOS | Android | Website

Average delivery times: 30-50 mins.

  • GrubHub is a FREE app with the ability to order food from smaller local and big chain restaurants. They offer FREE delivery with a $15 or more purchase and the option to tip your driver when placing your order. Some restaurants may require a minimum order amount for delivery.

How to Save:

Is this your first time ordering with GrubHub? Lucky you, because for a limited time you can score these sweet deals (limit one per customer):

GrubHub was the first delivery service I tried. I ordered my favorite soup and sandwich to kick start this journey and after ordering realized I could have added an additional $3.02 worth of food to get myself free delivery… not so Hip2Save of me! 🤦‍♀️

My GrubHub ordering experience:

The app was very user-friendly and easy to use. I also couldn’t believe how quickly it was delivered! From the time I ordered to the time the GrubHub delivery girl knocked on my front door, it was exactly 35 minutes—talk about getting what you pay for! It would have definitely taken me longer to get ready, drive to Panera, order, and bring it back to my house to eat.

As far as the food goes, my sandwich came slightly cold and my soup could have been hotter, but it was still enjoyable. Everything was prepared just as you would expect if you were eating right at Panera.

screenshots from phone of grub hub panera order app

Here are my GrubHub ratings:

    • Packaging: ⭐⭐⭐⭐…wasn’t delivered in an insulated tote.
    • Food Freshness: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Hotness: ⭐⭐⭐soup & sandwich could have been hotter.
    • Order process: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Selection: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 
    • App experience: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Delivery Time: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Price: ⭐⭐⭐delivery fees + tip made the order REALLY expensive!

My overall GrubHub rating: 4.3 out of 5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

hand holding black phone with perks and coupons on screen

A few additional considerations about GrubHub:

Pros:

    • They offer great perks: After my first order, I was shocked to see how many perks I already have! I can score free delivery at multiple places and even get a free you pick two at Panera if I spend $15. I feel like my first order is already paying for itself!

Cons:

    • My app didn’t have live updates: My food came pretty quick so I don’t think there was much time to update my order. Regardless, if you weren’t home in time or stepped out of the office, you wouldn’t know exactly when they’re coming which could result in you missing out on your meal.
    • It’s expensive: I spent just over $19 for a sandwich and soup—that’s way too much! 😱 However, if you can order with a coworker or friend, you’ll be sure to meet your minimum without over-spending on the food you don’t really want and it will save you money on a delivery fee.

2. DoorDash

woman wearing orange shirt holding a panera bag and carry tote

iOS | Android | Website

Average delivery times: 25-35 mins. 

  • DoorDash is a FREE app with the ability to order food from smaller local and big chain restaurants. Delivery and service fees will vary depending on the restaurant, however, I found most of the delivery fees near me to be free. Additionally, you have the option to tip your driver when placing an order. 

How to Save:

Right now with DoorDash, you can score FREE delivery on your first order – no promo code needed!

Up next was DoorDash! Since I was planning to order the same meal for all the meal delivery places I was trying, I had my Panera Chipotle Chicken Avocado Melt on the mind. However, while browsing through the selections, it wasn’t even an option! In fact, not only was my specific sandwich missing from the menu, but I couldn’t even order my favorite soup or any salad if I wanted one, because they weren’t even listed! 🤷‍♀️

My DoorDash ordering experience:

I was disappointed I couldn’t order the meal I wanted since not all of the options were listed on the app. This would be a huge let down for anyone craving a specific meal from their favorite place, only to find it’s unorderable through the app!

However, the food I did order was good. It came in 41 minutes from the time I ordered until delivery which was 11 minutes past the quotes times. But I loved that the delivery woman had an insulated tote to keep all my food piping hot. My sandwich was delicious and my soup was hot. And I paid the least overall since delivery was FREE. WIN!

screenshots from phone with doordash receipt

Here are my DoorDash ratings:

    • Packaging: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Freshness: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Hotness: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Order process: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Selection: ⭐⭐⭐was missing quite a few items on the app.
    • App experience: ⭐⭐⭐lowered my rating because of missing food items.
    • Delivery Time: ⭐⭐⭐⭐took slightly longer for delivery than originally quoted.
    • Price: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

My overall DoorDash rating: 4.4 out of 5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

hands holding phone with doordash app on screen

A few additional considerations about DoorDash:

Pros: 

    • Consider a DashPass: In some areas, DoorDash offers a subscription program called DashPass that offers a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees when ordering $12 or more from any DashPass-eligible restaurant. The subscription is $9.99/month and you can cancel anytime with no strings attached. Typically subscribers save between $4-$5 per order.

Cons:

    • Some items may not be on the menu: This was a huge letdown, especially since I wanted a specific meal. However, their app allows you to easily report a problem if you see one as I did. And the great news is that after checking back with my DoorDash app the following week, it looks like my Panera menu was updated with all the sandwiches and salads that were missing! How awesome is that?!

3. Uber Eats

panera food sandwich soup and chips sitting on counter

iOS | Android | Uber Eats

Average delivery times: 15-40 mins. 

  • Uber Eats is a FREE app with the ability to order food from hundreds of different restaurants. Delivery and service fees will vary depending on the restaurant and, for my location, ranged between $1.99 and up to more than $5+. You can also adjust your driver tip amount up to 1 hour AFTER delivery.

How to Save:

Right now, to help support the community and local stores, Uber Eats is offering free delivery from local restaurants. No promo needed – just look at the purple tag on the top right that says “$0 Free Delivery”.

Uber Eats also had a user-friendly app, however, my food took the longest from time of order until delivery, ringing in at 1 hour and 5 minutes total. Plus, my hot sandwich came cold and my soup was cold to boot! But hey, at least I could order what I wanted, unlike DoorDash. 😅

My Uber Eats experience:

Considering this order ended up being the most expensive after the tip and delivery fees, I was pretty disappointed that the food came cold. Not only that, but It came 20 minutes later than the maximum quoted time. Pretty disappointing when you’re hungry at work! I would probably use another app before trying this one again.

screenshots of uber eats app with panera order on screen

Here are my Uber Eats ratings:

    • Packaging: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Freshness: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Hotness: ⭐⭐…sandwich and soup were both cold.
    • Order process: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Selection: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • App experience: ⭐⭐⭐⭐…estimated delivery time kept fluctuating.
    • Delivery Time: ⭐⭐⭐…delivery took the longest overall.
    • Price: ⭐⭐⭐…ended up being the most expensive order.

My overall Uber Eats rating: 4 out of 5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

phone with uber eats promo on screen

A few additional considerations about Uber Eats:

Pros:

    • Join their FREE rewards program: There are plenty of ways to earn rewards in the Uber Rewards program! Get 1 point for every $1 you spend on Uber Eats and Uber Pool, double points on Uber X, and triple points on Uber Black. All points add up to $5 Uber Cash and new benefits!
    • Consider an Uber Eats Pass: For just $9.99 a month, you can have an Eats Pass. You’ll score free delivery PLUS 5% off orders over $15 from any restaurant during any time of day. You can also cancel at any time. This would be great for members looking to order more than 2 times per month.

Cons:

    • It’s costly: Out of all the places I ordered from, this place cost me the most money and time overall. Consider how much time you have if your order takes longer than expected and also how much you’re willing to pay.

4. Postmates

hand holding brown chipotle bag

iOS | Android | Website

Average delivery times: 35-55 mins. 

  • Postmates is a FREE app with the ability to order groceries, food from many different restaurants, and even alcohol. Delivery and service fees will vary depending on the restaurant and, for my location, ranged between $1.99 to $3.99. Additionally, you have the option to tip your driver when placing an order. 

How to Save:

Score free delivery on your first order with Postmates. No minimum required and no promo code needed!

Postmates is newer to the scene and I hadn’t really heard much about them so I was excited to give it a go! However, I’m sure you already took notice of my “not-so-Panera to-go bag”—that’s because Panera isn’t even offered on my Postmates! Bummer!  

Also, the first time I tried to place an order at another local sandwich shop, it took 20 minutes only to be notified that my order had been canceled due to no Postmates being available in my area. Fast forward a few days and I gave it a go again and this time tried Chipotle! Success! Sort of…

hand holding big burrito

My Postmates experience:

The Postmates app was easy to use, however, it was a huge disappointment to get excited about my meal for 20 minutes only for it to be canceled the first time I placed an order.

When I ordered a few days later, my quoted delivery time kept changing on the app which was frustrating. Once my order was on the way, I did receive a confidential courtesy text with frequent updates. In regards to my food, I was pretty disappointed because my steak burrito came cold. I think this could have been avoided if the driver used an insulated bag.

screenshots of postmates app with chipotle order on screen

Here are my Postmates ratings:

    • Packaging: ⭐⭐⭐⭐…wasn’t delivered in an insulated tote.
    • Food Freshness: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • Food Hotness: ⭐⭐…my burrito was completely cold.
    • Order process: ⭐⭐…first order was canceled.
    • Food Selection: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
    • App experience: ⭐⭐…first order was canceled & estimated delivery time kept fluctuating.
    • Delivery Time: ⭐⭐⭐…delivery took 1 hour which was one of the longest.
    • Price: ⭐⭐⭐…delivery was on the steeper side at $3.99.

My overall Postmates rating:  3.3 out of 5 ⭐⭐⭐

hand holding phone with screenshot of postmates text message

Here are a few additional considerations about Postmates:

Pros:

    • Try Postmates Unlimited: You can get unlimited free delivery on all orders over $15 with Postmates Unlimited. Plus, there are no added fees for small carts or peak pricing. You’ll also get access to promotions, discounts, and exclusive events.

Cons:

    • They might cancel your order: Come to find out, Postmates has a pretty large delivery territory, however, if your experience is anything like my first one, there’s a possibility no one will be available. This could really throw you off if you’re needing a meal at a specific time and it takes 20 minutes to notify you that your order is canceled (as it did for me).
    • Restaurant selection could be minimal: Since Postmates is somewhat new in various areas, they might not have all of the restaurants you’re looking for. I was pretty disappointed they didn’t have Panera, but they did have a larger selection for my area than I was expecting.

How do I feel about these services overall?

woman smiling holding panera bag

I think if you tend to order out a lot, one of these services is more than worth it—free perks and reasonable subscriptions to always get free delivery can be a huge win. Plus, you can save on fees when ordering with coworkers or friends and not have to waste gas driving anywhere.

On the flip side, if you only occasionally eat out, then this could end up being a pretty costly service to use. Each one of my lunches (after tip, service fees, and delivery) rang in at just under $20. And for one person, that’s quite a large splurge for a single lunch!

🏆My pick for the overall winner: DoorDash ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Overall, I ended up liking DoorDash the best. It was the cheapest meal I purchased and I loved that delivery was free without needed to sign up for a subscription. Yes, it definitely was a let down that my desired meal wasn’t on the app when I originally ordered, but it was quickly updated afterward. I also found that the other restaurants had their entire menus listed so I think it was simply an error.

And although my food came just a few minutes past the quoted time, it was a pleasant experience since it was delivered hot and delicious. And to top it off, I was recently visiting family and DoorDash was the only available app in their location—kudos to you, DoorDash!


We tried 8 different meal delivery boxes and shared our favorite!


Sara is a self-taught blogger and photographer with 5 years of experience having work featured in various building, travel, and fashion publications, most notably Bassett Furniture and Fossil.


Join The Discussion

Comments 21

  1. Amy

    I use Doordash at work to deliver Dunkin Donuts or Cinnabon as a little surprise some mornings. Delivery has always been free and quick. Very highly recommend! I generally do the lowest amount of tip possible (I believe it’s $3) and then hand them an additional cash tip at delivery so I know they’re actually receiving something. Always makes me nervous they might not be getting most of the tip through the app!

    • desiree hall

      We do not get the tip I’m the app most times. Dd is only required to pay us $2 and the rest of the guaranteed minimum delivery fee is made up of your tip! So if you dont tip in app and only tip in person then DD has to pay its drivers more instead of covering their cost with your tip

    • Donia

      My son in college works for door dash so I do recommend giving tip in person in cash if possible. He says the same that he is not getting tips in full most times people mean to give him.

  2. Christina

    I agree on Door Dash, it’s definitely the cheapest but we’re usually disappointed with the selections they offer..

  3. Janell1986

    Waitr is the absolute BEST if you have them in your town …

  4. Lana

    We were grossed out to see a Door Dash driver take the insulated bag into the restroom one night at a restaurant. Then she came out and food went in the bag and out the door she went. That really pretty much turned us off any delivery service.

    • Donia

      Report that to door dash as they do not know what drivers are doing. Drivers are independent contractors and therefore each one is their own boss and choose what the do and accept in deliveries. My college son uses door dash for holiday money for college right now and he loves it but says he does not get in full what tips people put on app itself.
      He gets what is given in cash at delivery though. I tip based on service most times so I like cash when order received myself. I know he takes great pride in this job. It is his first and he is very efficient.

  5. Mary

    I LOVE Doordash. I have the monthly subscription and it saves me a ton since I use it a lot for lunch deliveries and home/dinner deliveries throughout the month. Please use my link https://drd.sh/0TIGb1/ if you are signing up for the first time and you will receive $5 off your first 3 Doordash orders over $10. New customers only. Thank you!

  6. Kris

    I signed up and did one earlier today because I am home sick. I got my first month of door dash deliveries for free. Great experience

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Oh good! Thanks for sharing your experience with us, Kris. Hoping you feel better soon!

  7. Robyn

    I had a bad experience with door dash actually had my delivery driver steal 70 dollars worth of food

  8. adm96005

    Good delivery services are def convenient for the consumer. As a small business owner, I’d say that if your restaurant already offers their own delivery service, id urge you to order directly from the restaurant. The orders are received quicker and less room for error. In addition, these meal deliver services take 30% of the check from the business.

    • adm96005

      *food not good

    • Alla

      Agree 💯. We have all dd, ubereats and grubhub at our restaurant and there are times when customers would not receive their food and call us where’s my food. We later found out the drivers never delivered it and it happens mostly with new drivers or those who no longer want to deliver food for that company. Also they take forever to deliver and the food is not that hot. I always see them sit in their cars in the parking lot for a while when they pick the food up from us. I assume they are checking their apps for address but that doesn’t take10 mins and more. It’s always best to call the restaurant and pick it up if possible.

  9. Michelle

    I ordered from Postmates the first time the other day. After I checked out I realized not only did they charge $30 in taxes and “fees” (only about $10 was actually tax), but that was in addition to the $5.99 delivery fee and every menu item was $1-3 more expensive than other delivery services. Our meal ended up being almost $40 more than if we’d ordered through another service. We also had a missing menu item and missing sauces. They only gave me a credit to use in the next 30 days instead of refunding my credit card. I will stick to door dash from now on.

  10. Tiff

    DoorDash is superior. My order has never been wrong. It has been on time 99% of the time. Grubhub has terrible customer service. I have not received food and they have charged me double. Postmates can be a joke. They hardly cover anywhere. Their pricing is as high as Grubhub. I have had money on hold the them for days. They refused to refund my order after they took an order for a restaurant that was really closed.

  11. halambe

    Have had issues with the three we’ve used (GrubHub, Door Dash & Uber Eats). Some restaurants don’t “accept” your order until a drivers nearby, which the driver won’t know until the restaurant accepts the order. Annoying. We’ve contacted a rep who tells us to contact the restaurant. There have been several times we ordered and there was no drivers so after an hour we have to try to get ahold of the customer reps and get refunded. The menus are never up to date and I’ve submitted the form to let them know and it’s still never updated. It’s been a pain in the butt and super expensive yet we still continue to use every now and then for the sheer convenience. Haha Drivers have always been extremely courteous, only issues we’ve had is the app and company itself. Good to know from people’s comments about the tipping. I’ll try to remember the cash over tipping on app.

  12. Elissa

    This is great! I was actually JUST wondering which service is best because I hate to cook and o would utilize this a lot!! Thank you so much for the research!!

    • Collin (Mrs. Hip)

      You’re so welcome, Elissa! Glad this has been helpful!

  13. Elissa

    Question: if you purchase a gift card for a delivery service, does it only go towards the fees? Or can you use it to purchase the food as well?

  14. Angel

    Get $20 off your order
    eats-bryanm18661ui

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