The best meal delivery services, according to the publishers of Bon Appétithome Chef. Home Chef has a good range of foods, and if you have dietary restrictions, the customization opportunities here are plenty. We have been independently researching and testing products for more than 120 years. If you buy through our links, we may earn a commission.
Learn more about our review process. This affordable meal kit service provides restaurant-quality meals for those on a budget. Everything comes in advance portions and the menu changes with new recipes added weekly. One drawback of EveryPlate is that the products aren't packaged as carefully as other services, meaning you'll have to check your box to find out which ingredient is right for each recipe.
That said, the box itself and the packaging materials are solid. However, everything was cold and cool when I opened it. The experts in our lab liked that Dinnerly keeps costs low by reducing excess packaging and not printing recipe cards (their prescriptions are available online). While some items come loose in the box to minimize packaging materials, one reviewer said: “I loved the packaging and freezer bags they used, as they kept my food cold even on hot days.
This certified organic company offers a wide variety of healthy meal plans and works with farmers to obtain sustainable ingredients. With keto, paleo, and vegan offerings, this kit has something for all types of health-conscious home cooks. Favorite dishes included a couscous salad with Bahārāt spices, peppers stuffed with kale and beans, spicy shrimp and bacon bowls, chicken with garlic and chard, rice and veal tenderloin with carrots in whole butter. On the downside, some evaluators found that the instructions could be a bit complex and required a lot of pans and bowls, but that the images on the recipe cards were very useful.
This plant-based meal delivery service features world-inspired recipes. All meals are completely vegan and the kits come with a weekly recipe book that you can save to recreate your favorite dishes. Our evaluators found the meals to be ingenious and tasty, and appreciated that all the offerings were plant-based and didn't take long to prepare. “I love how purple carrot meals are delicious and nutritious without involving complicated cooking,” said one evaluator.
Meals feel much more sophisticated and complicated when eaten than when cooked. It encouraged me to try new flavors and food combinations that I wouldn't have thought of myself. Popular main courses include spinach, artichokes, grilled cheese with hot pepper mayonnaise and potato chips with oregano, Japanese gnocchi with miso, tomato butter and bok choy, and smoked portobello tacos with jalapeño and cashew sauce and Spanish rice. Epicured was the first low-FODMAP meal delivery service designed for customers with common gastrointestinal disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn's disease, colitis, SIBO and celiac disease.
Their Michelin star chefs collaborate with doctors and dieticians to create delicious meals that adapt to complex dietary restrictions. All meals are fully prepared and require refrigeration upon arrival. Some meal delivery services can be expensive and most also involve shipping costs. But it's worth keeping in mind that they're also usually healthier and less expensive than takeout food.
There's also the benefit of skipping a trip to the grocery store and not having to waste time thinking up ideas for meals and looking for recipes. If you prefer to take out all your pots and pans every night, ready meal delivery services can also offer you a smart solution. While ready-made options come at a high price, ultimately you pay for the convenience, which may be worth it for you. At the Good Housekeeping Institute, we try all different types of food products and services.
From healthy snacks and supplements to food subscription boxes and meal delivery services, our experts are committed to providing you with the best of the best in quality, performance, taste, nutrition and more. In our most recent study on meal delivery services, we recruited more than 280 in-home evaluators across the country, and our in-house experts also tested the services in our laboratories. In total, we evaluated more than 40 different meal delivery services, ranging from traditional kits that come with pre-measured ingredients and a follow-up recipe card to fully prepared options. We tested the services for three months.
In the end, we made our selections based on expert evaluations and feedback from evaluators in the categories of overall satisfaction, food quality, cost, recycling efforts, and availability. Our top choices fit a wide variety of dietary preferences, including gluten-free, low-carb, high-protein foods and more. Although taste is subjective, we ultimately chose companies that scored high overall among reviewers. Purple Carrot, for example, is the best vegan or vegetarian food kit we tried, since none of its weekly recipes contain meat or animal by-products.
Home Chef manufactures meal kits that can be easily customized, so if you have children or people with picky tastes to consider, this service would be a smart choice. There are also cheap meal kits in case the goal is to have dinner on the table without ruining the budget. And if you have special dietary issues or are following an eating plan, there are keto, paleo, and low-calorie meal kits to keep your specific nutritional goals intact. That's the million-dollar question, right? With seemingly endless options, how can you find the best meal kit service for your situation? The flashy, colorful food delivery boxes from companies like Freshly, Home Chef, Sakara Life, Purple Carrot and Gobble are now a staple for busy home cooks (check out the doors of some of your neighbors), but each one has its own set of unique features, along with strengths and weaknesses, that are often based on their target audience.
While the different boxes may offer a meal plan that fits a niche (such as vegan, paleo or gluten-free), many obtain recipes and menus from chefs, culinary teams, nutritionists and grocery experts and select them to take to kitchens and to the hands of home cooks around the world, with weekly menus with delicious ingredients. Blue Apron is widely accepted as the granddaddy of meal kit delivery programs in the U.S. In the US, and the brand still manages to offer great meals with easy-to-follow recipes, all at a fair price. The eight weekly menu options available range from simple pasta dishes to innovative international cuisine, with vegetarian and seafood options available.
Even in the most basic recipes, you might find one or two unknown components in the recipe card, and the website often highlights these ingredients as an educational opportunity. The website is easy to navigate and the recipes are tagged with useful keywords, such as customer favorites, quick and easy, ideal for grilling, etc. Occasional promotions include a menu from celebrity guest chefs or recipes that highlight popular travel destinations. An optional wine pairing service is also available, and Blue Apron is constantly launching special menus to help you prepare a festive variety for major food parties, such as the Super Bowl and Thanksgiving.
Home Chef has more than 38 meal kits to choose from in any given week, more than any other service, including meals prepared for the oven and dinners in a pan. I tried Home Chef myself and loved the amount of customization you can do from week to week, such as changing the proteins in your food choices, from chicken to pork, fish, or doubling the protein if you're feeling especially carnivorous. You can even double the serving size of a full meal if you plan to entertain yourself the following week or simply want more leftovers for lunches and snacks. These flexible features make Home Chef stand out from the rest.
Other modifications to the meal delivery service include ordering proteins without antibiotics instead of the standard version or adding plant-based meats, such as Impossible Beef, instead of regular meat. The meal kits, recipes, and ingredients are pretty standard in their offering (making Home Chef an efficient meal delivery kit for the masses). Examples include meal kit options, such as mini pork pies with chipotle, chimichurri, roasted sweet potato and garlic, peppercorns, salmon, prawns with garlic cream, gemelli and broccoli. A new and unique offering from the meal delivery service is their oven-ready meals, which come with everything you need to prepare the meal, including the cooking tray (no kitchen mess or plates).
See an example of prepared food for the Home Chef oven here. We've rounded up some of the best meal delivery services available right now so you can have food on the table, reduce waste and save time. Meal delivery services, such as Freshly, Fresh N Lean and Mosaic Foods, ship meals that are ready to be heated and eaten, without the need for cooking. If you're spending too much time and money on healthy takeout food or the Whole Foods salad bar, this is the kit for you.
Despite the fast-food approach, every menu at this meal kit delivery service has a sophisticated and mundane atmosphere. Personally, she uses meal delivery services as a way to change her family's normal dinnertime routine and learn about a variety of new foods and unique preparation methods. You can expect lots of comfort food from this meal delivery service, such as meat pies, burgers, and pasta dishes, but everything I prepared was solid. .