A number of meal delivery services work on the same basic model: They send pre-measured ingredients and accompanying recipes to your home, usually on a weekly, biweekly or monthly basis. The meals are prepared in the company’s own kitchens, and many offer options to accommodate special dietary needs, like gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan.
Some meal delivery services also offer grocery delivery. These companies typically partner with brick and mortar stores or own their own line of groceries. They use a variety of common mailers to deliver packages that include non-perishable foods and, in some cases, fresh or frozen foods. They also use dry ice to keep perishables cold and safe during transit.
Grocery delivery services are typically much larger in size than meal delivery options and can be delivered via car or truck. They may be able to offer same-day or next-day delivery in some cities. They also utilize a range of common shipping services and often work with local delivery drivers. Most grocery delivery services will provide a tracking number for your order and can help you reorder items if needed.
In addition to meal delivery and grocery delivery, some services are also offering a full-service option where they cook meals for you. This type of service will take the guesswork out of planning and shopping, and can save you a lot of time and energy. These meals will be prepared and packaged, so they can be stored and reheated as needed. They will be ready to eat in three to seven minutes via microwave or stovetop, depending on the type of food.
Most of the meal delivery options available are single-serving meals. This is good for some people, especially if they are on a diet or need to watch their calories. But it may not be a great fit for families, particularly if one member of the family is following a different eating pattern than another.
When meal delivery first launched, many consumers were concerned they would commit to a certain plan for the long term and be locked into it. Luckily, most meal-delivery services now allow you to pause your membership if you need to. And a few services, like Misfits Market, have even created a “Meal Kit Only” option that lets you choose just the meal kits you want, eliminating the subscription and reducing your costs.
The meal-delivery industry is continuing to grow, and many services are offering more and more options. It’s important to find a plan that meets your budget, lifestyle and tastes. And if you’re worried about food waste, most companies have worked hard to reduce it by minimizing packaging and using reusable containers. Check out our guide to the best meal delivery services to learn more about how these services work, and then decide which option is right for you. You might be surprised at how affordable, convenient and delicious these meals can be! meal delivery