Whether you’re online, listening to a podcast, going for a run, or just shopping at the grocery store, it seems like meal delivery services - Services that deliver a box of fresh, pre-portioned food and recipes right to your doorstep - are popping up EVERYWHERE. 

As a new mom, deep in the hustle of trying to have it all and juggle about a bajillion tasks each day,  I decided to try out a handful and I thought it would be fun to share the experience with our community. 

Ultimately all of these ended up being about the same cost - 4 meals, each for two adults for around $10/ serving. After doing the math, this was totally worth it. Between the time saved in the grocery store, to the eradication of mental labor I spent trying to come up with something that wasn’t chicken and broccoli again - yeah, totally worth it. 

GOBBLE

I tried this one first as it was advertised on a parenting podcast I listen to. All the meals can be prepared in 15 minutes or less, they’re kid-friendly meals, and I was intrigued by it’s No. 1 rating by Parents Magazine. 

You can choose a two-person or four-person plan, depending on the size of your tribe. We went with dinner for two since it’s just us and a 16 month old who mostly tries to feed the dog and then demands blueberries. 

Side note: In addition to dinner, Gobble has also introduced The Lunch Box, which can help you prep lunches for the week. The Lunch Box Plan gives you everything you need to batch cook six grab-and-go lunches each week.

Pros: 

  • Quick prep/ cook time - seriously, 15 mins or less. 

  • Kid-friendly - my kiddo isn’t really a picky eater and she liked most of what we gave her. 

  • Specialty menu options - gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, low-carb. 

  • Plenty of food! We often had an entire meal of leftovers for lunch the next day! 

Cons

  • Lots of packaging - yes, this is the case for all of them but many other companies have managed to use recyclable packing material, reusable containers, and cut down where they can on waste - all while maintaining a competitive price point. 

  • The food can be a little bland since it aims to be kid-friendly - you may have to spice it up a little. 

  • $6.99 delivery charge 

SUN BASKET

A lot of these meal services advertise on podcast and social media so I chose this one based off of another podcast advertisement

The emphasis of Sun Basket is definitely on the ingredients - and it shows. The produce is all organic, the meat is antibiotic-free with no added hormones, and the seafood is wild-caught and sustainable. They also offer a variety of different meal plan options catering to special diets such as paleo, vegan, vegetarian, and pescatarian. No dietary restrictions? You can mix-and-match recipes from all of these different menus!

Weekly deliveries arrive in packaging that's 100 percent recyclable and compostable, which is a major win. Choose between the classic plan—which serves two to four people and offers paleo, gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian, pescatarian, diabetes-friendly, and more speciality meal plan options—or the family plan, which serves four and offers kid-friendly meals as well as a vegetarian option.

Pros: 

  • High-quality, sustainable ingredients 

  • Fully recyclable packaging

  • Lots of different plans to choose from

  • Specialty menu options - gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, low-carb

Cons: 

  • A smidge pricier than the others 

  • Longer prep/cook times 

HELLO FRESH

Hello Fresh has been calling my name for a long time - I feel like I see and hear it everywhere. So I finally gave in and gave it a whirl. 

Hello Fresh is basically a blend of the two services mentioned above. They let you customize your weekly menu. You can choose the categories of meals you’d like: “Fit” (nutritionally dense), “Quick” (30 mins or less), or “Variety” (a fun way to try something new without having to scour the supermarket for a one-off ingredient). You’ll get nutritional information for all your meals. Finally, they’re all packed neatly together so when your box arrives you slap some magnets on the recipe cards, and tuck all your ingredients - neatly packaged in a brown bag and labeled - in the empty space. Voila! 

Pros: 

  • Customizable meal preferences

  • Lots of plans to choose from 

  • Tidy packaging, mostly recyclable 

Cons: 

  • Packaging could use improvement 

  • Not organic, although they’re very clear that their priority is to provide a variety of fresh foods

  • Not great for specific dietary restrictions, but the info about allergens and nutrition information is available

  • Less ideal for picky eaters

PLATED

Plated offers a contemporary twist on family favorites - you’ll notice meals that you’ve definitely heard of, just with a slightly more exotic twist. The meals take a bit longer to cook, but it’s a great option if you’re looking to expand your cooking skills and use some ingredients you’ve maybe never heard of before. 

Pros: 

  • Lots of customization and meal-filtering options available

  • Innovative food choices 

  • Very detailed recipe cards 

  • You can find these meals at a local grocery store

Cons

  • On the pricey side 

  • This service has actually closed down :( 

DINNERLY

Dinnerly must’ve gotten the memo because all of a sudden their advertisements were popping up all around me. They boast greater simplicity, with fewer ingredients and less steps in their recipes than in those found in other meal kits. The delivery service also positions itself as cheap, and at $5 per serving, it certainly looks like the cheapest meal kit on the market. However, minimum orders are in place: customers must order at least two portions per recipe and at least three recipes per week. We met those requirements since we’re looking for about 4 meals per week so we gave it a go. 

Pros: 

  • Simple recipes 

  • Inexpensive 

Cons: 

  • Meals can be bland 

  • Small portions - we typically had one thing in front of us as opposed to the other kits which provided a main food and a side of some sort. 

  • Non-organic - and some food was nearing the end of it’s life so we had to be conscious of that when planning which meals we would have on which nights. With other kits, we could cook whatever meal  sounded good. 

  • Unlike other kits, to save on cost, they do not send recipe cards so all recipes have to be followed through the website, on an app, or printed out. 

  • $8.99 shipping charge 

In addition to the few reasons I mentioned at the top, having meal kits delivered to our home has allowed us to eat from home more, learn new recipes and techniques, and minimize food waste. While we haven’t loved every meal we’ve ever had, we’re always excited to try new things and meal kits have made that easy. 

At the end of the day, you’ll have to decide which of these meal kits suits your lifestyle better, if at all. And if you’d like to give them a try, we’ve found some savings for you! 

Gobble - $40 off your first order!

Sun Basket - $60 off your first order!

Hello Fresh - We have 4 FREE boxes to give away. Interested? Shoot us a message. Otherwise, here’s $40 off your first order! 

Let us know: Have you tried meal kit delivery services? What do you think?