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Meal kits take the hassle out of meal planning and grocery shopping, but the best prepared meal delivery services take convenience even further by fully cooking the meals for you. When you use one of these services, you’ll always be just a few minutes (of reheating) away from a delicious meal, no chopping or sauteing required.
With so many out there, finding the best prepared meal delivery service is all about knowing what’s most important to you. Is it affordability, dietary restrictions, or the variety of meals that matters most? Whatever your preferences, there’s bound to be a meal delivery service for you. Continue reading for the best options.
The Best Prepared Meal Delivery Services of 2021
Why We Chose It: Fresh n’ Lean offers delicious, sustainably sourced, and fully prepared meals that cater to the most popular diets.
Lots of options for special diets
Organically sourced ingredients, sustainable practices
Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack options
Most meals are preselected
Fresh n’ Lean delivers fresh, organically sourced meals that are ready to be enjoyed in three minutes. Each delicious chef-cooked dish is full of macronutrients, balanced calories, and protein. In addition to dinner options, you can add on breakfast, lunch, snacks, and even bulk items.
Fresh n’ Lean accommodates the most popular dietary needs with five meal plans: Protein+, Keto, Paleo, Vegan, and Low Carb Vegan, along with an A La Carte option. Not to mention, these meals are entirely gluten-free. Once you subscribe to a meal plan, you’ll choose the number of meals (breakfast, lunch, dinner) and the number of days (five or seven). Although you can’t choose your exact meals, Fresh n’ Lean will send a variety of delicious and fully prepared dishes that change week to week based on your preselected preferences.
Examples of meals include Cajun shrimp and chicken sausage with brussels sprouts (Protein+); Zucchini chicken alfredo (Keto); Grass-fed steak with root vegetables (Paleo); Chimichurri broccoli with quinoa (Vegan); and Veggie Tinga (Low Carb Vegan). Plus, there are breakfast options like cremini mushrooms and spinach frittata and blueberry cinnamon oatmeal, and bulk items like salmon, chicken breast, and quinoa by the pound.
Meal plans are shipped nationwide via GLS, FedEx, or UPS for Friday delivery, guaranteed by Saturday. You can skip a week, pause, or cancel Fresh n’ Lean anytime before the deadline of noon PST Saturday for the following week’s scheduled delivery. Prices start at $7.93 per meal but are dependent on your meal plan and the number of meals received per week.
Why We Chose It: Home Chef’s Fresh and Easy plan includes delicious meals that require little to no prep at a competitive price.
Easily customizable meals
Serves up to six people
Has a mobile app
Organic costs extra
Cannot accommodate strict dietary restrictions
Home Chef is known for its easily customizable, great-tasting meal kits. Starting at $6.99 per serving, it also ranks as one of the more cost-effective services available.
Of the three plans—Classic, Fresh and Easy, and Well-Balanced—the Fresh and Easy subscription plan offers the most convenience. This plan includes 15 Minute Meal Kits with pre-portioned ingredients that cook in under 15 minutes; Oven-Ready and Grill-Ready Meals that are fully prepped and ready to cook; and Fast and Fresh Meals that arrive cooked and only need reheating. Despite this convenience, flavor is not compromised with dishes like Smoky Tex-Mex Shrimp Penne with Peppers and Corn; Asiago Turkey Meatballs with Tomato Basil Couscous; and Green Curry Chicken with Cauliflower Amandine and Peas. Even if you sign up for the Fresh and Easy plan, you’ll still have access to the rotating list of 19 options across all meal plans.
Home Chef delivers to 98 percent of the United States. Enter your ZIP code during the sign-up process to see if your locale is included. You can select the day of the week (Monday through Friday) that’s most convenient for you, though options will vary according to where you live. Plans can be paused or canceled anytime before the weekly deadline of noon CST on the Friday prior to the scheduled delivery week.
Why We Chose It: In addition to exclusively catering to a strict ketogenic diet, Ketoned Bodies is also dedicated to being environmentally friendly.
100 percent keto
Sustainably sourced ingredients
Options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner
One-time purchases available
Menu doesn’t rotate
Doesn’t accommodate food allergies or other restrictions
As the country’s first and only Regenerative Agricultural Keto Meal Prep Company, Ketoned Bodies is as dedicated to a healthy planet as it is to healthy eating. It partners with farms that work to replenish the soil and those that raise grass-fed beef and pasture-raised pork and poultry. Because the entire company is focused on a strict keto diet, you don’t have to worry about accidentally choosing a meal that’s not compliant. Plus, the food arrives frozen, giving you the flexibility to enjoy it when you want.
When signing up for Ketoned Bodies, you choose the number of meals you’d like to purchase (10, 15, or 21) and whether you’d like to receive them weekly or just as a one-time purchase. Next, you’ll choose your meals, which are categorized as Breakfast, Beef Entrees, Chicken Entrees, Pork Entrees, and Carnivore. While the menu doesn’t rotate weekly, you’ll be choosing from nearly 30 items such as Keto Pulled Pork Breakfast Hash, Mongolian Beef and Broccoli, Chicken Tikka Masala, and Jerk Pork Meatballs with Mashed Cauliflower and Asparagus.
Ketoned Bodies currently delivers to 95 percent of the continental U.S. and all orders ship Wednesday for next-day delivery. Enter your ZIP code on the website to see if you're in the delivery area. If you’ve signed up for weekly deliveries, you can skip, pause, or cancel any time before the deadline of Sunday at 6 p.m. ET for the following week. Pricing begins at $13.95 per meal.
Why We Chose It: With over 50 fully prepared, entirely plant-based and organic meals, Veestro makes it easy to be vegan.
100 percent vegan
Organic, non-GMO ingredients
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
Menu doesn’t rotate
Veestro is a plant-based prepared meal delivery service that uses preservative-free, organic ingredients. Its chef-designed meals are delivered frozen and ready to heat, eat, and enjoy. Whether your goal is to manage your weight or to simply stick to a vegan diet without the hassle of planning and cooking, Veestro makes it easy.
There are two plans to choose from at Veestro. The A La Carte plan allows you to choose 10, 20, or 30 meals to receive either as a subscription or a one-time purchase, while the Weight Loss plan has you choose three meals per day for either five or seven days each week. The menu doesn’t change weekly but there are tons of meals to choose from for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, including over 50 for the A La Carte plan and 40 for the Weight Loss Plan. Both plans allow you to filter by the following dietary preferences: Gluten-Free, High Protein, Low Calorie, Soy Free, Nut Free, and Kosher. While some dishes are vegetable-focused, others utilize meat substitutes to create plant-based versions of classic dishes. Some examples are mushroom stroganoff, country fried chick’n, and pepp’roni pizza.
Veestro pricing begins at $9.90 per meal. It delivers across the continental U.S. and the day you receive your shipment depends on your delivery zone. You can pause or cancel your subscription anytime before your payment processes, which depends on your billing cycle.
Why We Chose It: Factor offers fully prepared meals that are chef-crafted and designed by dieticians, plus access to nutrition coaching.
20+ dietician-created options per week
Free of gluten, hormones, and more
Several a la carte options
Has a mobile app
Not many options for vegetarian, vegan, or paleo
Not suitable for severe food allergies
Factor uses fresh ingredients for its fully prepared refrigerated meals that are all free of gluten, hormones, antibiotics, refined sugars, and GMOs. The recipes are both chef-crafted and designed by dieticians. In addition to meal subscriptions, Factor offers nutrition coaching packages as well.
When signing up, you have the option to choose the number of meals you’d like per week: four, six, eight, 12, or 18. Then, you choose your meals from a list of more than 20 options. Though there are no separate meal plans, you can filter the options by Keto, Paleo, Low Calorie, Vegan, Vegetarian, Dairy-Free, and other keywords. Braised Pork Ragu with Parmesan Risotto, Salmon with Roasted Mango Salsa, and Southwest Turkey Chili are just a few of the options you can expect. Plus, there are breakfast options like blueberry pancakes with sausage, desserts like pistachio and raspberry cheesecake, as well as shakes, broth, and other a la carte items. All Factor meals can be heated in the microwave or oven in minutes, according to the meal-specific instructions on the package.
Pricing starts at $11.50 per meal and you can skip a week, pause, or cancel your subscription any time before the weekly cutoff time of 11:59 p.m. CT on Wednesday for the following week. Factor delivers on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday, depending on your ZIP code, to all 48 contiguous United States.
Why We Chose It: Paleo on the Go is 100 percent paleo and AIP friendly, uses sustainably sourced ingredients, and offers a la carte shopping and bulk options, in addition to subscriptions.
100 percent Paleo
Accommodates specialty dietary needs
Sustainably sourced ingredients
A la carte, bulk, and subscriptions
Menu doesn’t rotate weekly
Paleo on the Go is a Paleo and Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) friendly meal delivery service that delivers chef-prepared frozen meals directly to your door. The company is abundantly transparent about its food sourcing and guarantees that the meat it uses was humanely raised in a way that’s great for the animals, the planet, and your body. It also details how it buys produce and even other ingredients like “extra virgin” Vietnamese fish sauce.
Instead of subscribing to a meal plan, Paleo on the Go allows you to buy items individually, in bulk, or by subscribing to specific items to receive on a regular basis (weekly or every two, three, four, six, or eight weeks). While there’s no obligation to subscribe, doing so gets you a discount on the item’s standard price.
Paleo on the Go has a menu of more than 50 items, with full meals starting at about $15. Even though the options don’t rotate weekly, they provide plenty of variety for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even dessert. You can expect meals like Beef Short Ribs and Mushroom Gravy with Cauliflower "Polenta," Chicken "Pozole" Verde, and Tuscan Pork and Kale Soup.
Paleo on the Go ships to all 50 states, Monday through Friday, via FedEx. Your delivery day will depend on your shipping selection and where you’re located. If you subscribe to specific items, you can manage your selections at any time.
Why We Chose It: With plans starting at just four single-serving meals per week, plus 30+ health-focused options to choose from, Freshly is great for a single person.
100% certified gluten- and peanut-free
No refined sugars
Lots of new options weekly
Has a mobile app
Doesn’t accommodate special diets like vegan, paleo, keto
No emphasis on organic or sustainable sourcing
No breakfast or snack options
Each Freshly meal is perfectly sized for one person, fully prepared, delivered fresh, and ready to eat in three minutes. The company's emphasis on lean proteins, seasonal veggies, and whole-grain starches means you can have convenience without sacrificing nutrition. Plus, they’re gluten-free, peanut-free, and made without any artificial ingredients, refined sugars, or preservatives.
When signing up, you choose to receive either four, six, 10, or 12 meals each week. While there are no subscriptions based on special diets, you can sort the more than 30 new meals weekly according to the following categories: chef-crafted classics, signature collection, better-for-you take-out twists, and FreshlyFit. The FreshlyFit meals are designed with a focus on specific macronutrients and include meals that are higher in protein and lower in carbs.
You can look forward to hearty, flavorful dishes like Sausage Baked Penne with Sauteed Zucchini and Spinach, Protein-Packed Chicken Parm with Mozzarella and Garlicky Broccoli, and Peppercorn Steak with Sauteed Carrots and French Green Beans.
Pricing starts at $8.49 per meal, depending on the number of meals delivered each week. Freshly delivers to most cities throughout the continental U.S. (check on the website using your ZIP code to confirm availability). Your location will determine what days of the week are available for deliveries as well as the weekly deadline to skip, pause, or cancel your subscription.
Why We Chose It: Trifecta specializes in macro-balanced, organic meals that are designed to support your weight loss and muscle-building goals.
Options for keto, paleo, vegan, and vegetarian
Organic and sustainably sourced ingredients
Breakfast, lunch, dinner available
Most meals are pre-selected
With its nutrition-trained chefs, Trifecta caters to many dietary preferences with delicious, fully prepared, macro-balanced meals that optimize performance. The company uses the highest quality organic ingredients and sources its food from environmentally sustainable farms and fisheries.
Trifecta offers several meal plans to fit your lifestyle: Clean, Paleo, Keto, Vegan, and Vegetarian. Once you select one, you then choose the number of meals per day—breakfast, lunch, dinner, and/or a third entree—and the number of days per week (five or seven). These meal plans are all chef’s choice, which means that rather than choosing each meal yourself, a variety will be selected for you based on your preferences. In addition to these meal plans, Trifecta also offers Classic Meals that you can choose individually and Meal Prep items that you can buy to assemble your own dishes. Example menu items include Asparagus Bell Pepper Frittata, Olive Lentil Primavera with Steak, and Enoki Mushroom Quinoa with Salmon.
Pricing starts at $13.79 per meal, depending on the number of meals per day and the days per week. Trifecta delivers to all 50 states and typically delivers on Fridays or Saturdays. The deadline to place an order, make changes, or skip a week is the Friday during the week before your next expected delivery.
Why We Chose It: BistroMD provides healthy and delicious meals suited for weight loss and its Diabetic Program is specifically designed to help promote stable blood sugar.
Specific diabetic program designed by a doctor
100+ rotating diabetic meals
Dietician consultation included
Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks
Cannot accommodate some restrictive diets
BistroMD is a doctor-designed meal delivery service that sends fully prepared, nutritionally balanced, and frozen meals meant to support healthy weight loss. Of the five programs, the Diabetic Program is specifically designed to maintain healthy blood glucose levels. Each chef-prepared entree in this plan has 25 grams or less of net carbs and contains an adequate amount of lean protein for your body to regulate blood sugar.
Once you’ve selected the Diabetic Program, you’ll then choose your specific plan: either the full program (including breakfast, lunch, and dinner) for five or seven days or the lunch and dinner program for five or seven days. While the menu of entrees doesn’t rotate weekly, there are more than 100 options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner to choose from. Some examples include Artichoke, Spinach and Roasted Red Pepper Frittata; Blackened Chicken with Creamy Smoked Paprika Sauce; Spinach and Feta Stuffed Salmon; and snacks like Parmesan Italiano Chips.
Pricing starts at $7.12 per meal and BistroMD delivers to every state in the continental U.S. Timing of delivery depends on when you place your order but can take up to six business days from the time FedEx picks up your package. The weekly deadline for changing or skipping your order (or canceling your subscription) is 5 p.m. ET Wednesday the week before your next delivery.
With the hard work of planning, shopping, and cooking taken care of, all you have to do is decide what kind of meal you’d like to heat up. If affordability is key, HomeChef is the way to go. If you're vegan, Veestro caters specifically to you. If you’re single, Freshly could be a great choice. And we recommend Fresh n’ Lean as our top pick because it offers the widest range of options for special diets and uses organic, responsibly sourced ingredients at a great price.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Do Prepared Meal Delivery Services Work?
A prepared meal delivery service delivers premade meals to your door based on your preferences. While these services are typically subscriptions that deliver on a regular basis (for example, weekly), some companies offer the ability for one-time purchases as well.
Are Prepared Meal Delivery Services Cheaper Than Buying Groceries?
Meal delivery services may not be as cost-effective as grocery shopping yourself. That said, if you’re not interested in cooking, they’re typically less expensive—and usually healthier—than ordering take-out. Not to mention, prepared meal delivery services save you travel-related expenses and, arguably, your most precious resource: time.
Who Should Use a Prepared Meal Delivery Service?
Prepared meal delivery services are a great option for anyone looking for help to put food on the table at least a few times a week. They allow you to maintain an active role in what's going into your meals without the hands-on responsibility and time commitment of pulling it all together.
Are Prepared Meal Delivery Services Healthy?
Because “health” may mean a different thing from one person to the next, determining whether a prepared meal delivery service is healthy depends on your particular needs. That said, prepared meal delivery services cater to many preferences, including low carb, low calorie, high protein, dairy-free, vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, diabetic-friendly, keto, Paleo, and other special diets.
To choose the best prepared meal delivery services, we identified those that have been around long enough to establish a solid reputation. It was also important to include services that are available across the nation as well as those that are transparent about their meals, subscription details, and customer service accessibility.