Have you ever felt the infamous “what’s for dinner” question shooting chills down your spine after a hard day’s work? If your answer is YES, then you’ll be overjoyed with our little corner of the Internet, dedicated to meal kit delivery services. So, what’s the main difference between meal delivery services and meal kit delivery services? People call both “a dinner in the box,” which is definitely a proper tagline for what they’re trying to do.
The essential disparity comes from the very number of cooking “moves” you’re able to dodge and still get a perfect, mouthwatering dinner. Meal deliveries get both shopping AND cooking off your back while meal kit delivery services “grind to a halt” after providing high-quality ingredients for you. This means you get to do a little cook-off with yourself, which is not without its benefits, believe it or not. We’ve done our homework in concocting a list of 5 “bulletproof” meal kit deliveries. Give them a shot the next time you’d like to add a bit of flair to your cuisine and save a bit of time along the way.
You’re probably wondering why you should settle with just ordering the material when somebody else can do all the cooking for you. Well, there’s a wide range of situations where you may prefer to roll up your sleeves and prepare your own meals. Imagine a remote beach town or cabin getaway, discrete candlelight and you making a delicious dinner for two. It can also be a very thoughtful gift to someone who, for one reason or the other, can’t leave their house quite often but still enjoys cooking. It’s a great help when you’re trying to master a new recipe but just can’t find all the ingredients you need.
Meal kit delivery services get shopping, chopping, dicing, slicing, and similar crafts out of the equation, allowing you to enjoy your culinary adventures, minus the mundane factors. Basically, it’s an even split of the workload; you get to envision the meal of your dreams and prepare it, meal kit delivery takes care of the ingredients and the know-how.
Sun Basket Review & Rating
Sun Basket’s main platform is one of absolute sustainability, which means they source non-GMO, organic, and seasonal ingredients. It’s all grown in highly regulated ranches, coast farms, and purveyors of seafood. All of their meats are free of hormones and antibiotics and the animals are grass-fed.
They also offer a great deal of professional recipes and nutritional charts and plans. You can just choose the meal plan most suited for your needs and cook away. One of their most prized assets is Justine Kelly, an award-winning professional chef.
An abundance of meal plans also includes recipes for gluten-free, paleo, and vegetarian servings. It takes about half an hour for complete meal preparation, so you’d be saving quite some time considering the “tools” are arriving at your doorstep. All of the ingredients are pre-measured for the recipes you’ve chosen, so all that’s left for you to do is put it all together. Insulated packaging prevents your food from going bad during the delivery. The boxes are compostable and 100% recyclable. Also, we need to mention that everything Sun Basket dishes out is hand-picked.
Blue Apron Review
The first “eye-catching” thing on the site is an impressive list of facts they’re proud of when it comes to the clean and healthy nature of their ingredients. Over 15k meals shipped every single month really puts their business approach into perspective. Seasonal produce is farm-fresh since farmers work alongside Blue Apron chefs. As they would say, skipping the middle man really allows for fresher products to reach more (hungry) customers. Their meat doesn’t feature ANY added hormones and all of the seafood is sustainably sourced.
The one thing we especially like about Blue Apron is their Freshness Guarantee. If any of the sent ingredients is not in proper cooking condition or missing, all you have to do is contact their user support and they’ll make everything right. A well-known rule is that a confident seller offers a good guarantee. This is how we see them believing in their products and everything the company represents.
There are the 2-person and Family meal plans, but you can also order ingredients for recipes outside of those. Their app is available for iPhone users only, but they’ve promised to branch out to Android soon enough, though.
Home Chef Review
Similar to the previous two options, Home Chef meal kit delivery service provides high-quality material for your gastronomical acrobatics. They also deliver easy-to-follow recipes with step-by-step explanations and images, so you can’t go wrong, even if you’re just starting out in the kitchen. They sport 10 different meals every week, so there will never be a lack of choices. Vegetarian options are also there, but only SOME of those are OCASSIONALLY vegan. What we’re trying to say is that they cannot guarantee a fully vegan diet throughout the whole week, every week.
One of the things we really like, and would implore other meal kit delivery services to start practicing, is their Referral Program. Namely, if someone buys food from Home Chef after being referred by you, as a subscriber, he/she will get 30$ off the first order and you will end up with 30$ of store credit. The only limitation is that you can’t refer a member of your own household.
Meal kit weekly options also feature a list of separate add-ons you can order or cancel by checking/unchecking the corresponding slider. The most popular add-ons are fruit baskets, breakfasts, premium meals, and smoothies. You’ll get your own delivery calendar, which allows you to manage meals on a weekly basis. This is especially useful if you’re not home for a week, let’s say; you don’t have to cancel your entire subscription, just uncheck that particular week in your delivery calendar.
This is a meal kit delivery service echoing that famous rustic and rural feel with their recipes and ingredients. Instead of just rotating a couple of recipe schemes week after week, they offer fresh ideas and new challenges every single month.
They boast only the freshest of ingredients and showcase some of the suppliers they work with. As far as recipes are concerned, this meal kit delivery service works closely with a team of chefs in order to dish out the best of the best. Lately, they’ve been working on keeping the meals fresh throughout the week by predominantly using ingredients with longer shelf life. This, of course, doesn’t fly with fish, for example, so they advise preparing those kinds of ingredients at the very start of the week.
Also, recipes come with different skill ratings. So, you can start with level 1 if you want to keep it light or opt for level 3 if you’re up for a challenge. Most people, however, find level 2 to be just down their alley. Meal plans are changeable, but only within the pool of offered recipes for that week. A vegetarian plan is also available (3 recipes per week), but not vegan. They do not offer programs for singles, though. Subscription at entry level covers the dietary needs of two people.
Their official slogan tells us that “Plated nights will be our best nights.” Plated is a meal kit delivery specializing in dinners, so it’s only logical night/evening is a strong motif throughout their website and business policy in general. The standard offer for our top picks in this category includes poultry and pork raised responsibly without any antibiotics and hormones, so Plated is not an exception to this rule of thumb. Seafood comes from trusted fisheries that support sustainable fishing. All of the produce is seasonal and as fresh as possible, beyond what can be found in almost any chain of grocery stores.
A bit of a slip-up emerged in the fact that they introduce organic ingredients sporadically, “whenever possible,” according to their statement. It’s worthy to note that Plated also doesn’t include “staples” in their deliveries. Staples are ingredients they presume you already have, which may pose a problem from time to time. This list includes: eggs, pepper, vegetable/olive oil, and salt. It’s not a huge list, but still requires some shopping on your part.
Plated offers refunds for any product under their “quality and freshness guarantee.” Another misstep on their part, in our opinion, is the absence of calorie counters and diet plans. Sure, the meals are healthy and well-balanced between 600 and 800 ccl, but a dedicated app of some sort would still be a step in the right direction.
Meal kit delivery services appeared in an effort to meet the needs of people who cook their own meals on some occasions. Whether it’s just out of pure love of cooking or trying to impress your dinner date, having the meal premade is, surprisingly, not always the optimal solution.
Basically, meal kit delivery covers the time until the ingredients are at your doorstep. You’re on your own from that moment on. Luckily, all of them offer a lot of pretty comprehensive recipes. Most respectable services try to keep it fresh when it comes to recipes, so they’re switching them every single week. They’re usually well-written and contain pictures to guide you through the process as best as possible. Some of the brands also have different levels of recipes, so a challenge can be met if one is wanted.
Organic and vegan diet plans were kind of a shaky ground for some of the delivery services. Most of them have some semblance of recipes that can fall under the vegan category, but fall flat when they’re required to cover a whole week of food. Organic quality is also something a lot of them try to follow, but the prices or unavailability still throw wrenches in those plans. Luckily, there are some meal kit delivery services that opted to go full vegan or full organic.
Pretty much all of them offer countless possibilities regarding the variety of meal packages, different programs, size of the orders, and many other aspects. All of them have recurring possibilities, which means you can get fresh ingredients at your doorstep every single week. Many of them allow full customization while some still don’t have that option.
From what we saw, quality and freshness guarantee is omnipresent, so you don’t have to fear of wasting your money on subpar produce. If some of the ingredients are missing, customer support will solve the problem in the swiftest of manners. Same thing will happen if anything arrives less than fresh and optimal for cooking. Some companies offer a money back guarantee too.
Cooking should be fun before anything, so pick a couple of favorite ingredients and prepare to dazzle somebody with your culinary skills. Always remember, though, pretty much anyone can make a dish that tastes good at first bite; the taste of the last one is what makes or breaks a true kitchen virtuoso.