The best meal service are designed to allow you to lose weight in a healthy manner. They work by ensuring you get the right nutrition and calories for your body. If you need help choosing the best meal service for you, then check out this article.
Best Weight-Loss Meal Delivery Services
Are there meal delivery services that will help you lose weight? We tracked down some worthwhile contenders.
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Best Weight Loss Meal Delivery Services:
While eating healthy sounds simple, it can be tricky to navigate at first blush. Between meal prepping, grocery shopping, calorie counting, and, oh yeah, the actual cooking, it’s easy to ditch healthy eating for something a bit more immediately gratifying—like DoorDashing your go-to late-night order. If you’re looking for convenient ways to kickstart your healthy eating journey, how about setting yourself up to get all of the ingredients you need for proper meal prepping delivered right to your door?
Weight loss meal delivery services have become increasingly popular. These subscription boxes plan out your meals for you, include recipe cards with step-by-step instructions, and give you just the right amount of ingredients. Some even provide entirely pre-made meals. Healthy eating (and losing weight) has never been easier with pre-portioned servings and meals already planned.
Which meal plan is right for weight loss?
With dozens of meal delivery services out there, it can be overwhelming to choose the best for weight loss. Not only do you want to choose one that’ll help you meet your weight loss goals, but there are other factors to consider like food options, taste, price, and more.
Where do you even begin? Don’t worry—we’ve done the research for you. We’ve rounded up five of the best weight loss meal delivery services for healthy eating based on price, meal options, ease of cancellation, and portion sizes. It’s time to read up and eat up.
Hungryroot ensures you get precisely what you want with a personalized quiz and hundreds of product suggestions added to your grocery list. It’s not a grocery delivery service, and it’s not a meal kit, either. Unlike other weight loss meal delivery services, Hungryroot doesn’t just offer you a predetermined recipe and its ingredients. Instead, it puts together a suggested list of top-rated groceries to add to your plan and presents a few recipes to put those healthy eats to good use—all personalized to your preferences and needs.
See something on your list you don’t want or are in the mood for something else? No problem. You can add or remove suggested products on your list, so there are no surprises when your box arrives in the mail. And once you’ve tested out Hungryroot for the first time, you’ll have the option to give them some feedback so they can improve their suggestions the next time around.
Plans start at $10.49/serving, but your specific pricing will depend on how many products you add to your plan. You can update your plan at any time, you can cancel whenever you want, and you can also pause or skip a week. The best part? Most recipes can be made in ten minutes or less. And don’t forget that Hungryroot also offers 40% off your first order of $99 plus free shipping.
With fresh and nutritious ingredients at the forefront of its business, Daily Harvest puts emphasis on a robust and healthy lifestyle rather than a “diet”. The company chefs craft nourishing and tasty meals that make it super quick and easy to fit a nutrient-dense meal into your schedule. Plans vary based on how many items you’re looking to get and the frequency of delivery. You can choose from plans of 9, 14, or 24 items, at a weekly or monthly rate. If you want to switch up the quantity or need to skip a few weeks, the website makes changing your order or delivery schedule easy.
95% of the ingredients the company uses are organic and its goal is to deliver the highest quality food while ensuring that practices at its purveyors’ farms are sustainable and regenerative. If you prefer an eco-conscious provider that also offers fruit and veggie-dense cuisine, Daily Harvest is worth the try
If cooking isn’t your thing, you might be thinking you’re up a creek when it comes to meal kits. Enter: Tovala. These meals come fully prepared; all you have to do is heat them in your oven, microwave, or better yet, your Tovala smart oven. This smart oven quite literally takes all the thinking out of cooking. You’ll simply scan the QR code on your meal and it’ll program the oven for you; just throw your packaged meal in there and let it cook to perfection without a second thought.
All ingredients are made fresh, never frozen, and menu options are updated each week for new and exciting combinations. With options like Buffalo Chicken Pasta, Spinach Artichoke Flatbread, and Smoky Coffee-Rubbed Salmon, there’s no sense of slacking when you warm one up for dinner.
The Tovala chefs have created hundreds of meals that rotate in and out to bring you 14 new dishes each week, including recipes that fit many different lifestyles such as calorie smart, gluten-free, carb-conscious, and vegetarian.
While the majority of meal kits cater to couples or families, Tovala is reaching out to singles and solo-eaters—each meal is only one serving size. You can choose between 4 and 16 meals per week, with meal prices starting at $11.99. And there are no commitments here; you can pause, skip, or cancel your subscription at any time.
If you’re looking for a food delivery service that brings sustainable farming, healthy ingredients, and mouth-watering flavors into one pre-made meal, Sunbasket might just be your answer. The meats and seafood it uses are humanely raised and sourced from trusted farmers, and nearly all of the produce in its meals are 100% organic—meaning you can sit back and feel good about what you’re eating. The meal kits come in two or four servings each, except for the Fresh & Ready meals, which come in single servings.
The company’s custom meal kits suit most types of diets and taste buds, including paleo, gluten-free, diabetes-friendly, vegetarian, and pescatarian. And why limit yourself to just prepared dinners? Sunbasket also has breakfast and lunch options, as well as healthy snacks to create a well-rounded and individualized meal plan.
Fresh & Ready meals are made to be heated in three minutes or less, and prices start at $9.99 per serving. Full meal kits are more kitchen-heavy but include easy-to-follow instructions to whip up your dish in 15-40 minutes; these meals start at $11.49 per serving. Both options also come with free shipping.
As a bonus, Sunbasket also works to take care of its community the same way it takes care of its customers—by donating an average of 10,000 pounds of food each week to various food banks. It’s hard to beat a meal delivery service that strives to deliver good food and strong values.
Is A Meal Delivery Service A Legitimate Weight Loss Option?
The nutrition industry is vastly complicated. There are all sorts of products, supplements, and foods that you can purchase to help you lose weight.
One of the most popular nutritional products right now are meal delivery services like Nutrisystem, Jenny Craig, and Blue Apron. And the idea behind these food systems is very clever.
Most people struggle with their nutrition when attempting to lose weight. They may not know what to eat, experience horrible cravings, or even binge eat from being too strict.
With these types of services though, all the foods are delivered right to your door. There is no second guessing what to eat. You simply select your plan, and you’re good to go.
This simplifies nutrition; there’s no denying that. But one question that remains is “Is a meal delivery service a legitimate weight loss option?” In my book, this means that the product not only helps you lose weight, but maintain that weight loss as well.
The short answer to this question is yes some of these services can help you lose weight. But I don’t believe all of them are beneficial for weight loss. Let me explain why.
Several of these companies like Nutrisystem, Jenny Craig, and Diet-To-Go offer select plans with pre-made meals. These meals are prepared by the company and then sent to your home. There’s absolutely no cooking involved for the consumer.
Now, meal delivery services offering pre-made meals have been around for some time now. But recently, these services have evolved.
Companies like Blue Apron and Hello Fresh are two of the main ones that come to mind. Instead of offering pre-made meals, they create specific meals and send you the recipe and every ingredient you’ll need. The difference is, you have to cook the meal.
I believe meal delivery services such as these offer legitimate value for someone struggling to improve their nutrition and lose weight. The simple reason is because it forces you to cook the meal. And as I’ve mentioned before, cooking is one thing that can add years to your life.
If you follow services like Nutrisystem and Jenny Craig, you’ll probably lose weight. But to be honest almost everyone will if they follow the directions. These companies create low calorie meals so you consume less daily calories. And as I talked about time and time again, a caloric deficit is the most important component of weight loss.
The trouble behind these pre-made meal services is that they teach you nothing about food. You would need to keep using them for the rest of your life if you want to maintain your results. And that’s where the problem lies.
To create sustainable results you need to learn more about food. There’s no getting around that. I don’t mean you need to be a dietician, but you should be able to do things like eyeball food portions and know how to create a balanced meal. Pre-made meal services will not help you in these areas.
The point I want to get across is that cooking is an essential skill you need to master if you want to improve your nutrition and lose weight. Meal delivery services that provide you with ingredients and a recipe offer more bang for your buck than pre-made meal providers.
But, in no way am I suggesting that you have to use one of these companies. I believe they offer advantages if you are extremely busy, need more organization in the cooking department, or want to learn how to cook. Knowing what you’re going to eat and how to cook it can be a lifesaver for some.
If this describes you, then you’d probably benefit from a meal delivery service. But there is a cost to benefit ratio when using these companies. Your price per meal will be a little bit higher than if you cooked food from your local grocery store. Most of these meal services cost upwards of $8-10 per meal.
Pre-made meal services like Nutrisystem should be avoided. They offer only short-term benefits. If you’re serious about your health and well-being, you should be invested for the long haul.
If you simply want to eat better, lose weight, and have no interest in meal service company, here’s a template that you can use at each meal.
Best Meal Delivery Service for Beginners: Blue Apron
Why we chose it: Blue Apron’s pared-down and curated meal selection make it a solid choice for first-time users who want to try out meal kits, improve their culinary skills and explore new recipes.
- Meal options for omnivores and vegetarians
- Diabetic-friendly recipes
- Non-GMO ingredients
- Wine bundles, pantry items and kitchen tool add-ons
- Ready-to-eat options
- Not suitable for vegans or other dietary restrictions
- You can only order up to four meals a week
Blue Apron offers four meal plans: Signature, Wellness, Vegetarian and Signature for Four.
The Signature plan has the most variety, with over 15 meal options. Additional search tags like “chef’s favorite,” “premium,” “family-friendly,” or “easy prep” help narrow your choices.
Our tester sampled the Signature plan and enjoyed all the recipes, stating that she’d order from Blue Apron again. The recipes are easy to follow, and the pictures included help speed up the cooking process.
One standout dish was the sheet pan cheesy mango chicken: “This dish was delicious and very filling. The combination of cheese and mango has both a sweet and savory taste that I rarely achieve when cooking on my own. It was also nice to do an easy sheet pan meal, although I did have to put them on separate sheets because it wouldn’t all fit on one. It was visually appealing, and I would definitely order it again.”
On the downside, subscribers can only order up to four meals per week, and the servings are capped at four. Larger households, or customers who want meals for the entire week, are best served by other companies on our list.
Best Budget Meal Delivery Service: HelloFresh
Why we chose it: With a starting price of just $8.99 per serving and a wide variety of additional discounts, Hello Fresh made our list as the best budget meal delivery service.
- Low calorie, pescatarian, vegetarian and quick-cook options
- Generous discount codes
- Snacks, dessert, breakfast and protein pack add-ons
- No specific dietary plans
- Not suitable for dietary restrictions
- Recipes may be too simple for experienced home cooks
Hello Fresh’s meal kits include pre-measured ingredients and recipe cards with easy-to-follow instructions. Most meals should take around 25 to 35 minutes to prepare, although a handful of “gourmet” recipes may take longer — up to 50 minutes.
Our tester sampled five different recipes and found most meals tasty, filling and easy to make. She also noted the ingredients allowed her to eat things she usually wouldn’t. About one of the meals, zucchini and mushroom bibimbap bowls, she says: “I always order bibimbap at Korean restaurants, but I’d never considered that I could handle making my own! I was impressed with every aspect of this recipe — it was filling, tasty and easy to customize.”
The white cheddar wonderburgers recipe was the only underwhelming meal in the kit. “The recipe didn’t tell me to mix anything into the ground beef,” our reviewer says. “Therefore the patties were kind of flavorless. It could have used garlic powder, dry ranch seasoning!”
The package arrived on time in optimal condition, and the ingredients were fresh. The ingredients inside the box were divided by meal and labeled in individual brown paper bags. The cardboard delivery box and paper bags were recyclable, and veggies were placed in bags without individual packaging. However, ingredients such as cheese, spices and sauces were individually wrapped in plastic, resulting in unnecessary waste.
Best for Families: Martha Stewart & Marley Spoon
Why we chose it: We chose Martha Stewart & Marley Spoon as the best for families because it offers 45 different dishes each week, from comfort food staples like sausage and ricotta lasagna to gourmet items such as honey-glazed pork tenderloin.
- 45 recipes to choose from
- Add-ons include protein packs, breakfast and dessert items
- Low carb, low calorie, quick-cook, vegan and vegetarian options
- Keto-friendly options
- No dedicated dietary plans
- Not appropriate for severe gluten allergies
Marley Spoon offers 45 recipes each week, and every meal is tagged with labels such as “kid-friendly,” “dairy-free,” “meat” or “vegetarian.”
Our tester enjoyed Marley Spoon’s fresh ingredients and recipe ideas. The recipes were easy to follow, although she felt that the cooking times were “overly optimistic” — all but one recipe took longer than the estimated time.
The most popular meal with our tester’s family was the everything bagel salmon with creamy chive potatoes and green beans: “This was a big hit. The salmon pieces weren’t that big, but they tasted good. The potatoes tasted good and were very filling. The green beans were not plentiful, but the flavor was nice.”
Some other recipes were hit or miss, but this was mainly due to each person’s personal preference.
On the downside, the packaging was confusing because the ingredients were grouped per category instead of per meal, with all the veggies, meats and pantry items in separate containers. That said, Marley Spoon’s meal kit produces much less waste by packaging the items this way, rather than individually.
Best for Celiac Disease: Green Chef
Why we chose it: We chose Green Chef as the best option for celiac disease because the company is certified by the Gluten Intolerance Group. This certification ensures that the available gluten-free meals and the facility where the meals are prepared meet strict gluten-free standards.
- Dedicated menus for keto, paleo, vegan and vegetarian diets
- Gluten-free certified by the Gluten Intolerance Group
- USDA Certified organic produce and eggs
- The “Fast & Fit” meal plan has fewer items
- Expensive at $12.99 per serving
Green Chef’s meal kits are sorted into Mediterranean, keto + paleo, Fast & Fit and gluten-free. Subscribers looking for gluten-free meals have over 10 weekly recipes available, most of which take 35 minutes or less to cook.
Green Chef is also certified organic by the USDA, meaning that all its produce and eggs are organic. That said, your box may still include non-certified ingredients if the company’s unable to source them organically.
Our tester sampled recipes from the keto + paleo meal plan, which included several gluten-free dishes, and enjoyed all the meals he tried. His favorite dish was the chicken and butternut squash hash: “The chicken cutlet was fresh, juicy and the seasoning was superb. The veggies tasted fresh. Overall, four out of five stars.”
The meals were easy to cook, and even though he was unfamiliar with the recipes, he said he would order from Green Chef again. However, the price would be a determining factor if he had to pick a meal kit over grocery shopping or eating out. Budget-conscious consumers may not be best served by Green Chef’s high price point.
Best for Weight Loss: SunBasket
Why we chose it: SunBasket’s weekly menu offers meal options for 10 different categories, including keto, low calorie, vegan and Mediterranean. Consumers with weight loss goals can choose from various nutritious meals, no matter their weight loss plan.
- Menu options for most dietary restrictions like keto, low calorie and vegan
- Produce is organically sourced whenever possible
- Ready-to-eat options
- Some produce ingredients arrived past their point of freshness
SunBasket uses USDA-certified organic produce whenever possible and offers menu items for the following diets: gluten-free, dairy-free, omnivore, vegan, vegetarian, paleo, diabetes-friendly and soy-free.
Meal kits may not be the best option if your goal is to lose weight. Pre-made meals aimed at weight loss have a well-earned reputation for often being bland, flavorless and not very filling. Furthermore, their effectiveness isn’t guaranteed, since each body is different and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all plan proven to help you shed pounds.
We decided to feature SunBasket for its focus on nutrient-rich, healthy meals that work for different dietary needs. Subscribers can select a SunBasket meal plan that best fits their weight loss goals, ideally in collaboration with a plan from a registered dietitian nutritionist.
Our tester sampled SunBasket’s gluten-free recipes, and she found the dishes both filling and satisfying. The kit had generous portion sizes — the kimchi fried rice with peas, bok choy and fried eggs in particular were enough for three servings.
One notable downside was that some ingredients arrived partially spoiled or wilted. The dishes were still tasty, but spoiled greens shouldn’t be the norm, especially from a company that promotes its use of fresh, high-quality ingredients.
SunBasket did its best to limit excessive packaging — the meals were packaged individually in brown paper bags with the corresponding ingredients. However, the vegetables were packaged in non-recyclable sealed plastic bags.
Best for Customization: Home Chef
Why we chose it: We chose Home Chef as best for customization because you can pick from a variety of meals, including gourmet recipes, 15-minute meals and ready-to-eat recipes. You can customize many of these dishes by swapping out the protein as well.
- Offers meal kits and ready-to-eat dishes
- Subscribers can swap ingredients and customize recipes
- Easy-to-cook meals and ingredients
- Limited vegetarian options
- Some recipes require specific cooking utensils
- Not suitable for people on strict gluten-free or dairy-free diets
Home Chef’s meal plans are versatile in terms of their preparation style. You can find gourmet dishes in the Culinary Collection, standard meal kits, easy prep recipes (that take from 15 to 30 minutes of prep time) and oven-ready or grill-ready dishes. For protein, subscribers can choose between fish, poultry, beef or a meat substitute.
All the ingredients arrived fresh and in proper packaging. There weren’t any problems with quality or storage and everything kept well throughout the week.
Our tester enjoyed all of the meals and decided to switch out her current meal kit service for Home Chef. Here’s what she had to say about the first meal she tried, a chili-lime enchilada chicken: “SO GOOD. It also came with pre-chopped veggies, so it was just slightly more complicated to make than heating up a TV dinner.” She also mentioned that one of the recipes required a meat thermometer, something not many people have at home.
Home Chef’s packaging included non-recyclable plastic waste. The only recyclable items were the cardboard box and the ice packs used to keep the box cool while in transit.