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Since “healthy” is a broad concept, meal delivery services vary considerably in their approach. Some focus on health from a scientific standpoint, while others are more holistic.
Regardless of the specific philosophy, the aim is the same—to allow you to enjoy the many benefits of a healthier diet, in a convenient, customizable, and cost-effective way. The best healthy meal delivery services do just that. No matter which healthy-eating goals you’d like to achieve, odds are there’s a meal delivery service that can help.
Sunbasket caters to many diets, has a huge variety of meals and add-ons, and focuses on using organic and sustainably-sourced products.
Pros and Cons
Wide selection of proteins
Lots of add-ons
Offers kits and fully prepped meals
Occasional conventional substitutions
No free shipping when promos end
Premium meals cost extra
Sunbasket specializes in meal kits but extends its offerings into fully-prepped single-serving meals and a large collection of third-party add-ons, like pressed juices, egg bites, instant noodle bowls, and snacks. It’s almost like an online bodega. The kits and prepped meals (Sunbasket calls them Fresh & Ready) are all lunch and dinner dishes. While subscription settings max out at five meals per week, you can manually order many more—up to eight units of each two-serving meal kit or Fresh & Ready meal on the company’s large menu.
With a low per-serving price of $5.99, Daily Harvest is a great choice for the budget-conscious consumer.
Pros and Cons
Smaller serving sizes
Does not offer animal protein
Daily Harvest offers smoothies, “harvest bowls,” flatbreads, soups, “forager bowls,” chia bowls, lattes, oat bowls, non-dairy ice creams, and more. All products are shipped frozen, which the company says helps to preserve freshness and nutritional content. The company says it uses 95% organic ingredients, and the ingredient lists indicate which are organic and which are not. The site is well-designed and the menu can be filtered according to likes, dislikes, and dietary needs. All dishes are single-serving.
Use promo code SPRUCE30OFF to receive 30% off + free gift in every box.
Why You Should Try It
Hungryroot delivers a personalized weekly supply of healthy groceries with matching recipes to help you create beautiful meals.
Pros and Cons
Large collection of simple recipes
Free shipping over $70
Totally personalized plan
Available by subscription only
Grocery selection lacks some staples
Some may find credit system confusing
Hungryroot works a little differently from most meal delivery services. Rather than shipping prepped meals or meal kits, the company delivers healthy groceries and simple recipes, all based on your preferences. Hungryroot has many of the ingredients you would expect to find in a grocery store, though customers may have trouble finding certain items, like fresh herbs and spices. The recipes won’t call for anything not included in your deliveries (besides oil, salt, and pepper), but that doesn’t mean you can’t add your own touches.
The majority of Green Chef’s impressive weekly menu is dedicated to meal kits made with organic ingredients that come together for flavorful, plant-forward meals.
Pros and Cons
Certified organic sourcing
Diverse, interesting menu
Lots of packaging
Green Chef's certified organic status and roster of sustainably sourced ingredients set it apart from the rest. The rotating weekly menu includes 24 globally inspired recipes featuring house spice blends and sauces to add flavor. Meals accommodate multiple dietary plans and preferences, including keto, paleo, vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free. Additionally, Green Chef is both plastic and carbon offset, making it a sustainable option in addition to being a convenient one.
With its variety of plant-based foods that are all gluten-free and non-GMO, Splendid Spoon is our highest-scoring vegan meal delivery service.
Pros and Cons
Large rotating menu
Totally vegan and gluten-free
Not all organic ingredients
Limited menu filters for dietary needs
Only single-serving meals
Splendid spoon is totally vegan with 100% plant-based meals; there are no animal products of any kind. The company’s menu is divided into six subsections: Smoothies, Soup and Grain Bowls, Noodle Bowls, Light Soups, Extras (including items like bars and juice shots), and limited-time Seasonal Meals. You can filter the menu according to types of dishes, ingredients you’d like to avoid, and two dietary needs: low sodium and blood sugar-friendly. All meals are single-serving. The bowls ship frozen, and smoothies ship in cold packs.
Splendid Spoon offers a variety of plans, and customers can choose to have their meals delivered weekly, biweekly, or on a monthly basis. Some sample meal plans include:
Breakfast and Lunch + Reset: $105
Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner + Reset: $160
You customize your box after checkout. This becomes your default weekly order, which you can edit, if you like, at any time. You can skip weeks or pause/cancel at any time. Splendid Spoon ships to the lower 48 United States. Shipping is free.
Purple Carrot offers up to four servings of each meal in its meal kits and prepared dishes, making it our healthy, plant-based pick for families.
Pros and Cons
Both recipe kits and prepared meals
100% vegan meals
Globally inspired flavors
Whether you’re wanting to go fully plant-based, or just looking to add more meat-free meals to your weekly lineup, Purple Carrot makes it easy. The service offers both meal kits and prepared meals, and even offers a few add-ons to help stock your “plantry.” Customers can choose from meal kits or prepared meals, two or four servings, and whether they would prefer three or four meals per week. The range of flavor options and convenience make Purple Carrot our pick for families who want quick, healthy meals.
Customers with gluten sensitivities or allergies are in good hands with ModifyHealth; all of its meals are 100% gluten-free.
Pros and Cons
Meals are gluten-free and low-sodium
Menu developed with physicians, dietitians, and chefs
Meals stay fresh up to 10 days in the refrigerator
Only two meal plans available (low-FODMAP and Mediterranean)
ModifyHealth creates meals designed to support customers suffering from gastroenterological, digestive, and inflammation issues, and creates its menu in collaboration with dietitians and chefs. The menu features low-FODMAP and Mediterranean meal plans with breakfast, lunch, and dinner options, all of which are gluten-free and low in sodium. With dietitian support available, this service is dedicated to improving gut and chronic health issues.
Pricing and Plans
Low-FODMAP Entrées (6 meal minimum): $81 and up
Low-FODMAP Program (10 entrees plus expert support): $180 and up
Mediterranean Plan Entrées (6 meal minimum): $81 and up
Mediterranean Get Well Program (10 entrees plus expert support): $129 and up
Meals We Tried
Greek chicken and rice
Longevity stew with black-eyed peas and kale
Shrimp chimichurri with black beans and rice
Lemon thyme chicken with tahini cauliflower and za'atar quinoa
Blackened salmon with quinoa, broccoli, and red bell pepper
Roasted pistachio salmon with white beans and kale
Territory works with registered dietitians, restaurateurs, and chefs in local commercial kitchens to create nutritious, single-serving prepared meals.
Pros and Cons
Emphasis on sustainability
Limited delivery area
Territory Foods' emphasis is on curating meals that are gluten-, dairy-, and refined sugar-free. Based on your location and zip code, you can choose four to 12 meals from a rotating weekly menu that you can filter according to your dietary preferences, such as Whole30, paleo, keto-friendly, and vegan. Meals are designed by dieticians and created by regional chefs in commercial kitchens or restaurants, keeping the menu fresh and interesting. The company uses sustainably-sourced, seasonal ingredients, and meals are delivered in recyclable and compostable packaging.
BistroMD offers physician-designed programs, including plans geared specifically towards weight loss.
Pros and Cons
Science-backed weight loss approach
Provides breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks
Few plant-based options
Relatively static menu
Can’t choose your delivery day
BistroMD was founded by husband and wife team Ed and Caroline Cedarquist. He’s the CEO and resident foodie, and she’s a bariatric physician. The company provides breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks, delivering frozen, fully-prepped, single-serving meals optimized for weight loss without compromising flavor or satisfaction. The macronutrient content of the meals is precisely balanced and optimized for sustainable weight loss. There’s a women’s plan and a men’s plan, each with a different total calorie count, and every plan comes with dietitian support.
BistroMD offers six plans: standard, gluten-free, heart-healthy, diabetic, keto, and menopause. The company also has a snack program, called EATS (Essential And Tasty Snacks), available as an add-on. You can order either the full program or just lunch and dinner.
5 days of lunch and dinner: starts at $164.85
7 days of lunch and dinner: starts at $141.65
The company often offers discounts, so you may be able to sign up at a lower cost. BistroMD ships frozen meals via FedEx anywhere in the continental U.S. for a flat of $19.95.
Meals We Tried
Chicken, rice, and cheddar casserole
Salmon with dill mustard sauce
Turkey breaks with cranberry apple chutney
Oven-fried catfish with spicy tomato leek sauce
Baked pasta marinara with chicken sausage
Meatloaf with honey bourbon glaze
Mojo pork with black beans and rice
Chicken pad thai
Grilled salmon with creamy pesto
Lasagna with garden marinara
We chose Sunbasket as the best overall service because the company is focused on healthy food and it scored highly with our testers. We think that for most people, Sunbasket provides the ideal balance of convenience, cost, customization, and variety.
Guide for Choosing the Best Healthy Meal Delivery Services
Are Healthy Meal Delivery Services Right for You?
There are definitely pros and cons to weigh when deciding if a healthy meal delivery service is right for you.
Reduced stress and responsibility
Increased free time
Potential health and nutritional improvement
Potential cost savings over restaurants and takeout
Higher cost than DIY meal prep
Potential for hassles and disappointments
Given the large number of competent services on the market, as well as the ubiquity of new-customer discounts, we think meal delivery services, in general, are worth trying at least once. And if you’re going to try it, why not make it healthy?
Comparing Healthy Meal Delivery Services
To compare competing services, compare these points of difference:
Price: Most services are weekly subscriptions with recurring charges. What is the price per serving, and how many servings per week do you require? And don’t forget about shipping costs.
Diet and Variety: Typically, the more diets a service accommodates, the fewer selections it offers for each. Conversely, the more a company focuses on one type of diet, the more options you’ll have to choose from. What is your ideal balance between adherence to a diet/lifestyle and having a large menu from which to choose?
Flexibility: Can you choose your delivery day? Can you still use the service when traveling? Try to get a sense of how the service will fit into your schedule and lifestyle.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is a Meal Delivery Service?
With a meal delivery service subscription plan, the company preps and delivers the ingredients for you to prepare their recipes at home.
Does a Meal Delivery Service Require a Minimum Number of Meals Purchased?
Minimums depend on the meal delivery service as each has different options. For example, with Factor, you can choose from four meals to as many as 16 meals per week.
Can I Put a Vacation Hold on a Meal Delivery Service?
Most meal delivery services offer the option to put your order on hold while on vacation.
How Much Does a Meal Delivery Service Cost?
Prices vary depending on the company, number of meals ordered, and ingredients used in the recipe. Expect to pay around $6 per serving on the low end and up to $26 or more per serving on the high end.
Our testers ordered from, cooked, and rated 40 different meal delivery services. We carefully scored each one based on meal selection, nutritional information, sustainability, and customer service, as well as the flavor, freshness, and quality of each meal and ingredient. Our Spruce Eats tester panel includes dietitians, chefs, and longtime food writers. The one thing they all have in common is their passion for and knowledge of food.