Caters to specialty diets
Option for one-time or recurring orders
Large delivery minimum
Shipping costs extra
MealPro is the self-proclaimed healthy meal prep service for everyone—whether you’re an athlete, a busy professional, or a parent.
MealPro delivers customizable, diet-friendly meals to your door that microwave in minutes. We gave it a try to find out just how convenient this one-size-fits-most meal delivery service really is. Keep reading to find out how MealPro stacked up.
How It Works: Buy in Bulk
MealPro’s account signup process is simple and quick; there’s no intake questionnaire, you just sign up and fill your cart. You have the option to purchase as a one-time delivery or set up a recurring purchase, which we really liked.
Unfortunately, one of the most significant downsides of the experience with MealPro is the minimum order quantity. There are only two plan options, either 18 or 20 meals, which is by far the highest amount we’ve seen and also doesn’t give a lot of flexibility for the user.
Meals from the main menu are customizable to an extent, with the ability to add or substitute proteins and sides. MealPro also offers meal plan-specific meals for various diets, and custom meals if you want to build your own.
Meals vary in price from $9.99 to $15.99, depending on what you choose, and you’ll also pay for shipping. We paid about $40 in shipping costs alone.
You can either simply check out as a one-time order and accept the delivery date that you end up with, or sign up for recurring deliveries and choose your delivery date. For non-recurring deliveries, food takes about a week to get to you from the time you order, depending on where you live.
Choosing Meals: Clunky and Confusing
While picking your meals, it can be a little challenging to find the information you need to make food decisions, and not everything is in the same place on the MealPro website.
Menu descriptions are a bit vague, but by clicking the “nutrition” dropdown on each dish, you can view the full nutrition breakdown, some ingredient information, allergen statements, and special diet tags. Unfortunately, there’s no way to filter by any of these labels to show only what you need.
Overall, the main menu of meals offers 20 entrees, plus a selection of bulk proteins that you can order by the pound. Most of the meals follow a “meat + side” formula or are pasta-based. Portion sizes are quite large, around 18-21 ounces per meal, which seems like a decent value.
As far as customization, MealPro does allow you to select if you want extra protein or substitute vegetables and carbohydrate-based sides, though substitution options vary by dish and don’t always make sense. MealPro also accommodates an array of specialized diets, from bodybuilding to medically relevant meals like Renal, though it’s not so easily accessible.
If you want to order only meals on a specific diet plan, that’s located in a totally different area of the website and was so hard to find that we nearly missed it. You can also create totally custom meals by selecting your own protein and sides and choosing portions.
What We Made
We chose a selection of items to get to the minimum of 18 total meals and with two broken during transit, we had 16 meals to choose from to review. Of those 16, we will focus on these for this review:
- Steak teriyaki, broccoli, rice
- Garlic chicken, potatoes
- Shrimp fajitas, rice
- Penne Bolognese, meatballs
- Roasted chicken, vegetables, brown rice
Support Materials: None
No additional support materials come with MealPro. The box arrives with only the meals included, and while the website has a lot of information, none of it goes above and beyond the minimum requirements for after you’ve had meals delivered.
Packaging: Recyclable + Trash
Out of the various packing materials that your meals are delivered in, some is recyclable and some is not. The larger outer box and cardboard inserts both break down to be recycled, however, the plastic bags for the dry ice and the styrofoam liner for the box that help it all stay chilled have to be thrown in the trash.
As far as individual meals, the plastic trays are recyclable but the plastic film covers are not, although this is standard across this type of packaging from what we’ve seen.
The Cooking Process: Microwave or Oven Heating
MealPro’s meals can be heated either in the microwave for either 3 minutes or in the oven for 30 minutes. While the process may be simple, the instructions weren’t exactly clear. Instructions are on the back of the package for each meal, but they don’t indicate the duration of cooking for the microwave, so we checked the website and found it.
The extent of preparation involved is simply to remove the plastic film, heat, and eat, which any beginner can do. We also appreciate a meal delivery service that leaves us without any dishes to do.
Flavor, Freshness, and Quality: Nothing Special
Some of MealPro’s dishes were better than others in flavors and textures. We didn’t expect a lot from some of the dishes knowing they would be frozen, thawed, and reheated, but in some cases, we were pleasantly surprised.
Across the board, the dishes we tried were seasoned so as not to be bland, but nothing was terribly exciting, either. The diversity of flavor options is a bit lacking, unfortunately, with very simple flavor profiles like “teriyaki” and “fajita.” While this might appeal to the picky eater, we’d have liked to see more variety.
As far as texture, we were impressed with how well the meat held up, but the rice was always soggy and while vegetables did have some crunch in them, everything just seemed wet. In fairness, we did not try the oven method for cooking, only the microwave, but we imagine most customers would do the same.
We also appreciated the information on the MealPro website around sourcing. We were happy to see the company's seafood meets the Monterey Bay Seafood Watch standards.
The dishes we tried were seasoned so as not to be bland, but nothing was terribly exciting, either.
Nutritional Value: Lots of Diets, Hard to Navigate
At first glance, it may not seem like MealPro accommodates much in the way of diets, but dig a bit further and you’ll find an array of options for different restrictions. MealPro offers plans for folks looking for extra protein, meals for seniors, and also has some meals for medically relevant diets like “Low Sodium,” “Kidney/Renal,” and “Kidney/Dialysis.” Also on offer are some restrictions like “Low Fat,” “Low Carb,” “Keto,” and a few others.
Some of these diets, especially the more medically relevant ones, are actually full meal plans that auto-generate a selection of meals in your cart and are only available on a different part of the website. The rest of the diets are among those listed in the nutrition info for each meal offered in the main menu where you select your own items. We found this cumbersome and tough to navigate, and it took some real digging to find most of the diet plans and where to order them.
In the general menu items, the portions are quite large and heavy in animal protein for the most part, so that will be reflected in the nutrition content with higher calories and protein as well. However, there is a range of calorie totals to choose from, and you can always flex these nutrients with the customization options to meet your preference.
Allergen information is available in the nutrition dropdown on each menu, but that’s not as easily customizable and accommodated. We did appreciate some of the information on the website related to the handling of food allergens and noted that MealPro prepares gluten-free items earlier in the day, an industry best practice for avoiding cross-contamination.
MealPro Is Good For
MealPro may be a good fit for people looking for simple flavors, big portions, and a stocked freezer, especially if they have dietary restrictions.
MealPro Is Not Good For
Adventurous eaters will likely find MealPro’s options fairly boring and repetitive, and those who only need a few meals a week likely won’t be happy with the delivery minimums.
Add-ons: Bulk Proteins and Sides
In addition to pre-made meals, customers can add on bulk packs of pre-cooked proteins, in 1-pound increments, as well as some cooked side dishes in the same sizes. These items also count to get you up to your 18-order minimum, which we thought was nice. This way you can fill your freezer with extra meatballs or salmon if you don’t need or want 18 individual meals.
Customer Service: Mixed Experience
Due to an issue with the shipping carrier (which we do not blame on MealPro), our first order had to be thrown away entirely. Fortunately, we got a response from MealPro's customer service via email within a few hours and we were told a free replacement box would ship as soon as possible. We appreciated that, but waiting a full week for the replacement felt a bit long and we didn’t get proactive updates.
We also had an issue with meals bursting open in the box during both shipments; we had two meals in each shipment that broke open and needed to be thrown away. Dealing with this took several days to get a response by email, although it was over a weekend and it’s unclear if MealPro offers weekend support. Ultimately we got full refunds for everything that was not consumable, but be sure to take pictures of any damaged items, and don’t expect timely updates.
Making Changes and Canceling: Available Online
One perk of MealPro is that you have the option for a recurring delivery if you want it, but you’re not tied to it. This makes it easy to place orders as needed, especially given the size of the orders. Once you place an order though, you need to contact the company to make changes.
Users can easily opt in to or out of recurring orders on the website and can choose from a variety of delivery frequencies, whether you want meals weekly or every 14, 21, or 28 days. Recurring orders can be canceled online, but the orders themselves can’t be changed on the website once they are placed.
The Competition: MealPro vs. Icon Meals
MealPro and Icon Meals are comparably priced, in the range of $10-$15 per meal, and provide single serving, vacuum-sealed food that microwave in under 5 minutes.
While both companies offer a similar level of variety and quantity of meals to choose from, MealPro has a very high delivery minimum of 18 meals, while Icon Meals lets you buy as much or as little as you like.
In terms of customizability, Icon doesn’t allow any changes to its signature meals but you can create fully custom meals (with the help of its useful nutrition calculator) or purchase a lot of items a la carte. MealPro, on the other hand, allows customers to make changes to meals such as increasing protein portions, adding extra carbs or replacing them with vegetable servings, etc. MealPro also sells a select few items a la carte like proteins and a few vegetables, but that's less than what Icon has to offer. MealPro also offers totally custom meals but with fewer options and does not have a nutrition calculator.
Icon’s menu also changes more frequently—weekly—while the menu from MealPro seems to remain in place longer and with both companies offering a similar selection of meals, Icon ultimately has more variety for someone ordering on a regular basis. Both companies draw on the same flavor profiles, basic ingredients, and heavy quantity of meat proteins, and even though MealPro has a slight edge on flavor, neither company is giving us much to write home about in that department.
As far as pre-made microwaveable meals go, MealPro is certainly ahead of what you’ll find in the frozen foods aisle in terms of customization, portion size, and nutrition accommodation. However, we never got a good read on who exactly the service is catering to, and perhaps in trying to be something for everyone, MealPro ends up serving no one particularly well.
We spent numerous hours looking through 48 meal delivery services’ websites, ordered meals and cooked them at home, photographed the process, spoke with customer service representatives from the companies, filled out detailed surveys about each company and their meals, and wrote in-depth reviews and comparison articles. Our expert panel includes dieticians, chefs, and longtime food writers. The one thing they all have in common is their love and knowledge of food.
The criteria we used to evaluate each company included:
- The ordering process
- Meal selection
- Packaging and support materials
- The cooking process
- The flavor, freshness, and quality of each meal and ingredient
- Nutritional information
- Customer service
- Product Brand MealPro
- Lowest Price per Serving $9.99
- Number of Diets Served 9
- Number of Recipes 20
- Delivery Area 48 states
- Serving Sizes Available 1