Making sure your family gets three nourishing meals every day is a struggle for many parents. Time is short, and food preferences are all over the place come mealtime. A meal delivery service can be a great option, but you want the best without investing a ton of time and money finding one that meets your needs.
To solve this problem, here is a breakdown of six popular companies that will help you determine the best meal delivery service for families like yours.
It’s great to have everyone around the table, enjoying a meal together. The best meal delivery service for families can make this a reality every night. There are a lot of really good services out there but Home Chef wins accolades as being the best overall in every category.
Home Chef offers a variety of options with more customization than other services. Their price point is attractive, and they have solid reviews for taste, freshness, and quality.
- Customizable, allowing you to add, swap, or eliminate the main protein in many dishes
- Larger portion sizes are great for growing teenagers and heartier appetites
- Calorie and carb-conscious options, as well as a vegetarian menu
- It can take some work piecing together meals for other special dietary preferences
- 30 minute or less options, with 5-minute prep, gets meals on the table quickly
As a family with young children, you know firsthand how much they love to help in the kitchen. One Potato is a meal delivery service that encourages these moments and opportunities for learning with family-friendly meals.
One Potato’s recipes, created by Weelicious and a James Beard award-winning chef, are dishes that even the youngest, pickiest eaters will enjoy. Plus, they provide tips for getting kids safely involved in meal prep (and the bonus cookie dough in each box is a major perk too!).
- Prep is easy and meals take less than 30 minutes to prepare
- Ingredients are pre-chopped, enabling kids to safely help in the kitchen
- Quality is a priority with organic, non-GMO ingredients
- Customizable portions based on your family size
Many of the best meal delivery services for families cater to busy lifestyles. They know families want and need dinner on the table fast, but that taste and nutrition are equally important. Where other services focus on achieving this in under 30 minutes, Gobble raises the bar with meals that can be on your table in 15 minutes or less.
All ingredients in your Gobble meal kit come pre-cut, pre-measured and ready to toss into a pan. Most meals are only three steps and require minimal pans and utensils to prepare, making for quick and easy cleanup.
- Wide variety of international cuisines to explore with your family
- Sophisticated dishes might not be well received by younger, pickier eaters
- While there isn’t an allergy- free menu, many meals can be prepared free of common allergens like dairy, nuts, and gluten
- From package to table in 15 minutes or less
What a Crock is an innovative company specializing in shipping meals to your door that are designed to go in the crockpot in the morning, so they are ready when you get home. Their meals are sold by portion so no matter what size your family is, you make only what you need.
They also have the option to build a plan and receive recurring healthy meals, or you can order a one-time shipment to try it out. Though each of What a Crock’s meals is curated to go in a crockpot, they can also be prepared in other ways such as on the stovetop, in a pressure cooker or Instant Pot, or the oven depending on the dish.
Curious about what dishes they offer to tempt your tastebuds? Try out dishes like Sweet & Smokey Riblets, Lemon Garlic Chicken, Crabby Mac & Cheese, Jambalaya, Shrimp & Scallop Scampi, or Jerk Chicken. Pickier eaters love the Chicken Pot Pie Stew and Philly Cheesesteak Stuffed Peppers.
They do have vegetarian and vegan options as well, such as Veggie White Bean Chili, Veggie Tikka Masala, Palak Paneer, Veggie Chickpea Curry, and Sweet Chili & Rice.
There are so many selections, you are sure not to get bored, and of course, they are always coming out with more meals.
While meal delivery services can streamline mealtime at your house, cost remains a major deterrent for many families. Food budgets can be tight, and you might not be that interested in blowing most of it on one or two meals. EveryPlate is a budget-friendly solution to this problem.
Visit the EveryPlate website and you’re greeted with the tagline “America’s Best Value Meal Kit”. At under $5 a serving, EveryPlate makes mealtime fast and easy without stretching your budget.
- One of the most economical meal delivery service options available
- You can only choose between portions for two or four people, which is restrictive for some families
- Shipping is not included, which adds costs to the overall price per portion
- Decent variety with 11 meal options per week
Sometimes you want to enjoy a home-cooked meal with your family with minimal fuss and time in the kitchen. Heat and eat meals are a great option but taste and quality are sometimes an issue. Sun Basket wins the top spot for taste, quality, freshness, and family-friendliness in the heat & eat category.
If you love variety or have special dietary needs, Sun Basket offers options for Paleo, vegetarian, gluten-free, and more.
- Delivered fresh, all you do is heat and eat
- A good option for families that follow special diets or have food sensitivities
- A bit more expensive than some of the other best meal delivery services for families
- Kid-friendly add-ons that pack easily into lunches
- A dozen meal options every week
Martha & Marley Spoon
It’s no surprise that the meal service with Martha Stewart’s name attached is one that wins high marks for variety. Martha & Marley Spoon have taken the meal service concept and infused it with flavors that step outside the typical while still appealing to the range of preferences at your table.
Martha & Marley Spoon offers 22 meal options each week, many created to meet the needs of special diets and food allergies.
- Nearly two dozen meal options every week
- Meals are tagged as family-friendly, 30 minutes or less, etc. for easy menu planning
- Delivered fresh, with a focus on seasonal ingredients
- Unique spice blends that add flavor without being overpowering
- Currently no breakfast, lunch, or dessert options
It’s easy to list a few of the companies offering the best meal delivery service for families, but mealtime isn’t a one size fits all adventure. Your family is unique in many ways, which means that even the very best meal delivery service might not be the best fit for your family.
Before jumping on board with any of the companies above, or one that isn’t included on this list, here are a few points worth considering.
Meals Everyone Will Love
A challenge with any meal delivery service is finding an option that appeals to everyone in your family. When you’re making meals from scratch, you can customize your dishes accordingly. This isn’t always an easy task when meals come pre-cut, pre-portioned, or prepared for heat & eat.
Take some time to look over their current menu, as well as past or upcoming highlights if they’re available. Are there options that your kids will enjoy? What about dishes that are easily recognizable, and not too exotic? Working to adapt each and every dish takes away some of the convenience that meal delivery services offer.
Few things are as important as the quality of foods you feed your family. If there’s a downside to family meal delivery services, it’s that quality can be all over the board.
Generally speaking, companies that include organic, non-GMO, and ethically sourced ingredients into their dishes are paying more attention to quality and freshness. It’s also worth looking at some reviews to see what subscribers are saying about quality.
Variety is key, especially if you’re depending on a meal service to provide a couple of meals to your family each week. Not only do you want to avoid boredom, but you want enough variety to please everyone in your family.
Consider how many menu options are offered each week, and if those options are overall appealing to you and the other members of your family.
Fast and Easy for Parents
Something that each of these meal delivery services offers is less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying your family. Still, there are variances in how much time you’re going to spend in the kitchen with each of these services.
Do you like to chop and prep ingredients yourself? Do you want something pre-cut and pre-portioned so that little hands can also help? Are you more interested in heat & eat options that require no more than 5 minutes in the kitchen?
The awareness of food allergies has grown in recent years, but you can’t assume that every company considers allergens when creating their meals. If you have any allergies or sensitivities in your family, it’s important to choose a company with specially designated menus.
If you’re interested in a food company without allergen or special diet information, reach out and contact them directly with your questions before ordering.
A meal delivery service isn’t going to work if it doesn’t fit in your budget. It’s also easy to get carried away ordering meals when they all look so appetizing. Take some time to consider what you’re willing to spend before diving in.
You’re going to find a wide range of costs in these types of services. We’re talking anywhere from $5 to $15+ per serving. The quality you get for the price should also be a factor in making your decision.
Are you ready to enjoy a delicious, healthy, and stress-free meal with your family? One of these best meal delivery services for your family is sure to provide you with exactly what you’re looking for. Home Chef is the top choice, but others like Gobble and EveryPlate also have so much to offer.
If you’ve been on the fence about trying one of these services, just take the leap. If you take a little time and research the best option for your family, there are some great choices out there that won’t leave you disappointed.