healthy living

Thinking About Meal Delivery Services? Here Are the Pros and Cons

meal delivery

There are so many meal delivery options these days. No matter what unique diet you’re on, you can find a delivery service that meets those needs.

There are also many variations of meal delivery services. For example, you can get ingredients and recipes to make a meal at home. On the other hand, you can choose fully prepared meals. Both ready-to-eat and frozen meals are available.

My Experience with Meal Delivery

I’ve tried several of these meal delivery options myself. For a while, I really loved Thistle’s fresh vegan options. However, I didn’t like their particular delivery schedule. In fact, delivery in my particular living situation is a challenge with almost all of the meal delivery options. I have to be home to answer the door. Furthermore, I usually need to be awake early.

I thought I might like Daily Harvest. It has healthy vegan options including soups and smoothies. However, I didn’t find the taste of these frozen foods as appealing as I had hoped. They were okay. However, they weren’t outstanding. I didn’t want to pay to eat less-than-great food.

I even tried a few of the make-it-yourself options. For example, Hello Fresh has easy-to-prepare food options. However, I don’t particularly love cooking. I found that if I was going to do the cooking myself anyway, then I’d rather find recipes I was excited about and get the individual ingredients myself.

In the end, I decided to stick with Farm Fresh to You food delivery once per week. I love getting local, seasonal, organic produce. Plus, they’ve added a terrific array of other options including bakery, dairy, and meat/meatless goods. It’s the perfect balance for me of prepared foods and ingredients. Plus their overnight delivery service works for my particular housing arrangement.

Benefits of Meal Delivery Service

Each person has to figure out if meal delivery service works for them as a concept. Then they need to find what works for them. Everyone is unique in their dietary, financial, and logistical meal needs. Overall, here are some of the benefits of meal delivery:

  • If you go with a service like Hello Fresh, then you can learn to cook simple meals. You get the exact amount of everything that you need to complete a recipe. It’s a nice quick introduction to cooking.
  • It is very easy to find the diet you’re seeking and receive balanced meals within those restrictions. In other words, if you need gluten-free, calorie-restricted, paleo, keto, or vegan-friendly meals, then you can avoid the hassles of finding the groceries yourself by using a meal delivery service.
  • It’s convenient if you dislike grocery shopping and are able to easily receive food deliveries at home. In my case, I had to be home for deliveries, because it isn’t possible for deliveries to be left on my porch without getting stolen. However, that may not be the case for you.
  • Whether or not delivery is convenient, the meals themselves are convenient. The cook and prep time is minimal across all meal delivery services. Furthermore, there are plenty of services that supply prepared meals so you just need to heat and eat.

Drawbacks of Meal Delivery Service

Again, everyone’s needs are different. Here are some of the drawbacks I personally experienced with meal delivery service:

  • The cost didn’t work out for me. Meal delivery services tend to be cheaper than good takeout food but more expensive than purchasing ingredients at the store. I often found that I would supplement the meals with extra food anyway, so it extended my budget.
  • I got bored with the meals. Many meal delivery services only offer a limited menu with very little choices to change it up. Even with Thistle, which had a nice array of different options throughout the week, I got bored with how often I was eating the same thing with the same flavors. It made meal delivery unsustainable for me over the long haul.
  • There is an environmental cost. I found that a majority of the meal delivery services resulted in a lot of waste. The foods were individually packaged in plastic, cardboard, or some combination of the two. Some of them required those non-reusable ice packs that can’t be good for the earth as they fill up the landfills. Overall, I felt like meal delivery was causing me to create a lot more trash than buying ingredients and cooking would do.

What are your thoughts? Have you tried meal delivery services? What do you like and dislike about them?

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Kathyrn Vercillo

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