Food subscriptions are always popular, but they've perhaps never been as handy as they are now, since they can save you trips to the grocery store in the middle of a pandemic. And, whether you enjoy spending time in the kitchen cooking the ingredients you're sent or would simply rather warm up something already prepared, there's a food subscription box for you.
Before you pick one, you should ask yourself a few questions about what you want to get out of it, Amy Lee, MD, an expert in weight control, nutrition, and obesity and head of Nucific, tells Health. You'll want to think about why you need this option, since each brand has different offerings to serve various purposes, she adds. "Are you willing to prep and cook by following a recipe? Are you looking to eat healthier or purely for convenience?" Evaluating how much work you're willing to put into a meal after you've been sent a kit can help you pick the right food subscription box for you, notes Dr. Lee. "A boxed subscription, to me, is all about convenience. But remember, a typical dish cooked from scratch is likely much more cost efficient," she explains.
Below, our guide to 20 of the best food subscription boxes available.
Blue Apron, a food subscription service which includes the makings of a meal you cook for yourself, is among Dr. Lee's favorites because it takes the hassle out of buying a bunch of new ingredients at the grocery store every time you want to try a new recipe. "I enjoyed Blue Apron a lot because my intent was to save time from having to shop," shares Dr. Lee.
The Mindy-Kaling approved Hello Fresh subscription also comes with a recipe card and the ingredients you'll need to make yourself a meal. The ingredients are sourced straight from farms, per the company's website, and you can choose from a list of over 20 recipes each week.
Mosaic Foods is great if you're looking for already prepared meals that you can simply pop in the microwave. Also nice: It has subscriptions that cater to vegan and vegetarian individuals.
Daily Harvest also sends kits that don't require much effort on your end, meaning its meals are ready to consume in mere minutes. The brand has a wide variety of dishes to choose from, including flatbreads, oat bowls, and smoothies.
When you get a Gobble box, you technically do the cooking, but the hard part—like peeling, marinating, and chopping—has already been done for you. This means you save loads of time (you can seriously get dinner on the table in 15 minutes) and still get to enjoy a fresh meal.
Snap Kitchen meals are dietitian-approved, and breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all offered, depending on the plan you choose. Snap Kitchen is also great if you're dieting, since it offers variations for keto and paleo individuals.
Dinnerly allows you to pick your delivery day and recipes (choose from 16 a week, and also have the option to make your meals vegetarian), and your food shows up in an insulated box for the day you've scheduled it. And because slicing and dicing can take so much of your precious time, the brand's recipes are made up of five simple steps. Bonus: You won't be penalized for skipping a week of your subscription, per Dinnerly's website.
This subscription, like many others, allows you to choose from a variety of recipes. However, Home Chef lets you personalize select meals by swapping out a side you don't love or even doubling up on the protein, making it truly customizable to suit your needs.
Purple Carrot helps you stick to whatever goals you've set for yourself, such as staying gluten-free or implementing lots of protein into your diet. You can also add packaged snacks to your box for days when you know you'll be on the go or simply want some healthy in-between meal options while working from home.
Green Chef is another great pick for those trying to adhere to keto and plant-based diets. The ingredients for each meal come with step-by-step instructions, along with photos, for those of us who are more visual (guilty).
This subscription service by Martha & Marley Spoon sends you ingredients to create Martha Stewart's recipes. The recipes take less than 30 minutes and can be completed in just six steps.
With Freshly, you choose from more than 30 dishes, and your choice comes already prepared by a chef. All you have to do is heat it up for three minutes and dig in.
Just because you're a health food fanatic doesn't mean you don't occasionally crave dessert. Enter: Food Stirs, which offers the makings of health-conscious baked goods, such as keto chocolate chip cookie mix and organic brownie mix.
Butcher Box is ideal for individuals on a heavy protein diet. You can create your own custom box and choose what kind of meat you want (including seafood options) and pick from a variety of high-quality cuts.
Love with Food offers different subscriptions that feature high-quality and popular snacks, such as Boom Chicka Pop and Snack Factory pretzels. An added bonus: For every subscription box you get, a meal is donated to someone in need.
Sun Basket offers nutritionist-approved meals and caters to special diets, including carb-conscious, paleo, Mediterranean, pescatarian, vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and diabetes-friendly. It uses organic produce, antibiotic- and hormone-free meat, and wild-caught and sustainable seafood—so you'll feel good about what you're putting into your body. Also worth noting: your weekly delivery arrives in recyclable and compostable packaging to minimize landfill waste.
Being health conscious doesn't mean you don't have a sweet tooth (everything in moderation, right?). Candy Club subscriptions offer a variety of tasty sweets, and it makes for a great gift for a loved one if candy isn't really your thing.
If 2021 is the year you're determined to learn how to cook more meat, you can stop your food subscription search here. Omaha Steaks value packages come with everything you need, down to the seasoning.
Sakara makes eating healthy easy by delivering plant-based, ready-to-eat foods right to your door. You can customize your weekly meal plan so it best fits your schedule.
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