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The 7 Most Affordable Meal Delivery Services in 2022

Meal prep of The 7 Most Affordable Meal Delivery Services in 2022 is the practice of preparing the key elements of a dish

Meal delivery services can be a quick and convenient way to enjoy more healthy, home-cooked meals.

However, these services can range quite a bit in price, with some costing even double or triple as much as others.

This can make it particularly challenging for those on a tight budget to find an option that works for them.

We considered several factors when determining which meal delivery services to include in this article.

  • Price: We chose meal delivery services that are low in cost and provide good value, with prices ranging from $4.99–$12.99 per serving.
  • Other fees: In addition to considering the prices of meals, we also considered other fees for each service and included some that offer free or low cost shipping.
  • Availability: We selected meal delivery services that are available throughout most of the contiguous United States.
  • Variety: Each meal delivery service features a wide range of recipes and ingredients on weekly menus. We also picked services that cater to different eating patterns. Some also offer both meal kits and prepared meals.
  • Quality of ingredients: Meals are made using fresh, high quality ingredients and are free of artificial sweeteners, additives, or preservatives.
  • Nutrition: We picked meal delivery services that offer nutritionally balanced meals with ingredients like fruits, veggies, lean proteins, and whole grains.

Here are eight of the most affordable meal delivery services in 2022.

Best for beginners

Dinnerly

  • Price: $4.99–$6.39 per serving, $9.99 for shipping
  • Dietary needs: vegetarian, vegan, low calorie, low carb, dairy-free, no added gluten
  • Subscription: 3–6 meals per week, with 2 or 4 servings each
  • Customization: rotating weekly menu with 45+ recipes
  • Ingredient quality: antibiotic-free poultry, some organic produce
  • Who it’s best for: beginners looking for a simple way to save time on cooking

Dinnerly is a subscription-based service that provides meal kits that are delicious, easy to make, and affordable, making it one of the best options for beginners.

It offers a rotating menu of simple recipes and allows you to select 3–6 meals per week, with either 2 or 4 servings each.

A few examples of items on their menu include:

  • Low-Cal No-Skewer Chicken Kebabs
  • French Onion Mac & Cheese
  • Vietnamese-Inspired Steak Banh Mi Bowl

Low calorie, low carb, kid-friendly, dairy-free, vegan, and vegetarian options are available and labeled on the menu to help you find options that fit your needs.

Breakfasts, brunches, proteins, and desserts can also be ordered for certain special occasions.

Dinnerly is currently available in most of the contiguous United States and starts at $4.99 per serving, along with a flat shipping fee of $9.99 per order.

What our tester says

“All of the recipes I tried from Dinnerly were very easy to make and took less than 30 minutes from start to finish.

“For example, I only needed one bowl to prepare the Creamy Tomato Basil Tortellini with Peas, which made cleanup a breeze. While I did add a few more vegetables to the dish to make it more balanced, the flavors were spot-on, and even my toddler enjoyed it.

“You can read more about my experience trying Dinnerly in our full review.”

— Healthline Nutrition and Fitness Market Editor Kelli McGrane, MS, RD

Best meal kit

Martha and Marley Spoon

  • Price: $8.69–$12.99 per serving, $9.99 for shipping
  • Dietary needs: low calorie, low carb, vegetarian, vegan, dairy-free, no added gluten
  • Subscription: 2–6 meals per week, with 2 or 4 servings each
  • Customization: weekly rotating menu with 45+ recipes
  • Ingredient quality: antibiotic-free poultry, some organic produce
  • Who it’s best for: those interested in preparing more fresh and healthy meals at home

Martha and Marley Spoon is a meal kit company that provides high quality, chef-designed meals that can be prepared in a pinch.

Recipes feature seasonal ingredients sourced from trusted suppliers to maximize the quality of your meals.

You can customize your menu and choose between 2–6 meals per week, each containing 2 or 4 servings.

Some of the available entrees include:

  • Roasted Tilapia with Herbed Panko
  • Ravioli & Vegetarian Boscaiola Sauce
  • Japanese Chicken Udon Stir-Fry

The company also provides add-ons, including a la carte proteins, coffee kits, and desserts, for an additional cost.

Martha and Marley Spoon costs $8.69–$12.99 per serving, along with a shipping fee of $9.99 per order. The service is available throughout most of the contiguous United States.

Best for prepared meals

Mosaic Foods

  • Price: $4.99–$11.99 per serving, $9.99 for shipping with 6 items, free shipping for 12 or 18 items
  • Dietary needs: vegan, vegetarian, wheat-free, nut-free, high protein
  • Subscription: 6, 12, or 18 items per week with 1, 2, or 4 servings each
  • Customization: menu with over 70 items to choose from
  • Ingredient quality: some organic ingredients
  • Who it’s best for: people who want to save time in the kitchen or who follow a plant-based diet

Mosaic Foods offers a wide range of veggie bowls, pizzas, soups, smoothies, and oat bowls, all of which are plant-based and fully prepared.

Each week, you can build your own box with either 6, 12, or 18 items. Most items contain one serving, but larger serving sizes are available for select items, including pizzas and family meals.

All menu items are free of artificial ingredient. Some also feature organic produce, depending on availability.

Items that are vegan, wheat-free, nut-free, or high in protein are labeled on the menu.

Here are a few of the items they offer:

  • Jerk Lentil & Plantain Bowl
  • Roasted Grape & Butternut Squash Pizza
  • Miso Soba Noodle Soup

Prices range from $4.99–$11.99 per serving, depending on the specific items you select. Shipping costs $9.99 for a box with six items, but shipping is free for larger orders with 12 or 18 items.

Mosaic is available in most areas throughout the Eastern and Western United States. You can enter your ZIP code on their website to check whether delivery is available in your area.

What our tester says

“I tried several of the family meals and appreciated that all I needed to do was bake them. Plus, they could be served in the same dish, so cleaning up after dinner was super easy. Every family meal includes at least four different vegetables, and I really enjoyed most of the flavors.

“However, some of the meals needed more time in the oven than the instructions called for.

“If you’re looking for a range of prepared food options to have on hand, Mosaic Foods also offers single-serve items like smoothies, oat bowls, and soups that only need a few minutes in the microwave.”

— Healthline Nutrition and Fitness Market Editor Kelli McGrane, MS, RD

Best for families

Home Chef

  • Price: starts at $7.99 per serving, $10.99–$15.99 for shipping
  • Dietary needs: low carb, low calorie, vegetarian
  • Subscription: 2–6 recipes per week, with 2, 4, or 6 servings each
  • Customization: rotating weekly menu with 30+ recipes, allows you to customize certain dishes by swapping, upgrading, or adding proteins
  • Ingredient quality: some organic produce and poultry
  • Who it’s best for: busy families looking to streamline weeknight dinner prep

Home Chef is a budget-friendly meal kit service that makes it easy to enjoy more healthy meals at home.

Each week, you can order boxes with 2, 4, or 6 servings each and select between 2–6 meals per week, making it an excellent choice for families and large households.

Calorie-conscious, carb-conscious, and vegetarian recipes are available on their weekly menu. Many recipes also allow you to choose from several protein sources to customize your meal.

Plus, they offer meal kits that are ready in 15 minutes or fewer and fully prepared oven-ready options.

Here are a few examples of meals on their menu:

  • Chicken Breast and Creamy Jalapeño Sauce
  • Spaghetti with Roasted Red Pepper Cream
  • Hawaiian-Style Sloppy Joes

Home Chef costs $9.99 per serving, and additional shipping fees are calculated when signing up.

Home Chef can be delivered to most areas within the United States, and you can enter your ZIP code on their website to determine availability.

What our tester says

“I really enjoyed the meals I tried from Home Chef. The recipes were pretty straightforward, and all of the ingredients were packaged by recipe, making it easy for me to get dinner ready in about 30 minutes. My family especially liked the Chicken Lorraine, and I thought the sauce, fresh lemon, and almonds added a nice boost of flavor.

“Read more about my experience with Home Chef in this comparison of HelloFresh and Home Chef.”

— Healthline writer SaVanna Shoemaker, MS, RDN, LD

Most variety

HelloFresh

  • Price: $7.99–$9.99 per serving, $10.99 for shipping
  • Dietary needs: pescatarian, vegetarian, vegan, low calorie, low carb, Mediterranean
  • Subscription: 2–6 meals per week, with 2 or 4 servings each
  • Customization: rotating weekly menu with 50+ options, customization options for some sides and proteins
  • Ingredient quality: some organic produce
  • Who it’s best for: people looking to try new recipes and add more diversity to their diet

HelloFresh is not only one of the most popular and affordable meal delivery services available but also one of the most versatile.

The company offers an extensive menu with a variety of family-friendly, low calorie, low carb, vegetarian, vegan, pescatarian, Mediterranean, and quick and easy options.

You can order 2–6 recipes per week, with either 2 or 4 servings each.

Some of the recipes that they offer include:

  • Chicken Ramen in a Shoyu-Style Broth
  • One-Pot Vegan Cauliflower & Bean Soup
  • Spicy Harissa Barley Bowls

Each box includes preportioned ingredients and a recipe card with step-by-step instructions.

Some dishes also include customization options, allowing you to upgrade or swap certain sides or proteins.

HelloFresh starts at $7.99 per serving, and a flat fee of $10.99 for shipping is applied at checkout. Delivery is available throughout the contiguous United States.

What our tester says

“HelloFresh’s huge selection of recipes made it easy for me to find dishes that would appeal to my family. Like Home Chef, all of the ingredients were grouped by recipe, so each meal only took me 30 or 40 minutes to prepare. The Cheesy Smothered Mushroom Chicken was a family favorite, and I’ve recreated the dish multiple times.

“While HelloFresh doesn’t have as many options for certain diets like keto or paleo, it has a larger weekly menu than many other services and offers a good range of cuisines and ingredients.

“You can read more about the meals I made from HelloFresh in this comprehensive review.”

— Healthline writer SaVanna Shoemaker, MS, RDN, LD

Best for weight loss

Blue Apron

  • Price: $7.99–$11.99 per serving, $9.99 for shipping
  • Dietary needs: vegetarian, low calorie, low carb
  • Subscription: 2–4 meals per week, with 2 or 4 servings each
  • Customization: rotating weekly menu with 50+ recipes
  • Ingredient quality: sustainably sourced seafood, hormone-free meat and poultry, some organic produce
  • Who it’s best for: individuals interested in adding more nutritious, WW-approved meals to their diet

Blue Apron is a meal kit service that delivers fresh, preportioned ingredients directly to your door.

Their signature plan offers 2 to 4 recipes per week, with either 2 or 4 servings each. They also have a vegetarian plan and wellness plan, both of which provide 2–4 recipes per week with 2 servings each.

When creating your menu, you can select from several meal kits and heat-and-eat options, including low calorie, carb-conscious, and diabetes-friendly recipes.

They also offer many meals that are approved by Weight Watchers (WW), making it a good choice for those who are looking to lose weight.

Some of the available entrees include:

  • Spicy Vegetable Tostadas
  • Indian Shrimp & Mustard Seed Rice
  • Oven-Baked Hot Italian Sausage & Gnocchi

Blue Apron starts at $7.99 per serving, along with a flat delivery fee of $9.99.

Delivery is currently available throughout the contiguous United States.

What our tester says

“While some of Blue Apron’s recipes required a bit of multitasking, the ingredients arrived in good condition and were packaged by recipe, so each dish came together quickly. I also appreciated that the salmon was vacuum-sealed for optimal freshness, and it paired really nicely with the almond-date topping included in the recipe.

“Blue Apron’s menu doesn’t accommodate very many specialty diets, but it does have some unique offerings, like WW-approved meals and a wide range of pantry items like spices, meal kit bundles, and cooking tools.

“To learn more about my experience trying Blue Apron, check out our full review.”

— Healthline Nutrition and Fitness Market Editor Kelli McGrane, MS, RD

Best plant-based

Daily Harvest

  • Price: $5.99–$11.99 per item with free shipping
  • Dietary needs: vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free
  • Subscription: 9, 14, or 24 single-serve items per week
  • Customization: menu with 100+ plant-based items available
  • Ingredient quality: mostly organic ingredients with no artificial preservatives
  • Who it’s best for: people looking for an easy way to round out their diet with more plant-based meals and snacks

Daily Harvest specializes in providing fully prepared meals and snacks that are plant-based, gluten-free, and mostly organic.

They offer over 100 items to choose from, including a variety of smoothies, flatbreads, harvest bowls, and desserts.

Here are some examples of items currently on their menu:

  • Brussels Sprouts + Sesame Harvest Bowl
  • Pineapple + Smoked Paprika Flatbread
  • Green Chickpea + Turmeric Soup

Each week, you can mix and match your favorite meals from their full menu to create your own box with 9, 14, or 24 items.

Most items on their menu contain one serving, but certain items — including their lattes, scoops, and bites — include multiple servings.

According to their website, all dishes are free of artificial ingredients and most items are also organic.

Prices range from $5.99–$11.99 per item, and free shipping is available throughout the contiguous United States.

What our tester says

“I liked most of the items I tried from Daily Harvest, and they were generally pretty easy to prepare. The snack bites, oat bowls, and chia bowls were my favorites, plus they were super convenient for breakfasts and snacks.

“I also appreciated that the menu includes a wide range of plant-based ingredients, which can help keep things from feeling repetitive over time.

“That said, I found that most of the entrees weren’t filling enough for a full meal, and a few items didn’t keep their texture well after reheating.

“You can read more about the pros and cons of Daily Harvest in this hands-on review.”

— Healthline writer Rachael Link, MS, RD

source : https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/healthy-meals-on-a-budget

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