What I Look for in a Meal Kit Delivery Service

Meal kit delivery services seem to be all the rage right now. They're still a fairly new concept, but the thing I found so interesting is that they are suitable for all ages. I'm 23, and lots of my friends are trying them out since they're working lots of hours and are only cooking for one. Chances are you're not going to buy an array of vegetables, spices, and things to garnish your dishes with when you're cookin' solo.

Clients (mostly in their 30s-40s) I work with seem to love them, especially with big families, because life gets hectic, and having dinners planned for you makes everything a little bit easier. It also decreases the chance of dropping by Mickey D's when you're on your way home from work and forgot to plan dinner.

Since they're getting increasingly popular, and more are coming about, I wanted to put together some things to look for when choosing a meal kit delivery service! Here are some of my criteria to look for:

What's the Source?

This is a biggie for me. Lot's of companies can reel you in by saying how much money you can save with buying only the ingredients you need through a meal kit service, but if the quality isn't good, you might as well head to that Mickey D's after work, right?

Do a little research and see where the companies source their food. The more transparent they are, the better. I personally look for organic. Spices, vegetables, and other ingredients you want to use more of can be heavily sprayed with chemicals, pesticides, fungicides, etc. I also want to see where my meat and fish are coming from. Saving time with a meal-kit service isn't worth it if my chicken is barely chicken, or my fish came from a farm instead of being wild-caught.

I know these claims can come off as pretentious, but honestly it's a shame there has to be these claims! This is how food should be, so knowing the source is huge.
 

Does it fit your lifestyle/taste?

 It can be easy to decide on a company based on their website, name, logo, or prices. Make sure to take a look at their menus for a couple sample weeks. Since there are lots of meal kit delivery services out there now, you can actually find ones that cater towards a specific diet/lifestyle. There are now paleo, vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, or even anti-inflammatory diet meal kit services.

Also, if companies are creating lavish, fancy meals, and you only want the food to be delivered so you don't have to buy it, it might not be for you. On the flip side, if you are looking for ways to expand your pasta dinners, look for companies that have more unique recipes.
 

Does it suit the environment?

I know this may not be the top of many people's lists, but it is a pretty big aspect of a meal kit service. If you have ever received one, you know that besides the food, a lot else comes with it. I came home to one on my doorstep with only 3 meals, and the box was up to my mid-thigh! There's a huge box, little boxes inside, bags, plastic containers, ice packs, and insulation.

Meal kit services are inherently going to lower food waste since they only give you the ingredients you are going to use, but there are lots of other waste that comes with it. More and more are using recycled products, and sending products that can be recycled, which I think is pretty dang cool.

 

Now go explore!

I actually love (quality) meal kits so much. For those with hectic lifestyles, those cooking for 1, those cooking for a whole family, or those just trying to expand their meal creativity, meal kit delivery services are definitely something to try out.

Not all are created equal, and there are lots of different things to look for when choosing a company that works for you. These are a couple things I look for, and hope this helped! Do you have a favorite service? Would love to chat about it in the comments :)

Alexandra Agasar