Recently, the need for meal delivery services has burgeoned. With so many businesses flooding the market, few services still remain at the top for us.
One of those stand-out companies is Blue Apron. However, the race to be the lead dog is very competitive, and it is hard to know which is the best meal kit delivery service.
This article will explore top Blue Apron competitors and give you a window into why their services stand out as viable options.
What is the Blue Apron Meal Kit Service?
Blue Apron emerged in 2012 and has the distinction of being the first meal delivery service in the United States. It has quickly become one of the most respected services in the nation by offering chef-created and inspired dinners that contain pre-portioned ingredients.
The meal kits are delivered directly to your doorstep, with no need to waste time shopping! And for affordable price.
Each of Blue Aprons meal kits comes with everything you need to cook tantalizing creations. You simply follow the included easy-to-read recipe card. Each menu item takes 20 minutes to 45 minutes to cook, from start to finish (that include the prep time).
Blue Apron Meal Plans
Let’s take a look at the meal plans offered by Blue Apron.
You can pick between two, three, or four recipes each week that are portioned to feed two individuals. If you have a hard time deciding which recipes to choose, then you can let their team of meal experts make the choices for you (it will be like Christmas in a box every week!).
If you are feeding a family of four, then this is a great choice. The culinary team devices seven recipe options every week. You have the option of picking tow three or four recipes for delivery. This is a great family meal choice for anyone seeking a subscription service.
Vegetarian Plan for 2
Blue Apron offers vegetarian meal choices made from premium seasonal produce. You can choose three vegetarian recipes a week for two individuals.
Blue Apron is also offering a wine program that provides you with exclusive access to leading affordable wines. You pick which varietals you prefer, such as reds or whites, from their highly acclaimed selection.
The wine choices offered have all been picked by Blue Apron to complement each one of their meal recipes. The wines come in a specially designed bottle that is 2/3 the size of a standard bottle (500ml) which is the perfect amount for two people to share. The decision to enroll in the wine program services per week is a definite perk. It’s just a greater way to enjoy the many services that this type of company provides.
Pros and Cons of Blue Apron
As with any commercial service, there are always pros and cons.
Below we have strived to outline the advantages and disadvantages of Blue Apron:
- A highly respected company with an impeccable reputation.
- The meal kit delivery service saves you time because you don’t have to plan and grocery shop.
- Each meal kit contains high-quality ingredients that have been sustainably sourced.
- The recipes are chef-created with fresh produce and premium spice blends.
- Recipes change each week, so you always have a variation to pick from.
- Each meal is perfectly preportioned.
- All packaging and ice packs are recyclable.
- Top-quality and knowledgeable customer service.
- The menu features different diet plans such as vegetarian creations, wellness low-calorie meals, diabetes-friendly, Mediterranean meals, and more.
- The service is remarkably affordable and often ends up costing less than old-school meal preparation.
- An impressive wine program that easily pairs with their many gourmet meals.
- The ingredients offered are not all organic.
- The menu does not support a vegan diet, gluten-free & Paleo diet.
- Plans only for two people and four people.
What Other Meal Kit Delivery services Are Like Blue Apron?
As with any business that has gained acclaim, competition starts to explode. Blue Apron is no longer the new kid on the block, and there are quite a few other companies that have followed in their footsteps. Competitors have had to bring their ‘A’ game to outshine the leader.
Let’s examine each one of the best meal kit delivery companies to learn about their stand-out features and where they might need improvement.
Sunbasket – The Healthy Blue Apron Alternative
With Sunbasket, you can choose menu selections for breakfast, lunch, and diner. The organic meal delivery also boasts add ons like pre-made pasta with fresh sauces or a hearty breakfast or no-prep lunch bowl.
Choose a meal plan that fits your particular dietary requirements or tastes, all filled with farm-fresh organic ingredients. Pick between the following:
- Paleo: Meals with no dairy, grains, soy, corn, or gluten.
- Gluten-free: Only wheat alternatives. However, it should be noted that these meals are not suitable if you have severe gluten allergies.
- Carb-Conscious: The recipes contain 25 to 35g of net carbs or less per serving, and they are loaded with ample protein.
- Lean and Clean: These meal kits are made up of whole foods with under 600 calories.
- Chef’s Choice: The best seasonal recipes, that have been hand-picked by the sun Basket team.
- Vegetarian: The meal kits contain no meat or seafood.
- Diabetes-Friendly: All of the recipes have the approval of the American Diabetes Association
- Mediterranean: Meals made from healthy fats such as wild-caught salmon and whole grains. All meats are responsibly sourced.
- Fresh and Ready: These recipes require no prep time. You can simply heat and enjoy (they take less than three minutes to prepare).
- Pescatarian: Contains no meat or polulter. They are only vegetarian meals combined with wild-caught salmon.
Pros and Cons of Sun Basket
Below are a few of the pros and cons concerning Sun Basket.
- All ingredients are USDA organic and sustainably sourced.
- They have a wide array of dietary choices to fit anyone’s needs.
- Easy-to-follow recipes for different cooking skill levels.
- Oven-ready meal options for time-constrained peopled.
- Many add-ons, such as proteins, breakfast options, and lunch choices to customize your menu creation.
- You can skip a week when necessary or cancel at any time.
- Meal kit plans available in two and four servings.
- Some meals are offered in one-person serving!
- Sun Basket believes in giving back and focuses on making donations each week to charitable causes.
- Recyclable packaging in an effort to reduce the carbon footprint.
- Sun Basket offers only responsibly raised meats and wild-caught seafood.
- Although they offer gluten-free recipes, if you have a gluten allergy, you should avoid their foods because even the gluten-free meal kits are handled at a facility that also works with gluten, so cross-contamination can occur.
- For now, the company does not ship to AK, HI, MT, and parts of NM.
- Since it’s all organic, the subscription price is a bit higher than Blue Apron.
Recommended Sun Basket Meals
Let’s explore five of the leading meal options that are sure to tantalize your taste buds:
- Pork chops with fig agrodolce and caraway cabbage.
- Sweet and sour tofu with water chestnuts, snap peas, and white rice.
- Cheesy chicken Tetrazzini with braised kale
- Seared romaine salad with spiced chickpeas, piquillo peppers, and almonds
- Reuben-style tempeh sandwiches with avocado and carrot fries.
Home Chef – Plethora of Easy to Cook Meal Kits
Home Chef is a meal kit company with a focus on creating delicious easy to cook meals. Some of their meals are even oven-ready, with no prep-work at all!
One of the stand-out features of Home Chef is that it provide the ability to customize your meal kits. That means you can swap out, upgrade, or even double up the proteins in your meals.
Start out letting Home Chef know what you like and don’t like so they can make proper food recommendations. You are also free to pick out your own delicious choices every week, out of the 20+ recipes offered every week.
There are always new and exciting recipes to pick between at Home Chef. Each recipe is a classic with a nice twist, that will get your taste buds watering.
Building Your Meal Box With Home Chef
When you create your meal box, you can pick between the following:
- Meal kits that take 30 minutes or less
- Some express 15-minute meal kits
- Oven ready meals
- Grill ready (You can barbecue some of the Home Chef recipes, arriving with grill safe bag!)
- Culinary collection, with delicatessen from around the world
- Entree salads
You can order Home Chef meals online and utilize the meal kit delivery services, or you can buy Home Chef products at certain Kroger stores. In fact, they are one of the first meal kit service companies to enter the grocery shopping arena with their meals.
Pros and Cons of Home Chef
As with any meal kit service, there are pros and cons with Home Chef that you’ll need to factor in before you can decide if the service fits your particular needs.
- High-quality ingredients in each recipe
- Protein packs add-on choices.
- Customize your protein choices.
- Fresh ingredients.
- Precisely portioned meals.
- 20 plus recipes per week to pick from.
- Recyclable and reusable packaging.
- Many classic comfort food recipes are sure to appeal to traditional appetites.
- Additional ingredients are sometimes needed for Home Chef recipes and are not include,d such as salt, pepper, or olive oil.
- No program for one person.
Five Home Chef Meals To Try:
Below are five tastes meal choices by Home Chef:
- Mahi-Mahi and Tuscan herb sauce with Italian roasted potatoes and broccolini
- Miso ginger shrimp and snow peas with crispy rice cakes
- Southern baked pork chop with hot honey and cheddar-cauliflower mash
- Teriyaki pulled pork with jasmine rice and cashews
- Mexican-style pork meatballs with fajita veggies and black beans
Dinnerly – The Affordable Meal Kit Like Blue Apron
Dinnerly might offer less upscale meal choices than competitors, but the recipes are delicious and super easy on the wallet, with a starting price of only $4.69 per serving.
With 16 easy-to-follow recipes available every week, you’ll have plenty of variety to pick between. Another perk is that each meal takes only five prep steps to prepare, which is an excellent time-saving feature that cannot be overlooked.
Another feature to consider about Dinnerly is that they don’t take a walk on the wild or exotic side with their recipes. There are no rare spices or ingredients, unlike with other companies. The meal choices are all very classic, so they will appeal to picky eaters, kids, and families. Many parents enjoy the family box because their recipe choices are child-friendly.
Pros and Cons of Dinnerly
All subscription services have their pros and cons.
- Most affordable meal kit service.
- Recyclable and light packaging.
- You pick the delivery day.
- Five-step prep work for time savings.
- Appeals to picky eaters.
- 16 recipes a week.
- Protein packs and easy desserts available.
- Low-calorie choices appeal to dieters.
- Some recipes do require additional ingredients, so you’ll need a well-stocked pantry to meet the needs.
- Some would find the meals too simple.
Five Dinnerly Meal Options We recommend Trying
Below are five of the tasty meal kits offered by Dinnerly:
- Low-Carb Roasted Chicken with green beans & peppers.
- Chicken parm with roasted broccoli & garlic bread.
- Low-cal chicken & veggie stir-fry with noodles.
- French onion beef with egg noodles.
- Low-cal shrimp chowder with potatoes & corn.
Freshly – Best Meal Kit Delivery For Premade Meals
Freshly meal delivery offers premade meals but its quality is comparable to Blue Apron. Many consider the subscription service ideal because you can heat, serve, and enjoy in under three minutes – not like Blue Apron meals that do require cooking.
In today’s fast-paced world with careers, family, long commutes, and more, grocery shopping is a pain. People are seeking speed, so this delivery service has some undeniable appeal. After a long day, the last thing many people want to do is spend an excessive amount of time in the kitchen cooking.
Pros and Cons of Freshly
Below are a few notable perks and disadvantages of Freshly.
- Freshly’s goal is to offer less processed foods, with less sugar, and more nutrients.
- The meals are 100% gluten-free.
- Fast and easy meals that you only need to heat in microwave or oven.
- A vast collection of 36 weekly meals to choose from.
- Recyclable packaging.
- Can choose dietary preferences such as dairy-free, gluten-free, and soy-free.
- Excellentt service for weight loss diet.
- Choose from four to twelve single portioned meals per week.
- Skip weeks or cancel at any time.
- Prepared meals, which is a perk for many, but some might feel they lack freshness.
Best Freshly Meal Picks
Below are a few top meal choices from Freshly:
- Red pepper chicken bowl with whole grains & green lentils
- Savory-sweet chicken teriyaki bowl with basmati rice & veggies
- Herbed Paleo pork chop with carb smart parsnip-cauliflower mash
- Chicken Livorno with hearty white beans & kale
- Carb smart mojo chicken with veg-loaded refried beans
Martha & Marley Spoon Meal Kits for Martha Stewart Fans
If you are a fan of Martha Stewart, the mother of all American home cooking, this meal kit service is for you!
All the 25+ meals offered on the weekly menu are crafted and designed by Marth Stewarts and her culinary team and are perfect for people who wish to eat classic meals at home.
Martha & Marley Spoon meal kit subscription offer plans for two and four persons, with three meals to six meals per week.
Pros and Cons of Martha & Marley Spoon
Below is a list of all benefit sides and disadvantages of Martha & Marley Spoon:
- Pre-portions high-quality ingredients.
- Martha Stewart’s best recipes every week.
- 29 changing recipes to choose from every week.
- five food categories: healthy low-calorie diet, vegetarian, regular meat & seafood diet, easy under 30 minutes meals, and kid-Friendly meals.
- Desserts and protein pack available every week as add-ons.
- Some Gluten-free friendly meals.
- Meal bags with sorted ingredients per recipe for grab-and-go easy cooking.Flexible subscription.
- Some meals are high on calorie count per serving.
Recommended Martha & Marley Spoon Meals To Try:
- Chili-Rubbed Steak Tacos with Salsa Verde & Creamy Slaw.
- Oven-Fried Berbere Chicken with Spinach, Dates & Almond Salad.
- Low-Cal Sheet Pan Shrimp Scampi with Roasted Corn, Zucchini & Tomato
- Caramelized Onion & Mushroom Burger with Parmesan Fries.
- Low-Cal Miso-Tahini Udon Salad with Blistered Asparagus & Scallions.
Hello Fresh – #1 Most Popular Meal Kit Service Along With Blue Apron
If we were running a popularity contest, rest assured that Hello Fresh and Blue Apron would be the top two. Both of the companies have emerged as leaders in the meal kits market.
Hello Fresh has taken the spot as the number one largest global company – so they must be doing something right!
The Hello Fresh home-style meals are geared towards singles, couples, and busy families. The 20 menu choices are broken down by fast & easy recipes (sure to appeal to a rushed parent), low-calorie, pescatarian, and vegetarian.
Pros and Cons of Hello Fresh
Hello Fresh has a lot of pros, and few cons, to factor for being one of the best meal kit delivery:
- Pre-measured and pre-portioned foods.
- Easy-t0-follow recipes.
- Serves 11 countries, including the United States, Canada, Western Europe, and Australia.
- Pick from 20 weekly recipe choices.
- Responsible ingredient sourcing.
- Recyclable packaging
- HelloFresh charge for shipping after the first order.
- Does not offer meals for a vegan diet.
Some Great Hello Fresh Meals To Try
Let’s take a look at five of the top meal options that are suitable for young and old alike.
- Chicken sausage spaghetti bolognese with zucchini & parmesan.
- Szechuan pork & green bean stir-fry with candied peanuts & jasmine rice.
- Cheesy smothered mushroom chicken with mashed potatoes & roasted carrots.
- Salsa verde enchiladas with poblano pepper, black beans & Monterey jack.
- Middle Eastern steak & rice pilaf with tzatziki, almonds & smoky roasted veggies.
Green Chef – USDA Approved Meal Kits
Green Chef is a USDA-certified organic company and is ideal for anyone seeking clean food choices. Choose from Keto+Paleo, Balanced Living, and Plant-Powered meal kit plans.
Green Chef is also focused on making meal prep easy. Most ingredients arrive pre-pealed and pre-chopped, to make your cooking super easy and light.
As their name indicates, Green Chef is all about eating right and living green. Their delivery box is eco-friendly, and is the only meal kit company that offsets 100% of its direct carbon emissions and plastic packaging in every box!
Pros and Cons of Green Chef
If you are looking for organic meal delivery, then weigh the pros and cons of Green Chef.
- 100% USDA organic ingredients and locally sourced foods.
- Recipe choices for those with dietary restrictions – vegans, paleo, keto, weight-loss, clean eating.
- Eco-friendly packaging.
- Provides in-depth nutritional specs such as grams of protein, carbohydrates, and fat content of the meals.
- Can feed two to four people with three to four meals per week depending on plan size picked.
- Expensive in comparison to Blue Apron.
- Charge shipping each week.
Five Green Chef Meal Choices
Below are five gourmet meals offered by Green Chef.
- Creamy shrimp primavera, spaghetti squash, tomato, peas, Parmesan, toasted sunflower seeds.
- Korean beef bulgogi stir-fried broccoli, bell pepper, cabbage, carrots & cashews.
- Italian shrimp with pesto with sautéed Brussels sprouts, carrots & roasted red peppers.
- Chicken with harissa apricot sauce toasted pearl couscous with dried apricots, sautéed broccoli.
- Kidney bean burgers Monterey Jack cheese, creamy chimichurri, roasted potato wedges.
Without a doubt, a lot of Blue Apron competitors have appeared, and there are even more on the horizon.
We have picked some stand-out meal kit delivery services that we feel are serious competition to Blue Apron in the above reviews. One of them might fit your needs or budget better than Blue Apron.
Other Related FAQ:
Is Hello Fresh better than Blue Apron?
Without a doubt, we like Blue Apron better because of their upscale recipes and diverse choices, but we release that might not fit everyone’s tastes.
Quite frankly, they offer excellent food choices, impressive service, and acceptable prices. However, there is always something to be said for experience, and Blue Apron has honed its skills for almost two decades now.
Read our complete comparison between Blue Apron and Hello Fresh Here
What is the Cheapest Meal Delivery Service?
Dinnerly stands out as the most budget-friendly meal kit service if you try to save money but still want to enjoy yummy foods. You can eliminate the timely fiasco of grocery store shopping but still save money on your family meals. Read our Dinnerly full review HERE
Is Blue Apron Worth the Money?
We think Blue Apron is worth the money, but the ultimate choice will be yours and your checkbook.
In most situations, the price of Blue Apron’s meals is comparable to a trip to the local grocery store. If you compare it to take-outs or ordering in – it is sure more affordable, and healthier!
The meal kit delivery company has a lot going for it which makes it valued savings.
Are Blue Apron Meals Healthy?
Nowadays, meal delivery services are remarkably healthy, and Blue Apron meets the criteria. The company even offers a dedicated wellness plan, with weight watches approved meals, low carb meals, and more.
Unlike other meal kit delivery services, Blue Apron requires that all of its suppliers certify that the products and ingredients are sourced from non-GMOs (non-genetically modified organisms).
Does Blue Apron Have Vegetarian Options?
Yes, Blue Apron meal kit delivery services offer vegetarian meal choices. You have the option of picking three vegetarian recipes a week for two individuals. The plan is called the ‘Vegetarian Plan for 2.”
If you wanted to enjoy more vegetarian recipes per week for additional family members, then you would have to enroll in two meal kit services for food delivery to form an informal family plan.
What are the Highest-Rated Meal Delivery Services?
Our top choices for the highest-rated meal delivery services are Sun Basket, Blue Apron, and Dinnerly. We believe that each of the meal kit delivery services appeals to a specific demographic.
SunBasket offers organic meals and add-ons such as breakfast and lunch choices. Their meal plans also fit a vast array of specific dietary choices. The per-serving information is nicely broken down, so you know the specs of each recipe with no guessing or search needed.
Blue Apron Apron provides the best meal kit gourmet options with truly stellar creations, which is why we are a huge fan. Most people consider the food restaurant quality. In our review, they come out on top as the leading meal kit company.