Does a Meal Prep Service Make Sense for Your Finances?
Meal prep providers have change into more and more extra widespread over the previous few years. In the course of the COVID-19 pandemic when folks limiting their journeys out of the home, meals supply providers elevated drastically. Along with straight meals supply like DoorDash or UberEats, providers that delivered meal kits turned an increasing number of prevalent. Whereas these meal prep providers aren’t an ideal match for everybody, they will make sense for sure budgets.
What Is a Meal Prep Service?
A meal prep service, additionally typically referred to as a meal equipment, gives you with a sure variety of meals per week. You choose the variety of meals and which meals you need, and they are going to be delivered to your door. The substances are measured out in actual serving sizes, normally to make one to 4 parts.
It is not uncommon for meal equipment providers to supply a sure variety of “free” meals while you initially join. The concept is that you could check out the meal service for much less of a monetary dedication to see if it’s one thing that may give you the results you want.
One factor to concentrate on is that these free meals normally don’t all come upfront. If you happen to join a deal that provides 10 “free” meals, you received’t simply get 10 meals delivered to you for no value. As an alternative, it could be a reduction that’s equal to five free meals for the primary week, then 3 for the second week and a pair of for the third week.
What Are Some In style Meal Prep Providers?
There are various, many meal prep providers. Every of those meal equipment firms shares a number of traits, although they generally differ in a couple of key areas. Listed here are a couple of of the most typical meal prep providers:
- Blue Apron — Blue Apron has you select from their Signature recipes, Wellness or Vegetarian. You can too pair your recipes with their month-to-month wine subscription. Value is $63 for 3 meals per week for 2 folks
- Freshly — With Freshly, you’ll be able to select from 4, 6, 8, 10 or 12 meals per week, with every serving one meal for one individual. The fee begins as little as $8.49 per meal, plus delivery
- House Chef — With House Chef, you’ll be able to select from a wide range of completely different meals every week primarily based in your preferences and dietary restrictions. Meal plans begin as little as $6.99 per serving. You can too discover House Chef meal kits at choose Kroger grocery shops nationwide.
- HelloFresh — HelloFresh has over 27 recent recipes every week designed by cooks and nutritionists. Costs begin at $7.49 per serving and you may simply swap, skip or pause your order at any time
When Does a Meal Prep Service Make Sense?
Whereas a meal equipment or meal prep service could also be costlier than cooking your meals at house, it could make monetary sense for some folks. If you happen to discover you’re consuming most of your meals at eating places, a meal prep service might prevent a major amount of cash.
The easiest way to determine if a meal prep service would possibly make sense for you is to try your present meals price range. How much are you spending each week or month on food? Is that primarily spent on groceries, single meal deliveries, or eating places? Observe your spending with a device like Mint to determine the place your cash goes now.
Then you’ll be able to check out a couple of completely different meal prep kits and their costs to see if that may make sense in your price range. Keep in mind that many of those firms provide introductory charges so that you would possibly even be capable to attempt a couple of choices to seek out one which works for you. One other factor to recollect is that a number of the meals might need giant sufficient parts that they might work for leftover lunch the following day as properly, additional lowering your per-meal value.
The Backside Line
Utilizing a meal prep service could also be costlier than shopping for your individual meals and cooking at house. However, in case your culinary abilities, time, or vitality don’t permit that luxurious proper now, utilizing meal kits could be cheaper and more healthy than ordering supply or consuming at eating places. You could even discover making ready meal kits are a very good first step to extra confidence in making your individual meals.
Dan Miller is a contract author and founding father of PointsWithACrew.com, a web site that helps households to journey totally free / low-cost. His house base is in Cincinnati, however he tries to journey the world as a lot as potential together with his spouse and 6 youngsters.