The Best Meal Delivery Services of 2023
Seniors face dietary challenges as they age, especially in the presence of chronic health conditions, mobility challenges, and low energy. According to the USDA, over 44 million Americans are defined as “food insecure,” including many seniors who live with fixed incomes or with limited access to grocery stores.
Malnutrition often afflicts seniors who face these challenges, as they struggle to get to the store or cook healthy meals for themselves. Loved ones can shop and cook for their senior relatives, but this is rarely a permanent solution. As a result, meal delivery subscriptions have become popular alternatives to transportation services in getting seniors the meals they need.
As meal delivery has recently boomed into a multimillion-dollar industry, many families struggle to sift through all the options and choose the best service for their needs. This guide will help you understand the differences between many meal delivery plans, including the services they offer and the companies that run them. We’ll walk you step-by-step through the selection process so you can find the meal delivery company that’s right for you or your senior loved one.
How We Chose the Best Meal Delivery Services
With dozens of companies to choose from, our research focused on those that provide the best value overall based on multiple financial and health factors. We reviewed 28 companies that offer meal kits and prepackaged meals and chose the 8 stand-outs based on these characteristics:
- Wide Availability: We only considered companies that can deliver to the continental 48 United States or are likely to expand their services in the near future.
- Health Options: We only considered companies that offer at least one specialized diet option, as well as regular menu items that feature vegetables and other healthy ingredients.
- Affordable Pricing: We only considered companies that provide meals at $15 or less per serving, with the majority of companies offering meals between $10-$15 each.
Meal Delivery Service Categories
Meal delivery services usually provide either meal kits or fully prepared meals, packed in ice and delivered to your door in a large box. In either case, many companies let you purchase meals through a subscription that can be paused or canceled at any time.
Review our brief descriptions of meal kit services and fully-prepared meal services below, then check out our guide to discover some of the best brands available in these categories.
What you get:
- A recipe card: The card will have easy step-by-step instructions and may include visuals and nutritional information. Many of these recipes can be completed in 30 minutes, though some may take up to an hour.
- Ingredients: These will probably be individually wrapped in the exact amount you need. In the case of produce, they may already be washed. You’ll need to do some chopping and cooking but likely little to no measuring.
What you need to already have:
- Standard appliances: You’ll need a sink, stovetop, and oven to use most meal kits.
- Cookware: You’ll need some pots, pans, cutting boards, knives, and utensils. Recipes won’t call for specialized cooking tools.
- A few staples: Some companies will assume that you already stock basic items such as salt, pepper, and olive oil.
Fully Prepared Meals
What you get:
- Fully cooked meals: These will be either fresh or frozen. Just heat and serve the single-serving you are provided according to the directions. Many of these meals come with side dishes included in the same tray as the main dish.
What you need to already have:
- Refrigerator with freezer: Your meals will come in a box with ice packs or some other cooling material, so they’ll be safe sitting on your porch for a while if you’re not home to receive them. Once in the fridge, they may last about a week, though this varies according to the company. Freeze whatever you don’t plan on eating.
- Oven or microwave: Most meals should be heated in the microwave. Some may be heated in the oven if you prefer, though not all companies provide oven-safe containers.
The 8 Best Meal Delivery Companies of 2023
Overview of Meal Delivery Companies
Cost per Serving
Special Diet Options
Number of Weekly Meal Choices*
Meal Kits Services
Lunch and dinner
-Health & diet
-Vegetarian & Vegan
-Meat & fish
-Under 30 minutes
Lunch and dinner
$8.99-$12.49 plus some surcharges
-Meat & veggie
-Fit & Wholesome
-Quick & Easy
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
$11.00-$13.25 for Meal Kits, or 12.99 for Prepared Meals
Pre-Prepared Meal Services
Lunch and dinner
$11-$13.50, depending on the number of meals.
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
$7.99 for regular meals, $8.99 for pureed and gluten-free meals, free for some seniors
60+ items for self-pay customers
Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
Breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and shakes
Order exactly 21 meals and get 5% off your order, free shipping to zones 1 and 2, $19.95 priority shipping to zone 3
Note: Most companies have a large selection of recipes that they rotate through, with different recipes open for ordering on different weeks. Some companies frequently change menus to accommodate seasonal items. Companies that we’ve marked as providing lunch and dinner may not label any items as lunch items, but we consider them suitable for either meal.
The 3 Best Meal Kit Services
Best for a Simple Cooking Experience
Martha & Marley Spoon is a collaboration between beloved chef Martha Stewart and the meal kit brand Marley Spoon. Martha Stewart has been influencing the food industry since the 1970s when she began a catering business. Since then she’s become familiar thanks to her television shows, cookbooks, and magazines. Marley Spoon has been delivering sustainable, easy-to-use meal kits globally since 2014, and its collaboration with Martha Stewart in 2016 was a perfect way to bring Marley Spoon’s meal kits to Americans.
If you want to cook more for yourself but are worried that meal kit recipes will be over your head, Martha & Marley Spoon might be the meal kit brand you need. These kits come neatly packaged with each meal’s ingredients in separate paper bags so there’s no confusion. The meals can all be prepared in six steps according to the included recipe cards. Martha & Marley Spoon takes care to make all its meal kits as user-friendly as possible, even for the novice chef.
Martha & Marley Spoon Services and Products
-Vegetarian & Vegan
-Meat & fish
-Under 30 minutes
Pros and Cons of Ordering Marley Spoon
- Recipes created by celebrity chef Martha Stewart
- Seasonal, sustainable ingredients
- High-quality ingredients sourced from award-winning companies
- Reasonable costs per serving, as well as reasonable shipping costs
- Lengthy cooking times, as some recipes may take longer than 30 minutes.
Best American Menu Items
HelloFresh is working to alter the way people think about healthy eating, not just in America but across the globe. This brand currently delivers meals in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, and beyond. Its wide reach makes it all the more surprising that HelloFresh started extremely small, with founders Dominik Richter and Thomas Griesel hand-delivering groceries to several friends in Berlin, Germany.
HelloFresh’s menu has something to suit any craving and features many internationally-inspired dishes. Yet, perhaps the tastiest items from HelloFresh are its twists on classic American food. For those who love a good burger now and then, HelloFresh might be a good choice for you if you crave restaurant-style burgers but don’t want to leave your home to enjoy them.
HelloFresh Services and Products
-Meat & veggie
-Fit & Wholesome
-Quick & Easy
HelloFresh meal kits are a time-tested way to get fresh groceries and easy recipes delivered to your door. This brand tests all of its recipes 45 separate times to streamline them as much as possible.
Consider HelloFresh’s upsides and downsides below.
Pros and Cons of Ordering HelloFresh
- Reasonable starting costs as low as $8.99 per serving
- Low shipping fees at $9.99 per box
- Great discounts as high as $80 for first-time customers
- Four of seven meal categories include a surcharge
- No special diet options available
Best Vegan Meals
Purple Carrot challenges our culture’s concept of what makes food appealing and healthy. The entire product line features only plant-based meals, which means no dairy, meat, poultry, fish, or eggs. Purple Carrot runs on two linked goals: better health and a better environmental legacy. CEO Andy Levitt founded the company in 2014 in part because of his experiences with chronic health problems but also because he realized that plant-based eating uses far fewer precious resources than diets with animal products do.
Many meal delivery companies offer one or two vegan dinners a week, but Purple Carrot rises above the rest by fully committing to a plant-based menu. Vegans can enjoy their Purple Carrot meal kits without needing to comb through ingredient lists and only order certain menu items. Plant-based offerings are the main attraction, not an afterthought. Those who eat a completely vegan diet will never have to worry about accidentally ingesting animal products.
Purple Carrot Services and Products
Purple Carrot meal kits are easy to cook with and come in family and two-person-sized subscriptions that can be paused or canceled easily. Read on to learn about all the pros and cons of this innovative brand.
Pros and cons of ordering Purple Carrot
- Free shipping on all orders of all sizes
- Breakfast options available
- Unique ingredients, including pumpkin alfredo, quinoa soup, and tamarind chutney
- A limited menu of about 12 different meals
- Higher cost for the two-person subscription compared to the family plan
The 5 Best Pre-Prepared Meal Services
Best Single-Serve Meals
Factor75 was a Chicago-based meal service startup founded in 2013, which was then acquired by HelloFresh and relaunched as Factor. Factor offers a reheatable gourmet meal service catering to multiple dietary needs, including vegetarians and those on the keto diet.
Factor offers a choice of 35 fresh meals each week, which are shipped to you in packages made of recycled material. Meals take about 2-3 minutes to reheat.
Factor is best used by those looking for single-serving meals on a weekly basis as their prices can get expensive for family orders. Note that, unlike some companies, Factor’s meals cannot be customized, making them a poor choice for those with food allergies.
Factor Services and Products
-Vegan & veggie
Factor works on a subscription-based service that can be paused or canceled at any time, with no long-term commitment.
Pros and cons of ordering Factor
- Many specialty diet options, including low-carb, low-calorie, and Paleo-friendly
- Fresh food offerings that include a ban list of 85+ unhealthy ingredients and preservatives from their menu
- Very few vegan or vegetarian options available
- Short shelf life, as the meals include no preservatives
Best for Those Recovering from Illness or Surgery
Barb Anderson founded Mom’s Meals over 17 years ago when she saw the nutrition challenges faced by seniors who deal with chronic diseases and difficult medical recoveries. Sick and recuperating people often don’t feel well enough to cook wholesome, nutritious food, even though doing so is crucial to their recovery. They also don’t always have family nearby to cook for them. Anderson’s company saw that need and met it with a fully prepared food delivery service designed by dieticians. Mom’s Meals designs and prepares all of its dishes in Iowa, focusing on locally sourced produce.
Mom’s Meals is outstanding in the meal delivery industry because it partners with caseworkers in 40 states and with 400 healthcare companies, as well as selling directly to caregivers and individuals. If you qualify for Medicare waivers for food service, or if your Medicare Advantage or other health plan covers meal services during recovery periods, then Mom’s Meals might be able to cover your needs following a surgery or hospital stay. This brand even liaisons with your healthcare team to ensure that you get the right meals for your condition.
Mom’s Meals Services and Products
These meals arrive fresh and individually portioned and only require a quick reheat before serving. Read on to learn more about Mom’s Meals.
Pros and Cons of Ordering Mom’s Meals
- Many diet-specific menu options, including heart-friendly, cancer support, and more
- Low cost per serving, offering meals as low as $7.99
- Breakfast options available in addition to lunch and dinner
- High shipping cost at $14.95 per box, regardless of the number of meals purchased
Most Extensive Menu
Silver Cuisine has its roots in the company BistroMD, a food program created by husband and wife team Ed and Caroline Cederquist. Caroline Cederquist, a bariatric doctor, brings over 20 years of lifestyle and weight loss expertise to the brand. BistroMD has been successful because its meals are built to be flavorful as well as balanced and nutritious. Silver Cuisine, the brand’s meal program for seniors, follows a very similar business model as the original BistroMD program. Although the Cederquists didn’t build Silver Cuisine specifically as a weight-loss brand, they use the same sensible principles of balance to create fully prepared meals for seniors.
Many brands only stock 20 or 30 items on their menus at a time, but Silver Cuisine consistently keeps 150 or more items on its menu. Silver Cuisine rotates its menu but keeps many favorites available. This extensive menu, which includes breakfast and snack items as well as traditional lunch and dinner dishes, makes Silver Cuisine a smart choice for seniors who enjoy variety.
Silver Cuisine Services and Products
While you will have a customer login with Silver Cuisine, you won’t be tied to a subscription or required to order a certain amount of these meals each week. Silver Cuisine is a great option for those over 50 who don’t want to do any cooking. Read on to discover the pros and cons of this brand in more depth.
Pros and Cons of Ordering Silver Cuisine
- Stringent gluten-free standards with random cross-contamination testing
- A wide range of diet-specific menu items, including health-issue-specific choices
- Very extensive menu featuring about 150 meals
- AARP discount of 10% off every order, as well as 25% off a member’s first order
- Foods are delivered frozen and must be thawed and cooked
- High shipping costs set at $19.95 regardless of location or number of meals.
Best Customer Support
Diet-to-Go has been delivering healthy, portion-controlled meals to customers since 1991, making this brand one of the oldest on our list. Chefs prepare Diet-to-Go meals in kitchens in Northern Virginia and Los Angeles, allowing for efficient national distribution. This company has a long history of partnering with corporations to promote workplace wellness, and it works hard to empower all consumers by providing up-to-date diet information for all.
If you’re trying to improve your health by losing weight, you probably already know how crucial it is to feel supported. You have a goal, and you want your doctor and your family to offer support with positive advice and encouragement. If that’s the case for you, you’ll probably love Diet-to-Go as this brand gives you access to a free health coach by email or phone when you need that extra support and advice.
Diet-to-Go Services and Products
Pros and cons of ordering from Diet-to-Go
- A variety of diet options, including keto, diabetic, and vegetarian
- Full menu of meals, providing 7 breakfasts, lunches, and dinners per week
- Inexpensive starting costs at $8.61 per serving
- Customization options with the ability to swap meals
- Higher cost for men’s plans, as the meals feature more calories
- High shipping costs at $19.98 per box for all plans
Most Flexible Menu Options
Paul Ghiron founded Top Chef Meals after a conversation with his father inspired him to create a brand of ready-made meals with greater variety than was available at the time. Previously, Ghiron had extensive corporate catering experience with his family’s company. Top Chef Meals incorporates the culinary expertise of Ghiron into its vast collection of main and side dishes, creating customized orders near New York, freezing them, and shipping them all over the continental United States.
Top Chef Meals caters to seniors by recognizing that they want to have choices. As you review your choices for next week’s meals, if you dislike an entree, starch, or vegetable side, you can trade it out for something that suits you better. Having choice can have a powerful impact on your health because you won’t end up skipping part of your meal due to personal preferences or allergies. Top Chef Meals allows you more menu control, resulting in more balanced eating habits.
Top Chef Meals Services and Products
Pros and Cons of Ordering from Top Chef Meals
- Fully customized plans so customers can fulfill their dietary needs
- 10% discount for seniors on all orders
- Free shipping option when ordering 21 meals
- All meals are cooked the day before they ship
- High shipping cost for the Western United States at about $20 per box
Meal Delivery Alternatives
You can receive ready-made meals without having boxes delivered to your door. The following two services are not included in our top 8 since they are not universally available, but they might be worth considering if you want to try a different way to order meals for yourself or your senior loved one.
Chefs For Seniors
Most Personal Service
Chefs for Seniors was founded in Madison, Wisconsin in 2013 by a father and son team committed to bringing personal chefs into seniors’ homes to prepare quality meals for them. When Nathan Allman was 20 years old, he originally put together the business idea as part of a Burrill Business Plan Competition at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He quickly teamed up with his father Barrett to make Chefs for Seniors a reality. Now Chefs for Seniors has nearly 40 franchises across the United States.
Chefs for Seniors offers the highest level of service available in the meal delivery market. Instead of getting a cardboard box full of meals or kits on your front porch, a chef will knock on your door, come into your house, and get to work preparing food for you using their own tools. You’ll have the opportunity to chat with your chef, and any concerns you have can be addressed face-to-face. When the chef leaves after about two hours, you’ll have a refrigerator full of ten to twelve servings of delicious food. This level of personal contact with a chef simply can’t be beaten by conventional meal delivery services.
Chefs for Seniors Service
Pros and Cons of Ordering Chefs for Seniors
- Custom services, including custom menu choices tailored to your diet
- Opportunity to go over your next week’s menu before the chef leaves
- Fixed prices to ensure no fluctuation in cost
- Limited franchises, making the service unavailable in many cities
- Potentially high cost per meal compared to delivery services
Meals on Wheels America and Other Food Resources for Low-Income Seniors
Meals on Wheels traces its roots back to the early 1950s when community organizers across the world saw the value of incorporating food delivery into their charitable services. Since that time, Meals on Wheels America has brought together over 5,000 local partner organizations to serve disadvantaged seniors, meeting urgent food needs while providing important social interaction as well. Meals on Wheels America supports local charities on state and county levels, giving them funding, training, help through advocacy, and more.
Most Meals on Wheels partner centers tell seniors the cost of their meals (which are likely to be less than $8) and ask that seniors give what they can toward covering that cost. Those who cannot pay do not need to pay. There’s something special about how Meals on Wheels America and its nonprofit partners go above and beyond to fight loneliness and hunger in seniors regardless of their ability to leave the house or even to pay.
Meals on Wheels Services and Products
If you visit Meals on Wheels America’s website, you can view the local senior centers and non-profits that partner with the national organization to deliver meals in your area. Many centers have a meal hall for those who can leave their homes, and they deliver to seniors who cannot. To receive meals, you must meet certain qualifications such as being at risk for malnutrition and being 60 years of age or older. Someone must be home to accept a Meals on Wheels delivery.
Pros and Cons of Ordering from Meals on Wheels
- Nonprofit that delivers free meals and only accepts voluntary donations
- Personal connection, as many delivery volunteers can stay to chat
- Fully prepared meals that only need to be reheated
- Waiting lists can make it hard to obtain meals immediately and consistently
Other Food Resources for Low-Income Seniors
In addition to Meals on Wheels, some states offer programs to help low-income seniors access the food they need to stay healthy. We created comprehensive guides to food resources for seniors in each state so you can easily see what options may be available to you. Find your state on the map below to learn about the food programs for seniors, including Meals on Wheels locations, in your area.
How to Choose a Meal Delivery Service
If you’re considering ordering from a meal delivery company, you may feel overwhelmed by the variety of services on the market. Use this guide as a starting point to understand the industry and determine what kind of service will fit your lifestyle.
Step 1: Determine If You Prefer Meal Kits or Fully Prepared Meals
Meal kits allow you to keep cooking while reducing your need for grocery shopping and meal planning. Fully prepared meals, on the other hand, take all of the work out of dinner time. Below, you’ll find information on who would be the best fit for each option.
When assessing, if cooking from meal kits is right for you, consider the following questions:
- Do you want to cook?: If you like the idea of cooking but you’ve always struggled to cook or plan meals, these kits will build your confidence. These kits are also helpful if getting to the grocery store is challenging. However, if you simply have no desire to cook for yourself, then there’s no reason you have to choose a meal kit. Fully prepared meals can be just as healthy and are often the same price.
- How’s your balance, vision, and coordination?: If you feel energetic and enthusiastic about cooking, but you’ve experienced falls, you may want to discuss safety with your doctor. A doctor might give you tips for eliminating hazards and making your kitchen accessible. If you’re having severe problems with unsteadiness, loss of hand strength, sight, or memory, however, ordering meals that are already prepared may be the safer option.
- How’s your energy level?: It can be hard to give up cooking for those who enjoy the process, but if illness or aging are making your energy levels low or unpredictable, a meal kit may not be right for you. You don’t want to be stuck with a refrigerator full of meal kits and no desire to get up and cook.
Fully Prepared Meals
If you need a plan that requires zero cooking, then you can choose from one of many pre-prepared meal delivery services. Fully prepared meals from a meal delivery service may remind you of the freezer section of your local grocery store, but the truth is that most meal delivery services offer more balanced, nutritious meals than you can get in a typical grocery store. Most offer a choice between fresh and frozen deliveries.
Before choosing a pre-prepared meal delivery company, you may want to look into alternative services such as nonprofits that provide seniors with ready-made meals. In addition, your area may have opportunities to buy affordable, fresh meals made by a personal chef once a week in your own home. These services can be great alternatives to cooking if they are available in your area.
Whether you get your meals from a meal delivery service, a nonprofit, or a personal chef, you’ll just need to reheat when you’re ready to eat. Reheating will take a matter of minutes in a microwave. Most of the time, a pre-prepared meal will include one serving of an entree and side dishes, which can often be personalized to suit your preferences or needs.
Step 2: Consider Your Dietary Needs
After you’ve decided between premade meals or meal kits, pause to consider if your nutritional needs should influence your company choice. Almost all companies offer some form of specialty diet options, and many are designed by dieticians to be nutritionally balanced.
Many companies carry two or three of the following diet options:
- Low Sodium
- Low Carb
- Low Calorie
- Low Fat
- Gluten-free or “no gluten added”
Other diet options, like the ones listed below, are rarer, but a few companies do offer them:
- High protein
- Cancer support
A few companies cater to special diets so much that they do one or more of the following:
- Coordinate with your doctor
- Staff health coaches that you can call
- Allow you to swap ingredients or side dishes
- Allow full meal customization
Step 3: Understand the Industry’s Pricing System
If you eat out or order takeout frequently, switching to a meal delivery service may save you money. If you’ve been doing your grocery shopping and cooking yourself, however, a meal delivery service may require a larger food budget, unless you’re able to have meals delivered from a nonprofit organization or through your insurance. Despite the higher costs, spending more on a meal delivery service will be worthwhile if it contributes to your safety, health, and happiness.
No matter your situation, try to determine how much of your budget you can reasonably afford to spend on meal services so that you can accurately assess the range of costs currently offered on the market.
Per Serving Costs
Many companies charge the same basic price per serving for all of their meals, making your weekly costs easy to predict. However, a few companies price each meal individually based on its ingredients, charging more for a steak dinner than a soup dinner, for instance.
Most companies offer a discount to customers who order large quantities of servings or meals each week. Ordering two two-serving meals will almost always be more expensive per serving than ordering three four-serving meals from the same company, for example. The price difference can be as dramatic as $2 or $3 per serving.
The lowest per-serving costs we have seen on the market for dinners have started around $6.50, and the highest we have seen have been about $25. You will probably find that most companies’ per-serving prices fall between $6 and $12. Breakfast and snack items are often around $5 per serving.
Some companies factor shipping costs into their per-serving cost, but most add an extra shipping charge to every box delivered. Keep in mind that boxes are large and may include about 20 servings. A few companies determine shipping fees by national zones, which means that those furthest from the distribution center face the highest costs. Very few companies ship to Hawaii or Alaska due to high costs.
Step 4: Decide How Much of Your Weekly Diet You Want To Be Delivered
Subscription is the most common way to buy delivery meals. When you sign up for a subscription, you’ll usually have two or three options for the number of meals you receive per week, as well as two or three options for the number of servings per meal.
Consider the following factors to decide how many days per week you want to have meals delivered:
- Your budget: Meal delivery services make life much easier for those who struggle to cook or shop, but the cost of using meal delivery for every single meal can add up. Many people find it best to combine meal delivery with some easy-to-prepare items from a grocery store (think bagged salads and rotisserie chicken). With online grocery ordering and delivery becoming available in many cities, you might not need to leave your home to get a few basics.
- Your support system: The extent to which your friends, family, or other caretakers have the time and resources to help you will be the biggest factor to consider when deciding how many meals per week you should order. If your current support system is strained, adding even a small, two-dinners-a-week meal plan could give everyone the break they need while still providing the wholesome food you need to stay healthy.
- Insurance: A few meal delivery companies are capable of providing meals through insurance or Medicare waivers. If you have a chronic disease, are housebound, or are recovering from surgery, you can speak with your Medicare Advantage provider or other insurance benefits providers about whether or not you qualify for temporary or long-term meal assistance.
A few companies allow you to order whatever amount of meals and servings you want, and these are a great option for those who want every meal of the week delivered. Another option for getting meals delivered for every day of the week is to use two different meal subscriptions.
Step 5: Look for Promotions Before You Buy
If you have a company in mind, chances are good that you can find some kind of promotion to make your first few orders cheaper. Many companies include promotional pricing or free shipping on any new customer’s first order directly on their websites.
You can also find promotions through a variety of advertising platforms. Radio stations, podcasts, and social media influencers frequently offer codes for meal delivery services. During our research, we found $20 and $80 discount codes for leading brands through all of the above platforms. Chances are good that a younger relative of yours might be willing to use their social media accounts to conduct a hashtag search for a brand name to help you find a discount code.
Even if the company you want is more traditional and doesn’t advertise on the above-mentioned platforms, it may still offer you a discount based on your age or membership in certain organizations. It never hurts to ask.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need a subscription for a meal delivery service?
Many meal delivery services, both kits and fully prepared meals, have to be purchased through a subscription. You might be nervous about adding a subscription to your budget, fearing that you’ll be unable to stop making payments if your budget changes. These subscriptions are usually very flexible, however.
With most meal delivery subscriptions, you can:
- Pick your meals a week in advance
- Choose the size of the meal plan that suits you
- Change your meal plan size anytime
- Cancel anytime without a fee
- Skip or “pause” a weekly shipment anytime
A few companies give you the option of subscription or non-subscription ordering, and some have no subscriptions at all. However, some companies do charge an extra fee for non-subscription orders.
I don’t live in the mainland United States. Can I still order meals?
Unfortunately, we were unable to locate any major meal delivery services that deliver to Alaska or Hawaii at reasonable prices. Few companies even offer to deliver to the non-continental United States and some that do charge as much for shipping as they do for the food itself. Shipping to places like Hawaii requires airmail, which can easily cost over $100. Maybe in the future, cheaper delivery systems or more distribution centers will solve this problem, but for now, your best bet is to look for a locally operated meal delivery company.
Is meal delivery safe for me if I have severe allergies?
This depends on the company as well as on your specific allergies. Many companies have allergy-friendly plans, especially for individuals intolerant to gluten, but they may hesitate to label their products as completely free of an ingredient due to the possibility of accidental cross-contamination. If you’re looking for a guarantee that your food is free of gluten, shellfish, eggs, dairy, or some other allergen, you can check out a company’s FAQ section or call their customer service line to discuss the level of separation that preparation facilities maintain between ingredients.
Is a meal delivery service really better than ordering delivery from a local restaurant?
Yes, it is, for several reasons. A full dinner from a restaurant can easily exceed the cost of your typical meal delivery service meal. Even if the restaurant delivery is cheaper, however, it’s probably not nearly as balanced of a meal, and it may be difficult to determine what the ingredients and nutritional value are. Ordering from a restaurant on a regular basis is a hassle when compared to ordering once a week and getting a whole box of meals at a time from a subscription. With a meal delivery service, your orders can be predictable, filled with variety, and affordable.
I am struggling to afford food. What resources are available to me?
If you’re struggling to afford food as a senior, you’re not alone: it’s estimated that in 2021, 7.1% of seniors faced food insecurity. In addition to the possibility of getting free meals through nonprofits such as Meals on Wheels, you should look into getting help through the Supplemental Nutrition Program (SNAP). The SNAP website can help you determine your eligibility and take the next steps.