An increasing number of professionals and families are realizing the benefits of having ready-to-cook groceries delivered straight to their doorstep. When you’re short on time or want to make sure you’re providing healthy, delicious meals for your loved ones, meal kits delivery services are a godsend.
Blue Apron may have been the original meal kit service, but now these companies are popping up faster than dandelions in spring. With so many to choose from, it’s hard to know which one is best for your lifestyles and needs.
This article reviews the top seven alternatives to Blue Apron. We’ll give you the scoop on details that make each kit unique and who they’re best for, so you don’t have to keep wondering which one to choose.
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7 Companies like Blue Apron
This well-known meal kit company is very similar to Blue Apron in their quality, taste, and value. While Blue Apron is less expensive and provides a more simple ordering process, Plated stands out for their variety of options and focus on exotic, but simple-to-make meals.
Plated caters to those who love variety, so they have options for all sorts of pallets. Choose from 20 recipes each week, with novel options like Herb Falafel with Cucumber-Tomato Salad and Tahini Sauce and chef-inspired classics like Black Bean Burritos with Pico de Gallo and Guacamole. Compared to Blue Apron’s 8-10 weekly meal options, Plated takes the cake when it comes to choice.
Not only do they have a wide variety of recipes, but they also provide options for different dietary needs. You can choose meals crafted for requirements including:
Arguably the best part? This kit is sweet tooth approved! They always have at least two decadent desserts that you can add to your delivery.
Plated has a long list of positive attributes, but is not perfect, of course. While the meals are simple, they tend to take at least 30 minutes to prepare. They may take you out of your culinary comfort zone, but compared to Blue Apron -which is focused on improving your cooking skills- Plated offers only moderate support for aspiring chefs.
If you’re still not sure if this is the kit for you, find out more about how Blue Apron and Plated compare.
Blue Apron is big in the US, but HelloFresh is a global brand. Because of their well-recognized names, people often find themselves trying to choose between these two meal kit companies.
The plans, variety, and cost are fairly on a par. Most importantly, both options offer wine. So, if you’re an oenophile, you really can’t go wrong choosing either. But for those with more complex requirements in a meal kit, HelloFresh has some notably unique features as well:
Most meal kits have a ton of packaging; it’s one of the biggest downsides for most users. While HelloFresh indeed has lots of plastics and paper in their deliveries, but unlike Blue Apron, most items they send are 100% biodegradable and recyclable.
HelloFresh caters to the cooking newbie, with simple recipes like Saucy Beef Ragu with Olive Tapenade. They make cooking easy by offering 20-minute recipes, including cooking time, and rating each recipe by cooking difficulty.
When you’re trying new things, you get to learn what you like and don’t like. HelloFresh helps you remember which meals were a homerun and which you’d rather pass on with their save meals feature.
One hurdle to our love for HelloFresh is that they charge shipping. Although their prices before shipping costs are lower than Blue Apron, this annoying little detail may be enough to make up your mind on which meal kit service to choose.
Both these meal kit companies are the largest and likely the most reliable choices available. If you’re outside of the US, then the choice is simple. HelloFresh delivers in Canada, Australia, and Europe, in addition to the US. Find out more about how HelloFresh compares to Blue Apron to help choose between these two titans.
Martha and Marley Spoon
Another international meal kit service, Marley Spoon, departs from Blue Apron’s MO of simply making dinner easy. This German company is growing increasingly popular in the US and Australia, with the promise of meal kits for people who like cooking. Marley Spoon aims to connect the growers to the cooks by offering in-season meals. The growing popularity and tasty flavours make this option worth looking at.
Marley Spoon is unique in that it promises the finest, unique, seasonal ingredients. In their kit you’ll find items like grass-fed beef, Berkshire pork, artisanal cheeses, American-caught shrimp, and more.
While Blue Apron boasts a partnership with Weight Watchers, Marley Spoon has backing from the iconic Martha Stewart. The legend herself helps to craft each week’s artisanal, down-home recipes. Choose from meals like One-Pan Breaded Chicken Thighs with Lemon-Scallion Dressing and Tomato Basil Skillet Ravioli with Creamy Parmesan Spinach Salad.
This service offers 20 recipes to choose from each week with options for different dietary concerns, including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free choices. All choices are organized into five categories:
- Health and Diet
- Vegetarian and Vegan
- Meat and Fish
- Under 30-minutes
If you want to minimize the time spent in your kitchen, this service isn’t for you. But, if you savour the process of whipping up a new fancy dish, you may have found your match.
When you have a restrictive diet, a meal kit may not seem like an option for you. Thankfully there are companies like Purple Carrot. This meal kit delivery service is especially well-known among vegetarian and vegan consumers, as it’s one of the few plant-based meal kits available in the US.
Just like Blue Apron, Purple Carrot has different plans to choose from. But these plans aren’t based around your number of servings. Rather, you decide between three interesting goal-based options:
- Quick and easy
- High protein
- Chef’s choice
When you think vegan, you might think bland and gross. But Purple Carrot is putting in work to change that plant-based stigma. The weekly menu has tasty and unique options like Spring Ramen with Sugar Snap Peas & Red Miso Coconut Broth and Herby Farro Risotto with Baby Spinach & Roasted Mushrooms. You can also add on equally scrumptious (and healthy) breakfasts and lunches.
The plant-based nature of the ingredients makes Purple Carrot stand out among other options as a highly sustainable meal kit choice. Avoiding meat in your diet helps to cut down on water use and greenhouse gas emissions.
Do you love the convenience and excitement of Blue Apron, but follow a gluten-free or vegan diet or are interested in a more earth-friendly option? Purple Carrot is a great choice for you. The #veganlife isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but for those who are powered by plants, Purple Carrot meal kits are king.
Not ready to give up meat, but still want a meal kit with a focus on health and the environment? This meal kit is a leader in both.
Sun Basket puts a strong focus on the quality of their ingredients. While only some of Blue Apron’s ingredients are certified organic, all of Sun Basket’s produce is organic and non-GMO.
All recipes are developed by award-winning chef, Justine Kelly of Slanted Door, and are nutritionist-approved. Menu options like Guatemalan Jocón de Pollo with Tomatillo Sauce Over White Rice make healthy eating pretty appealing. There are quite a few health-conscious menus to choose from, including:
- Lean & Clean
In addition to being great for your health and your tastebuds, Sun Basket is also good for the planet. In contrast to Blue Apron’s abundance of packaging waste, these boxes, bags, and containers are 100% recyclable and compostable.
There are some things that this meal kit isn’t as good for as Blue Apron, though. For one, shipping is an extra $6.99. And even if you’re willing to pony up for delivery, it’s not available in every state. But if you’re uncompromising about what you put in your body, love variety in your diet, and live within the delivery zones, this is the meal kit for you!
This meal kit delivery service focuses on simple-to-follow, quick recipes for novice chefs. They offer lots of options for those with dietary restrictions and meals for 2, 4, or 6 people.
Instead of meal plan options, Home Chef allows you to pick your specific recipes from 18 meal options each week (versus 10 or less with Blue Apron). In addition to dinner, you can add on smoothies, seasonal fruit baskets, and 5-minute lunches. There are also premium meals like Lamb with Red Pepper and Jelly available at an extra charge for special occasions. Furthermore, you can swap out proteins in most meals to keep every eater pleased.
Specialty diet options include:
Home Chef is less expensive per meal than Blue Apron or Plated–another highly flexible meal kit option. But unlike Blue Apron, which always offers free shipping, there’s a $10 shipping charge for orders under $45. However, this is one of the few meal kits that you can find in grocery stores. So you can give it a try without ordering a week’s worth of meals or copping a shipping charge. Similar to Blue Apron, it also has a simple online marketplace, where you can buy kitchenware.
If you have a lot of people to feed, or folks with diet restrictions to consider, but still want variety and convenience, Home Chef is a strong meal kit contender.
Blue Apron is the leader of the meal kit trend, but now there are tons of other services to choose from. Each has slightly different options, which make picking one that much more challenging. We’ve selected seven top options that are like Blue Apron and compared them head-to-head so you have a better idea of which choice is right for you.
What’s your favourite alternative to Blue Apron? Let us know which of these choices you’re going to try, or if there’s another that’s worth checking out in the comments below!