Food Subscription Services Can Make Life Easier—Here Are Our Picks

Here are our top picks for every diet and cooking skill level.

Getting dinner on the table when everyone is busy all day working and going to school can be a challenge. One of the easiest options for busy families is ordering from a food subscription service. The biggest challenge may be deciding which one is best for your needs. We looked into some options to see how much each service costs to help you decide. Although all these plans are different, there is one thing they all have in common: you can pause or cancel your subscription at any time in the event your needs change.

woman cooking with subscription box service
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Best to Improve Your Cooking Skills: Blue Apron

If you like the act of cooking but maybe aren't the greatest at putting together a meal, then Blue Apron might be your best bet. Each delivery includes "chef-designed" recipes with portions of food already measured and step-by-step instructions, so just about anyone can follow along. You're able to select your protein preferences and choose your meals from a variety of options. (Some sample recipes are shown here.) There are a few different subscription options, including a 2-serving plan that delivers two or three times per week or a four-serving plan that delivers two, three, or four times per week. There's also a two-serving vegetarian subscription that ships two or three times each week.

Price: $9 per person per meal for the family plan

Best for Snack Lovers: Daily Harvest

Daily Harvest is a great option for someone who enjoys snacks over meals. Daily Harvest offers smoothies, harvest bowls, soups, oat bowls, chia bowls, lattes, and bites that are all vegan. (It's ideal for those who aren't stars in the kitchen as everything is already combined. You'll just need to blend or heat up your meals and enjoy them.)

First, choose the number of items in your weekly box, from nine to 24 per week or 24 items per month. You can alter your preferences according to your likes, dislikes, and dietary needs. Once you choose your plan, fill your package with any mix of items from the list.

Price: From $5.99 to $11.99 per item

Best for Calorie Conscious: Hello Fresh

Another good option for home cooks who need recipe inspiration is Hello Fresh. Select a weekly box with your favorite meats and vegetables to sign up, and note if you prefer low-calorie meals. Some of the options are Mediterranean couscous bowls and cheesy beef enchiladas. Each box comes with "easy-to-follow" recipes that have nutritional information. The plans are available for two or four servings in each box, for three to four weekly deliveries.

Price: From $7.49 to $8.99 per serving

Best for Families: Home Chef

Home Chef sends you boxes with pre-portioned food and recipe cards to feel like a pro in your kitchen. Begin by selecting preferences, such as if you're a pescatarian, vegetarian, or omnivore. Note whether you prefer low-carb or low-calorie food and if there are any ingredients you want to avoid, such as shellfish, nuts, red meat, nuts, or wheat. Choose among two, four, or six servings per box for two to six meals per week.

Price: From $8.99 per serving

Best for Vegans: Purple Carrot

If you're considering a plant-based diet but worry about finding delicious, meat-free meals, Purple Carrot is for you because every dish is vegan. You can choose between a two-serving plan, which includes three or four recipes per week, or a four-serving plan, which provides two or three recipes per week. You're able to select your meals or choose one of the pre-made plans, including high-protein, gluten-free, quick and easy, or chef's choice.

Price: From $13.25 per serving

Best for Plant-Based, Clean Eaters: Sakara

Sakara is all about clean eating and uses all organic, plant-based ingredients. There are a few subscription options available that all include meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Choose among two, three, or five-day-long programs that you'll receive weekly. Or, you're able to place a one-time order. If you don't want to sign up for a subscription, check out individual products from Sakara's clean boutique that offers bars, chocolates, and granola.

Price: From $120 to $350 per week

Best for Specific Dietary Needs: Sun Basket

Sun Basket is great for anyone who doesn't want to spend much time in the kitchen. Some options require cooking, but others are already put together, and you just need to heat everything up. To start, select two or four serving meals, from two to four times per week. You can pick specific meals from dietary preferences such as paleo, vegetarian, gluten-free, and diabetes-friendly. After your first order, you're able to buy add-ons, including items and meals for breakfast, lunch, and snacks.

Price: From $10.99 to $12.99 per serving

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