Better Solutions to Take Out: Meal Delivery Services

food delivery: takeout solutions

What’s for dinner? It’s a question that’s asked in households across America on a nightly basis. And while we all know it’s important to have a healthy dinner, it can be a challenge finding the time to get creative night after night. Enter meal delivery services.

Blue Apron

blue apron

Cost? $9.99 per person per meal

Whose it for? People who like to cook, but don’t have a ton of time to shop and plan meals. You must be open to new things and okay giving up control of your menu.

How does it work? Each week, Blue Apron comes up with six dishes for the week that can be made in 35 minutes or less. Your delivery comes with the precise amount of raw ingredients to create three of those meals selected based on of your dietary preferences. That means there’s something for everyone, whether you’re a vegetarian or a meat lover.

What’s cooking? Recent deliveries have included Coconut Curry Salmon Steaks with Celery & Bok Choy over Barley, a Pizza Panini with Red Leaf Salad, and Braised Heirloom Carrots & Crispy Goat Cheese with Toasted Almonds & Frisée Salad.

Where is it available? The majority of the U.S., including the entire east and west coasts. Click here to see if they deliver to your state.



Cost? $15 a plate to order a la carte. Get a monthly membership for $10/month and it’s $12 a plate.

Whose it for? Same as Blue Apron, but since they offer an a la carte option, Plated is great for someone who’s not ready to commit and just wants to use the service occasionally.

How does it work? Each week, Plated offers seven recipes to choose from (four meat & fish and three vegetarian). Choose your delivery day and menu and they’ll send recipes and fresh pre-portioned ingredients.

What’s cooking? Recent meals include Southwestern Gulf Shrimp and Grits with Leeks and Asparagus, Roasted Carrot and Chickpea Salad with Harissa and Quinoa, or Pan Roasted Steak with Onion Marmalade and Spring Farro.

Where’s it available? Plated delivers to 80% of the continental U. S. Enter your zip code to see if you’re in that zone.



Cost? Typically entrees are $10 – $13.

Whose it for? People who want to enjoy restaurant quality food (and we’re not talking your typical take-out) from the comfort of their home or office. In other words, foodies who just don’t have the time to cook.

How does it work? Every day, local chefs create new menu items that are available for same-day delivery. Dishes show up chilled, ready to go with instructions for heating them up in the microwave or oven.

What’s cooking? A recent menu included Roasted Chicken with Chimuchurri, Grilled Salmon Salad, Japanese Style Meatloaf, and a Smoked Tofu Quesadilla. Bonus: You can order drinks, desserts and there’s even a kid’s menu.

Where is it available? San Francisco Bay Area and coming to Seattle this summer. Munchery just received additional funding and is hoping to be in 15 to 20 cities within the next couple of years.


kitchen surfing

Cost? Depends on the chef, meal and number of people served. Most range from $40 to $80/person. 

Whose it for? Starting at around $40/person, this private chef service is probably not going to be an alternative to Monday’s night lasagna. However, if you’re looking for a special way to celebrate an anniversary or birthday party, this could be the service for you.

How does it work? Choose the type of cuisine you want, your price range and the number of people and Kitchensurfing will give you a list of chefs and menus that fit your criteria. You’ll find a range from backyard barbecues, to family brunch, to at-home cooking classes.

What’s cooking? A Latin American style tapas menu with chorizo quesadillas, chayote mex salad, empanadas, pupusas with spicy red cabbage slaw, and shredded beef tamales for $59/person. Or learn how to make ricotta cavatelli, capellacci di zucca, agnolotti, and garganelli in an $80/per person pasta class.

Where is it available? New York, Boston, Chicago, Hamptons, Los Angeles

KitchMe  (owned by


Cost? Use of website is free

Whose it for? Families who love to cook but are looking for inspiration and help organizing their menu. This is for the cook who wants to put great meals on the table but save wherever they can.

How does it work? Search KitchMe’s inventory of curated recipes and put together a weekly meal plan. KitchMe will instantly pick the menu you for you or customize it yourself. Then see what ingredients on your menu have corresponding coupons and grocery sales near you.

What’s cooking? Chicken Marsala, Salmon Croquettes, Baked Teriyaki Chicken, and Four Cheese Macaroni

Where is it available? Everywhere

Before you shop: Check out our KitchMe articles on the blog to see great ways you can use this site when it comes to creating a fabulous family meal.


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