Meal Kits Vs Prepared Meal Delivery Service

Meal Kits Vs Prepared Meal Delivery Service

With so many delivery meal services available, it’s tough to know both what’s best for you and what’s the most cost-effective option. Whether you’re shopping at the grocery store or eat too much fast food, there’s a better option!

Meal kit and prepared meal services both deliver healthy food with fresh ingredients to your doorstep. But the two delivery options are different in some ways, which is why we’re here!

Here we’ll go over the differences between meal kits and prep meal services, along with the pros and cons, so you can decide which option works best for you.

What is a Meal Kit?

In short, a meal kit involves all the ingredients you need to fix healthy meals to suit specific dietary needs at home.

With a meal kit, you’ll receive a selection of refrigerated ingredients along with recipes to prepare each plate. These kits feature all the elements you need to make flavorful meals—except for kitchen basics like salt and pepper!

Many meal kit services include proprietary blends of spices plus delicious sauces you can’t find anywhere else. Of course, this makes for a fresh and flavorful meal that’s ready when you are. Most meals take between 20 and 45 minutes to prep.

Since they involve getting in the kitchen and using more than just a microwave, meal kits are ideal for people who enjoy cooking and like to immerse themselves in making meals. If you enjoy dicing vegetables, searing meat on the grill or stovetop, and plating the meal in an appealing way, a meal kit might be right for you. Of course, there are some drawbacks to meal kits, depending on your personal preferences and needs.

Pros & Cons of Meal Kits

While meal kits are ideal for a lot of people, they’re not a one-size solution to crafting healthy meals at home. Here are a few pros and cons with meal kits.

Pros:

  • Ingredients are fresh and even organic
  • Serving sizes are pre-determined for two-person plans
  • Family-style kits are available to feed a group with ease
  • Can often adjust delivery schedules and meal plans
  • Often costs less than prep meals

Cons:

  • Cooking is required
  • Plans typically cover meals only (not snacks)

Some Leading Meal Kits Companies:

What is a Prepared Meal Delivery Service?

In contrast with meal kits, prepared meal services feature dishes that are ready to heat (and eat) upon arrival.

Most prep meals arrive flash-frozen with instructions included for reheating. Not only are these meals easy—there’s no cooking or prep required—but they can also accommodate a range of dietary needs. Often, prep meal services focus on unique nutritional challenges like diabetic-friendly programs or weight-loss regimens. In contrast, meal kits typically focus on flavor and dietary preference rather than weight loss.

Nutritional facts are often included on the prepped meal containers, just as you would find in the frozen food section of your local grocery store. The difference is that the food is flash-frozen and not languishing on a shelf before arriving at your door; meals are timed to be fresh and delicious.

In short, prep meals are ideal for those foodies with hectic schedules, small kitchens, and specific dietary needs or wants. There’s very little time required to heat and eat the meals, but subscribers can choose from globally-inspired cuisine that satisfies both the palate and the clock!

Pros & Cons of Prepared Meal Services

While prep meals are super convenient and often delicious, they’re not necessarily the right fit for every person or diet. There are both pros and cons to prepared meal services, as you’ll see below.

Pros:

  • No cooking involved—just heat and eat
  • Ingredients are fresh and even organic, then flash-frozen
  • Single-serving packages help curb calories
  • Plans for all dietary needs, including age distinctions
  • Plans can include sides and snacks

Cons:

  • No cooking involved—for some people, cooking is half the fun of eating!
  • Need to open another meal for a second serving
  • Can cost more than meal kits
freshly

Conclusion

While both meal kits and prep meal services offer a level of convenience that trips to the grocery store plus meal planning can’t compete with, the two types of kits have both different goals and varying pros and cons.

However, if you are looking to cut down on mealtime preparation and avoid rushing to the grocery store every other weeknight, both options can help with that! And while we’re partial to meal kits since we find joy in cooking, that’s not true for everyone—and there’s nothing wrong with that!

With meal kit and prep meal delivery options, nothing is standing between people who love food and the meals that will satiate their hunger and tickle their taste buds! Ready to try out a meal kit that’s tried and true? See our recommendations for the best meal kits to get you started.

About the author

Amanda (Mandi)
Amanda is a meal kits addict and a blogger who reviews meal delivery services on a daily basis since 2015. Mandi leads the content review team at themealkitcomparison.com since 2018.
Share
Quick Navigation

More To Explore:

vegan lifestyle
Benefits of a Vegan Diet
Benefits of a Vegetarian Diet
Vegetarian Diet: What Is It? Benefits, Diet Plan & More
hello fresh steak
HelloFresh Gluten-Free Meals 2022
hello fresh steak
HelloFresh Low Sodium Meals
Blue Apron Vegetarian meal
Blue Apron Vegetarian Menu Review
Vegan vs raw vegan
Vegan Vs Raw Vegan
Plant-Based Diet Benefits
Plant-Based Diet Benefits
Pescatarian Vs Paleo
Pescatarian Vs Paleo
Pescatarian vs Keto
Pescatarian Vs Keto: The Full Comparison
Vegan vs Pescatarian
Vegan vs Pescatarian: The Differences
freshly box to heat
Freshly Vs. Frozen Meals- Which is Better?
Vegetarian vs Pescatarian
Vegetarian Vs Pescatarian: What’s the Difference?
paleo vs keto
Paleo Vs Keto Diet
Hello Fresh
Best HelloFresh Alternatives
Blue Apron and Weight Watchers
Blue Apron and Weight Watchers Review
Parisian Steak Frites- blue apron
A Look at Blue Apron’s Keto and Low Carb Option
blue apron
Blue Apron VS Grocery Shopping: Are They Similar?
sun basket pesctarian
Sun Basket Pescatarian Menu Review
Hello Fresh - yellow squash flatbread
Best Hello Fresh Recipes Review 2022
large family meal kits
Best Meal Kits for Large Families
Sun Basket Meal
Sunbasket Lean & Clean Menu Review
Oven ready hello fresh
Hello Fresh Oven Ready Meals Review
BLUE APRON VS SUN BASKET- STEAK DISHES (1)
Blue Apron vs Sunbasket: Steak Dishes
Best Healthy Meal Delivery Service Miami
Best Healthy Meal Delivery Service Miami
Organic protein crunch salad
High Protein Dinner Options Using Meal Delivery Service
Sunbasket Fresh & Ready
Best Pre-Cooked Meal Delivery Service
Blue-Apron-Mediterranean-Diet meal kit
Top Meal Deliveries for Your Noom Diet Plan
Meal Delivery Services DC
Best Meal Delivery Services in Washington ,DC
oven ready hello fresh fish meal
HelloFresh Pescatarian Meal Plan Review 2022
home chef salmon
Home Chef Keto-Friendly and Low Carb Menu Review
Nutrisystem Diabetics Plan
Nutrisystem Diabetics Plan
best meal delivery NYC
Best Meal Delivery NYC
Best Meal Kits for Dinner
Best Meal Kits for Dinner
Best Meal Delivery Services In Pittsburgh 2022
Best Meal Delivery Services In Pittsburgh 2022
Best Meal Delivery Services in Utah 2022
Best Meal Delivery Services in Utah 2022
meal delivery in Austin, Texas
Best Meal Delivery Services In Austin 2022
Fresh Meal Kits - Hellofresh
The Best Fresh Meal Kits
meal delivery chicago
Best Meal Delivery Services In Chicago 2022 – Eat Better At Home
Mediterranean sun basket
Sun Basket Mediterranean Recipe Review
Green Chef Box
Green Chef Vegetarian Plan Review
Hello Fresh - yellow squash flatbread
Hello Fresh Meals For One Person
Best Meal Kits for Dinner Party
Best Meal Kits for Dinner Party
Hello Fresh Low Calories Plan Review
Atlanta
Best Meal Delivery Services In Atlanta 2022
Hello Fresh Ingredients
Hellofresh FAQs – All You Need to Know
Best Meal Delivery Services in Nashville:
Best Meal Delivery Services in Nashville: Eat Better At Home With Meal Prep Nashville Options
Hello Fresh
Hello Fresh Diabetes Meal Options
Every Plate Box
Best EveryPlate Alternatives
cancer patient meal kits
Meal Delivery for Cancer Patients
Blue Apron Box
Blue Apron Alternatives
Home chef express
Home Chef Express Meals Review
Home Chef pescatarian meal
Home Chef Pescatarian Meals Review
Blue Apron Box
A Review of Blue Apron Vegan Meal Menu
Sun Basket Diabetes-Friendly Meals
Sunbasket Diabetes-Friendly Plan Review
Home Chef - Snappy Steak & Guacamole Taco
Best Home Chef Recipes Review 2021
Blue Apron and Weight Watchers
Top 10 Blue Apron Easy Recipes Review
freshly
Review: Freshly for One Person
FRESHLY Review
Freshly Gluten-Free Meal Delivery Review
sunbasket prepared meals
Sun Basket Prepared Meals Review
blue apron box
Is Blue Apron Healthy? The New Blue Apron Wellness Plan
Little Spoon Plates Review
Little Spoon Plates Review – Is It Worth It?
blue apron Salmon
Blue Apron Meals for One Person
Green Chef Vegan and Vegetarian
Green Chef Vegan Menu
green chef new box
Review: Green Chef Paleo Menu
Hello Fresh Ingredients
Hello Fresh Whole30 Diet Options
Blue-Apron-Mediterranean-Diet meal kit
Blue Apron Mediterranean Diet Meals
Dinnerly low calorie options
Dinnerly Low-Calorie Menu
New moms meal delivery options
Best Meal Kits for New Moms
Dinnerly vegetarian meals reviews
Dinnerly for Vegetarians
hello fresh steak
What Are the Gluten-Free Diet Benefits
Beat Meal Kits for a High Protein Diet
Best Meal Kits for a High Protein Diet
Thai Turkey Lettuce Cups Sun basket soy free meal kit
Pros and Cons for Meal Kits
Fast Food Jack Burger Hello fresh
Best Meal Kits for Fast Food Fans
purple carrot look inside the box
Meal Kit FAQ: Everything You Need to Know
sun basket vegan
Sun Basket Vegan Meal Kits Review
Father’s Day meal kits
The Best Meal Kits for Father’s Day
The Best Meal Kits for the Memorial Day Long Weekend
meal kits for seniors
5 reasons seniors should try meal delivery services
mothers day meal kits
The Best Meal Kits for Mother’s Day
legacy food storage
Best Survival Food Kits to Stockpile
freshly
Best Alternatives for Freshly
dinnerly-meals
Dinnerly FAQ: Things to Know About Dinnerly Before Ordering
meal kits for quarantine days
Best Meal Kit Service to Order During Quarantine Days
dinnerly-meals
Best Meal Kit for $5
Coronavirus prep
How to Prepare for Coronavirus
HelloFresh for families
10 Things To Know About HelloFresh Before You Order
freshly
5 Things to Know About Freshly Before Your Order
Are Meal Kits Worth it?
Are Meal Kits Healthy?
Are meal kits worth it?
Are Meal Kits Worth It?
Sun Basket Meal kits
Best Meal Kits Online to Try Out
Nutrisystem basic plan for women weight loss
Nutrisystem Woman’s Plan: Review
Pizza_Margherita Nutrisystem
Nutrisystem Vegetarian Program
freshly boxes
Prepared meal delivery services for One Person
Are Meal Kits Worth it?
Meal Kits Industry Trends 2020
green chef delivery
How to Recycle Your Green Chef Box
Green Chef organic products
Green Chef Gluten-Free Plan Review
Veestro: Prepared Meal Delivery Review
Review: We Tried Veestro Meal Kits
Freshly Keto Friendly Meals
Freshly Keto Friendly Meals
Green Chef organic products
Green Chef Keto Meals
Veestro Box
Review: Veestro Weight Loss Plans
freshly boxes
Freshly Weight Loss Meals
Green Chef organic products
Review: Green Chef Organic Meals
Sun Basket Meal
Review: Sun Basket Keto Low Carb Plan
freshly boxes
We Tried Freshly Prepared Meal Delivery Service
Sun Basket Vegetarian- all organic products
Sun Basket Organic Meals: Review
everyplate review
We Tried EveryPlate Meal Kits
green chef delivery
We Tried Green Chef Meal Delivery
Hello fresh interior box
What is a Meal kit Delivery Service?
FRESHLY Review
What is a Prepared Meal Delivery Service?
Hello Fresh Dinner to Lunch Meal Review
Hello Fresh Vegetarian Plan Review
Home Chef Lunch Review
Home Chef Lunch Review
Hello Fresh Southwestern Spice Blend Recipes
Hello Fresh Southwestern Spice Blend Recipes
Hello Fresh Recycling
Hello Fresh Recycling
Hello Fresh Steak and Meat Meals
Best Hello Fresh Steak and Meat Meals
Creamy basil Hello fresh Gnocchi
Hello Fresh Gnocchi Meals
Hello Fresh Pork Meals
Hello Fresh Best Pork Meals
Hello Fresh Salmon meal kits
Hello Fresh Best Salmon and Seafood Meals
Hello Fresh Tacos and Quesadillas
Best Hello Fresh Tacos and Quesadillas
The Benefits of the Mediterranean Diet
The Benefits of the Mediterranean Diet
fresh-Salad-low-carb
Review: Hello Fresh Keto and Low Carb Plan
Hello Fresh
Hello Fresh Vegan Plan Review
Hello-Fresh-Chicken
Hello Fresh Chicken Meals Review
Home Chef Chicken
Home Chef Chicken Meals Review
home chef salmon
Home Chef Low Calories Meals Review
home chef keto plan
Home Chef Alternatives
Hello fresh for families
Hello Fresh for Families
home chef keto plan
Home Chef Low Carb Meal Kits
Sun Basket Vegetarian- all organic products
Sun Basket Vegetarian Plan Review
Home Chef Vegetarian Menu
Home Chef Vegetarian Menu Review
Sun Basket Paleo Steak Salad
Sun Basket Paleo Plan Review
Sun Basket Ingredients
What You Need to Know Before Ordering from Sun Basket
Green Chef Box
Green Chef FAQ- Popular Questions Before Ordering
blue apron Salmon
Green Chef vs Blue Apron: Salmon Showdown
Sun Basket Vegetarian vs Blue Apron Vegetarian
Sun Basket Vs Blue Apron Vegetarian Meal Kits
Sun Basket Vegetarian vs Home Chef Vegetarian
Sun Basket Vs Home Chef Vegetarian Plans
Sun Basket Vs Hello Fresh Vegetarian Meal Kits
Sun Basket Vs Hello Fresh Vegetarian Meal Kits
Sun Basket Vegetarian vs Green Chef Vegetarian (1)
Sun Basket Vegetarian vs Green Chef Vegetarian
Sun Basket vs Green Chef- Steak Salads
Sun Basket vs Green Chef: Steak Salads
Meal Kits Vs Prepared Meal Delivery Service