Best Gourmet Meal Delivery Services

Blue Apron is the best choice for top-end meals delivered to your door.

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Baked Salmon fillet
Photo: Getty Images / Carlo A

The goal of a gourmet meal delivery service is to deliver high-end meal kits and/or ready-to-heat meals to your door. These services typically use premium ingredients in a wide variety of menu options, so you can choose the meals that best fit your taste and dietary needs. Most companies only offer subscriptions, but a few allow standalone orders as well.

How does a gourmet meal delivery service make our list of top companies? In addition to a range of meal options and quality ingredients, inventiveness is also key. A company's meals ideally take you beyond what you'd ordinarily prepare for yourself at home. Finally, a great gourmet meal delivery service should have knowledgeable and friendly staff to assist with your questions or concerns.

Best Gourmet Meal Delivery Services of 2022

Best Overall: Blue Apron

Blue Apron
Blue Apron

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $7.99
  • Delivery Area: 48
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

Blue Apron is the original player in the meal kit delivery game, and it's clear that the company has learned a thing or two over the years. In our testing, the company has consistently demonstrated a high level of quality across the board. Tasters said the dishes were "diverse and interesting" with excellent flavor and texture, and praised the company's responsive and effective customer service.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • May surprise even seasoned foodies
  • Diverse, interesting flavors
  • Helpful live chat

Cons

  • Most recipes took 30 minutes or longer
  • May not appeal to beginners

Overview

Blue Apron has been a popular choice for many years, and it's easy to see why. The inventive menu rotates weekly; the ingredients are top notch; and the site and app offer an intuitive user experience. If you're a foodie, you'll definitely be in good hands: We've tested dozens of meal delivery services, and Blue Apron's menu is the only one we've seen that includes a duck dish. Not to mention prosciutto quesadillas!

Pricing and Plans

You can sign up to receive either two- or four-serving kits, in quantities of two, three or four kits per week. Blue Apron also offers "Heat & Eat" meals, which can be ready to enjoy after only three minutes in the microwave. The more you order, the lower your per-serving cost will be, ranging from a low of $7.99 to a high of $11.99.

Blue Apron categorizes its menu as follows:

  • Chef Favorites
  • Wellness
  • Family Friendly
  • Fast and Easy
  • Veggies (plant-based only)

Meals We Tried

Meal Kits:

  • Togarashi shrimp and vegetable fried rice
  • Space ranger chicken enchiladas
  • One-pan white wean and poblano shakshuka
  • Baked meatballs and romesco mayo

Heat and Eat:

  • Sweet and spicy beef bowl with rice, peppers, and edamame
  • Chicken alfredo pasta with peas

Best Variety: Cookunity

Cook Unity
Cook Unity

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $7.27
  • Delivery Area: 46
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

Our team of testers thoroughly enjoyed CookUnity's diverse menu; even the kiddos were impressed. We also appreciated the company's responsive customer service, the transparent, informative site and mobile app, and the mostly recyclable packaging.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Extraordinary variety
  • Just heat and serve
  • Accommodates a range of dietary preferences

Cons

  • High cost per serving for smaller plans
  • Only single-serving meals

Overview

CookUnity is pioneering the chef collective model of gourmet meal delivery. Each dish on the menu is the work of an individual chef, whose name and photo appear on the package. This model generates an exceptionally diverse menu of fresh, fully-prepared, single-serving meals.

Pricing and Plans

  • 4 meals per week: $12.69 per serving
  • 6 meals per week: $11.39 per serving
  • 8 meals per week: $10.89 per serving
  • 12 meals per week: $10.49 per serving
  • 16 meals per week: $10.39 per serving

Meals We Tried

  • Coconut lime hanger steak
  • Carnitas street tacos
  • Butternut squash ravioli
  • Chili roasted shrimp

Best for Saving Time: Tovala

Tovala-logo

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $9.99
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

Tovala has something no other meal delivery service has: the Tovala Smart Oven, which our testers identified as the service's primary strength. The oven has a built-in barcode scanner which instructs the appliance on how to cook or steam a particular meal. Customers simply scan the barcode on the meal's packaging and the oven does the rest. One tester noted that, "All the meal components cook at the same time, and come out perfectly cooked." Our testers also found the meals to be tasty, made with fresh ingredients, and highly enjoyable.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Smart oven makes cooking easy
  • Fresh and flavorful meals
  • Can also scan to cook hundreds of brand name grocery products

Cons

  • Smart oven requires counter space
  • Most meals are single-serving

Overview

Tovala is the only gourmet meal delivery service we've seen that comes with a purpose-built appliance that does the cooking for you. The menu offers plenty of variety and includes dietary accommodations like vegetarian and gluten-free dishes. Plus, the $49 (for new customers) oven is affordable, and the company allows you to try it risk-free for 100 days.

Pricing and Plans

You can order four, six, eight, 10, 12, or 16 meals in your weekly delivery. Meals are priced individually. Most cost $12.99, but some cost as little as $9.99. Shipping is an additional $9.99. Unlike most meal delivery services, Tovala does not offer a discount for larger orders.

Meals We Tried

  • BBQ pulled pork, jalapeno cheddar cornbread, and cabbage slaw
  • Sausage supreme flatbread with crunchy veggie salad in balsamic vinaigrette
  • Truffle duxelle filet mignon and "double baked" scallion mashed potatoes with bacon, cheddar and sour Cream
  • Chashu-inspired pork chop and noodles with soy sesame dressing, scallions and crunchy veggies

Best Splurge: Sakara Life

Sakara-Life-Logo
Sakara

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $28
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

While Sakara Life's claims to "release years of toxic build-up" and "reset the body's systems" are not based on scientific evidence, there's no denying that these phrases carry a certain allure, which the $28 per meal price tag only enhances. Go ahead and splurge. You know you want to.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Unique, colorful dishes
  • Wide variety of whole foods
  • Fixed menu so you can set it and forget it

Cons

  • Expensive
  • More "nutrition program" than meal delivery service

Overview

Sakara mixes the wellness and meal delivery worlds into one service. Its best selling Signature Nutrition Program offers a fixed menu, with dishes such as:

  • Kaleidoscope vitality bowl: chickpeas, rainbow carrots, serrano chiles, and garam masala
  • Ultra violet donut: purple sweet potato, almond flour, shredded coconut, and Himalayan sea salt
  • Sakara-style pasta bolognese: lentil pasta, adzuki bean tempeh, sauteed greens

You can also order "Wellness Tea, "Super Bars," "Super Powders" and more.

Pricing and Plans

The Signature Nutrition Program, mentioned above, is flexible. You could pay as little as $63 dollars for a standalone order of two breakfasts. But as long as you're splurging on the Sakara Life, why not go all out with a weekly subscription for five days of breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus three signature green smoothies, for $459 per week?

Meals We Tried

  • Southwest sunset soup, chipotle corn muffin
  • High vibe honeydew salad, mint chlorophyll quinoa, kombucha vinaigrette
  • Moo shu veggie wraps w/ tamarind sauce
  • Prosperity pad thai, kelp noodles, creamy sesame dressing

Best Pre-Made: Home Bistro

Home Bistro Logo
Home Bistro

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $15
  • Delivery Area: 50 states
  • Products Arrive: Frozen

Why You Should Try It

If you're looking for pre-made frozen meals, Home Bistro may be worth a try. Many of the meals are created by celebrity chefs like Cat Cora and Richard Blais. Our testers really liked the fast shipping, the straightforward and accurate heating instructions, and final products that matched the photos on the website.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Frozen, fully-prepared meals
  • Celebrity chefs
  • No subscription necessary

Cons

  • Not good for families
  • Minimal dietary accommodation

Overview

Home Bistro is one of the few gourmet meal delivery services that does not employ a subscription model. You can buy one individual meal, or fill the deep freeze in your garage with a single order. The single-serving meals are inventive and diverse.

Pricing and Plans

Home Bistro is a totally à la carte service. All meals and combo packs are individually priced. Single meals range between $15 and $19, while combo packs sell for around $75 for five meals up to about $320 for 20 meals.

Meals We Tried

  • Lamb pasta bake
  • Grilled spiced chicken with parsley-mint sauce and spice turmeric cauliflower over coconut rice
  • Lemon-caper piccata steak with roasted garlic marbled potatoes and Tunisian cauliflower gratin
  • Fire-grilled salmon with pomegranate-fig sauce, Israeli couscous, and honey spiced carrots

Best Plant-Based: Green Chef

Green Chef
Green Chef

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $11.99
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

With praise like "Green Chef's dishes are among the best I've received from any meal kit service," it's safe to say that our testers unreservedly loved Green Chef. Everything from the recipes to the site and app is "very clear and functional," while the meals deliver "an exceptional combination of easy preparation and big flavor."

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Certified organic
  • Good for families
  • Vegetarian and vegan options

Cons

  • Kits only; no fully prepared meals
  • Available only by subscription

Overview

A Green Chef subscription delivers certified organic gourmet meal kits that serve up to 12 people, making it a great option for families. The concise, well-designed menu changes weekly and draws on a wide variety of culinary traditions. The company also takes sustainability seriously with a fairly comprehensive guide to recycling its packaging, as well as a carbon offset program.

Pricing and Plans

Green Chef offers six categories of cuisine, including vegetarian and vegan plans. At initial signup, you have the option of serving two, four, or six people; but once you're a customer, you can order kits that serve eight or 12 people as well (although you can only get two such kits per week). Prices range from $13.49 per meal for three two-serving kits per week to $11.99 per meal for four six-serving kits per week.

Meals We Tried

  • Middle Eastern-style chickpea bowls
  • Maple glazed carrots with figs

Best Organic: ModifyHealth

Modify Health
Modify Health

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $11.75
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

Our testing team found ModifyHealth to be a good option for customers who prefer organic meals because the company provides the necessary ingredient information for its flavorful and balanced meals upfront. If there's any info that you can't locate, we found that ModifyHealth's customer service team provided quick answers to our questions.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Organic ingredients
  • Good customer service
  • Fully-prepared meals

Cons

  • Not suitable for families
  • Meals may need extra seasoning

Overview

ModifyHealth delivers fresh, fully-prepared, single-serving meals from the company's two menus: Mediterranean and Low FODMAP. Most meals contain organic ingredients, and both menus offer a meal program that includes educational materials and dietitian support for those who want it. The service's facilities are also 100% gluten-free.

Pricing and Plans

Low-FODMAP Menu

  • Meals start at $9.95 for breakfast and $12.95 for lunch and dinner
  • Program starts at $180 per week

Mediterranean Menu

  • Meals start at $12.95 per meal
  • Program starts at $129.50 per week

Meals We Tried

  • Greek chicken and rice
  • Longevity stew with black-eyed peas and kale
  • Shrimp chimichurri with black beans and rice
  • Lemon thyme chicken with tahini cauliflower and za'atar quinoa
  • Blackened salmon with quinoa, broccoli and red bell pepper
  • Roasted pistachio salmon with white beans and kale

Best Gluten-Free: Epicured

Epicured logo
Epicured

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $10.29
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

Epicured takes gut health seriously. Our testers noted that the service is among the few gourmet meal delivery services with a registered dietitian on staff, not to mention a relationship with the Mount Sinai Health System. Information is transparent for everything from sourcing to recycling, plus there's a robust FAQ in addition to other resources. Gluten-sensitive customers are definitely in capable hands with Epicured.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 100% gluten-free
  • Great selection and variety
  • Fresh, fully prepared meals

Cons

  • No family-size meals
  • Only available by subscription

Overview

Epicured considers itself to be a healthcare company. It also happens to employ a chef, Daniel Chavez-Bello, who has worked in some of the world's best kitchens, including El Bulli and Mugaritz. The comprehensive menu includes categories like breakfasts, beverages, and snacks and is designed in collaboration with a registered dietitian.

Pricing and Plans

With Epicured, you basically create your own subscription. You can order as much or as little as you like, and your last order will recur on a weekly basis until you change it. You can buy just a single smoothie (although you'll pay many times the smoothie's price in shipping) or multiple bundles of many meals. Entrees range from around $10 to $24, while bundles go for between roughly $100 and $200.

Meals We Tried

  • Vietnamese rice noodles (veggie)
  • Pad thai with chicken
  • Grilled salmon (sesame crusted)
  • Pulled BBQ chicken

Best Keto-Friendly: Factor

Factor
Factor

Key Specs

  • Starting Price: $11
  • Delivery Area: 48
  • Products Arrive: Fresh

Why You Should Try It

Factor straightforwardly states the macro breakdown for its keto meals: 60% of calories come from fat, around 20% of calories come from protein, and 10% or less of calories come from carbohydrates. Our testers loved many aspects of Factor's service, from the high-quality, flavor-packed meals to the friendly customer service associates conveniently available via live chat. A certain salmon dish even blew one of our testers away with its perfect "flaky, buttery, and sumptuous" texture.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Clear keto criteria
  • Excellent flavor and texture
  • Offers a variety of add-ons

Cons

  • Not ideal for families
  • Relatively expensive

Overview

A member of the HelloFresh portfolio, Factor offers fitness-focused meals, delivering a well-curated variety of fresh, single-serving dishes along with a decent selection of unique add-ons. Compared to other fresh ready-to-heat meal services, our testers were very impressed with the quality and flavor of Factor's food. All meals are single-serving, so Factor is better suited to active busy adults than to families with children.

Pricing and Plans

  • 4 meals per week: $15 per serving
  • 6 meals per week: $12.83 per serving
  • 8 meals per week: $12.38 per serving
  • 10 meals per week: $11.99 per serving
  • 12 meals per week: $11.50 per serving
  • 18 meals per week: $11 per serving

Final Verdict

Overall, the best gourmet meal delivery service is Blue Apron. In our tests, the company has consistently received top ratings across multiple categories due to its exceptional ingredient quality; an inventive menu that rotates weekly; an intuitive, flexible ordering system; and prompt, convenient customer service. Finally, as always, the proof is on the plate, and that's where Blue Apron really shines, delivering attractive, delicious, well-balanced recipes week after week for a very reasonable price.

Compare the Best Gourmet Meal Delivery Services

Company Starting Price Delivery Area Products Arrive Customers Can Choose Delivery Date? Free Shipping?
Best Overall
Blue Apron
$7.99 48 Fresh Yes No
Best Variety
Cookunity
$10.39 46 Fresh Yes No
Best for Saving Time
Tovala
$9.99 48 Fresh Yes No
Best Splurge
Sakara Life
$28 48 Fresh No Yes
Best Pre-Made
Home Bistro
$15 50 Frozen No No
Best Plant-Based
Green Chef
$11.99 48 Fresh Yes No
Best Organic
Modify Health
$11.75 48 Fresh No Yes
Best Gluten-Free
Epicured
$10.29 48 Fresh No Yes, on orders over $100
Best Keto-Friendly
Factor
$11 48 Fresh Yes No

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do Gourmet Meal Delivery Services Work?

In general, using a gourmet meal delivery service is simply a matter of choosing meals, waiting for delivery, and then preparing the food according to the provided instructions. Most services offer subscription plans, which provide customers with a set number of meals per week or month. The degree of flexibility varies widely across companies. A few services allow à la carte orders.

How Much Do Gourmet Meal Delivery Services Cost?

Prices range from around $7 to nearly $30 per meal. Most services also pass along shipping costs, or offer free shipping above a certain threshold. Your weekly cost will vary depending on which service you use and how many meals you order.

Do Gourmet Meal Delivery Services Have Healthy and Fresh Ingredients?

In short, yes. A gourmet meal delivery service that doesn't offer fresh, wholesome ingredients likely won't survive for long in this competitive market. Most services provide some ingredient and sourcing information upfront, but if you can't find what you're looking for, just reach out to the service in question. Companies are usually happy to provide more information.

Are There Any Gourmet Meal Delivery Services for Weight Loss?

There are several gourmet meal delivery services that you may find helpful in achieving your weight management goals. On this list, Factor and Sakara are the most explicitly wellness-focused services. Epicured might also be a good choice because of its comprehensive menu.

Methodology

Gourmet meal delivery services have many moving parts. From the moment you order to when the last dish is cleaned and put away, the overall customer experience is influenced by many factors. We tested more than three dozen meal delivery companies, subjecting each to a rigorous data-driven analysis of every aspect of its service. Price, flexibility, variety, flavor and texture, sustainability, nutrition, cookability, and customer service all factored into the final scores.

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