Five Boston Meal Delivery Services to Try Now
The days of frozen, processed ‘diet’ delivery services are over. Here, we explore the new batches of delivered grub.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to determine that cooking for yourself is almost always healthier than eating in a restaurant. And while that makes total sense, some of us—you know who you are—simply do not have the time (or desire) to spend more than five minutes in front of our appliances. Fortunately, during the past few years, Boston has become home to a number of healthy meal delivery services promising to make cooking healthier, more convenient, and all around easier.
But with so many healthy meal delivery services to choose from, finding the one right for you can be a struggle. To make it easier, we spoke to five local companies to find out what they bring to the table.
Best for: The ethical foodie
Based in: South Boston
Delivers to: Downtown and Greater Boston
Pricing: This is not for the penny pincher—each meal costs $18.49
Most popular meal: Mongolian beef with soba noodles, organic vegetables, and garlic-ginger soy sauce
The details: Customers choose from a weekly menu of fully cooked, chilled meals that are delivered to your doorstep. “As far as the mission, it’s pretty simple,” says cofounder Mike Speights. “Our mission is to make truly nourishing food massively convenient in Boston and beyond.” The company, which was founded in 2011, uses local, sustainable products and sticks to a few guiding quality standards, Speights says, including using meat raised free of antibiotics or hormones, as well as organic produce and spices. “Food, really from a convenience perspective, is also ripe for change as far as being something that’s on-demand,” he says. “Everything else in our lives is kind of on-demand now with technology, so why can’t we make food that way?”
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Best for: Healthy eaters on a budget
Based in: Pembroke
Delivers to: Greater Boston
Pricing: Clients pay by the dish and order each month, with most single-serving entrees starting around $8; $50 delivery minimum
Most popular meal: Shepherds pie made with either ground turkey or tofu
The details: Cooking From the Heart has been operating since 1989, making it Boston’s oldest meal delivery service. “We have seen many food fads come and go, and have stayed true to our philosophy of offering balanced and interesting dishes without compromising taste and quality,” says owner Robin Salazar. And though Cooking From the Heart ensures that all of its dishes are made with fresh, healthy ingredients, Salazar says the service isn’t about calorie counting. “Many of our customers have lost weight eating our food, [but] we are not a weight loss company,” she says. “We allow our customers to choose the dishes which are right for them.”
Best for: The holistic health nut
Based in: Medford
Delivers to: Customers nationwide
Pricing: Packages vary; six two-serving entrees costs $99
Most popular meal: The Chi-Noa breakfast smoothie, which contains chia seeds and quinoa
The details: Macro-Mediterranean combines the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet with principles of macrobiotic eating to construct its menu, which is available either through full meal plans or as individual meals. “We learned the theory of healing with food when studying macrobiotics, but having direct experiences over the past six years with people who are eating the food and telling us how it has made a significant difference in their life is the best thing we could have ever hoped to experience,” says owner Jeremy Hayward-Thomas, listing everything from reducing arthritis pain to lowering cholesterol as potential outcomes of the plan.
Best for: The cooking enthusiast
Based in: Wellesley
Delivers to: New England
Pricing: Customers pay for each multi-serving meal; most are around $20
Most popular meal: Seasonal, sweet cider BBQ chicken
The details: Instead of delivering fully prepared meals, Healthy Habits Kitchen provides its users with the exact ingredients, in the exact quantities, needed to prepare its menu items. “It’s home cooking without the time-consuming chopping, meal planning, and grocery shopping, and superior restaurant flavors without the high cost, caloric content, and fat,” says owner Sue Schochet. Each meal, Schochet explains, is perfect for both the healthy eater and the time-crunched cook: They can be prepared in under 30 minutes, contain fewer than 400 calories per serving, and are 30 percent fat or lower.
Best for: Vegans and others with dietary restrictions
Based in: Ipswich
Delivers to: Greater Boston, the North Shore, and select communities within 40 miles of Boston
Pricing: Pricing and delivery fees vary; one full week’s worth of meals for one person costs $299
Most popular meal: Truffled wild mushroom ragout with chive polenta and maple-glazed tempeh
The details: Life-long cooking enthusiast and cancer survivor Kristen Thibeault launched Kombu Kitchen to “change the way people think about eating right by making healthy food delicious and delicious food healthy.” With a variety of packages available, Kombu Kitchen releases a new menu of vegan meals each week. Thibeault stresses that the company consults with each client, allowing for customized plans. “I am focused on helping people with special dietary needs,” Thibeault says. “We work with many local hospitals and clients with severe medical conditions or allergies to offer vegan, gluten-free, and sugar-free meals.”