Purple Carrot Brings Vegan Meal Kits to Whole Foods Markets

The all-in-one meal service is putting its pre-portioned products in North Atlantic stores this week.

Pan seared tofu and black rice noodles from Purple Carrot.

Pan seared tofu and black rice noodles from Purple Carrot. / Photo provided

Last year, former New York Times columnist Mark Bittman joined forces with Purple Carrot, a vegan meal kit service. While the celebrity food advocate eventually parted ways to focus on other endeavors, his involvement helped propel the company’s plant-based dishes to tasty new heights.

Now, those healthy meal kits are just an after-work errand away: Purple Carrot has announced a partnership with Whole Foods Market, and will start putting its pre-portioned meal kits on North Atlantic store shelves this week. Although the Needham-based company’s delivery service has spread to more than 30 states since it launched in 2014, this marks the first time its products have been available in stores.

Whole Foods’ Dedham location is the first to carry these kits. Once the partnership reaches more stores, East Coast customers can walk into their local Whole Foods and grab a pre-assembled, portioned box of ingredients to prepare at home.

“Over the last year, we’ve listened to the feedback of our busy consumers who also wanted to find our products on grocery shelves,” Andy Levitt, founder and CEO of Purple Carrot, wrote in a press release.

To start, Whole Foods will stock three meal kits: Pan-seared tofu with black rice noodles, Mongolian seitan stir fry, and cashew korma with cauliflower rice. These kits will also be available in Whole Foods’ to-go hot bars, the Boston Globe reports. Each kit runs for $19.99.

“We recognize that now, more than ever, our customers are in need of convenience without the sacrifice of quality and nutrition,” said Kimberley Rose, VP of purchasing for Whole Foods’ North Atlantic region, in a press release. “Purple Carrot has created a great product that will help us to provide our customers with one more way to continue to eat well even on the busiest of days.”

Purple Carrot’s expansion comes in the wake of another IRL-meal kit company’s departure, as Pantry shuttered in Washington Square earlier this month. It might seem like a tough world for meal kit services, but Purple Carrot’s foray onto store shelves looks promising. The Globe reports the industry is valued at about $1.5 billion. And with recent expansions in pre-packaged meal services from companies like Instacart, Boston Burger Company, and Just Add Cooking, the industry looks like it’s here to stay.