Preparing a meal from scratch can make you feel like a superhero of sorts. However, cooking your favorite meals become monotonous and time consuming, especially if you are busy with other family duties. You can get some great recipes online to switch things up, but making new recipes week after week can take up a lot of time searching on Pinterest or cookbooks, while also requiring more time at the grocery store as you check and double-check your list.
Enter the meal-kit delivery service!
For many young professionals and couples, this awesome new idea has made their cooking life a lot easier. Delivering 2-3 servings of vegetables and meat with a delicious recipe attached means you can cut back on shopping time and recipe searching duties. But there's rarely enough for an entire family to eat. Feeding two hungry adults and a couple of kids takes more than one small pack of ground beef and a few broccoli sprigs.
But the fact is, most of these meal kits only enough for 2-3 people eating small portions! Luckily, some services have begun to offer family sized meals, catering to 3-6 people. Many also have options for specific dietary needs like egg free, gluten free, dairy free, paleo, and more.
- Best Feature: Best tasting and most fun to cook!
Max Servings: Family of 4, 4x per week
Price Per Serving: $9.94 - $11.95
Allergen Options: gluten free, low carb, vegetarian
Downside: Takes more time to prepare
Discount Available? YES (save up to $159)
- Rank: #1
- Best Feature: Most unique flavors, with food upgrades available (for an extra cost)
Max Servings: Family of 4, 2x per week
Price Per Serving: $10.99 - $12.99+
Allergen Options: gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, vegan, lean and clean, paleo
Downside: Only 2 family deliveries per week, food upgrades are pricey
Discount Available? YES (save up to $60)
- Rank: #2
- Green Chef
- Best Features: Most "niche diet" options, familiar flavors and recipes
Max Servings: Family of 4, 3x per week
Price Per Serving: $10.99
Allergen Options: None (family). For individuals, they have paleo, vegan, keto, omnivore, gluten-free, vegetarian, carnivore
Downside: Family plan only has omnivore and carnivore options
Discount Available? NO
- Rank: #3
Below I've collected 14 services that allow you to customize your order size to accommodate for small to large families. Plated is currently my favorite option for families. Why? They simply offer the best tasting food, for the best price, and the most meals per week.
The cheapest option is going to be Platejoy (shown below), but it's not a “meal kit” per se. Rather, Platejoy creates recipes for you, then does your online shopping and delivers groceries to your door.
Because you aren't paying for the standard meal kit experience, you pay less overall. You still get the fun of new recipes every week, and the time-saving aspect of having food delivered though, so this is a great option for someone on a budget. They also have extensive meal plans for anyone with food allergies or specific diet requirements.
Some of the kits below let you toggle “servings”, while some let you toggle “number of persons”. It may take a couple weeks of delivery to get the portions perfect, but you can always save extra for leftovers, or supplement with a dessert until you get it just right. Let's get started!
Green Chef is a USDA organic certified meal kit delivery service and is the first to receive gluten-free certification. They deliver fresh pre-portioned, healthy natural ingredients to your doorstep every week.
They have one of the most extensive varieties of meal plans available, outpacing most competitors. Green Chef’s plans include gluten-free, paleo, keto, omnivore, carnivore, vegan and vegetarian. As such, they cater for most diet types, along with many meal preferences.
The delivery service offers generous portions that should fill you and your family up. The meals are easy to prepare and take between just 30 and 40 minutes to make. They also chop and dice ingredients for you and even mix sauces, saving a lot of time and effort. I know this from experience too. You can see more details in my review of Green Chef. But, in general, this is one of the more appealing services. The main disadvantage is that they do have a lot of packaging. Still, much of the packaging can be reused or recycled, which cuts down on waste.
The amount you pay for meals depends on the plan you choose. They have two family options: Family Omnivore and Family Carnivore for which you will pay $11.99 and $12.99 per meal($25 off first order through my links). Vegetarian meals cost $10.49 per meal, vegan meals cost $11.99 per meal, while both keto and paleo meals are $14.99 per meal. To cancel the subscription or change your order, you need to seven days notice.
The presence of family plans is particularly appealing and these seem to contain more servings than the regular plans. The meals themselves are a good balance of complex and simple. For example, one option is tandoori chicken. The flavor is one that many kids would find appealing, although there are adult-focused ingredients as well (including almond-raisin quinoa). The assumption is that both adults and kids will be eating the same meals.
When you hear Martha Stewart, you most likely think, the fantastic cook. Martha has recently teamed up with Marley Spoon meal kit service to ensure you can cook just like her. The food delivery service brings you fresh and sustainably sourced ingredients for Martha-inspired meals. Their offerings include grass-fed beef, Berkshire pork, American-caught shrimp as well as artisanal cheeses. They also cater to carnivore, vegetarian and gluten-free diets.
Unlike most other prepped ingredients delivery services, Marley Spoon is also available in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, and Australia. However, they do not deliver all over said counties and even in the US. You will need to confirm from their website whether they ship to your area.
They have two plans: a two-person box and a family box. Both boxes allow you to choose either two, three or four servings per week. You can also plan your meals up to five weeks in advance and have up to five days to review your order once you make it. The company is very green and has minimal packaging. They even offer tips on how to recycle each packaging item.
The minimum you can order is four servings. For the two-person box, you will pay $48 for two meals, $61.50 for three and $76 for four meals a week. The family box contains four servings per dinner. For $76 you get two meals a week. You will part with $106.80 and $139.20 for three and four meals a week.
The service also uses tags to help people pick the best meals. This includes tags for meals that are dairy-free, spicy, gluten-free, require less than 30 minutes and also those that are kid-friendly. That last option is powerful. It helps make sure you get meals the kids will actually eat. Meals that require less than 30 minutes of work are also perfect for busy families.
Most food delivery services give you ingredients to prepare healthy homemade food. Burga Box, however, is that service that gives you a monthly cheat meal. They deliver burger recipes and components, and you get to create your own humongous, delicious burgers right at home.
Chef Paul Malvone, one half of the Boston Burger Company, came up with the concept. Every month he goes into his ‘burga lab’ and creates a masterpiece for members of the ‘Burga Club.'
The subscription fee is $59 per month. The box that arrives from the meal kit service contains two half-pound patties, two buns and several sides that include mac and cheese, fries, coleslaw, baked beans, and sauces. The instructions they send are straightforward to follow and add to the fun. Their packages are very well iced, and all ingredients arrive still cold, and the ice packs are still rock hard.
The food delivery service gives you great value for your money. Though the portions are designed to feed two people, they can comfortably feed up to three adults or two adults and two children. After all, the burgers really are large. The most exciting aspect is that there are different burgers each month, so all you do is order and prepare to be amazed.
Started by Catherine McCord, One Potato delivers fully prepped meal kits for busy families. Their recipes are based on the cookbooks written by the company’s founder. Subscribers get to choose one of five meal plans. First, you tell them the size of your family and your meal preferences. Then, they send you an email outlining your preferred meals and let you schedule the meals you want to have each week.
One Potato promises to deliver meals that appeal to everyone in the household. True, the ingredients may be new, but the outcome will be nothing short of lovely, they say. The meals are kept exciting but are still friendly for kids. One such meal is herb roasted chicken and polenta fries.
The company focuses on providing a healthy alternative to dining out, frozen dinners or takeout for families. As a result, the meals are fast to prepare, typically taking 30 minutes or less. Customers also get free shipping and a discount on their first delivery.
There are multiple plans to choose from, each designed for different situations. For example, the Two Potato plan is ideal for families with either 1) two adults, 2) one adult and one teenager or 3) one adult and two small children. Larger families can go for the Six Potato plan or the Five Potato plan. Each of the plans has been outlined on their website so that you can quickly pick the one that fits your needs. The site also breaks down the cost per serving, along with the weekly total.
The names of the plans simply refer to the number of servings per night. So Five Potato includes five servings and Six Potato includes six. This makes it easy to get exactly the right size each time.
Hardi Irvani loves dinners. He would invite guests to unique dinners where they had to participate in cooking. The dinners inspired the creation of Peach Dish; a meal kit delivery service that sources fresh organic ingredients from local Atlanta farmers and artisans. The service is ideal for families and even entertaining as you can order four to 12 meals a week. The options change from one week to the next, so you'll never get bored.
They also follow the USDA recommendations from choosemyplate.org to ensure all your meals are nutritionally balanced. They even use an in-house dietitian to design the meals and ensure they are healthy and easy to make.
As a whole, the service does not cater to specific dietary needs such as gluten-free, vegan, paleo and diabetes. However, the design of the service means that you choose which meals you receive, which some being vegetarian and others not. There is a small ‘no gluten added' selection. However, none of those are labeled as being gluten-free. When choosing, you do also need to look at the serving sizes. Some meals only offer two servings, while others are suitable for more.
For families and kids, the biggest advantage is the ability to choose larger meals. The way the menu changes regularly may also help if you have picky kids. However, the meals aren't specifically targeted at children. Some do resemble comfort food, while other options may be too complex for many kids. The simple solution would be to look at the available menus and see what you think.
You can either subscribe to Peach Dish service or order as a guest. Unlike other food delivery services, they have a separate store where they sell a variety of products, including: spices, cookbooks, salts with different flavors, jams, desserts and meats. I've tried this service myself. It's not my favorite option but it does still have some appealing features. You can check out the full review for more details.
The minimum order is four meals a week, which costs $50. For six servings a week, you will pay $70. You can also get eight and 12 dinners a week for $90 and $130 per week. Shipping is $0 to $15 for subscribers and $12 to $27 for guests. In both cases, the shipping price depends on your location.
PlateJoy is a meal kit service designed to save you money, energy and time. The company uses your preferences to create a customized meal plan for you and your family. To do so, they use 50 data points to work out the best meals for you specifically. This includes considering whether you want kid-friendly options and whether you tend to batch cook. PlateJoy also offers free dietary advice from a professional nutritionist.
However, the service is also a little different. They generate a list of groceries and a couple of grocery stores near you (via Instacart) with different offers. The meals are customized to include ingredients, portions, cooking and prepping time allowances within your range. As such, it functions as a digital pantry and is more complex than the other services.
The pricing of every element varies depending on the number of adults and children you are serving and the estimated of portion per person. They offer small, regular and large options for every meal, making it perfect for families. There are two packages on offer, either a semi-annual or an annual subscription. The semi-annual subscription goes for $69 (about $11.5 per month) while the yearly service goes for $99 (about $8.25 per month).
The pricing is because you are still paying for the ingredients in a separate step.
What are some of its downsides? Unlike most meal-kit services, PlateJoy does not provide prepared ingredients. The service also only offers the ingredients available on Instacart in 31 US states. But, if you don't mind this step, the style does make things easier. After all, you can also purchase whatever ingredient you want from whatever grocery store, within your desired budget with any limitation and have it delivered to your doorstep. You also have more options to tailor the ingredients, which may be appealing.
Plated is a flexible meal delivery service. They offer a variety of customizable meal plans with nine dishes to choose from on a weekly basis. So, what do they offer? You might like the sound of several dessert options! Better yet, they make use of fresh, healthy and high-quality organic ingredients.
Plated not only supplies ingredients but also provides well-explained recipe cards. They range from simple 15-minute recipes to the extreme edge of culinary exploration. In fact, this was one of my favorite services to use. You can find out why in my full review of the service.
Some of their popular meals include:
- Trout Piccata served with Herbed Orzo and Sauteed Green Beans
- Grilled Pork Chop served with Peach Salad and White Balsamic Vinaigrette
- Oregano Chicken Kebabs served with Creamy Basil Corn and Burrata
Even though these sound complicated, many would be appealing to kids as well. The recipes are actually a great way to get kids trying more unique food, while still making sure they eat what's on their plate. However, most meals aren't specifically designed for kids and some families may find them too complex.
There are multiple options for ordering the service. You can choose either two, three or four servings per night and then choose between two, three or four nights per week. Plated estimates that a four servings per night plan would satisfy two adults and three kids or two adults and two teenagers. The pricing varies depending on the plan you choose but calculates out to somewhere around $10 to $12 per serving. There is also free shipping on all boxes over $60. Desserts are a $4 supplementary dish.
This company started out in San Francisco and expanded its market to other regions around the world. A plummeting profit almost led to their shut down in 2015, due to the expansion to various states. Today, it stands out as a leading meal-kit delivery service.
The Good Eggs website oozes an aura of professionalism at first glance. You can find your way around this online market and make your order in a jiffy. Good news!! You can order anything; you don’t have to order an entire package. Their services are available in most Bay Area Zip codes from 10 am to 9 pm every day of the week. Just place your order by 1 pm, and it will be at your doorstep on the same day.
They have several meals broken down into 3-Dinner Kits, Reorders, Market, Produce, Dairy, Meat, Fish, Snacks, Bakery, and Pantry. For easy small family meal planning, the weeknight dinner kit would be the best option at $69.99 per week. It comes with three meal options and three servings each at $7.77.
Nevertheless, the kits aren't specifically designed for families or for kids. So, you're just getting larger servings of adult-focused food. You do get to see the meals in the kit before you order, so you'll know whether a kit is right for you. If you need more flexibility, you can focus on the individual meals, which tend to provide three servings. Many of these are more kid-friendly, including a selection of 15-minute pizzas. You can also order kids lunch kits from the site.
Beyond this, you can explore their market for different types of produce and even go for bulk options such as the family brunch with fish. They offer generous portions as well. Your order comes in a sturdy cardboard box that is partitioned into sections and kept cool for a few hours with the help of ice packs. All orders above $60 come with free shipping. The service gets consistently good reviews and is a very flexible option.
Chef'd is famous for partnering with various high profile food brands to bring you healthy, delicious meals. There are dozens of chefs at Chef'd that ensure you get five-star meal kits delivered to you. Chef'd caters to several diet needs and has collaborated with experts from multiple areas to help create appealing and healthy meals.
Their meals are broken down into multiple categories, including meal type, cooking style and primary protein (e.g. chicken, fish, beef). This makes it easy to find exactly what you're looking for. Many of the meals are more homestyle than other services, with fewer unusual ingredients. There is also a family-friendly section, offering dishes like baked meatballs and beef bourguignon. This makes the service great for families with young kids.
There are two different ways to order from the company. First, you can order meals individually. Most allow you to order two or four servings. Prices vary depending on what the meal is and the ingredients. For example, some breakfasts are as low as $10 per two-person entrée and the more sophisticated dinners up to $20 a piece.
There is also a meal plan component. There are five plans on offer:
- American Diabetes Association Meal Plan
- Atkins Meal Plan
- New York Times Cooking Meal Plan
- Spoon University Meal Plan
- Weight Watchers Meal Plan
The plans are customized, letting you choose how many people you're cooking for, the number of meals per week, whether you have any allergens (e.g. gluten, soy, dairy) and which proteins you want. You are still basically ordering meals individually, so you would need to do that each week. But, the style is perfect if you follow a restrictive diet or if you're struggling to choose on your own.
Two friends were having a conversation about meals and busy lives. They concluded that life hassles have made it difficult to eat healthy meals and thus Hello Fresh came into being. This meal kit service picks fresh and wholesome ingredients out, pre-portions them and ships them to your home. You will still enjoy cooking but without having to go to the grocery stores.
They have three plans; classic, vegetarian and family. One fantastic thing about their menu is you can filter for fit, quick, seafood-free, pork-free or beef-free meals. Unlike some other services, they just focus on dinners. So, there are no breakfasts or lunches to choose from.
Though the food is delicious, the recipes are fairly basic and unsurprising for meals stated to be prepared by chefs. That isn't necessarily a bad thing. Simpler recipes are often good for novice cooks and families with picky children. This is also a relatively inexpensive service, which may be another reason to consider it. I tried this service myself, so you can see more details in my full Hello Fresh review.
The family plan provides four servings for two or three nights a week. You can also get four servings with the classic or the veggie plan, so these are an option too. With a maximum of four recipes per week, you'd have to shop for yourself the other nights. The company doesn't allow you to customize meals either. Instead, they come in a bundle. That aside, you get to enjoy seasonal ingredients all year round and each week has a different menu.
The family package price is $7.89 per serving, while the other plans are $8.99 per serving. Shipping is free on all orders irrespective of location. Note that you may have to cancel subscriptions by phone or give a week's notice.
Sun Basket has a strong focus on healthy meals and includes a Family Plan that consists of vegetarian, paleo, gluten-free and Chef’s choice options. Families can receive a box with either two or four recipes every week, where each meal serves four people. The boxes come with tips on how kids can chip in to help prepare each meal. This is an excellent option to help busy parents bond with their kids over meal preparation. They also offer weekly themes such as taco night or pasta night.
According to the company, quality is at the heart of all their ingredients. Additionally, each of the options for the family plan can be customized. For instance, if you are eating paleo, your kids do not have to. You can place an order that will give your kids the ingredients they crave and you, your paleo meal. The same applies for vegetarian and gluten-free meals. The Chef’s choice is an option to get hand-picked recipes by their chefs.
The downside to this family plan is that it feeds four. If you are a family of three, you can refrigerate what remains to consume later. But, there are no options for larger families. You can also find out more details about precisely what you get in my Sun Basket review. In that post, I talk about my personal experiences with the meal kit service, including the parts that I enjoyed and the parts that I didn't.
At only $9.99 per person, regardless of the number of meals, you can get to enjoy a well-balanced and fresh meal with your family. Delivery for each of the meals costs $5.99 per week. This is a little bit high but at least, the dreaded question ‘what are we having for dinner’ becomes unnecessary.
Great news though – they are running a promotion where you can get 50% off of the Family Plan! That's an awesome deal. For individuals they offer smaller discounts, but Sunbasket really rocks the family plan deal. The deep discount is one excellent reason to start off with Sunbasket if this is your time trying a family meal kit.
Terra's Kitchen prides themselves on creating plant heavy Mediterranean inspired dishes that reduce inflammation and are good for your heart. All their protein offerings are non-GMO, hormone-free and antibiotic-free. Their seafood is also from sustainable sources. Apart from regular breakfast, lunches and dinners; you can also purchase healthy snacks, salads and smoothies.
They offer paleo, gluten-free, low calorie, vegetarian and vegan options. You can combine your meals any way you want and there are more than 50 to choose from. Because the meals are all Mediterranean-inspired, some people find they get monotonous over time. Whether this happens for you would depend on your preferences. Even so, the service is a good way to get started with healthy eating and learn to cook Mediterranean meals.
Unfortunately, only a subset of the meals serve four people, most serve two. As such, you might have to repeat the same meals frequently or make two orders of the same meal.
Meals from Terra's Kitchen are easy to prepare and can make fun activities with the kids. You only need between 15 to 30 minutes to whip up the delicious food. Their packaging is unique and your order arrives in a returnable vessel with reusable trays kept cool by ice-packs. The food delivery's portions are plentiful, and if you have two small children, there will probably be leftovers they can carry to school the next day.
The family meals are priced starting at $9.99 per serving. The minimum order amount is $63.49. Shipping is free for your order if it is above $100 and $4.95 for orders that do not meet that threshold. Their sides will cost you at least $2.99.
Blue Apron must be the most famous meal kit service out there. With the amount of advertising they’ve been doing, that’s not surprising. The company is easy to use and offers delicious meals. Following their recipes isn’t any problem at all, as the instructions are clear.
There are two plans to choose from – a two-person and a family plan. The family plan is designed to serve four people. It offers two, three, or four recipes each week for either $8.99 or $9.99 per serving, depending on the number of meals you order. Shipping is free in each case.
Once you have checked out, you are able to choose what meals you want. These are based on the weekly menu – and there is a limited selection for family meals (I only spotted four when I looked!). This may be completely fine if you don’t have picky eaters. But, if your family members have strong preferences, the selection may simply be too limited.
This is also a service that I reviewed myself. I’ve even gone back to them multiple times, which says something about the quality of their food. Blue Apron still isn’t my favorite meal kit service but it is a decent one – and a good place to begin. My main issue was that some of their meals were boring, similar to things that I could make myself.
There is also very little customization. You can select the meals but that’s really it. The main specialty diet option is for vegetarian meals and that’s only available for the two-person meal plan, not the family one.
The biggest thing that makes Gobble stand out is the ease of cooking. Meal kit companies are all over the place when it comes to time. Some are simple and easy. Others require multiple steps and some fairly complex cooking processes. With Gobble, all meals take 15 minutes (or less!) to prepare.
They really do too. I tried Gobble out for myself and wrote a review on it. I found the meals truly were easy and fast. I personally love cooking, so the style felt a little bit like cheating to me. In all honesty, I’d rather meals that are more complex and take a bit more work. But, it’s easy to see how Gobble would be appealing if you’re short on time.
Gobble is extremely relevant for families because you can add on more servings – all the way up to 12 servings per meal. Most of the other kits on this list only support a family of four. But many people do have larger families. Besides, the meals are all very fast to prepare. That’s always a good thing with a family. Cooking dinner is often the last thing on your mind when you get home – and I’ve seen some meal kits take close to an hour to put together.
Another feature is kid-friendly meals. This includes options like baked mac and cheese, which would be perfect in many situations. You could even choose to order a kit for the adults and another for the kids. After all, they only take 15 minutes to prepare.
Ordering is simple enough and you do get to choose your meals each week. There are only two plans, and each gives you three full dinners each week. One plan is for two people, the other for four. The meals average out at between $11.95 and $13.95 per serving, depending on your choices. Of course, the total price will change depending on whether you add any extra servings, snacks, or desserts.
Home Chef is a solid choice for families because they don't venture too far into “cultural” foods that a lot of kids dont' like. While other services travel around the world and have you make things from Africa, Asia, and all the spice that come along with that, Home Chef pretty much sticks to familiar favorites.
That being said, they aren't boring! I really enjoyed their meals like pork chops with pine nut compound butter with kale and parmesan or shrimp lo mein.
The smallest setting they have for meals is 2 meals per week for two people, but you can expand it up to six meals for six people! That's a pretty large food delivery, so it's perfect for bigger families, or families with big appetites.
At about $20 per meal, it's right in the middle-range for prices, and you won't get much of a discount for ordering in bulk. This company would be great for a healthy-living-style adult who wants to meal prep for a couple days in the week, or for someone with kids who aren't terribly adventurous but like more than just plain spaghetti.
Get $30 off here to make your first delivery much cheaper!
These family meal kits can be really fun to experiment with. They're a great way to spend time with the family, and begin teaching your children a useful life skill. No matter who you are or where you live, you have to eat. Knowing how to cook delicious meals for yourself is something they'll be able to enjoy for the rest of their life.
This is also a great way to ease them into the idea of taking over responsibilities at home! Being responsible for cooking one meal per week from their favorite meal kit program could be fun for them, and free up some of your time.
With the 50% discount from Sunbasket, it's at least worth experimenting with for a week, or for a month to see if this something your family might enjoy.