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Top 5 Best Food Subscription Services – The Best Food Delivery Services

Top 5 Best Food Subscription Services – The Best Food Delivery Services

Here are five of the best food subscription services you may access in the US. These are national companies that cover most of the US. There are parts of the country that some of the food delivery services cannot reach, so do not get your hopes up before checking their delivery options. All five of the companies have their fair share of pros and cons to the point where it is difficult to decide which is the best, which is why this article allows you to judge for yourself. The positive points and negative points for each company have been listed below.

Blue Apron

Blue apron publicity photo with box and food from the Food Delivery Services

Blue Apron has been around since food subscription services started becoming popular. They are the big boys in the world of food ingredients and recipe delivery because they are a big company, a successful company, and they deliver to most places in the US. They have also managed to stay in business and remain profitable in what is frankly a very tough industry.  The amount of profit in delivering pre-prepared ingredients is very low, which means delivery companies have to charge more. Plus, getting people to sign up to the service is very difficult because it is an industry that is mostly powered by word of mouth

Advantages of Blue Apron

  • Their food delivery services have been around for longer than most food-subscription services. They were established in 2012.
  • It is well known, which means it is less likely to go out of business any time soon. They are also turning a profit, which probably means they will not go bust anytime soon.
  • They have a seasonal menu, and the level of variety is what keeps some people coming back for more.
  • The company does send peasant food, but many of the dishes they send are for meals that you wouldn’t usually think of making. In other words, they are not foods you typically find in pubs or takeaways.
  • You may buy the ingredients for a meal and receive only what you need. You do not end up with a cupboard full of part-used spices that you will never use again.
  • The portions are often ample enough so that you have leftovers, and the menu selections are often diverse enough to help stop the range feeling stale.
  • The food products they offer are of a high quality. The biggest quality complaints are often from poor delivery handling rather than poor food selection.

Disadvantages of Blue Apron

  • Despite the eco-friendly-looking box, the company is not eco-friendly. They over-package all of their food items when you order their food delivery services. So much of the food is plastic wrapped that you could choke a flock of seagulls with just a two-person box.
  • The company has a very wasteful attitude in their packing factory. Epic amounts of food are thrown away because of slight imperfections or because the cutter didn’t make a clean cut.
  • Their marketing is probably is very sleazy and very manipulative. They entice people in with offers that always have a catch. Even the discounts often require a larger purchase or subscription that you cannot get out of.
  • You cannot cancel a subscription easily. Trying to cancel is like trying to pull teeth from a crocodile with a spoon. Even after confirming a subscription cancellation, they may still send food and charge you for it.

Terra’s Kitchen

Terra's Kitchen Publicity picture with food fridge and box

The people behind Terra’s kitchen have taken a good hard look at the food delivery industry, they have examined why it is so difficult to stay afloat, and they understand why so many of their competitors go out business. As a result, they offer a genuinely different service to their competitors, and they have built very strong and concise brand principles and unique selling points. If they manage to maintain their low prices, they will be in business for a long time.

Advantages of Terra’s Kitchen

  • All of the hard work is done for you. The meal’s ingredients are already cut up for you. The meals are suitably complicated, but the hardest part of each meal is done for you.
  • The cuisine is very diverse and are as upper-middle class as you can get from a food-delivery service. The fact the meals are so sophisticated makes the cooking more worthwhile.
  • A small fridge is included with the meal. It is customizable and allows you to keep all your ingredients in one place, and allows you to keep them fresh.
  • The company is more nutritionally conscious than most. The meals always contain a slew of micro and macronutrients, and they are all wrapped up in just one meal.
  • Making the meals is very quick and the process is very efficient. The hard work is done for you, so it leaves only the cooking and post preparation. It also saves on a lot of washing up because you don’t mess up bowls, boards, mixers and so forth.
  • The price of the meals is very low when you consider the complexity of the meals. A single-serving meal is no more expensive than a pizza from a local takeaway.

Disadvantages of Terra’s Kitchen

  • The cheaper meals options are…cheap. They are meals that you could have thought up yourself if you had walked around a supermarket. The cheaper meals are the sort of thing you could have bought in a frozen ready meal.
  • The pre-cut, pre-skewered, and pre-made items are fantastic time savers, but they lose freshness because they have already been prepared. If you put the meal off for a few days, you will be able to taste the lack of freshness.
  • If you use their food delivery services, you have to return the mini-fridge like milk bottles to a milkman (if you are old enough to remember milkmen, they used to bring milk in the morning and sleep with your wife while you were overseas in the armed services).
  • The free shipping means they have to increase the cost per serving. It would be a little fairer if the company simply charged delivery for the fridge and food, so that they may lower the cost-per serving in bulkier purchases.

Purple Carrot

purple carrot Publicity picture with box and food displayed

This company offers genuinely good food that is created especially for vegans. The company has taken a massive risk catering to vegans, and they are serving a niche that is tough to crack. The service requires a lot of selling, but if they can pull in enough customers, then there is a strong chance those customers will be loyal for a very long time. The company has a tough road ahead if it wishes to stay in business, but they are offering something genuinely unique, which is vegan food that actually tastes nice to non-vegans. If any of these food delivery companies deserves to stay in business, it is this one.

Advantages of Purple Carrot

  • The meals are all vegan, which is fantastic for the tiny portion of the population who are vegan. Most vegan meals are uninspired, and most vegan ready meals taste like a builder’s flannel, so the fact a company chose to cater to vegans is a plus in itself.
  • Each meal is carefully thought out. The company has to try harder with vegan meals because there are fewer ingredients to play with, and there is a big risk of the meals becoming repetitive or stale if they are not carefully chosen.
  • Some of the recipes are very complex, which is good because bland vegan food is one of the side effects of having a conscience and eating food that doesn’t cause suffering to other creatures. The complex meals are not bland–they are positively exotic.
  • It is aimed at the vegan palette, which is going to scare away many newbies because vegan food is typically horrible from a carnivore’s point of view. However, this is not a bad thing. Purple Carrot allows you to grow and mature your palette so that you start liking vegan meals.

Advantages of Purple Carrot Food Delivery Services For Vegans And Non Vegans

  • The company’s brand and food delivery services is verbally (not financially) supported by Mark Bittman, which may help to stop it going out of business any time soon. Mark started the brand behind, “How to cook everything” but he has no shares in food delivery services at this time.
  • There are many strange meals that you have probably not heard of before. The Purple Carrot people have really put a lot of thought into the meals. Unbelievably, these weird and strange breakfasts, dinners, teas and snacks are truly delicious.
  • In terms of food quality and recipe quality, this company is top of the pile. You will not find better meals or better quality ingredients than with this company unless you visit a very expensive restaurant.

Disadvantages of Purple Carrot

  • Where’s the beef? It is vegan cuisine and that is going to put some people off and turn them on to other food delivery services. However, if you were to offer people these meals without mentioning that it was vegan food–most tasters would be very pleasantly surprised.
  • What a stupid name. Spreading the quality of this company by word of mouth is like asking to be slapped. Telling people it is vegan food is like telling people you hate them, and telling them to try a company called “Purple Carrot” sounds as if you are trying to fool them into Googling pictures of penises with elastic bands around them.
  • Some people will be scared away by how different the food is. You will have trouble finding this stuff in restaurants. The cuisine they offer is very well researched, and if some of it is original to Purple Carrot, then they should say so because they deserve all due credit.
  • It is “All” health food. Eat it and it will unclog the fat from your arteries, give you more energy, improve liver function and lower your chances of bowel cancer. This is all well and good, but now and again, you want something greasy and bad for you.

Home Chef

home chef Publicity picture with box and food displayed

The main selling point of this company is that you may cook their meals in less than 30 minutes. As a side effect, the meals tend to be of a slightly lesser quality, but it is still better than ordering from a takeaway or buying processed food to eat. In addition, there is nothing stopping you from adding a little more love and attention into the cooking process. In addition, this company has a fantastic selection for people with specific dietary requirements. Even if the company lowered its food standards (which it hopefully won’t), it will still have customers because there are so few food delivery services that offer such a selection of dietary options.

Advantages of Home Chef

  • Many of the meals are designed to be cooked in thirty minutes or less. They are not simple, but they are prepared and cooked in a way that allows you to get it done well under an hour.
  • This is the company to go to if you have dietary requirements, such as nut-free food, soy-free, dairy-free, gluten free, and low calorie options. Click on their page that says, “Recipes” and make your order based on your dietary requirement.
  • They have a breakfast option, which doesn’t sound like a big advantage, but so many other companies forget breakfast and assume you will have cereal that it is nice to find a company that appreciates a well-prepared breakfast.
  • The portions that their food delivery services pack for you are just right, and all the ingredients are fresh. They are also a little more environmentally conscious than the average food delivery company.

Disadvantages of Home Chef

  • The recipe preparation instructions are shit! The food ideas are great, the ingredients are brilliant, but the way they tell you to put them together is terrible. Do not follow their instructions, go on the Internet and research the name of the meal and follow the instructions of real chefs on the Internet. Cook it how Home Chef tells you to, and you will have a plate of over boiled mush.
  • Why aren’t they advertising their food delivery services better? There are thousands people that have a tough time finding good food because of their dietary requirements, and this company would be ideal for them, and yet it is viciously difficult to find online!
  • They offer a no commitment and skippable meal systems where you may try the service without a food delivery services subscription, but they ask you to sign up with your email address before they explain how it works.
  • They vacuum pack the meat and fish to keep it fresh, but the carbon dioxide collects in the pores of the meat, which creates a sulfur smell when you open. You have to rinse the meat and leave it to sit a little while for the smell to go away.


hellofresh publicity photo with food and box

Despite having fewer advantages than the other food delivery services in this article, HelloFresh is a very popular service. A big reason is because they offer meals that Americans recognize and enjoy. The other services in this article offer fantastic food that is healthy and satisfying, but many people don’t want “fancy” meals every night. Some people want a tasty lasagna or a burger and fries now and again. Having six varieties of nut in your exotic curry is nice and palate expanding, but sometimes people want peasant food that they know they enjoy, and that is what HelloFresh offers.

Advantages of HelloFresh

  • This company has spent more time concentrating on the food types that US citizens are used to. Most of the meals that are offered when you buy their food delivery services are instantly recognizable by most Americans.
  • The meals are easy to cook for people with no cooking experience at all. Even poor quality cooks will be able to create edible and nice meals with HelloFresh ingredients, recipes and instructions.
  • They do not throw out food just because it has a slight imperfection. They are a little more forgiving about what is good and what is not, which means they produce less food waste than some of the other food delivery services in this article.
  • You are able to pause deliveries. For example, if the next delivery options all have spices in, and you do not like spices, then you may pause your delivery and have it pick up on another day.

Disadvantages of HelloFresh

  • They will sell your personal details and there is nothing you can do about it. Expect a lot of junk mail through the post, via email and over the phone. If your phone has a restricted number and you have never given it out to anybody but HelloFresh, you can expect bi-weekly calls for the rest of your life from a slew of foreign sounding voices.
  • They have poorly paid and under motivated delivery drivers. Tell them not to give it to your angry neighbor, and they will give it to them if you do not answer. Tell them to leave it behind your fence, and they will leave it on your doorstep for your neighbor’s dog to pee up.
  • The cancellation process for their food delivery services is very muddy. If you are not happy, you are going to have to buy a bunch of meals before your cancellation actually goes through. If you are not happy, then cancel as soon as possible to save money where possible.
  • Who are these jerks that they hire for customer support? The phone staff are patronizing, and the Live Chat staff are outright rude. They must have created a really nasty working environment in their customer service department because the sheer amount of antagonistic bile the staff produce is surely the result of HelloFresh treating their staff like dirt.

Conclusion – Try Them All

It is unfair to say that one is better than the other, even though I personally think that Purple Carrot is the best. Instead of taking my word for it, why not try a few weeks with each different company? Try a month subscription with each service to see which you prefer. After all, one has to assume that there is a certain level of personal taste and preference required. What one person likes, another will hate…so try them all and pick your favorite.

About The Author

Ash The Great

After a varied career in different industries from the hospitality industry to the financial consultancy industry, Ash now spends his days working as a professional writer.

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