Do you hate cooking? Don’t have time to cook? Don’t know how to cook? Then someone made a subscription meal box just for you. There is an abundance of options available, but are they worth the cost? They offer convenience and can be much less expensive than take-out food, but are depending on the box, may cost more than a grocery store.

So, What are Meal Subscription Boxes?

meal subscription boxes

They are exactly what they sound like. You sign up for a weekly subscription, choose your meals, and receive all the ingredients and cooking instructions for 3-4 meals, with 2-4 adult sized servings.

Benefits of Boxes

Convenience and Saving Time

  • Instead of shopping and buying ingredients that you would only use once, the box includes the perfect portion of each ingredient. Aside from small prep work, most meals are prepped, cooked and ready to serve in 45 minutes or less.


  • Most boxes come with printed instructions; often including photos for each step. If you don’t know how to cook, this is an easy way to learn. The recipe will guide you through prep and cooking so everything gets to the table at once; no more scrambling to get side dishes finished at the same time as an entree!


  • If you follow a specific type of diet, (vegan, gluten-free, diabetic, allergy avoidance, etc.) you can find specific plans to fit your needs. Most plans will offer a way to pause delivery or skip a week or two completely. If you are going on vacation, having guests, or simply want to make your own meals, you can usually change your order dates with a quick adjustment on their website.

Fresh Ingredients

  • These meals are usually well-balanced and healthy choices. Most ingredients last in your refrigerator for 3-5 days, allowing you to choose when to cook.


  • Most people make the same recipes over and over. These plans offer meals you may never have thought of, or may never have tried otherwise. You wouldn’t want to buy a whole bottle of curry powder if a recipe only uses a teaspoon when you aren’t sure you are going to like curry. This way, you can order a curry meal and try it first. Though they are rare, some companies are now offering breakfast, lunch, and snack boxes as well as dinner. While the majority of meals are fresh and allow you to cook from scratch, there are also some which come with some ingredients pre-chopped, and others come completely cooked and ready to be popped into a microwave. You can have one meal a week delivered, or four, depending on your needs.

The Downside

Each company has the same basic premise. Some, however, are much pricier than others. Prices vary from as little as $5.00 per person per meal to $20.00 per person. While you can choose meals for 2 or 4 people, it’s going to be more expensive if you have a larger family. Keep in mind they are calculated on an average adult-size serving, which may not march your idea of portion size.

Subscription meal boxes don’t offer all the food necessary for every meal of the day. Most subscriptions allow up to four meals a week, which means you are still going to do a lot of your own grocery shopping and meal planning. Meals come with nearly all elements needed, but you will most often have to provide small things like oil, salt, and pepper, butter, or a little milk.

There are many plans which try to cater to specific dietary needs, but not all are easily accommodated. For example, you may require gluten-free, organic, and vegan. Not all subscriptions are going to offer all three choices. You may not be able to find a plan with everything you want.

About The Author
Raye Wiedner is an active widow, living in the Midwest. She has been a health care worker for most of her life, with a passion for trying new adventures.

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