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Written by: Felicity Kay on Oct 25th, 2021

Best Meal Delivery Services  in Gainesville 2021 (Updated List)

Whether you’re a working professional on the go, a busy parent who needs easy meals for the family, or a student at the University of Florida looking to eat healthy on a budget, everyone in Gainesville is looking for something different in a meal delivery service.

To help you narrow down your options, I’ve scoured the internet for the very best meal delivery services in Gainesville for every price point and dietary need. Check out all your choices below. Or, take a look at how the options in Gainesville stack up against our list of today’s Best Meal Delivery Services.

Short on Time? Here Are the Best Meal Delivery Services in Gainesville for 2021

What’s the Difference Between Meal Delivery and Food Delivery?

There are two types of services on this list: food delivery and meal delivery. A food delivery service is one like Grubhub that brings you a cooked meal as ordered from a restaurant. The positives include convenience and quality, but they aren’t a long-term solution to meal planning as the cost builds up quickly. 

A meal delivery service is something like Blue Apron or HelloFresh that delivers the ingredients to your door but leaves the actual cooking up to you. 

Some of them also offer prepared meals, typically at a lower cost per serving than you would get from a restaurant. Most are also focused on healthy eating, unlike food delivery services. 

Our Best Meal Delivery Services Reviewed

1.   Home Chef - 5-Minute Meals in Gainesville Starting at $8.99/serving

Home Chef Best Features

Home Chef in a Nutshell

Home Chef has been around since 2013 and is one of the most affordable and versatile meal delivery companies out there. For starters, it has its recipes conveniently organized into categories based on their ingredients. You can sort by vegetarian, nut-free, carb/calorie-conscious, protein, and even dessert.

Another major selling point for Home Chef is its extensive customization options. For certain recipes, you can customize your recipe by choosing the size and type of protein. My colleague was impressed with Home Chef’s Customize-It feature and wrote about it in this review.

Meals from Home Chef fall into multiple categories: there are the standard meal kits (that come with pre-portioned ingredients you cook yourself) and then a range of quicker-prep options on the Fresh and Easy plan, including Oven-Ready dishes you just need to assemble and bake and a Fast & Fresh microwave meal ready in just five minutes.

2. Blue Apron - Options for Gainesvillians on Any Diet

Blue Apron Best Features

Blue Apron in a Nutshell

Blue Apron is well-known for its high-quality ingredients and balanced meals that satisfy a range of dietary requirements. You have three main meal plans to choose from: Signature, Vegetarian, and Wellness. Each offers a two-person plan and there’s also a Signature for 4 plan that’s perfect for families.

Within the meal plans, you can pick recipes that are diabetes-friendly, WW-approved, vegetarian, pescatarian, or carb-conscious. Prices at Blue Apron start at $7.49 per serving, and you’re looking at just over $40 a week for two meals on a two-person plan. For a more detailed dive into pricing, check out my colleague's review.

The recipe cards list recommended wines to complement each dish and Blue Apron also has a wine-pairing service that you can add to your order.

3.  Purple Carrot - Fueling Plant-based Power in Gainesville

Purple Carrot Best Features

 Purple Carrot in a Nutshell

Purple Carrot exclusively delivers vegan ingredients that are packed full of protein, flavor, and healthy fats. Purple Carrot has a two-serving plan and a four-serving plan for its meal kits, both of which are highly flexible. It recently began offering prepared meals so if you’d rather not cook at all, you can order up to 10 single-serving vegan meals per week.

Ourreviewer enjoyed Purple Carrot so much, it made it onto our list of the top vegan meal delivery services, too.

Another bonus is that it doesn’t just offer dinner. You can branch out into breakfast and lunch recipes as well, perfect for busy workdays where you’re short on time but still want to make healthy eating a priority.

Purple Carrot also has a “Plantry” section where you can buy vegan snacks like plant-based chocolate, marshmallows, and cheese. You can add up to three of these items to your order every week.

4.  HelloFresh - Most Popular Choice in Gainesville

HelloFresh Best Features

HelloFresh in a Nutshell

HelloFresh is undoubtedly a heavy hitter in the meal kit industry, and it’s the most popular meal kit service in the United States.

You can learn why in my colleague’s detailed HelloFresh review.

There are six different plans to choose from: Meat & Veggie, Veggie, Family Friendly, Calorie Smart, Quick & Easy, and Pescatarian. You can choose between two and four servings per meal and get anywhere from two to six recipes on any given week.

Meals range from $7.49-$12.49 per serving, and shipping is an extra $8.99. Prices go down the more servings you order, but for a basic box of two recipes for two people, you’re looking at a base price of $58.95, regardless of your chosen plan.

HelloFresh also offers extras that can be tacked on to your order if you’d like. These include treats like cookies and garlic bread.

5. Sunbasket - Healthy Meals for Every Dieter

Sunbasket Best Features

Sunbasket in a Nutshell

Sunbasket is one of the most diet-friendly meal delivery services available in Gainesville. It has meal plans for Vegetarian, Pescatarian, Gluten-Free, Mediterranean, Diabetes-Friendly, Paleo, and Carb-Conscious diets, as well as a calorie-smart plan known as Lean & Clean.

Sunbasket recipes are easy to sort by dietary requirement, and it also has a Fresh & Ready line of prepared meals for even faster prep times. Prepared meals arrive in a single serving package, ready to pop into the oven or microwave.

One of our experts also carried out an in-depth Sunbasket review that goes over the pricing and meal plans in more detail.

Sunbasket’s main claim to fame is its values. Among its goals are things like 100% recyclable packaging, a lower carbon footprint, and working with food banks.

6.  Freshly - No Prep, No Problem for Gluten-Free Gainesvillians 

Freshly Best Features

Freshly in a Nutshell

Freshly is here for the busy commuter who simply doesn’t have the time or energy to prep and cook for themselves all week. And it does it all without sacrificing nutrition or flavor. With a rotating menu of about 30 dishes per week, Freshly doesn’t skimp on variety either.

Freshly’s prices are a little higher than some other services on this list, and affordability will depend on how many meals you order per week. For a full price breakdown and to see what it’s like to try Freshly, take a look at my colleague's review.

Freshly meals come in a single serving tray that’s ready to microwave, heat, and eat. Its protein-packed meals are perfect for the health-minded shopper and Freshly has also recently added vegan recipes to its range with a new Purely Plant category.

7.  Green Chef - Organic and Balanced Meal Kits

Green Chef Best Features

Green Chef in a Nutshell

Green Chef is focused on healthy, diet-friendly living. It has plans for paleo and keto dieters, as well as a plant-based plan, a balanced plan, and allergen-free meals.

Prices for Green Chef are a little more expensive than some of the other options. You can read more about that in our dedicated review.

But considering the quality of these meal kits, and the dietary preferences it accommodates, you might find it’s worth the premium price tag. For example, you can try international options like the Korean Chicken Bulgogi, or reimagined healthy comfort food like the Mushroom and Cheddar Melts.

One thing that sets Green Chef apart from other companies is that it caters to customers with allergies and strict health diets, like keto. While it still isn’t recommended for those with severe allergies, those with intolerances or mild allergies can find several options.

8.  EveryPlate - The Most Affordable Meal Kits Around

EveryPlate Best Features

EveryPlate in a Nutshell

EveryPlate is here for everyone in Gainesville that wants to try meal kits but can’t look at the prices without wincing. There are 14+ recipes to choose from each week, and most of them are priced at $4.99 per serving.

There are three plans: ClassicPlate, VeggiePlate, and FamilyPlate. The plans are pretty similar, with the main difference being that the FamilyPlate is designed with picky eaters and children in mind.

Recipes on this plan include things like Tuscan Herbed Chicken, Black Bean and Pepper Jack Tostadas, and Chicken Scallopini. Read more about EveryPlate’s meals in our review!

Unfortunately, because it’s so focused on affordability, EveryPlate doesn’t yet have options for most dietary needs. Vegetarians may be able to make do with the limited veggie plan, but anyone on a stricter diet will struggle.

9.  Grubhub - Best Food Delivery in Gainesville

Grubhub Best Features

  • Restaurant meals direct to your door

  • No cooking or prep time

  • Endless variety

Grubhub in a Nutshell

Grubhub is a food delivery service, not a meal delivery service. Like meal delivery services, though, it’s exploded in popularity over the past few years.

Grubhub works as a database of restaurants in your area that you can browse and order from. A Grubhub driver will then go to the restaurant and pick your food up for you. A short time later you’ll have a delicious, ready-to-eat meal like the Wok Fried Rice from Bento Asian Kitchen + Sushi delivered right into your hands.

There’s a delivery fee for using Grubhub, so it can get expensive if you’re using it every day. It’s probably not a long-term replacement for cooking. The positives, though, are that you can use an app to order, and regular promotional campaigns can help you save some cash.

10.  Postmates - Custom Take-Out in Gainesville

Postmates Best Features

  • Mix-and-match restaurants

  • Low delivery cost on partner restaurants

  • Fleet orders let you get delivery from unlisted restaurants

Postmates in a Nutshell

Overall, Postmates is very similar to Grubhub. They’re both app-based food delivery systems. However, there are a few key differences. Postmates has a partner program with selected restaurants that lowers the cost of delivery (normally down to $2-$4). This is at the cost of higher delivery fees ($6-$10) for other restaurants.

Postmates also has Fleet orders, where you can give a list of several restaurants and have the orders all delivered at once. So, you could get dinner from one restaurant, but a dessert like the Lava Cake from Branch House Tavern all in the same order.

You can even get food from a restaurant that isn’t on the Postmates app, as long as you can give the driver instructions on how to get there.

Best Meal Delivery Services for Gainesville: Comparison Table

Meal Delivery Service

Special Discounts

Starting Price

Dietary Preferences Offered

Shipping Fee

Meal Types

Home Chef

Get $80 off plus free shipping



Vegetarian, Nut-free, Carb/calorie-conscious


Meal kit and ready-made meals

Get Started

Blue Apron

Save $110 on your first 4 boxes



Vegetarian, WW-approved, Diabetes-friendly 


Meal kit

Get Started

Purple Carrot 

$20 off and free shipping





Meal kit, ready-made meals, snacks

Get Started


Get $80 off plus free shipping



Vegetarian, Pescatarian 


Meal kit and ready-made meals

Get Started


Get $90 off and 4 FREE gifts



Vegetarian, Pescatarian, Mediterranean, Diabetes-friendly, Paleo, Carb conscious 


Meal kit and ready-made meals

Get Started


Save $60 with Promo Code LAUNCH15





Ready-made meals

Get Started

Green Chef

Get $80 off plus free shipping



Keto, Paleo, Vegetarian


Meal kit

Get Started


Save $80 on your first 3 deliveries





Meal kit

Get Started





Food delivery 

Get Started





Food delivery 

Get Started

Bottom Line: Are Meal Delivery Services in Gainesville Worth It?

Meal delivery services are a great way to gain confidence in the kitchen, save time, and try new and creative recipes without worrying so much about nutrition. I know I’ve been grateful to skip my weekly trip to the grocery store more often than not when I’m using a meal delivery service.

Life has a habit of getting busy when you least expect it. So whether you’re a student at UF gearing up for the school year, a busy parent, or a hustling entrepreneur, using a meal delivery service can be an easy way to tick eating healthy off the to-do list.


What is the most affordable meal delivery service in Gainesville?

EveryPlate has the lowest price per serving in Gainesville at only $4.99 per serving. You can also get $80 off your first three boxes! We’ve also made a complete list of the best affordable meal delivery kits for more deliciously affordable meal plans.

What is the best healthy meal delivery service in Gainesville?

With Blue Apron, you can choose from calorie-smart options including those approved by WW (aka Weight Watchers) for healthy meals that don’t break the bank. For more healthy options, check out our round-up of the Healthiest Meal Delivery Services

What is the best diet meal delivery service in Gainesville?

Sunbasket caters to the widest range of dietary needs, covering everything from paleo to pescatarian diets. If you’re looking to lose weight, check out Blue Apron and Green Chef, both of which made it onto our list of the Best Weight Loss Meal Delivery Services.

What is the best paleo meal delivery service in Gainesville?

Sunbasket has the biggest collection of paleo-friendly recipes, but Green Chef and Freshly also have some options for customers on the paleo diet. For even more options, take a look at our list of the best paleo meal delivery services.

About The Author

Felicity Kay

Staff Writer, Delivery Rank

Felicity loves and lives for food, and new culinary experiences in general.
When shes not out walking her dogs, shes trying out the coolest new restaurants and take out in the local area - one day she might even learn to cook!

Felicity loves and lives for food, and new culinary experiences in general.
When shes not out walking her dogs, shes trying out the coolest new restaurants and take out in the local area - one day she might even learn to cook!
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