Eating out in NYC is great, but it can be a lot more expensive than cooking at home. Meal delivery services allow you to enjoy nourishing meals at home while saving money for rent. They’re also designed to work with your lifestyle, accommodating your dietary preferences and your schedule.
My colleagues and I have tested and researched dozens of meal delivery services. Together we’ve narrowed down the best of the best, and they turned to me (as the resident New Yorker) to let you in on our insider knowledge.
Blue Apron is my top meal delivery service in New York right now, thanks to its gourmet options and wine pairings. With the service’s meal kit and prepared meal offerings, I get to enjoy delicious dinners from the comfort of my own home – and at a much lower cost than a NYC eatery!
Even if Blue Apron isn’t the right fit for you, I’ve compiled 9 more options to suit a range of diets and budgets. Read on to see the best meal delivery services for all kinds of lifestyles.
Blue Apron – Best overall meal kits in NYC
Factor – Best diet-focused prepared meals in NYC
Home Chef – Best customizable meal delivery service in NYC
HelloFresh – Best family-friendly meal delivery service in NYC
Green Chef – Best for healthy, organic ingredients
Optional wine pairings available
16 recipes per week, plus tons of extras
Dietary options include WW-approved, vegetarian, and more
Current deal: Enjoy $180 off across your first 6 orders
Blue Apron offers a tasty assortment of dishes inspired by cuisines around the world. New Yorkers don’t generally have to travel far to be able to experience international cuisines, but it’s so much fun crafting these recipes from the comfort of your own kitchen.
Blue Apron’s internationally-inspired dishes are a great way to explore new flavors you may not have cooked before, like Moroccan-Style Chicken and Spanish Trout. Each recipe card includes photos and clear instructions and you’ll even find how-to videos on the app – so you don’t have to worry about these meals being difficult to make.
The menu features 16 meal kits each week, which cover a broad range of categories including vegetarian meals, family-friendly options, and lower carb/lower calorie Wellness recipes that have been both nutritionist- and WW-approved.
As well as the meal kits, you also have the option to add extras such as desserts, breakfasts, and appetizers to your weekly shipment. Think Soppressata, Egg and Cheese Sandwiches with Spicy Fig Mayo, Salted Caramel Rice Pudding with Toasted Pecans, and Truffle and Parmesan Knots.
This is also where you’ll find Blue Apron’s microwavable Heat & Eat meals, which are a single-serving solution for nights when you just don’t want to cook. You can pick up extra proteins, too, like scallops, shrimp, chicken, chorizo, and more. My colleague’s in-depth review looks at the menu in greater detail.
I’m a huge fan of Blue Apron’s optional wine delivery service. If you’re a wine fan, this subscription is a great opportunity to try new varieties, and each meal kit includes pairing suggestions, so you always know which bottle to open with your dish. I recommend giving it a try as a one-off even if you don’t want to commit to a monthly subscription.
Blue Apron’s meal kits start at $5.74 per serving. This is based on the largest order size of 4 meals per week for 4 people, making it especially great for families or larger households. Don’t forget extras will affect your final total, too.
Nutrition coaching programs available
35 meals to choose from per week
Dietary options include keto, low-calorie, and vegan
Current deal: Up to $276 off!
Factor ranks high on my list thanks to its great flavors and time-saving convenience. Microwavable meals don’t always turn out delicious, but Factor is proof that you really can enjoy restaurant-quality meals in minutes.
Unlike many other prepared meal delivery services, Factor doesn’t deliver frozen food. The meals are always fresh, and Factor suggests they be eaten that way, though you can of course freeze them yourself for an extended shelf life.
Factor offers support for multiple dietary needs as well as a balanced Chef’s Choice plan that will suit most busy New Yorker lifestyles. The selection of keto dishes is particularly strong, with around 15 high-protein, low-carb dishes each week. The entire menu is also gluten-free.
The menu does include vegan and vegetarian meals, but Factor doesn’t have a huge selection of plant-based options. There are only about 5 to choose from each week, but they’re a great way to cram some meat-free days into your diet.
The ingredients are high-quality, too. Factor only uses humane, sustainable sources for its produce and proteins. The service isn’t organic – and there isn’t a ton of specific information on where the ingredients are sourced – but, as my colleague explains in their review, they certainly pass the taste test.
Your Factor subscription also comes with a free 20-minute nutrition coaching session with an in-house dietitian. This feature makes it a particularly good choice for anyone wanting to lose weight, get fitter, or overhaul their eating habits.
Factor’s meals start at $6.19 per serving, but the cost goes up on smaller orders. The minimum order is 6 single-serving meals per week, but you can purchase as many as 18 – great for when you want to stock up the fridge.
The pricing makes Factor a premium service, but in my opinion, you get what you pay for. New Yorkers who want quick, convenient, dietitian-approved meals may find it worth the price.
15-minute, oven-ready, and other time-saving recipes
30+ meals on the menu per week, plus customizations and extras
Dietary options include low-calorie, low-carb, and more
Current deal: Get 18 Free Meals (50% off your first 4 boxes)!
Home Chef’s extensive customization options are its biggest advantage. The already-sizable menu of 30+ meals each week becomes huge when you consider the many additional protein options available. Note, however, that these protein swaps will usually come with an upcharge.
Almost every dish on the menu can be customized, whether it’s upgrading from chicken to steak or swapping pork for shrimp. Curiously, though, there’s no option to alter any side dishes, as you’ll find with HelloFresh.
Home Chef offers Customize It swaps to the Impossible Burger. This makes it a good choice for vegetarians as it increases the range of options on the menu. However, it’s not the best choice for vegans, as a lot of the vegetarian recipes do contain dairy.
Home Chef’s other plus is its range of cooking and prep options. These include standard meal kits as well as more complex Culinary Collection meals (which come at a higher price thanks to the premium ingredients used). There’s also a new Family Menu, which can help you quickly find the best 4-serving dishes designed with families in mind.
If you prefer to keep things simple, Home Chef has options for that as well, with quick, 15-minute meal kits and oven-ready options that just need to be assembled in the accompanying pan. In fact, there’s an entire sub-menu dedicated to Home Chef’s low-effort recipes. It’s called Fresh and Easy, and it has its own entry on my list.
My colleague really enjoyed Home Chef when testing it for their review, though they were a little confused by the pricing structure. Home Chef is one of few services to individually price its meals rather than charge a flat rate per serving.
The starting price of $7.99 is just a guide, and you can order anywhere between 2 and 6 meals per week for either 2, 4, or 6 people. You can also add extras to your box for an added fee, including snacks, salads, soups, and more.
Order up to 6 recipes per week
30+ meal kits to choose from, plus customizations
Dietary options include vegetarian, pescatarian, and low-carb
HelloFresh's popularity is proof of how many people enjoy its tried-and-tested recipes. Its menu offers more than 30 dishes each week that cater to a range of tastes and lifestyles, but all of them are family-friendly and many have been kid-approved.
All meals are ranked by difficulty – though most are labeled Easy or Medium. Look out for meals like Beef and Cheese Tostadas with Bell Peppers, Tomato Salsa, and Hot Sauce Crema, Italian Chicken over Lemony Spaghetti, or Roasted Garlic and Zucchini Flatbreads.
Most meals take 30 minutes on average to make. In fact, if you want to know just how simple HelloFresh’s dishes are to cook, my colleague reviewed the service at home, so you can see what these meal kits look like in practice.
The service lets you order up to 6 recipes per week. This is more meals than many other services and means you can use HelloFresh to provide almost all of your weekly dinners – a surefire hit for most households.
HelloFresh has some basic dietary plans, despite not catering to niche diets such as keto. You’ll find around 10+ veggie recipes each week, plus a good selection of calorie- and carb-smart options. HelloFresh has even started to include vegan meals.
It is possible to modify the recipes as you cook them – however, those on strict diets will prefer a more specialized service such as Green Chef.
The HelloCustom feature is a great way to customize some dishes on the menu. This gives you the opportunity to swap out the sides or proteins. A veggie kale salad dish can be topped with steak or chicken, for example, while a schnitzel dish can come with a side of either potatoes or an extra helping of broccoli.
Pricing starts at $3.32 per serving, based on the maximum order of 6 recipes for 4 people per week. This puts HelloFresh at the more budget-friendly end of the meal delivery scale. The minimum order is 2 meals for 2 people per week.
Prepped ingredients and ready-to-use sauces
30+ recipes to choose from per week
Dietary options include plant-based, gluten-free, keto, and more
Green Chef’s biggest draw is its organic ingredients and dietary accommodations. The menu showcases 30 recipes each week, catering to lifestyles like keto, gluten-free, vegan, and Mediterranean. You’ll find other tags as well, letting you know which dishes are high-protein, quick-to-cook, and more.
You can order meals from any of the plans at any time, which means you always have access to the full menu. I like to eat plant-based meals where possible, but I also love the chance to indulge in exciting keto dishes like Pecan-Crusted Salmon or Mongolian BBQ-Style Ranch Steak.
Green Chef streamlines some of its meal kits with prepared sauces and spice blends, and some of its veggies come washed and chopped. This helps to limit your time spent in the kitchen. You won’t find any prepared meals, however. For those, Factor is a better choice.
The service also offers a number of add-ons to complement your weekly shipment. These vary week to week, but there’s usually a good selection of proteins, breakfast items, and side dishes available for an extra fee, including colorful salads, sandwiches, and oatmeal.
As a certified organic service, Green Chef uses premium ingredients across the board. This means the produce used will be free of chemicals, and meats such as poultry are raised with the highest animal welfare standards.
These top-end ingredients come with a higher price, but I think it’s worth the investment for the many who want to focus on their health. When my colleague tried Green Chef for themselves at home, they found that the high-quality ingredients led to better-tasting meals.
Prices start at $5.99 per serving, based on the maximum order size of 4 meals for 6 people per week. The fact you can order for households of 6 makes this a great option for larger families if you can afford the cost. The minimum order size is 3 meals for 2 people.
Easy prep meal kits and prepared meals
17+ options per week, plus customizations
Dietary options include low-calorie and low-carb
Fresh and Easy is a special section of the Home Chef menu focused on easy eats. Don’t be confused: it’s the same service as Home Chef, but it only includes the fastest and simplest recipes to put together. This makes it a unique entry on my list.
Despite its focus on convenience, prepared meals are not Fresh and Easy’s main goal. Instead, the service has developed a number of ways to make meal kits as simple to cook as possible. This means you can still enjoy freshly cooked meals, even with limited time.
The menu relies on creative shortcuts to get dinner on the table quickly. Oven-ready meals come with recyclable baking trays – all you have to do is assemble in the pan and cook. While Express meal kits come with prepped ingredients for stress-free cooking.
The Fast & Fresh dishes can be popped in the microwave or oven, and there are even entrée salads available with pre-cooked proteins that don’t need to be heated at all.
As a sub-brand of Home Chef, Fresh and Easy shares some of the same pros and cons. For example, the customization feature extends to the Fresh and Easy menu. This lets you switch up the protein in many recipes – though Fast & Fresh meals can’t be customized.
Once again, the biggest disadvantage is the lack of support for vegan diets. There are very few options on any given week. Even though you can opt for the Impossible Burger for some recipes, meals still contain dairy. Plant-based diners should consider a more specialized service like the all-vegan Purple Carrot.
Overall, this service delivers the convenience that it promises, as my colleague discovered when they reviewed Fresh and Easy. You’ll even have access to the wider Home Chef menu when you sign up so you can mix and match your meals.
And, as with Home Chef, Fresh and Easy’s menu items are individually priced. Dishes start at $7.99 per serving, and you can order between 2 and 6 meals per week for 2, 4, or 6 people.
Frozen, calorie-controlled meals
150+ dishes on a rotating weekly menu
Dietary options include heart-healthy, diabetic-friendly, and gluten-free
BistroMD is a weight loss meal delivery service featuring doctor-designed dishes. Its prepared meals are designed to be convenient and nutritionally balanced to help you lose weight without having to worry about cooking or calorie counting.
The service’s comprehensive program provides most or all of your meals for the week, depending on the plan you choose when you sign up. This could mean breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even snacks, 5 or 7 days a week. You can also choose a less regimented plan with just lunch and dinner.
The meals themselves cover a small variety of cuisines, with classic American staples like Meatloaf with Honey Bourbon Glaze alongside some internationally-inspired flavors such as Stuffed Grape Leaves with Tomato Sauce.
The frozen, single-serving meals are rotated on a weekly schedule, so new recipes aren’t added very often. Snacks include high-protein, high-fiber bites like whey protein bars, granola mix, cheesecakes, and shakes.
BistroMD has programs for different lifestyles and dietary needs, many of which are targeted at those with health or medical conditions. Alongside the signature plans for men and women, you’ll find specialized programs for diabetes, menopause, and a heart-healthy plan.
It has Gluten Free and Keto Flex plans – there’s now even a Vegan plan available. This is great to see as it means there’s much more choice for plant-based dieters. You can choose from over 25 options that have 13 grams of plant protein per meal.
BistroMD would work well for anyone who has struggled with dieting in the past, but frozen ready meals won’t work for everyone and it might not be the most cost-effective option for your household, as my colleague revealed when they reviewed BistroMD for themselves.
Plans start from $8.24 per serving, based on the largest plan size of 7 breakfasts, 7 lunches, and 6 dinners per week. You can also contact the service regarding a customized program.
Meal kits, prepared meals, and snacks
16 entrées per week, plus breakfast and lunch options
Dietary options include high-protein, gluten-free, and more
Purple Carrot is an entirely plant-based service offering meal kits and prepared meals. It’s also one of my personal favorites. I love it because the recipes celebrate vegetables in all their forms, rather than relying on processed meat alternatives and other animal-product substitutes.
The menu features a range of international cuisines. Look out for tasty-sounding dishes like Stir-Fried Miso Ramen with Maple-Glazed Radishes and Kimchi Slaw, or Nashville Hot Fried Tofu Sandwiches with Creamy Cabbage and Pear Slaw.
You can subscribe for either meal kits or microwaveable prepared meals – but unfortunately, you can’t mix and match between the 2. You can also pick up extras in the ever-changing Plantry such as cashew cream cheese, almond cookies, and black bean burgers.
You can also choose from Purple Carrot’s Less Prep meal kits. These save you time in the kitchen by including shortcuts like prepared sauces and washed and chopped veggies. They’ll also cut cleanup time by using fewer pots and pans.
To save even more time, you can order some frozen meals delivered in serving bowls made of plant-based fiber instead of single-use plastic.
Purple Carrot offers breakfast and lunch kits in addition to its dinners. These include light and simple fare like Loaded Avocado Toast and Protein Power Bowls. You can add them to your weekly shipment for a small additional fee.
If you have allergies or dietary needs, Purple Carrot accommodates these well, with gluten-free, nut-free, and soy-free options, plus meals that are high-protein and lower calorie.
When I tried Purple Carrot for myself at home, I enjoyed every dish. I’ve been a repeat customer many times ever since – and I’m not even strictly vegan!
Purple Carrot prices start at $8.50 per serving. Of course, the exact price you pay depends on what you order. Your options include either 3 or 4 meal kits per week for 2 or 4 people, or 6, 8, or 10 single-serving prepared meals.
Pick up breakfast, lunch, and dessert, too
100+ menu options per week
Dietary options include low-carb, vegan, no added gluten, and more
Marley Spoon’s partnership with Martha Stewart makes it one of the most popular options across the US. The homemaking guru probably doesn’t spend much time in the test kitchen, but her influence is prevalent across this service’s gourmet meal kits.
The menu includes a wide range of recipes, from simple to more complex. The core cuisine is elevated American fare, but there are many internationally-inspired dishes like the Filipino-style chicken dish pictured.
Marley Spoon’s menu is also huge, featuring more than 100 choices each week. This includes breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and desserts. You’ll find everything from low-carb and low-calorie options to indulgent dishes like Butter-Basted Steak.
The service also features a variety of cooking methods. There are Under 30-Minute recipes, one-pot and one-pan dishes, plus a limited number of microwaveable meals for particularly busy nights.
In addition to the variety, my favorite thing about Marley Spoon is its sustainability. The service uses fresh, seasonal ingredients from family-run producers and local farmers. The company also met its goal of becoming carbon-neutral.
There’s even a special tag on the menu for climatarian dishes. This label highlights meals that omit certain ingredients, like beef and lamb, with a high carbon footprint. This helps you make more informed choices and feel better about your personal environmental impact.
Marley Spoon’s menu has other tags that might be of interest, too. These include a range of kid-friendly meals as well as vegan, vegetarian, optional spice, and no-added-gluten dishes. You can read more about Marley Spoon’s extensive offerings in my colleague’s in-depth review.
Pricing starts at $2.99 per serving, based on the largest plan of 6 meals for 4 people per week. This makes Marley Spoon a great option for families and larger households. The minimum order is 2 meals for 2 people per week.
Great for families
100+ menu options per week, including snacks and desserts
Dietary options include vegetarian, vegan, and low-calorie
Dinnerly is easily the most budget-friendly meal delivery service on my list. Meal kits are much more affordable than dining out, and in some cases, they’re cheaper than going to the grocery store, but even so, they can feel like a luxury. That’s why Dinnerly’s low prices are so enticing.
In my Dinnerly review, I was impressed by the sheer number of options. Other budget-friendly services tend to cut corners, but Dinnerly caters to multiple diets and boasts a diverse menu of more than 100 offerings – much like its parent company, Marley Spoon.
Dinnerly’s menu offers a range of cuisines – everything from homestyle American food to spicy Asian-fusion dishes. Look out for meals like Spinach and Ricotta Calzone, Buffalo Chicken Meatballs, and more.
The trade-off for Dinnerly’s cheaper price tag is that the dishes are simpler than other services. Most recipes only have 6 or 7 ingredients, so the meals themselves are quite basic. Still, the variety on the menu is impressive.
The menu features tags to help navigate the huge number of recipes. There are dairy-free, vegetarian, and other dietary labels. There are also easy-prep and easy clean-up options like one-pot and sheet pan recipes, and even a kid-friendly tag for picky eaters.
Among its offerings are breakfast and lunch items, as well as desserts and snacks. These are all grouped into one large menu though, so it can be difficult to find what you’re looking for if it’s something specific you require.
Dinnerly is a great option if your top priority is saving money. Its meals are naturally a no-frills option compared to more expensive services, but I think the low price makes up for this.
Meal kits start at $2.12 per serving, and you can order between 3 and 6 recipes for 2 or 4 people per week. You’ll have to subscribe to the largest plan to get the lowest cost per serving.
$5.74 Per Serving
$6.19 Per Serving
$7.99 Per Serving
$3.32 Per Serving
$5.99 Per Serving
$7.99 Per Serving
$8.24 Per Serving
$8.50 Per Serving
$2.99 Per Serving
$2.12 Per Serving
2 meals for 2 people
6 prepared meals
2 meals for 2 people
2 meals for 2 people
3 meals for 2 people
2 meals for 2 people
10 prepared meals
3 meal kits for 2 people/6 prepared meals
2 meals for 2 people
3 meals for 2 people
20 - 60 min. meal kits
Kits, speedy kits, oven-ready, prepared
20 - 30 min. meal kits
30-minute meal kits
Oven- & grill-ready, kits, prepared
Meal kits, prepared meals
30 min. meal kits
30-minute meal kits
What should you be looking for when choosing a meal delivery service? Here are some pointers from a Brooklyn-based meal delivery service pro (hi, that’s me!):
Decide what’s important: If you’re a vegan or strict keto dieter, you need a service that meets your nutritional needs like Factor or Green Chef. If you’re cooking for a family, you’ll have different considerations entirely, such as portion size or the types of dishes on the menu.
Choose which meal type you’d prefer: Do you want ingredients and recipes so you can cook dishes from scratch? Then you’ll want to choose a meal kit delivery service like HelloFresh. Or are you someone who requires prepared meals that can be refrigerated for quick and easy heating? Perhaps you’d like a service that offers both, like Blue Apron.
Price matters… but it's not everything: Times may be tough, but you still want meals that are satisfying, balanced, and won't go to waste - so don't forget to factor in the quality of ingredients, menu diversity, and the complexity of the dishes.
Try out different services: If you’re not happy with your first meal delivery experience, try a different service. There are meal delivery services for just about every diet and budget. Oh, and I’ve found the latest discount offers for most of them!
Dinnerly is New York’s most affordable meal delivery service, with prices as low as $2.12 per serving. If you’re looking for hearty, family-friendly comfort food, Dinnerly could be perfect for you – and it won’t blow the budget!
Blue Apron’s Wellness plan is great for low-calorie, low-carb recipes, and diet tips. The menu works in line with WW (formerly Weight Watchers), which makes it easy for dieters to track their Smartpoints.
Factor is my pick for the healthiest meals in New York. It offers keto, vegan, and gluten-free prepared meals, and all its recipes promise to be nutritionally balanced and healthy. Plus, they’re tasty!
Meal delivery services, such as Blue Apron, send you ready-to-heat prepared meals or DIY meal kits so you can cook at home. Food delivery services connect you with local restaurants, fast-food joints, and even convenience stores to bring you snacks, drinks, and hot meals.