Meal delivery services are a convenient way to get nutritionally balanced meals that are quick to prepare. As we get older, it’s more important to focus on eating a low-calorie, nutrient-dense, balanced diet. This helps maintain your health, reduce the risk of injury, and manage any medical conditions.
Meal deliveries can cut down on grocery shopping and meal prep, and they can get you out of a food rut, too. But finding the best one to suit your diet or cooking ability, fit in with your medical needs, or suit your budget can be a hassle.
I’ve researched dozens of services to find the top 10 that hit the mark. I wanted customizable and flexible services with a good choice of meals. I’ve found easy-to-prep kits and pre-made dinners to suit different dietary requirements. There’s no need to reach for processed convenience foods when you can have nutritionally balanced meals delivered to your door.
My top choice for seniors is Factor. It has a wide variety of meal options and provides fresh and nutritious ingredients. Its prepared meals are perfect if you no longer want to spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Keep reading to find out how it compares with other meal delivery services out there.
Factor – Best nutritionally balanced prepared meals for seniors
HelloFresh – Best for meal kit variety
Green Chef – Best certified organic meals for seniors
Fresh, ready-made meals
35+ recipes per week
7+ dietary options including keto, vegan, carb-conscious, and high protein
Current deal: Get 50% OFF your 1st box + 20% OFF the next 4 boxes!
Factor offers an excellent range of nutritionally balanced prepared meals. For additional support, you can even book a 20-minute appointment with a registered nutritionist. This is great if you suffer from diabetes or high blood pressure.
The nutritionist can advise which meals are best to help manage any health conditions. It’s also useful for weight loss advice to keep you on the right track with your eating habits.
The meals are delivered fresh and ready-cooked. Preparation is as simple as heating them up in the oven or microwave. This makes Factor an excellent choice if you want to benefit from nutritious meals without the extra hassles of grocery shopping or cooking.
Every meal on the menu is clearly labeled so you know exactly what to expect. Categories include Protein Plus, Keto, Calorie Smart, Vegetarian, or Vegan. This makes it really easy to pick which recipe suits your dietary needs.
To get the most nutritional benefit, Factor recommends you don’t freeze its meals. They’ll stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Remember to check the “Enjoy By” date on the packaging to help you keep track of which dish to eat first.
Add-ons include smoothies, juices, breakfasts, and snacks. This means fewer grocery store trips and feeling happy knowing you’ve got healthy options when you fancy a snack. It’s worth looking through these. I liked the look of the Salted Peanut Energy Bites and the Keto Cheesecakes.
Depending on your location, you may be able to add frozen smoothies. These need to be stored in your freezer and are ready to blend. I like this as another effective way to get extra fruits and veggies conveniently throughout the day. Plus, it frees up space for more meals in the refrigerator.
Factor has a Protein Plus plan with each meal containing at least 30 grams of protein. As you age, it’s recommended you increase your protein intake to help maintain muscle mass, support bone health, and improve recovery time from injuries.
Meals may be heated in the microwave, but they’re just as tasty as those done in the oven. Our reviewer reported that the meat stays tender and the veggies don’t turn to mush.
The minimum order is 6 meals per week, and prices start at $6.19 per serving. It might not be suited to those on a smaller budget, but if you want nutritionally balanced meals with zero prep, Factor provides exactly that!
30+ recipes per week
5 dietary options including low-calorie, carb-conscious, and pescatarian
Current deal: 18 free meals + first box ships free + 3 surprise gifts
If you want to expand your culinary skills, HelloFresh is a great option. It offers a variety of meal kits that cater to different cuisines. From Mediterranean Chicken Gyro Couscous Bowls to Asian Ginger-Beef Stir Fry, there’s no chance of getting bored at mealtimes.
Most meals can be prepared in 30 minutes or less making it ideal for quick dinners. You can also see options up to 5 weeks in advance, which is great for meal planning. When you know you’ve got a busy week ahead, you can select more “Easy Prep” options to cut down on time spent in the kitchen.
HelloFresh meal kits remove the hassle of grocery shopping. There’s no need to worry about forgetting that key ingredient when you return from the store. We’ve all been there! Everything is included for you to get cooking straight away.
I really liked the flexibility around the subscription plans. Pausing or skipping a week is so simple, and you can even change your delivery day to make sure you’re home when your box arrives.
Keep in mind that HelloFresh doesn’t cater to specialist diets. If you’re vegan, gluten-free, or on a keto diet, I recommend Green Chef instead.
HelloFresh recipes put the fun into cooking and help you develop your kitchen skills. Learning new things is great for keeping your brain active and encourages you to become a more adventurous chef. Our HelloFresh reviewer found the recipes to be “foolproof”, so beginners are definitely welcome.
There’s no need to stress about the mess either. Look out for kits labeled as “Easy Cleanup”, “One-Pot”, or “One-Pot”, and clearing up the kitchen after dinner is a breeze. Some of the one-pan options include the One-Pan Beef Enchiladas Verdes or the One-Pan Salsa Verde Pork Tacos.
The minimum order is 2 recipes for 2 people per week. If you prefer to rely on a meal delivery service for more meals, you can increase your order to 6 meals a week for 2 or 4 people. Prices start at $3.32 per serving for the largest order.
Sustainably sourced ingredients
45+ recipes per week
8 dietary options, including gluten-free, keto, and vegetarian
Green Chef is a premium meal delivery service. Every meal on its menu is certified organic and sustainably sourced. This means the meals are healthy and have minimal impact on the environment.
If you’re following a strict diet plan, it’s particularly good. Meal planning and grocery shopping are much more complex if you follow a specialist diet, so it’s fantastic they’re so well-catered for.
Meals that are tagged as “Gluten-Free” are certified by the Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) making them a safe choice for those avoiding gluten.
The Mediterranean diet is particularly good for seniors. It contains lots of heart-healthy fats and fresh veggies, which can help reduce cholesterol and have anti-aging properties. These dishes are conveniently labeled, so you know you’re getting something that’s good for your health and your taste buds.
If you follow a plant-based diet, you can expect around 6 to 7 vegan dishes each week. I liked the look of the Penne with Creamy Mushroom Sauce, which uses cashews to create a parmesan cheese topping.
Green Chef tests out its recipes with novice chefs to make sure the step-by-step recipes are easy to follow. This is good news if you’re new to cooking. I thought it was handy that sauces, spice blends, and marinades are all pre-prepared so you can focus on the peeling, chopping, grating, and stirring.
Green Chef states that most recipes can be made in around 30 minutes, but this wasn’t the experience of my colleague who tried it at home. They found it often took an extra 15 minutes prep time and cleanup took another 15. For quicker meal kits, I’d recommend Fresh and Easy.
Each week, you’ll discover a range of handy add-ons. You can order additional proteins like fish or chicken, as well as some breakfast and snack options like the Smoky Bacon and Cheddar Egg Bites.
The cardboard packaging can easily be recycled curbside. Unfortunately, some ingredients are packed in plastic. This is to keep ingredients fresh, but if you’re concerned about the environmental impact, check local recycling facilities before you order.
Prices start at $9.99 per serving and you can order a minimum of 3 meals for 2 people and a maximum of 4 meals for 6 people.
Can mix meals with different serving sizes
30+ recipes per week
7+ dietary options including low-calorie, vegetarian, and high protein
I love the Customize It feature on Home Chef’s menu. It makes your meals so much more adaptable and flexible. Meals with this feature let you change your protein option to the one you like best. For example, the Creamy Sausage and Kale Stuffed Peppers can be made with chicken, beef, or turkey, instead.
There’s also a range of different types of meals available. You can choose from a meal kit, easy-prep meal kits, bundles, breakfast, and dessert options. Again, this gives you much more choice when it comes to planning your menu.
Home Chef suits chefs of all abilities. You can decide whether you want to prepare and cook your meal from scratch or select an oven-ready option. The meal kits generally take around 30 minutes and the express kits around 15 minutes. If you want a super-quick meal that simply needs reheating choose from the Fast & Fresh range.
The recipe cards are clear to follow and the step-by-step photos help you visualize the whole process from start to finish. There are 3 levels of difficulty from beginner to advanced. However, as my colleague explained in their Home Chef review, the text can be quite complex. It’s best to read through all the steps before starting to cook so you’re sure of exactly what to do.
You can easily filter calorie-conscious or carb-conscious recipes from the main menu. If you click on Recipe Categories in the Resources menu, you can choose recipes by allergen, such as soy, by ingredient, such as poultry, and by meal type, such as breakfast. This is really helpful for checking if your dietary needs and taste preferences are catered for.
Home Chef has a great menu, but it seems a bit sparse in terms of veggie options – though, it does have around 6 veggie options every week. If you want more veggie meals, I recommend Green Chef. Or if you prefer prepared meals, try Factor.
Home Chef has a minimum order of 2 meals for 2 people. If you’re cooking for one, you can easily save the extra portion and reheat it for lunch the next day. For the maximum order of meals, prices are only $7.99 per serving.
Access to the Home Chef menu
20+ recipes per week
7+ dietary options including carb-conscious, pescatarian, and spicy
Fresh and Easy is a sub-brand of Home Chef’s most convenient and easy-prep meals. With Fresh and Easy, you can have dinner on the table in as little as 3 minutes with the Fast and Fresh meals, which are pre-cooked and only need to be popped in the oven or microwave. For chef-quality meals with almost no preparation or washing up, Fresh and Easy is a real winner.
The 15-minute meal kits are a good choice if you still enjoy cooking but don’t want to be on your feet for too long in the evenings. They’re great for those days when you’re lacking in energy but still want to eat a balanced and healthy meal. Have a look at our in-depth review to see some recipes my colleague sampled.
I really like the choice of entrée salads. They combine plenty of healthy veggies with prepared proteins to make a light and tasty meal. These would be perfect for days when you want to grab something quick and easy for lunch.
Home Chef’s Customize It options apply to the Fresh and Easy menu, too. This is great news if you want to avoid red meat and opt for a healthier protein like chicken or fish instead. The ability to choose fish means you can select Omega-3-rich salmon for added health benefits.
Delivery times are more flexible than other services. You can select any day between Monday through Friday to fit in with your other commitments. But there’s no need to be home at the time of delivery as your meals are guaranteed to stay fresh, even if you’re out for the day.
The meals can accommodate some dietary preferences. For example, you can choose to avoid shellfish and tree nuts among others. However, if you’re particularly sensitive, or celiac, Fresh and Easy isn’t recommended. It can’t guarantee meals are completely allergen free due to their preparation and packaging procedures. Have a look at BistroMD with certified gluten-free meals as an alternative.
Fresh and Easy isn’t the best choice for adventurous chefs. It’s definitely more suited to beginner chefs or those with little time on their hands. Recipe instructions are logical and simple to follow. Ingredients are ready-prepped and portioned out ready for you.
Even if you sign up for Fresh and Easy, you can still access Home Chef’s meals too. That means if you have more time or want to take your kitchen skills to the next level, you can order a more complex meal kit.
A minimum order is 2 meals per week for 2 people but, as with Home Chef, you can order up to 6 meals a week. Prices start at $7.99per serving.
Holistically healthy meals
16+ weekly options
8+ dietary options including carb-conscious, low-calorie, and diabetic-friendly
Blue Apron offers a varied selection of chef-inspired meals. With the emphasis on quality meals and quality ingredients, it’s nice to know they don’t come with a hefty price tag.
The plans cater to a range of dietary accommodations. There are plenty of recipes on the Wellness menu approved by nutritionists, including carb-conscious options and heart-healthy choices. If you’re cooking for 1, add some Heat & Eat recipes, which are nutritionally balanced meals that are ready in 5 minutes.
The variety of cuisines will definitely appeal to more adventurous tastes. I was impressed by the menu choices on offer. I liked the look of the Italian-inspired Soppressata and Truffle Honey Calzone and the Romesco Chicken and Poblano Pepper with a Spanish-style sauce. With flavors from across the globe, there’s something for everyone on the menu.
80% of Blue Apron’s ingredients come directly from the producers. This makes it a sustainable and more environmentally friendly option. Plus, the great thing about meal kits in general is you’re able to create delicious home-cooked meals with less food waste.
If you don’t want to spend too long in the kitchen, you can choose from 2 less-prep options. The Ready to Cook meal kits contain prepared ingredients that only need to be thrown together and cooked. Fast & Easy recipes take less time to cook so you can have a fresh and tasty meal on the table in less than 30 minutes.
The delivery service can be adjusted to meet your schedule, too. Your subscription is easy to pause, and you can skip deliveries up to 5 weeks in advance. For more details about setting up and managing your subscription, check out our in-depth Blue Apron review. You can also use the app to quickly make changes to your order.
One of the best things about Blue Apron is the range of add-ons available. Each week, you can select additional snacks, breakfasts, and salads, so the menu isn’t just designed for dinners. Choose from options like Asparagus and Apple Salad or Buttermilk-Orange Snack Cake, and you’ve got all your daily meals covered.
Don’t worry if you consider yourself a novice chef; Blue Apron meals come with visual recipe instructions that make putting your meal together a breeze.
The minimum order is 2 servings of 2 meals per week. This can be increased to 4 servings of 5 meals per week, with prices starting at $5.74 per serving. Seniors aged 55+ can also get an exclusive discount by verifying your ID.
Menopause program available
150+ recipes on rotation
6+ dietary options including weight-loss, gluten-free, and heart-healthy
BistroMD has a meal plan designed specifically for diabetics. All meals on this plan support diabetics, pre-diabetics, and anyone who wants to eat carb-conscious meals. These dishes help you maintain healthy levels of blood glucose and are protein-rich, which helps regulate blood sugars.
BistroMD is a medically designed weight-loss delivery service. You can choose to have a 5-day plan or a 7-day plan. Decide whether you prefer breakfast, lunch, and dinner or just lunch and dinner. Having a full plan prevents you from cheating on your diet and helps achieve any weight-loss goals.
When you sign up for BistroMD, its registered dietitians create a custom plan for you. This means your meals are designed to support your individual health needs as well as your weight loss journey. You can choose meals from various programs including the Heart-Healthy program, or the Keto-Flex program.
Recipes are all nutritionally balanced, so you can’t swap sides or customize recipes. However, you can contact customer services to arrange for meals with certain ingredients to be removed from your menu. The ingredients and nutritional information are included in every recipe so you can see at a glance what’s included.
Snacks can also be added to your menu for an additional cost. These are called EATS, which stands for Essential and Tasty Snacks. EATS are designed to boost your metabolism, which can contribute to weight loss. They include protein bars, nut mixes, and even cheesecakes.
Weight-loss meals don’t have to be bland or boring either. Our reviewer liked the use of alcohol flavorings and the creative culinary twists. For more details, read our in-depth BistroMD review to find out about the different types of dishes on the menu.
All meals are generally low in sodium and fat, and high in protein and fiber. This can be beneficial for older adults who may have specific dietary requirements. Unfortunately, options are limited for those following a vegetarian diet and there are no plant-based meals available. Check out Factor for plant-based prepared meals.
The minimum plan is 5 lunches and 5 dinners per week. Prices start at $8.24 per serving and you can order up to 3 meals per day for 7 days on the full plan.
Some organic ingredients
20+ recipes per week
8+ dietary options including gluten-free, high protein, and low-calorie
Purple Carrot is a great choice if you follow a vegan diet. Its meals feature fresh veg and plant proteins, without focusing on processed meat alternatives.
Plant-based meals are a good option for improving overall health and well-being. Research has shown that plant-based diets can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases, lower your risk of diabetes, and reduce your cholesterol levels. They are also easier to digest and lighter on the stomach.
There are plenty of delicious and nutritious recipes to try. Some tasty options I found on the current menu include Indian Butter Chickpea Tacos and Pesto White Bean Melts. The creative variety of dishes more than makes up for the limited number of weekly recipes.
I like that you aren’t just restricted to main meals. Purple Carrot offers breakfasts, snacks, and there’s even a “Plantry” that includes meat-free pantry staples. This cuts down the need to pop out to the grocery store for extra items and they can be easily added to your plan at the click of a button.
Purple Carrot offers a range of meal plans that cater to different dietary needs. These include gluten-free, high-protein, and low-carb options.
You can opt for meal kits or prepared meals. There are around 5 prepared meals every week that can be heated up in 2 minutes. Meal kits serve either 2 or 4 people and take between 20 to 40 minutes to prepare. There are also “Less Prep” choices that take even less time to get on the table.
Unfortunately, the packaging isn’t as eco-friendly as it could be. Our reviewer noted that there was a lot of plastic included in the box that was more difficult to recycle. This could be off-putting for those wanting to reduce their environmental impact.
The cost of this meal delivery service may be a consideration for some seniors on a fixed income. The minimum order is 3 meal kits for 2 people per week, or 6 prepared meals per week. Prices start at $8.50 for the meal kits.
250+ recipes on a 5-week rotation
4 dietary options including vegetarian, carb-conscious, and diabetic-friendly
Senior Diet-to-Go is a convenient choice for weight-loss meals. Meals are portion-controlled, which can help you to both manage your weight and avoid overeating. Everything is included – that means fruit, snacks, sides, and condiments. This keeps you on track to achieve your weight loss goals.
The meal plan is designed specifically for seniors. Portion sizes are smaller than the regular Diet-to-Go plan. This is because as you age, most people need fewer calories to keep them going, as well as maintain a healthy weight.
Senior Diet-to-Go meals are designed to be nutritionally balanced and provide a variety of essential vitamins and minerals that seniors need to maintain good health. Recipes include higher levels of certain vitamins and minerals that may be particularly important for seniors, such as calcium and vitamin D.
There isn’t a specific Mediterranean meal plan available, but you can choose meals that fit. The Mediterranean diet is particularly beneficial for heart health and supports those at risk of heart disease. Meals are low in saturated fats, which helps to lower cholesterol.
It isn’t suitable for vegans, but there’s a dedicated vegetarian plan. So if you’re following a meat-free diet and need to lose weight, this is a great option. Some main dishes include Moroccan Lentil Salad and Texas Tofu Chili. I also like the look of the Chocolate Zucchini Bread which is one of the breakfast choices. A better option for prepared vegan meals is Factor.
Meals arrive fully prepared and just need to be heated if necessary. As can be the case with low-calorie food, some meals can taste rather bland. Our reviewer compared them to “airplane food”. So if you like bold flavors, it’s probably not the best choice. These are designed to help you lose weight, and sadly that means they may compromise on taste.
As a weight-loss service, Diet-to-Go meal plans are comprehensive. You can choose from a 5-day or 7-day plan with either 2 or 3 meals per day. The 2 meals don’t include breakfast. Prices start at $4.60 per serving.
Market items available
100+ recipes per week
3+ dietary options including low-carb, low-calorie, and vegetarian
Dinnerly is one of the most affordable meal delivery services on my list. This makes it a good option for seniors on a budget. Recipes are simple and the basic ingredients keep costs low without sacrificing quality. I found plenty of recipes that are big on flavor like the Garlic-Soy Pork Noodles with a blend of teriyaki and tamari sauce.
Every recipe is tagged with dietary accommodations. So while you can’t filter the menu, you can see at a glance which recipes suit your needs. Tags include low-calorie, dairy-free, healthy, and no added gluten.
The meal kits are designed to be easy to prepare. In fact, each recipe can be created by following 5 simple steps or less. What I didn’t like was the lack of images. I find recipes easier to make when I can see a photo of the steps, so novice chefs will need to read instructions carefully.
Unlike most services, no paper recipes are included with your delivery. You need to access them online in your account or by using the app. Although this reduces extra paper waste, you might prefer to have a hard copy to use while cooking. You can always view them on a tablet or even print them out instead.
Dinnerly meal kits are designed to serve at least 2 people, so seniors who are only cooking for themselves might find that the portion sizes are too large. Recipes could either be adjusted or leftovers can be kept for another day.
There’s plenty of variety on the Dinnerly menu despite the simple recipes. From hearty meatloaf to comforting mac and cheese, there’s something to satisfy a range of tastes. Alongside mains, you can order breakfasts and desserts like the Peanut Butter Banana Overnight Oats and the Warm Chocolate Skillet Cake.
Seniors with specific dietary restrictions could struggle to find suitable recipes. Try reviewing its menu options to make sure there are enough meals to meet your dietary needs. It’s also worth knowing that vegan meals are extremely limited. If you’re on a plant-based diet, it’s better to opt for a service that offers a vegan plan like Green Chef.
When you set up your account, you create a personal Taste Profile. This is used to suggest recipes that are most suited to your preferences. This can easily be changed and you can swap any recipes you aren’t keen on up to 7 days before your next delivery.
You can order a minimum of 3 meals for 2 people up to a maximum of 6 meals for 4 people. Prices start at $2.12 per serving for the largest order.
$6.19 Per Serving
$3.32 Per Serving
$9.99 Per Serving
$7.99 Per Serving
$7.99 Per Serving
$5.74 Per Serving
$8.24 Per Serving
$8.50 Per Serving
$4.60 Per Serving
$2.12 Per Serving
6 prepared meals
2 meals for 2 people
3 meals for 2 people
2 meals for 2 people
2 meals for 2 people
2 meals for 2 people
10 prepared meals
3 meal kits for 2 people/6 prepared meals
3 meals for 2 people
Meal kits, speedy kits, prepared meals
30-minute meal kits
Kits, speedy kits, oven-ready
Oven- & grill-ready, kits, prepared
5 - 60 min. meal kits
Meal kits, prepared meals
30-minute meal kits
Choosing the best meal delivery service can be a challenge particularly if you have special dietary needs. Read the following tips to help you decide.
Nutritional value: The best meal delivery service needs to provide balanced and healthy meals that meet your nutritional needs. Look for meals that are rich in protein, vitamins, minerals, and low in calories. Investigate the quality of ingredients and whether they offer organic or non-GMO options, like Green Chef does.
Ease of use: Decide whether you prefer zero-prep meals like Factor provides or if you’re happy to spend more time in the kitchen. You can opt for ready-to-cook meals, meal kits, or even a combination of both. Think about what would suit your cooking ability and lifestyle best.
Health concerns: Consider your personal health concerns and find out if the meal delivery service can meet your needs. Some have plans with meals designed to support heart health or include diabetes-friendly recipes such as BistroMD.
Plan Flexibility: Make sure it's simple to pause or cancel your subscription to avoid being stuck in a contract for meals that aren't to your liking. Choose a service such as Home Chef that provides you with the option to tailor your recipes or change ingredients. This enables you to adjust recipes according to your preferences or dietary needs.
The best diet for seniors depends on your individual health needs and preferences. Generally, a healthy and balanced diet for seniors should include a variety of nutrient-dense foods and essential vitamins and minerals. This means a range of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein sources like fish, chicken, and beans.
Seniors with medical conditions should eat foods that support their needs. For example, if you have diabetes or high blood pressure, select low-carb and low-sodium recipes. If in doubt, check with your medical practitioner for some nutritional guidance. Some delivery services, like Factor, have registered dietitians on hand to answer any queries.
Meal delivery services are a convenient, safe, and healthy way to get nutritious meals. There’s no need to stress about planning meals or grocery shopping. Meals can be delivered ready-prepared or as meal kits depending on your level of skill in the kitchen. A service like Home Chef offers both kits and prepared meals.
Some meal delivery services also offer additional items. Green Chef has extra snacks, breakfasts, and proteins you can add to your weekly order. Food arrives fresh, frozen, or ready to cook and you can easily pause or cancel deliveries to suit your schedule.