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Written by: Joey Kendrick on Apr 25th, 2021

Sunbasket vs. Home Chef 2021: Two Great Services

With so many meal delivery services to choose from, picking out just one can be a harrowing choice. With our help, hopefully, that decision can become a little easier.

Let’s look specifically at Sunbasket vs. Home Chef. As far as I’m concerned, these two companies are titans in the meal delivery world. Both have delicious menus, great reputations, and a large number of devoted followers. But is one definitively better than the other?

If you’re curious about other companies, check out our home page for more of the best meal delivery services available. 

At a Glance: Sunbasket vs. Home Chef


Sunbasket

Home Chef

Dietary preferences

Vegetarian, pescatarian, paleo, low-calorie, dairy-free, and more

Vegetarian, low-calorie, low-carb

Menu variety

27+ options per week

19+ customizable options per menu

Starting price

$10.99/serving for meal kits

$8.99/serving for prepared meals

$6.99/serving

Shipping cost

$7.99+

$7.99+

Prep time

0-45 minutes

0-60 minutes

Learn more

Read our in-depth Sunbasket review.

Read our expert Home Chef review

Dietary Preferences

If you have any unique dietary requirements, Sunbasket is far and away the better choice here. In fact, Sunbasket is one of the best meal delivery services overall for anyone with any sort of dietary restrictions

In addition to Vegetarian and low-calorie options (known as the Lean & Clean plan), Sunbasket offers eight other menu plans including Pescatarian, Paleo, Gluten-Free, and Diabetes-Friendly. Other dietary restrictions are also accommodated with a variety of soy-free and dairy-free meals available from the full menu. This makes Sunbasket the easy choice for anyone with unique dietary needs. 

Home Chef caters to a select few diets by offering a vegetarian menu as well as a range of calorie- and carb-conscious dishes

Its customization options also allow for small adjustments, such as swapping your protein. However, these pale in comparison to Sunbasket’s expansive options for special diets. 

Winner: Sunbasket

Menu Variety

Sunbasket and Home Chef have two of the most expansive menus I’ve seen. Both offer a wide variety of dishes inspired by international cuisines, such as Home Chef’s Mexican-inspired Oaxacan Cheese-Stuffed Fajita Chicken:

and Sunbasket’s Indonesian-inspired Blazin’ Balinese Chicken:

In addition to its standard meal kits, Sunbasket has a Fresh & Ready menu of prepared dishes that simply need to be reheated and enjoyed. Home Chef doesn’t offer microwaveable prepared meals, but it does have a selection of 15-Minute Meal Kits and Oven-Ready dishes which come with an ovenproof pan. 

One feature that separates Home Chef from the pack is its protein customization options, which can be used on almost every dish on its weekly menu. Take the Sweet Chili Lettuce Wraps, for example. The dish comes as standard with steak, but you have the option to swap that out for Organic chicken, ground turkey, shrimp, or even a higher grade of steak. 

Not to be outdone, Sunbasket has its own unique offering simply called “Market.” In Sunbasket’s market, you can order a wide variety of à la carte grocery items. This includes everything from sustainably sourced salmon to Impossible Burgers to organic chocolate-covered cashews.

Depending on your lifestyle, Sunbasket’s grocery options may or may not be more useful than Home Chef’s customizable menu. Both features are exciting in their own ways so this one is too close to call.

Winner: It’s a tie

Starting Prices

After reviewing so many meal delivery services, one trend I’ve noticed is that more dietary accommodations typically mean a higher price.

When you compare the prices between these two services, it becomes apparent how costly it can be to adhere to a specific diet. Sunbasket’s base price of $10.99/serving for its meal kits is noticeably more expensive than Home Chef’s $6.99/serving price, which covers meal kits and prepared meals.

Both services provide ample upsell options, whether that’s Home Chef’s premium protein upgrades or the à la carte grocery items from Sunbasket’s market. Shipping fees for both services are essentially comparable although it’s worth noting that shipping does rise to $13.99 when you order just two meals for two people from Home Chef.

All in all, based on the starting price per serving, Home Chef is easily the more affordable option.

Winner: Home Chef

Delivery and Packaging

Sustainable and recyclable packaging are often of concern for anyone interested in subscribing to a meal delivery service. In general, Sunbasket’s commitment to sustainability is more overt than Home Chef’s.

In Home Chef’s FAQ section, I found a text-heavy list of instructions on how to recycle or otherwise responsibly dispose of its packaging. It was great to see that the company seems to have transitioned to use only recyclable materials in its packaging.

Sunbasket offers a similar guide on its website, but this one is far superior and easier to read. It breaks down exactly what materials are in every aspect of the company’s packaging (along with images). Sunbasket provides in-depth recycling instructions as well as thoughtful ideas for reusing containers and packaging materials.

Both services are making good strides toward fully sustainable packaging, but I’ll give the edge here to Sunbasket because of how in-depth its online guide is.

Winner: Sunbasket

Meal Prep

As I mentioned earlier, both Sunbasket and Home Chef offer a variety of meal prep options. Each service has low- and no-prep dishes as well as more involved recipes for you to prepare in your own kitchen.

When it comes to prepared, microwavable meals, Home Chef has some catching up to do. Being that it’s new to the microwave-ready meals game, its 1 weekly option pales in comparison to Sunbasket’s 14 weekly selection.

Home Chef definitely makes up for that with it’s oven-ready meal kits, which are just as easy to make. All you have to do is stick the included tray in the oven.

Home Chef also has premium dishes labeled “Culinary Collection.” These recipes are intended to be more involved. As someone who enjoys spending time in the kitchen, I really appreciated this option.

Honestly, both of these services are great when it comes to offering a wide variety of meal prep options. Ultimately, Home Chef’s instructions are just a little clearer than Sunbasket’s, and the menu is better organized to display what sort of prep goes into each dish. For those reasons, Home Chef nudges into the lead this round.

Winner: Home Chef

The Bottom Line

When it comes down to it, Sunbasket and Home Chef are two of the best meal delivery services around. These seasoned companies have been around long enough to know what works and what customers want. I can honestly say either service would be a delight to use.

As far as which service is right for you, it depends entirely on your own needs. The biggest difference between these two is that Sunbasket offers more options for specialized dietary restrictions while Home Chef has a much lower base price.

Winner: Sunbasket for folks with particular dietary preferences, Home Chef for people who want a more affordable meal kit.

About The Author

Joey Kendrick

Contributing Writer, Delivery Rank

Joey is a writer based in New York City. He has covered many subjects, but food is his true passion. With his two cats as research assistants, he creates content for clients all over the world.

Joey is a writer based in New York City. He has covered many subjects, but food is his true passion. With his two cats as research assistants, he creates content for clients all over the world.
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