The 5 best cheap meal delivery services of 2022


Meal delivery services are a great option for feeding families big and small. They offer the perfect solution when you’re too busy to grocery shop, especially when you’re on a budget. It can take hours to create a budget, compare grocery sales, and complete weekly shopping hauls followed by a trek home to organize it in your kitchen. And you still need to take to prep, chop and assemble each meal.

Why spend hours each week when you could spend minutes picking out a meal plan instead? Meal delivery services drop off pre-measured ingredients on your doorstep, so you can make dinner in record time. Some meal delivery services even provide ready-to-cook meals, so all you have to do is heat them up.

I compared dozens of meal delivery services to bring you the five best cheap meal delivery services on the market. Each subscription-based meal delivery service gives you the freedom to pause or cancel your subscription at any time. Almost every item is under $10 per serving, so this budget-friendly service will save you valuable time in other areas of your life.


  • Cost per serving: Starts at $4.99 per serving
  • Shipping cost: $9.99
  • Serving size: 2 or 4 people and 3 to 6 meals per week 

If you’re looking for a simple, fast, and delicious meals, consider Dinnerly meal delivery service. Each Dinnerly recipe has only six ingredients, allowing even the most recipe-challenged person the ability to make an impressive meal.

Dinnerly creates a 28-recipe meal plan menu each week so you can order your favorites. Meals are labeled for dietary preferences so that you can choose from options like a low-carb, kid-friendly, dairy-free, spicy, one-pot meal, no added gluten, vegetarian, and ready in under 30 minutes. Dinnerly keeps prices low by using digital recipe cards, simple packaging, and minimal ingredients in each dish, and the brand cuts costs by not heavily marketing its services. 

After making your weekly meal selection, check out the Market feature, which gives you the option to include smoothies, sides, desserts, or extra protein sources in your shipment. Everything except the gel inside the ice pack is recyclable, though not all packaging material can be recycled through the curbside collection if your recycle center won’t pick up #1 and #4 plastics.


  • Wide range of dietary preferences
  • Six ingredients per recipe
  • Market feature for individual add-ons
  • Six meal per week option
  • 28 recipe options per week


  • No printed recipe cards
  • Market features cost extra
  • No vegetarian option for the 6-meal weekly plan


  • Cost per serving: Starts at $4.99 per serving
  • Shipping cost: $9.99
  • Serving size: 2 or 4 people and 3 to 5 meals per week 

When you choose the EveryPlate meal delivery service, you can customize your meal plan kit based on the following preference categories:

  • ClassicPlate: Meat, seafood, and vegetable options
  • VeggiePlate: Plant-based and vegetable options
  • FamilyPlate: Kid-approved meals fit for the whole family
  • EasyPlate: Meals ready in 30 minutes or less

EveryPlate creates a meal plan with 17 recipes to choose from each week. Pick your preferred meals, add them to your cart, and you’re on your way to getting pre-portioned meals shipped right to your door. Once you get the box, each recipe takes just six steps to cook.

EveryPlate can keep its pricing low by focusing on affordable ingredient costs and responsible packaging. Boxes, separators, and box liners are 100% recyclable, though the film and cotton interior of the box liners should be disposed of in the trash. You can cut open gel ice packs to throw away the gel and either recycle the pack or reuse it for personal use.

If you’re new to EveryPlate, you can currently get $104 off your first three boxes. This breaks down to $1.79 per serving for the first box and $3.99 per serving on the next two boxes, based on a 4-person plan. To get this deal, scroll to the bottom of the front page, click on “Delivery Options”, and then click the button to “get $1.79/meal + 20% off your next 2 boxes.”


  • Shop by meal preference
  • Easy and quick meal assembly
  • Family-friendly options available 


  • It doesn’t cater to special diets like keto, gluten-free, or low-carb
  • Five meals per week maximum
  • Limited weekly menu


  • Cost per serving: $5.99 to $11.99 per serving
  • Shipping cost: Free
  • Serving size: 1 person 

Daily Harvest is a great option for someone looking for a cheap meal delivery service offering organic, plant-based meals. Daily Harvest’s pricing is different from other meal delivery services. You pay per item, and the price ranges between $5.99 and $11.99. You can get a bulk discount of $5 if you order between 9 and 11 items, $10 for 12 to 23 items, and $25 for 24 to 26 items per delivery.

Choose from over 80 options offered by Daily Harvest, from lattes and snacks to bowls and flatbreads. Daily Harvest even has plant-based mylk and ice cream. 95% of Daily Harvest items are organic fruits and vegetables, delivered to your door weekly or monthly.

All items arrive in dry ice and recyclable packaging. Frozen items can be thawed and enjoyed or microwaved, depending on which items you choose. You can change preferences inside your Daily Harvest account at any time until 6pm ET on Sunday prior to your next scheduled shipment.


  • Variety of options
  • Bulk discount pricing
  • Free shipping


  • Not family-friendly
  • Slightly expensive
  • Some items may not be sufficient for a meal


  • Cost per serving: Starts at $6.99 per serving
  • Shipping cost: $8.99 or $13.99 for 2 people and 2 meals per week
  • Serving size: 2 or 4 people and 2 to 6 meals per week 

Home Chef meals start at $6.99 per serving, with over 20 meals to choose from each week. Home Chef may be the best choice for you if you like to customise your meal delivery services. Dietary preferences are limited to calorie- or carb-conscious, and you can choose to avoid certain foods, such as pork, beef, shellfish, mushrooms, tree nuts, peanuts, and poultry. You can also add meals and edit serving sizes for each recipe when setting up your weekly meal delivery.

When you’re selecting meals for the week, certain recipes will have a “Customize It” button underneath. Click and choose your preferred protein, which are carefully selected to complement each recipe. You can also bundle and save with breakfast or salad bundles, or choose extras like breakfast, dessert, bread, snacks, or protein packs. 

You can search for meal recipes based on your cooking preference, such as oven-ready, microwaveable, grill-ready, culinary, and 15-minute meal kits for those days you just need a quick dinner. You can also purchase home Chef meals from Kroger-family grocery stores.

If you sign up for Home Chef now, you can save $90 over your first four deliveries. 


  • Highly customizable
  • A la carte options for breakfast, snacks, desserts, etc.
  • Available for purchase at Kroger grocery stores


  • $13.99 shipping fee for 2 meals twice per week
  • Not the cheapest per meal
  • Add-ons can make this option expensive


  • Cost per serving: $7.99 or $8.99 per meal for self-pay
  • Shipping cost: $14.95 flat rate
  • Serving size: 1 person

Mom’s Meals is a company focused on serving nutritious meals for seniors and those who have health conditions that require a specific diet, offering almost 60 meal choices. Each meal costs $7.99 and caters to general wellness, vegetarian, low sodium, heart-friendly, and diabetes-friendly food needs. Pureed, renal-friendly and gluten-free meals are $8.99 per meal. 

Those on Medicare Advantage, Medicaid, Long-Term Services and Supports, and Older Americans Act programs may be eligible for Mom’s Meals through insurance. Caregivers and individuals can self-pay for Mom’s Meals, and customers receive a 10% discount for using auto-ship.

Mom’s Meals has breakfast, lunch, and dinner options, and it’s easy to choose based on your health condition. Each meal comes pre-made, can be refrigerated for up to 14 days and easily be heated in the microwave. Meals can also be frozen, though be sure to thaw them in the refrigerator before heating. Veterans also receive a 10% discount.


  • Caters to health conditions
  • Auto-ship not required
  • No cooking is required, just heat and enjoy


  • Paleo and keto diets not included
  • Limited meal options
  • High shipping fee

Also: Best meal kit delivery service 

I chose Dinnerly as the best cheap meal delivery service because it offers the cheapest per serving price and uses only six ingredients in a five-step process. 

Check out the meal tags to make choosing your weekly plan faster and easier. Then sit back and wait for your pre-portioned ingredients to arrive at your door. 

Cheap meal delivery service

Price per meal

Meal choices

Dietary preferences



28 new meals each week to choose from

  • No added gluten

  • No added dairy

  • Vegetarian

  • Vegan 



17 new meals each week to choose from

Daily Harvest


80+ meal choices

  • Dairy-free

  • Gluten-free

  • Organic

  • Plant-based 

Home Chef


20+ new meals each week to choose from

  • Calorie-conscious

  • Carb-conscious

  • Option to avoid pork, beef, poultry, fish, shellfish, mushrooms, tree nuts, peanuts

Mom’s Meals


60 meal choices

  • General wellness

  • Heart-friendly

  • Diabetes-friendly

  • Renal-friendly

  • Cancer support

  • Pureed

  • Gluten-free

  • Vegetarian

  • Low sodium

Choosing the right best cheap meal delivery service for you comes down to dietary preferences, budget, and time. If you’re vegan, vegetarian, or plant-based, it makes sense to find a meal delivery service that caters to your specific diet.

If you’re feeding a family and need kid-friendly meals, a meal delivery service focusing on family meals may work best. If prep and cook time are your biggest factor, Dinnerly may be an ideal option for fast meals, especially compared to Home Chef meals, which usually take longer to assemble.

Choose this cheap meal delivery service…

If you want or are…


Simple and easy recipes with just a few ingredients


Kid-friendly meals and eco-friendly pakaging

Daily Harvest

A single person who wants simple and fast plant-based meals and snacks

Home Chef

To spend a bit more money and time on customizable meals

Mom’s Meals

Are an older adult, a caregiver, or an individual with dietary needs specific to a health condition

To choose the best cheap meal delivery services, I compared several factors, including:

  • Dietary preferences
  • Budget
  • Shipping costs
  • Packaging
  • Amount of menu options
  • Prep and cook time
  • Types of meals available
  • Discounts and promotions

Since everyone has different needs, I chose meal delivery services that meet a variety of dietary preferences. I also analyzed kid-friendly options with family portion sizes, as well as options for single people who may not want leftovers or extra food going to waste. The amount of meal options on each weekly menu also impacted this rating.

The environmental impact of using a meal delivery service also serves as an important factor in the decision-making process. Pre-portioned and packaged ingredients can increase the amount of plastic waste in the environment. All companies featured except for Mom’s Meals demonstrate a commitment to limiting package waste by providing recyclable packaging materials and reusable ice packs.

Budget and shipping costs were also considered, with the lowest budgets per serving a major factor. Shipping costs vary, from Daily Harvest’s free shipping to Mom’s Meals $14.95 flat rate shipping fee. Though Mom’s Meals has higher shipping fees and may not focus on plastic waste reduction like other meal delivery services, it serves a niche audience that other services do not, making it a valuable option for those living with health conditions that need specifics diet to thrive.

A meal delivery service is a subscription-based service that delivers a box of fresh ingredients with pre-portioned amounts for your preselected recipes. Cook-from-a-kit boxes, or meal-kit delivery services, are substitutes for grocery shopping, meal planning, and searching for recipes. 

There are also meal delivery services that provide ready-to-eat meals that can be heated in the microwave or oven, or thawed and enjoyed, like smoothies and bowls.

When you use a meal delivery service, the service sources ingredients and sends them to you prepackaged and ready to cook. Alternatively, you can use a meal delivery service that prepares meals, so all you have to do at home is heat it up. Once you select your meal choices, the delivery service packages ingredients and ships them to your door. You refrigerate or freeze the ingredients until you’re ready to prepare the meal.

Right now, Dinnerly is the cheapest meal delivery service. Costing only $4.99 per serving, it’s affordable compared to other services where they may charge double the amount per serving. 

Many meal delivery services are available, and it may be worth considering alternatives, depending on your budget and dietary preferences.

Original Article

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