How to Choose a Meal Prep Service
By A. Abrams July 3, 2019
There are a few important factors that should be considered when looking for a meal prep company.
The first thing to consider before looking at these factors in your decision making process is to ask yourself: what is the purpose of signing up for a meal prep service?
What are your goals? You obviously have a reason for looking for a meal prep subscription service, so keep your goals in mind. Most of the time, we sign up for a prepared meal service to either save time on cooking, reduce stress when it comes to meal planning, lose weight, gain weight, regulate your diet because of dietary restrictions due to a health condition or overall: just to eat healthy.
All of these goals can be met by using and sticking to a meal prep delivery service!
Let’s examine some of the most important factors involved in researching a meal prep service, and think about how they relate to your goals:
- Think about your budget. If you plan on replacing all of your meals with those from a meal prep service, look at your monthly expenses and see what you spend on food. The amount you spend on grocery shopping and eating out can now all go towards paying for your meal plan subscription – this is something that people often don’t think about before they decide a meal prep service is too expensive.
- Value – if a meal prep company is only charging you a couple of dollars per meal, well, then you get what you paid for. Look for companies that charge between $7-10 per meal. Any less than that and you’re likely to be getting lower quality meals. The more you pay, the better the quality.
- If you’re getting your meals shipped or delivered, look at this cost, too. Many companies factor their expenses for delivery and shipping into the cost per meal and they offer you free delivery, while not every company does this. If meals are low in cost and charge nothing for delivery, you’re likely to be getting meals that are not good in quality.
- Is the meal prep company you’re checking out using fresh ingredients? If not, look for another service. It’s usually pretty obvious simply by looking at pictures of their food if they are using a ton of processed ingredients.
- If a company is using anything fried that they expect you to reheat, move on! Sure, waffle fries sound great – but do you really think they made those fresh in their kitchen? And do you really think they are healthy?
- Are you allergic to anything? This is a big consideration when it comes to eating anywhere or ordering from any place. If you have a severe allergy, that is you can have a very bad reaction from being in the same room as an ingredient, from touching it, or eating foods that are cooked in the same area as that ingredient, then unfortunately a meal prep service just might not be for you.
- Do you have dietary restrictions? If you need low-carb meals due to your own personal diet needs or because you are diabetic, find a company that offers ketogenic meals. (FitEx Meals offers a large variety of keto meals – and we’re improving that menu every week!)
- While not every company lists their ingredients specifically, they should be able to provide you with that information if you ask.
- Measuring Nutrition
- If you are using a meal prep service to reach a personal fitness goal or for dietary restrictions, you obviously understand how important it is to carefully measure your nutrition. A meal prep company should be able to tell you the nutrition contents of each meal like how many calories are in their meals, and at the very least, their basic macro-nutrients by the gram.
- Does the meal prep company measure their ingredients? If you’re watching your fat, carbs, and protein intake carefully, imagine how upset you would be if you found out that the meal prep company you’ve been ordering from wasn’t weighing their ingredients properly. While cooking can be done without perfect measurements to get the right taste, when you’re recording your nutrition intake you need to have faith that the numbers you’re reading on the container are accurate.
- Meal Packaging
- Be sure to choose a company that uses sealed containers for your meals. You need a container that remains closed to the outside air to keep your food free of contamination and bacteria. If you ever need to freeze your meals, you’ll want a container that prevents the chance of freezer burn.
- Customer service is key – and can make all the difference in choosing the right meal prep company. If a company screws up your order, they need to be held accountable and responsible for how they handled your order and straighten things out properly. This might mean fixing the order, offering a refund, or simply showing that they understand their own error and asking how they can accommodate you.
- Most companies have great people that care about your health and nutrition – if your meal prep company doesn’t show that they care about what you think of them, it’s time to move on!
- Custom Meal Options
- Most meal prep companies have a set menu to choose your meals from. If a meal prep company asks you to pay a certain price and to take what you get, it may be time to look for another company that offers you the opportunity to choose your own meals – after all, you’re paying for meals to keep you full, happy, and healthy. It would likely push you away if the meals you receive contain ingredients you can’t stand – or that you can’t have for religious or dietary reasons – because you didn’t have the option to choose meals without those ingredients.
- Does the meal prep company offer you the chance to remove ingredients you don’t like from meals or offer totally customizable meals? This could make a huge difference when choosing the right company to prepare your meals.
- It’s not likely that you will remain dedicated to a new diet or lifestyle if you don’t enjoy what you’re eating. Having the option to choose your meals and find your favorites allows you to remain committed to the program. FitEx Meals allows members to choose meals from a revolving menu of over 300 tasty options – so you’ll never grow bored and always find a favorite.
The FitEx Meals Difference
Here at FitEx Meals, we offer you totally personal customer service. We offer every member the chance to work with us one-on-one to discuss personal goals and needs. Your nutrition and happiness is what matters most – after all, our product is providing meals which is a necessary and important part of multiple times of the day. Getting those meals right is a big deal to us, so we’re constantly working to improve our recipes, process, and customer service.
The price of our meals is on the lower side and competitive – but we cram value in the form of wholesome and fresh ingredients into our meals. We give you the option to pick up your order to save you a few dollars, or to spend a little more and have the convenience of meals delivered to your door.
Every meal is prepared fresh without preservatives, cooled to preserve quality, and packaged in individual containers to keep your meals tasty and easy to microwave in recyclable, BPA-free plastic containers.
We even offer you the opportunity to try out one of our meals before signing up for a subscription (which is already a great program, as there is no commitment), which is as simple as placing a one-time order – or visiting us in person at our store in Tampa to buy a meal from our Grab-and-Go cooler. We restock our cooler three times a week with different meals for those who have little time to commit to a meal prep subscription plan, to grab a quick bite for lunch, or to sample a meal before signing up. Our fridge is always stocked with keto meals, signature prepared meals, breakfast meal prep, prepared snacks, and more.
Our meals are delicious, nutritious, and filled with the nutrients you need to reach any goal, for any diet. If you’re looking into meal prep and have any questions, give us a call or send us an email and we’ll work with you to help you find a meal prep plan that works for you and your lifestyle.