Canstar Blue’s healthy meal delivery review compares Lite n’ Easy, HelloFresh, Youfoodz, Dinnerly and Marley Spoon on taste & quality of ingredients, freshness of meal or ingredients, variety of meals available, ease of ordering, delivery, customer service, value for money and overall satisfaction.
See our Ratings Methodology.
For some, cooking is the chance to flex their culinary skills, creating mouth-watering meals from scratch to impress house guests. But for others, cooking is another chore to add to a busy day, something that only results in more washing up. Regardless of which camp you belong to; the sudden rise of the healthy meal delivery industry has been a saviour for households often pressed for time or too tired after a hard day’s work or play. Plus, getting a variety of tasty meals delivered straight to your door can be a handy alternative to fighting for a parking space outside your local supermarket.
To help you find the best healthy meal delivery service(s), Canstar Blue has again surveyed more than 670 Australians for their feedback on the healthy meal delivery providers they’ve recently used (in the last six months). Respondents scored brands on taste and quality, freshness, meal variety, customer service, ease of ordering, delivery, value for money, and overall satisfaction. Delivery services that received the minimum sample size (30 responses) are featured in our latest ratings.
Lite n’ Easy took the cake as the best-rated healthy meal delivery service for the third year in a row! It whipped five-star reviews overall satisfaction and in the majority of rated categories!
Rated #1 Three Years in a Row!
Lite n’ Easy is once again rated #1 for overall satisfaction by Canstar Blue, scoring 5 stars for freshness, variety, customer service, ease of ordering, delivery, value for money, and customer satisfaction.
Here are the best healthy meal delivery services in Australia, as rated by consumers in Canstar Blue’s latest review:
Lite n’ Easy came out hot as the top-rated pick with five stars for freshness, meal variety, customer service, ease of ordering, delivery, value for money, and overall satisfaction.
Meanwhile, HelloFresh got the edge in terms of taste and quality, receiving the only five-star review for the category. It also got full marks for delivery and range variety. Youfoodz and Dinnerly achieved the same results for ease of ordering, with Dinnerly additionally scoring five stars for customer service.
One of the most well-known names in the market, Lite n’ Easy tends to be marketed towards people looking to lose weight, with the brand offering a number of meal options and plans to suit all budgets and tastebuds. Delivering nationwide, Lite n’ Easy claims it uses the expertise of dieticians to ensure consumers get the optimal nutritional intake for their health goals.
Customers can choose between five-day or seven-day meal plans, which include meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as snacks. Some menu items include chargrilled steak & pepper sauce, vegetarian potato and chickpea curry, rigatoni, chicken noodle soup, and raspberry & apple crumble.
However, you may have to look elsewhere if you have specific dietary requirements, although Lite n’ Easy’s menu does cover a range of cuisines, helping to spice up mealtime. Prices will vary from state to state (although a full seven-day plan will generally cost you under $200), with Lite n’ Easy listing the full price range on its website, making it easy to factor your meal plan into your budget.
First launched in Germany, HelloFresh has expanded on a global scale. It offers different meal plan sizes to suit two or four people, with each person able to snag between three and five recipes per week. There are several menu themes to choose from, including Family-Friendly, Mostly Meat, Vegetarian, Calorie Smart, Carb Smart and Quick & Easy.
HelloFresh may be a handy option for those with multiple mouths to feed. Instead of delivering pre-made meals, HelloFresh provides all of the fresh ingredients to help cut down on preparation time, rather than the cooking itself. Like its competitors, HelloFresh has a rotating menu, meaning you’ll get plenty of options to choose from during your subscription.
Each plan contains a number of meals for each person, with the costs coming down to about $10.99 per meal, depending on what you get. In addition to the ingredients, you’ll also receive a recipe to follow, with HelloFresh outlining the preparation time and cooking difficulty of each meal, making it easier to choose which meals you’d like to try.
Youfoodz is another popular option for busy (and ‘hangry’) households. Like most brands within the industry, the majority of Youfoodz’s range includes healthy recipes designed to help you lose a few kilos, while also coming in handy when you’ve forgotten that it’s your turn to cook.
Food starts from $2.99 for snacks and $9.95 for meals. Youfoodz also offers several bundles, including the Bestsellers Bundle, Weight Loss Bundle, FUEL’D High Protein Bundle and the Best Of Both Bundle. You can also check out the brand’s Signature Premium Meals for dishes like beef bourguignon and forest mushroom orecchiette.
Shoppers can either stack up on individual meals or can order plans to suit their lifestyle or eating habits. Meals are broken into the three major meals of the day, as well as snacks and drinks for those looking for something a bit extra. Youfoodz meals are claimed to be cooked by chefs and vacuum-sealed to stay fresh for up to nine days, meaning those prone to forgetting about their food in the fridge are covered.
Love meal planning but can’t seem to get your head around it? Dinnerly markets itself as an affordable, flexible, subscription service that helps make cooking every day easy. Although, unlike some other healthy meal delivery brands, Dinnerly only provides meals for dinnertime and does not offer breakfast, lunch or dessert.
There are a couple of box sizes to choose from, a two-person box or a four-person box. Two-person boxes typically cost between $53.49 and $87.39 (including shipping), and are said to serve two people for three, four, five or six nights per week. The four-person ‘family box’ is alternatively designed to feed four people three to six nights per week. This larger option is usually priced between $84.99 and $126.39 (including shipping). If you don’t want Dinnerly every week, the ‘flexible subscription’ means you can choose which weeks to receive Dinnerly deliveries and only pay for what you receive. Dinnerly also caters to non-meat eaters, or anyone looking to have a meat-free night.
Dinnerly currently ships to most areas in NSW, VIC, QLD, SA, NT, ACT, TAS and WA. Delivery specifics depend on each location, so make sure to check the website to know when you can expect your next fix!
Marley Spoon offers another option for those who still enjoy spending time in the kitchen, but don’t enjoy venturing out to the supermarket or farmer’s market. With a menu that changes every week, Marley Spoon includes dairy-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and low-carb meals to suit the whole family.
Offering a two-person or four-person box (with each meal costing around $10 depending on which option you select), you can pick how many meals a week you would like, making family mealtime easier for busy households. Additionally, if you’re going away for a week – or the fridge is running out of space – you can put your subscription on hold, or simply skip a week, making it easy to work around your lifestyle.
In the box, you will find recipes in addition to the fresh ingredients, although the meals are more cantered towards dinner options than other meal times. Marley Spoon delivers to most areas in NSW, VIC, ACT, QLD, SA, NT and TAS. The cost for delivery is $9.99, similar to other providers.
While the above healthy meal delivery services made the cut for inclusion in our ratings, it doesn’t mean there aren’t others worth checking out. Here are a few others you might want to feast on.
Choice Fresh Meals has been operating for more than 20 years, mainly catering to seniors, those unable to cook due to an illness, as well as busy professionals. This healthy meal delivery service is said to offer more than 80 ‘generous portion size’ dishes, each apparently containing locally-sourced ingredients. Some items you might see on the menu include Asian braised beef short ribs, steamed barramundi and citrus butter, meatloaf and rosemary gravy, vegetarian paella, roast pork with apple sauce, mango cheesecake and bread & butter pudding.
While Choice Fresh Meals doesn’t require customers to start a weekly subscription, unlike some meal delivery services, there may be a minimum spend of $50 with each order. The service additionally allows for multiple delivery days for certain suburbs.
Prices usually start from $4.20 for soups or $6.70 for sandwiches, and reach up to $15.90 for ‘premium’ menu items like aged porterhouse steak. Many of the meals also come in either a regular or large size, with the larger alternative usually costing just over $1 more. Diabetic-friendly, gluten-free and low salt options are also available.
Nourish’d is a relative newcomer to the healthy meal delivery market, although it has made a big impact on consumers with its good range of healthy meal alternatives. With options for paleo, keto and low-carb diets, as well as meals for those who suffer from dairy or nut allergies, Nourish’d may be the option for shoppers looking to stick to that clean lifestyle, although the company only currently deliveries to cities and towns on the East coast of Australia.
The weekly menus change regularly, meaning plenty of variety when it comes to mealtimes. There are various options to choose from, including dairy-free, gluten-free, nut-free, vegetarian, keto-friendly, paleo-friendly, low carb, no chilli, no egg, no fish, no garlic, no onion, no soy and no sesame.
Nourish’d lets you order through a subscription or one-off order. The subscriptions can be arranged weekly, fortnightly, or once every three weeks. You can build your own order, with prices starting from just under $13 per meal. Snacks are also available, making it a handy option for those who suffer from sugar cravings, or need an afternoon pick-me-up.
Another brand that delivers fresh ingredients to your door, Dinner Twist may be the go-to option for consumers on the West coast of Australia, exclusively delivering to addresses in and around metro Perth. Coming in either weekly or fortnightly deliveries, Dinner Twist also works around your schedule by allowing users to skip a week or cancel your subscription at any time.
Hungry consumers are treated to plenty of options all of which come out around $10 per serve. Plus, unlike other meal delivery services, you can also order marketplace items like free-range meat and fish, oats, paleo bread, condiments, vegan cheese as well as eco-friendly household items, pet goodies and gifts!
Dinner Twist does not include the nutritional or calorie intake of its foods on its website, and instead steers towards a holistic approach to eating, although all recipes are said to be overseen by a qualified nutritionist to ensure that you still end up with a healthy meal at the end of your fork.
Healthy meal delivery services are worth trying if you’re looking for convenience, to change your eating habits or save time cooking. Just keep in mind that meal delivery services typically aren’t cheap and can potentially leave you forking out more on groceries per week, compared to if you were to buy the ingredients yourself. Our survey found Aussie consumers spend an average of $54 on meal kits per week and $58 per ready-made meals weekly.
Here are the main reasons Aussies we surveyed decided to use meal deliveries:
Our survey shows Lite n’ Easy continues to be the best of the pack. It has not only satisfied consumers on specific factors like freshness and value for money, but also performed well overall. HelloFresh is another popular pick if you’re searching for something that offers good bang for buck and provides a variety of drool-worthy menu options to choose from. Dinnerly also seems to be a good choice if you’re new or unsure about using subscription-based meal services and prefer to go with a provider with proven good customer service.
Ultimately, which provider you go with will come down to your personal preferences, as well as how much time you have on your hands. Those rushed off their feet may prefer pre-made meals, while those who feel at home in the kitchen should have no issue with the fresh ingredient varieties, leaving you to keep your hands dirty and do the cooking.
They say variety is the spice of life – and that’s certainly true when it comes to food. But like eating the same old foods, don’t just stick with one meal delivery provider out of convenience if it’s leaving you feeling a little underwhelmed at the end of mealtime. Try new providers, new meals, and shop around to make sure you’re getting great food, and value.
This report was written by Canstar Blue’s home & lifestyle journalist, Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito. She’s an expert on household appliances, grooming products and all things grocery and shopping. In addition to translating our expert research into consumer-friendly ratings reports, Tahnee spends her time helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services, while highlighting the best deals and anything you need to be aware of.
Picture credits: Elenadesign/shutterstock.com, Vladislav Noseek/shutterstock.com, Clovera/shutterstock.com, SUPREEYA-ANON/shutterstock.com
Canstar Blue surveyed more than 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have used ready-made meal delivery service(s) in the last six months, including services that prepare and deliver to your doorstep, pre-prepared meals and meal kits, and excluding restaurant delivery services such as UberEats – in this case, 673 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then alphabetically. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
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