Best Low-Calorie Meal Delivery Services

Sunbasket is the best meal delivery service for low-calorie food

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Low-calorie meal plans can help facilitate weight loss by creating a calorie deficit, meaning your body burns more calories than you take in. But following a healthy, low-calorie diet can be difficult, as it requires calorie counting, meal planning, and preparing. Luckily, the expanding market of meal delivery services offers low-calorie meal plans that take the guesswork out, while reducing your time planning, purchasing, and cooking, making calorie reduction easier to execute.

We tested several dozen meal delivery services to curate this list of low-calorie plans that include portion-controlled, nutrient-packed meals with a balance of protein, healthy fats, whole grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. 

Best Low-Calorie Meal Delivery Services of 2022

Best Overall : Sunbasket

Verywell's Rating
5.0

SunBasket

SunBasket

Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $9.99 per serving
  • Delivery Area: 46 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh
Why You Should Try It

With a variety of meal kits, heat-and-eat meals, and grocery add-ons, Sunbasket is a great choice for people looking to follow a nutritious, low-calorie meal plan full of nutrient-dense, sustainably sourced, quality ingredients.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Environmentally-conscious sourcing and packaging

  • Robust selection of add-on items

  • Features 99% USDA-certified organic fresh produce and dairy

Cons
  • Higher price-point

  • Some meals lack flavor

Overview

Sunbasket’s Lean & Clean meals are about 600 calories or less per serving and include healthy fats, at least 10 grams of protein, and 5 grams of fiber per serving. We love the range of flavor profiles featured and the versatility of this meal plan, offering meal kits if you are up for cooking, or quick heat and meals. Additionally, you can add a la carte grocery items including healthy breakfast options, snacks, and lean proteins like grilled chicken and wild pollock.

Learn More: Read Our Sunbasket Review.

Pricing and Plans
  • Meal Kits: start at $11.49 per serving (price varies depending on selection)
  • Fresh & Ready Meals: start at $9.99 per serving (price varies depending on selection)
Meals We Tried

Meal Kits

  • Sea scallops over fresh fettuccine with sun-dried tomatoes and spinach
  • Snapper with romesco, vegetables, and almonds
  • Burmese chicken and sweet potato curry
  • Sirloin strip tacos with zucchini scallion salsa

Prepared Meals

  • Broccoli mac and cheese
  • Chicken chow mein with broccoli, mushroom, and toasted garlic
  • Beef donburi rice bowl with edamame and kimchi-lime vegetables
  • Burrito bowl al pastor with plant-based Impossible Beef

Best Variety : Hungryroot

Verywell's Rating
4.7

Hungryroot

Hungryroot

Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $9.69 per serving
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh
Why You Should Try It

Hungryroot offers thousands of nutrient-dense, simple-to-prepare meals as well as a large selection of grocery items featuring simple, whole-food ingredients.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Accommodates a wide variety of preferences

  • Easy, quick-cooking meal kit options

  • Large selection of grocery add ons

Cons
  • Confusing credit-based purchasing system

  • Can be time-consuming sorting through options

Overview

Hungryroot is a hybrid grocery store and meal delivery service, perfect for those looking for variety. It offers more than 3,000 nutrient-dense, chef-crafted, fast-cooking meal kits with a low-calorie filter option highlighting meals under 500 calories per serving. In addition to the meal kits, you can stock up on low-calorie fresh produce, pre-cooked lean proteins, whole grains, snacks, sauces, and more to build your own healthy meals.

Learn More: Read Our Hungryroot Review.

Pricing and Plans

Meals start at $9.69; plan on a minimum of $70 an order per week to obtain free shipping. For orders less than $70, shipping is $6.99. A more detailed breakdown is as follows:

  • 2 servings with 8 recipes: $9.69 per serving
  • 2 servings with 7 recipes: $9.69 per serving
  • 2 servings with 6 recipes: $10.29 per serving
  • 2 servings with 5 recipes: $10.89 per serving
  • 2 servings with 4 recipes: $11.39 per serving
  • 2 servings with 3 recipes: $11.39 per serving
  • 4 servings with 4 recipes: $9.69 per serving
  • 4 servings with 3 recipes: $9.69 per serving
  • 4 servings with 2 recipes: $10.29 per serving
Meals We Tried
  • Spinach, artichoke, and mushroom tortelloni 
  • Roasted salmon and sweet potato on Brussels 
  • Southwest chicken and rainbow veggie tacos 
  • Thai peanut beef and broccoli stir-fry

Best Value : Dinnerly

Verywell's Rating
4.5

dinnerly-meal-service

dinnerly-meal-service

Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $4.99 per serving
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh
Why You Should Try It

While Dinnerly is not geared toward weight loss, it does offer a low-calorie meal filtering option that includes a variety of meals that are generally under 600 calories, at a budget-friendly price.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Quick and easy recipes

  • More affordable option

Cons
  • Recipe instructions do not come with visuals

  • Limited customization options

Overview

Dinnerly requires some meal prep and cooking, however, recipes are only five steps and can be prepared in 30 minutes. Meals are developed by the company’s in-house chef and registered dietitian, ensuring flavorful and balanced meals. There are offerings for two and four servings, making it a good choice for couples and families or individuals who like to have leftovers on hand for the next day.

Learn More: Read Our Dinnerly Review.

Pricing and Plans
  • 3 meals with 2 servings each: $6.39 per serving
  • 4 meals with 2 servings each: $5.99 per serving
  • 5 meals with 2 servings each: $5.89 per serving
  • 6 meals with 2 servings each: $5.79 per serving
  • 3 meals with 4 servings each: $5.69 per serving
  • 4 meals with 4 servings each: $5.49 per serving
  • 5 meals with 4 servings each: $5.29 per serving
  • 6 meals with 4 servings each: $4.99 per serving
  • Shipping: $9.99
Meals We Tried 
  • BBQ cheeseburger with sautéed onions and smashed potatoes
  • Low-cal veggie drunken noodles with broccoli, peppers, and cilantro
  • Grass-fed ground beef and cheddar quesadillas with corn
  • Caramel chicken stir-fry with snow peas and jasmine rice

Best for Nutrition Counseling : BistroMD

Verywell's Rating
3.9

BistroMD

BistroMD

Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $10.99
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Frozen
Why You Should Try It

Our testers loved the ease of this program, with a large variety of heat-and-eat meals and snacks designed by physicians and registered dietitians to optimize weight loss.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Many breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks to choose from

  • Programs created by physicians and registered dietitians

  • Meals are ready in as little as five minutes

Cons
  • Some meals lack flavor and texture

  • Cannot choose delivery date

Overview

BistroMD tops our list with physician- and registered dietitian-designed meals, offering a wide variety of calorie-controlled prepared meals and snacks. These customizable meal plans offer breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks with over 150 chef-prepared meals and snacks to choose from each week. This subscription service provides access to exclusive member resources and support, including booking a session with a dietitian, a private Facebook community, text support, access to a health library, and a welcome webinar.

Learn More: Read Our BistroMD Review.

Pricing and Plans
  • Full program 7 days: $219.80 
  • Full program 5 days: $187.35 
  • Lunch and dinner 7 days: $188.86 
  • Lunch and dinner 5 days: $149.90 
  • Shipping: $19.95
Meals We Tried
  • Chicken, rice, and cheddar casserole
  • Salmon with dill mustard sauce
  • Turkey breast with cranberry apple chutney
  • Oven-fried catfish with spicy tomato leek sauce
  • Baked pasta marinara with chicken sausage
  • Meatloaf with honey bourbon glaze
  • Mojo pork with black beans and rice
  • Grilled salmon with creamy pesto

Best for Weight Loss : Diet-To-Go

Verywell's Rating
3.4

Diet-to-Go

 Diet-to-Go

Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $9.71
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Frozen
Why You Should Try It

Diet-To-Go’s meal delivery service offers portion-controlled meals to help support your weight loss goals. 

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Pre-portioned meals

  • Many low-calorie options

  • Meals ready in just two to three minutes 

Cons
  • Not much recycling info

  • Users report site can be clunky

Overview

Diet-To-Go's mission is to support weight loss or maintenance goals through ready-to-heat meals. The company offers a variety of meal plans, and customers are able to choose their plan based on dietary needs and/or preferences (carb-controlled, low sodium, vegetarian). Plans are easy to pause or switch, and the company offers motivational tips and recipes on its blog.

Learn More: Read Our Diet-To-Go Review.

Pricing and Plans

You can receive as few as 10 and as many as 21 meals per week (which means either two or three meals per day). The plans with two meals per day do not include breakfast. The least expensive keto plan, for example, costs around $151 per week, with additional shipping fees depending on your location. The largest plan—21 meals—costs about $225 per week, which is just over $10 per serving.

Sample Meals We Tried
  • Chicken Florentine burger 
  • Tomato pesto meltover 
  • Tuscan boats with turkey 
  • Monterey turkey with almonds 
  • Chicken black bean wrap 
  • Turkey Salisbury steak 
  • Asian meatballs 
  • Herbed baked salmon 
  • Chicken and three grain 
  • Blackened turkey loin

Best Prepared Meals : Freshly

Verywell's Rating
4.2

Freshly
Freshly
Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $9.58 per serving
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh
Why You Should Try It

Freshly offers a broad range of pre-made meals covering different cuisines and a flexible subscription program.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Meals ready in three minutes or less

  • Many diet preferences represented 

  • Offers a selection of add-on proteins and sides

Cons
  • Subscription required to use service 

Overview

Freshly provides fresh, heat-and-eat, single-serve meals that accommodate many different dietary considerations. The meal plans are extremely flexible and the meals are easy to prepare. Meals include flavors from many world cuisines including American, Greek, Indian, and Thai, and are options for dairy-free, gluten-free, peanut-free, vegan, vegetarian, and more. Although the plan with six meals per week is the most popular option, orders can include four to 12 meals each week and can be delivered on the date you choose.

Learn More: Read Our Freshly Review.

Pricing and Plans
  • 4 meals: $50
  • 6 meals: $75
  • 8 meals: $ 100
  • 10 meals: $125
  • 12 meals: $150
Meals We Tried
  • Asian style chicken and noodles
  • Steak peppercorn
  • Thai green curry
  • Pork chile colorado

Best Plant-Based : Daily Harvest

Verywell's Rating
4.3

Daily Harvest
Daily Harvest
Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $6.79 per serving
  • Delivery Area: 48 states
  • Products Arrive: Frozen
Why You Should Try It

Daily Harvest offers a wide variety of low-calorie vegan meal options including smoothies, grain and oat bowls, soups, flatbreads, and ice creams with minimal prep and cook times.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Emphasizes plant-based, organic ingredients

  • Large variety of meal options

  • Quick prep and cook times

Cons
  • Vegan diets can lack certain nutrients

  • Meals are typically lower in protein

Overview

These chef-designed plant-based meals are high in fiber from fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, optimal for maintaining a low-calorie diet and supporting overall health. We love that Daily Harvest meals are made with organic ingredients and are free of artificial ingredients, fillers, gums, refined sugars, and stabilizers. All products come frozen and require minimal prep and cooking, making it easy to increase your daily fruit and vegetable intake.

Learn More: Read Our Daily Harvest Review.

Pricing and Plans

When placing orders, you'll first need to select a box size—either Small (9 items), Medium (14 items), or Large (24 items). Then, simply fill the box with whatever menu selections you like. While pricing depends on what you order, Daily Harvest offers volume-based discounts; the more items you buy, the more money you'll save.

Per-Item Pricing

  • Lattes: $5.99
  • Forager Bowls: $6.79
  • Mylk & Bites: $7.99
  • Smoothies & Soups: $8.49
  • Scoops: $8.99
  • Harvest Bowls & Flatbreads: $9.79
  • Harvest Bake: $11.99

Volume Discounts

  • 9-11 items: $5 discount
  • 12-23 items: $10 discount
  • 24-26 items: $25 discount
Meals We Tried
  • Mint and cacao smoothie
  • Mango papaya smoothie
  • Hazelnut and chocolate bites
  • Tomatillo and pepper flatbread
  • Portobello and pesto flatbread
  • Sweet potato and wild rice hash
  • Brussels sprouts and tahini harvest bowl
  • Spinach and shiitake grits
  • Tomato and zucchini minestrone soup

Best High Protein : Fresh N Lean

Verywell's Rating
3.7

Fresh n Lean

Fresh n Lean

Key Specs
  • Starting Price: $8.49 per serving
  • Delivery Area: 50 states
  • Products Arrive: Fresh
Why You Should Try It

Fresh N Lean is a great option if you are on a specific diet and want quick and easy, non-frozen, portion-controlled meals.

Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Simple reheating instructions

  • Expansive menu

  • Caters to a variety of diets

Cons
  • Minimal customization

  • Lack of evidence-based nutrition resources

Overview

Fresh N Lean caters to people on special diets including keto, paleo, vegan, Whole30, or Mediterranean, with all meal plans averaging under 500 calories per meal. We liked the ease of these non-frozen, heat-and-eat meals, and the option to add on breakfasts.

Learn More: Read Our Fresh N Lean Review.

Pricing and Plans
  • Vegan Standard: starts at $8.49 per serving
  • Vegan Low Carb: starts at $9.99 per serving
  • Protein+: starts at $10.32 per serving
  • Keto: starts at $10.66 per serving
  • Paleo: starts at $10.66 per serving
  • Whole30 Approved: starts at $10.66 per serving
  • Mediterranean Diet: starts at $10.32 per serving
Sample Meals We Tried
  • Grilled shrimp with caper dill aioli and roasted winter squash
  • Moroccan mint grass-fed steak with spiced cauliflower and brown rice
  • Tikka chicken with turmeric-roasted cauliflower and quinoa
  • BBQ turkey meatballs with white beans
  • Cajun salmon with Yukon potato and tomato rice

Final Verdict

Sunbasket is unrivaled in the amount of variety it offers its customers, all with a focus on organic and sustainably-sourced products. Using seasonal, farm-fresh ingredients, Sunbasket curates ever-changing weekly menus that accommodate a variety of diets, including gluten-free, paleo, vegan, and diabetic-friendly. The company strives to use 100% organic produce in all of its meals, and the majority of the packaging is recyclable or compostable. These factors combined to give it top ratings with our testers.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How Much Do Low Calorie Meal Delivery Service Cost?

    Meal delivery services offer pre-portioned meals and ingredients, so there is typically less food waste, which may be more cost-efficient depending on your usual grocery shopping and cooking habits. The cost of meal delivery services varies greatly and depends on the type of plan you choose. For example, prices typically drop per serving as you increase volume, so a meal plan for four would be less per serving than one for two. Our list of low-calorie meal delivery services ranges from $4.99 to $11 per serving. 

  • What Is a Low-Calorie Meal?

    There is no set definition of what a low-calorie meal is, as it’s subjective and varies according to an individual's overall calorie and nutrition needs. A low-calorie meal is considered one that is aligned with your daily calorie intake for weight maintenance or weight loss, which depends on many factors including age, height, weight, energy expenditure, resting metabolic rate, and overall health. However, generally, low-calorie meal plans for women are considered between 1,200 and 1,500 calories per day and between 1,500 to 1,800 calories per day for men. It's important to remember that calorie-restrictive dieting is not suitable for everyone, so it's important to check with a healthcare professional.

  • Are Low-Calorie Meal Delivery Services Worth It?

    For those who are too busy to cook or have trouble eating balanced meals, low-calorie meal delivery services can help you optimize your nutrition, as they typically contain portion-controlled proteins, vegetables, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates. Low-calorie meal delivery services can also help you to achieve and maintain an optimal weight, which is associated with better health outcomes.

    If you have specific goals in mind, consider meeting with a registered dietitian (RD) or using one of the meal delivery services that offer counseling with an RD to help assess all of your nutritional needs. Reaching your individual health goals will ultimately make these meal delivery services worth it if they fit your budget.

  • How Do I Choose a Low-Calorie Meal Delivery Service?

    There are several comparison points to consider when choosing a meal delivery service, such as:

    • Price: Our list of meal delivery services ranges from $4.99 to around $11 per serving. Most services offer a decrease in price per meal with high volume orders, so consider your budget and how many meals per week you want to choose the right option. 
    • Number of Meals per Week: Determine how many meals you think you would consume per week and what type (breakfast, lunch, dinner). How often do you dine out? Will you bring meals to work (and do they have a microwave)? Do you travel often? How often do you like to cook your own meals?
    • Prepared Meals vs. Meal Kits: Some meal delivery services offer meal kits that provide ingredients and instructions to cook your own meals while others are heat and eat. Consider how much time you have and if you would like to cook your meals or prefer the convenience of microwavable meals.
    • Add-ons and A La Carte Items: Consider whether you want the option for add-ons like pre-cooked proteins, sides, and grocery options or if you are just looking for single-serving meals. 
    • Nutritional Content: Assess your daily calorie, carbohydrate, and protein needs using the guidelines from the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics. Look for meal plans that are high in fiber, healthy fats, lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains. 


Methodology

We ordered, cooked, and evaluated meals from 40 different meal delivery services to rate each one’s offerings, nutrition profiles, prices, sustainability, and, of course, flavors. We contacted the customer service teams at each of the companies, collected data, and rigorously reviewed each one.

Our Verywell Fit writers are all registered dieticians who relied on their research and its resulting data to inform their reviews.

Article Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. "Healthy Eating Plan."

  2. Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. "The Nutrition Source."

By Anne Cook Carroll, MS, RD
Anne Cook Carroll is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. She earned a Master’s Degree in Clinical Nutrition from New York University and a Bachelor’s Degree in American Studies from Trinity College (CT).