Fresh n’ Lean Review

A variety of heat-and-eat meals are offered

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4.2

Fresh n’ Lean

beef with vegetables and broccoli in a white bowl

Verywell Fit / Maxwell Cozzi

Fresh n’ Lean is a meal delivery service that targets people who follow specific diets and don’t want to spend time in the kitchen cooking. If you are most concerned with adhering to a diet and do not care about the option to choose the meal itself, this service could be for you.

Pros
  • Caters to a variety of diets

  • Simple reheating instructions

  • Expansive menu

Cons
  • Cannot select meals

  • Expensive

  • Lacks credibility and evidence-based resources

4.2

Fresh n’ Lean

beef with vegetables and broccoli in a white bowl

Verywell Fit / Maxwell Cozzi

Fresh n’ Lean is a meal delivery service that caters to those who follow high-protein, Paleo, keto, Whole30, and vegan diets. It was founded in 2010 in the kitchen of a one-bedroom apartment, and the company is now headquartered in Anaheim, California.

Fresh n’ Lean ships meals to customers in all 50 states. Each week, customers are sent randomly selected meals from their chef-curated menu to fit their selected diet or a la carte meals. We ordered a box to learn more about what the service has to offer.

All the Fresh n’ Lean meals are chef-curated and ready to heat and eat.

Pricing: It Varies

Fresh n’ Lean offers six meal plans in addition to an a la carte meal plan option: Protein+, KetoPaleoWhole30, Standard Vegan, and Low Carb Vegan. The price per meal starts at $7.93 but will vary based on your selected diet and the number of meals you order. Shipping is free.

With the exception of the Whole30 plan, you choose meals from your selected diet and can order breakfast, lunch, or dinner, a combination of two meals, or all three. You are only given options to order for five or seven days. For the Whole30 plan, you can order five, seven, or 10 entrees and either zero or five breakfasts. 

Additionally, you can order a la carte meals to build your weekly meal plan for an $85 minimum. 

Here is the pricing breakdown:

Protein+

  • Breakfast for 5 or 7 days: $10.75 per meal
  • Lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $14.99 per meal
  • Breakfast and lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $11.09 per meal
  • Lunch and dinner for 5 or 7 days: $12.43 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 5 days: $10.36 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 7 days: $9.75 per meal

Keto

  • Breakfast for 5 or 7 days: $10.50 per meal
  • Lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $15.43 per meal
  • Breakfast and lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $11.25 per meal
  • Lunch and dinner for 5 or 7 days: $12.99 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 5 days: $10.63 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 7 days: $9.97 per meal

Paleo

  • Breakfast for 5 or 7 days: $10.50 per meal
  • Lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $15.43 per meal
  • Breakfast and lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $11.25 per meal
  • Lunch and dinner for 5 or 7 days: $12.99 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 5 days: $10.63 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 7 days: $9.97 per meal

Standard Vegan

  • Breakfast for 5 or 7 days: $10.50 per meal
  • Lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $12.64 per meal
  • Breakfast and lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $9.78 per meal
  • Lunch and dinner for 5 or 7 days: $10.05 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 5 days: $8.45 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 7 days: $7.93 per meal

Low Carb Vegan

  • Breakfast for 5 or 7 days: $10.70 per meal
  • Lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $13.92 per meal
  • Breakfast and lunch or dinner for 5 or 7 days: $10.99 per meal
  • Lunch and dinner for 5 or 7 days: $12.27 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 5 days: $10.09 per meal
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 7 days: $9.41 per meal

Whole30

  • 5 or 7 entrees, no breakfast: $15.43 per meal
  • 10 entrees, no breakfast: $12.99 per meal
  • 5 entrees, 5 breakfast: $11.25 per meal
  • 7 entrees, 5 breakfast: $11.54 per meal
  • 10 entrees, 5 breakfast: $10.63 per meal

How It Works: Chef-Curated Meals

All the Fresh n’ Lean meals are chef-curated and ready to heat and eat. Start by selecting your meal plan. You will then choose whether you want five or seven days' worth of meals, along with which meals (breakfast, lunch, and/or dinner).

At this point, you are also given the opportunity to add whether you have any allergies to eggs, sesame, dairy, shellfish, tree nuts, or soy, as well as an option to exclude up to three ingredients from your meals, such as cilantro, curry, and olives. 

Next, you can add “bulk and sides” as well as branded accessories. Finally, you are prompted to check out and are given a pre-set “deliver by” date.

Under all six plans, you will be sent meals at random. The a la carte plan, on the other hand, allows you to choose from around six entrees and three breakfasts each week.

10 fresh n lean prepared meals on a counter

Verywell Fit / Maxwell Cozzi

Choosing Meals: Mostly Pre-Selected

While some meal plans like keto and Paleo have a range of items on the menu, the low-carb vegan plan only offered four options consisting of a soup and three plates of vegetables. However, they have since updated the low-carb vegan plan to include six options.

After selecting your number of meals and types of meals for the week, you can choose to add additional breakfasts, snacks, entrees, proteins, and vegetables.

You are billed weekly and if you want to cancel or skip a week, you have to notify the company by Saturday at noon PT. 

What We Made

For the purposes of this review, we ordered five days’ worth of dinners from the Paleo meal plan and did not make any customizations or add food allergies. We received:

  • Creamy broccoli soup
  • Stir fry vegetables with braised beef
  • Ginger sweet potato bowl with shrimp
  • Red pepper-infused salmon and veggies
  • Vegetables con pollo

Packaging: Well-Insulated

Our meals arrived in vacuum-sealed, BPA-free recyclable trays in an insulated cardboard box with ice packs. All meals were prepared and ready to heat and eat with the exception of the soup, which was packaged separately from the chicken breast—so it required an extra step to prepare. The box was well-insulated, and the ice packs kept the food cold.

In total, there were 19 pieces of packaging in our delivery. Fresh n’ Lean claims that some of its packaging items are recyclable, such as the plastic meal trays and seals. The padding/insulation is biodegradable. For the ice gel packs, follow the manufacturer's instructions printed on the packaging.

fresh n lean meals in a cardboard delivery box

Verywell Fit / Maxwell Cozzi

Customer Support: Full Slate of Support

The meals themselves arrived in plastic trays with written preparation instructions as well as an ingredient list and nutrition facts label. This information is also available on the website, where you can click on the meals that were delivered to you. 

You can reach customer support through email, an online request page, and by phone every day from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. PT. We reached out via phone and received immediate assistance, and also got a same-day answer to an email we sent.

Nutrition: Experts on Staff

Each meal is crafted with nutrition and ingredients in mind to fit within the specified diet. However, there is no mention on the website of how the company determines its nutritional parameters or if it employs a dietitian to assist in menu development. Fresh n’ Lean did tell us, however, that it has two nutritionists on its staff. One is a holistic nutritionist certified by the American Fitness Professionals & Associates, and the other is a Precision Nutrition Level 1-certified nutritionist. In terms of menu creation, Fresh n’ Lean added, “​​We develop our menu by analyzing current global meal trends as well as what is seasonal.”

Each meal comes with a nutrition facts label as well as an ingredient list. The meals that were delivered to us on the Paleo plan were especially high in protein and fat, and lower in carbohydrates. Fresh n’ Lean also takes your indicated food allergies into consideration when sending you your meals for the week.  

The Cooking Process: Simple

The meals were easy to reheat from the instructions provided which included directions for microwaving meals, reheating in an oven, and cooking on the stovetop. If you opt to microwave the meal, you will not need any additional cookware. However, if you use the oven or stovetop, you should have a pot and an oven-safe dish on hand. Microwave reheating was the fastest but resulted in the least palatable and visually appealing dish. Thus, we recommend using the oven or stovetop.

fresh n lean meal with beef, vegetables, and rice in a white container

Verywell Fit / Maxwell Cozzi

Flavor, Freshness, and Quality: Fresh, but Lacking Variety

All of our meals arrived vacuum-sealed in their trays and nothing was spoiled. In regards to menu diversity, we found the meals on the Paleo plan to be similar to each other—they were primarily a serving of animal protein served over vegetables.

Fresh n’ Lean Is Good For

Fresh n’ Lean is good for people who prioritize following a specific diet above all and are not concerned with the specific meal itself as they will not be able to pick and choose. It’s also a good option for anyone looking for quick meals at an affordable price that only need to be reheated.

Fresh n’ Lean takes your indicated food allergies into consideration when sending you your meals for the week.

The Competition: Fresh n’ Lean vs. Seattle Sutton’s Healthy Eating

Fresh n’ Lean and Seattle Sutton’s Healthy Eating both offer prepared meals with very little option for customization. With Seattle Sutton’s Healthy Eating program, you know exactly what meals will be sent to you. The opposite is true for Fresh n’ Lean. While Fresh n’ Lean is focused on catering to specific diets, Seattle Sutton’s Healthy Eating is geared towards calorie and portion control to support weight loss and weight management.

Finally, Seattle Sutton’s Healthy Eating meals are crafted following recommended guidelines for good health set forth by the American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, National Institutes of Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Fresh n’ Lean does not reference a dietitian or evidence-based resources in crafting its meals.

Final Verdict

If you are serious about following a high-protein, keto, Paleo, vegan, or Whole30 diet but do not want to spend time cooking, then this service may be for you. While you won’t be able to select the meals, you can at least be confident that you will be eating within the diet plan that you follow.

Methodology

We ordered, cooked, and evaluated meals from 27 meal delivery services to get a sense of each one’s offerings, nutrition profiles, prices, and, of course, flavors. We contacted the customer service teams at each of the companies, collected data, and wrote detailed reviews about each one.

Our writers are all registered dietitians and rely on their research and its resulting data to inform their reviews.

Specs

  • Product Name Fresh n’ Lean
  • Lowest Price per Serving $7.93
  • Number of Diets Served 6
  • Number of Recipes 60
  • Delivery Area 50 states
  • Serving Sizes Available 1
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