Category

Food Delivery

Your Local Market Shifts Shape: Grocery Shopping Adapts to New Realities

Meal kit delivery services are blowing home cooking out of the water. Looking to compete, the number of prepared foods at Whole Foods and prepared foods at Costco has steadily ticked up. Supermarkets are losing customers as more and more avoid the long lines in favor of foods they don’t have to shop for or cook. Call the trend lazy, but after a long day at work, picking up the kids from soccer practice, and responding to those eternal emails, it seems that no one wants to spend time over a stove, hot or otherwise. While home cooking is your best bet for a healthy and affordable dinner, grocery stores and outlets that sell groceries are creating pre-made meals that are are focused on local produce, fresh proteins, and nutritious ingredients.

Time Savers

Meal kit companies like Blue Apron and Chef’s Menu have quickly developed a cooking replacement industry of easy, delivered-to-your-door ingredients that are perfectly portioned and ready to cook. These meal kits make cooking a breeze and with pre-portioned ingredients, yit’s easier to avoid food waste. Although the price is higher per serving than shopping for ingredients yourself, people are willing to shell out a little extra cash for the convenience factor. Supermarket chains like Whole Foods, as well as big box stores like Costco jumping on the meal kit bandwagon in an attempt to keep customers. (For more about meal kits and meal delivery srvices, look here for our recommendations.)

Kroger Co. is jumping right into the industry with their own meal kit, Prep + Pared, which you can find at four stores across the country (more are anticipated to start carrying the product soon). Dishes include Moroccan Inspired Spring Vegetables, Creamy Chicken + Bacon Alfredo, Japanese Inspired Beef Bowl, and Chimichurri Steak and clock in at around $14 (serves two). The meals take about 20 minutes to prepare with no chopping required.

Prepared Foods at Whole Foods

While Whole Foods doesn’t sell their own branded meal kits (yet), you can find Purple Carrot, a plant-based meal kit service, selling their pre-packaged dinners at Whole Foods stores around the country. Meal offerings include Mongolian Seitan Stir Fry, Pan-Seared Tofu and Black Rice Noodles, and Cashew Korma with Cauliflower Rice, to name a few.

Prepared Foods Sell. A lot.

Started in 2012, the meal kit market is seeing a huge spike in sales. Since its inception, the industry has generated about $1.5 billion in U.S. sales in 2016, according to Packaged Facts, and is expected to double to $3 billion in the next few years. Grocery store revenue, on the other hand, is in decline, so these markets are doing all they can to stay relevant. Only 49% of customers see a supermarket as the primary outlet for groceries and the average number of weekly trips to a grocery store is declining. These companies hope that meal kits will help bolster sales, and maybe even help families eat easily and healthily for affordable prices.

Food Apps that Deliver are the Future of Food Delivery

food apps that deliver, pizza delivery near me

The golden arches of McDonald’s used to represent the epitome of cheap, fast, convenient food. But while the drive-thru model in many ways revolutionized how we consume, more change in “fast food” is afoot. As the tech world and food world increasingly overlap, there’s an exploding number of food apps that deliver deliciousness right to your door.

According to The Toast, 74% of millennials report a preference for food delivery, and the market’s potential is estimated at around $210 billion. Naturally, the most demand is for pizza that delivers “near me.” Unsurprisingly, pizza currently accounts for about 60% of the food delivery market. But we’re quickly moving beyond the days of the classic pizza boy. Pizza delivery is increasingly high-tech, too, while the number of services that facilitate food delivery continues to grow.

Take Zume, a California-based pizza delivery company. Behind the scenes, it’s not just humans making each pie. Instead, the company has robots that measure and spread the pizza sauce, and put the pie into the oven. (Humans do all steps in between.) According to the company, this decreases the amount of time it takes for each order, making things even faster and more convenient.

Food Apps that Deliver are on the Rise

Domino’s pizza tracker, available online and as an app, was one of the earliest disruptions in the world of food delivery. Not only can customers easily pick their toppings without having to actually call a restaurant, but they can see step-by-step when the food is prepared and “shipped.” Now, numerous apps also let customers quickly order food to be dropped at their doors—and not just for pizza. GrubHub, Door Dash, Just Deliveries, Uber Eats, Amazon Prime Now, Delivery Hero, and Food Panda are just a few players in the growing food delivery market and many also offer the same easy ordering and tracking features that Domino’s mainstreamed.

GrubHub, for instance, is a food delivery aggregator, meaning it simply acts as a middleman in the meal process. It puts restaurant menus and reviews in one place and lets users order their meals through the GrubHub app. Then, GrubHub routes the order to the chosen restaurant and that restaurant both fulfills and delivers the food. A company like Just Deliveries, on the other hand, facilitates delivery for restaurants—many higher-end—that don’t offer the service. They don’t just take the order, but actually have their own logistics networks for delivery.

There’s More to it than just Prepared Meals

When it comes to food apps that deliver, though, it’s not just about prepared meals. Blue Apron, which went public in June, 2017, is perhaps the best testament to a broadening concept of food delivery. Blue Apron delivers meal ingredients and recipes on a subscription basis—a more niche version of the growing grocery delivery markets (led by Amazon and Instacart).

Altogether, fast food arguably isn’t fast enough anymore, as it still means shoppers have to go somewhere. The younger generation especially is drawn towards food delivered to wherever they are, and technology is increasingly making such a level of speed and convenience possible. Whether it’s groceries, a pizza, or your favorite restaurant’s best meal, there’s a good chance it can easily be dropped on your doorstep.

No Time to Make A Healthy, Scrumptious Dinner? Check Out Our Favorite Meal In-a-Box Delivery Services

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Consumer Packaged Goods are Now Meal Delivery Services in All Shapes and Sizes

Since 2010, countless meal delivery services have popped up all over the country. From pre-prepped smoothies and soups to gourmet breakfast and heat and eat dinners, consumer demand for quick, nourishing meals has taken off. We take a peek at a few favorites, companies with an eye on flavor, ease of preparation, and environmental friendliness, whose packaged goods arrive on the doorstep and make meal prep as speedy and painless as opening one of the portion-sized boxes. Meal delivery services, which serve up some of the best consumer packaged products on the market today, continue to expand and, since convenience is key – we all want to eat foods that are good for you but our lifestyles increasingly call for us to do so with increased time efficiency, it seems – our list captures a few of the best consumer packaged goods products we like to call special.

Chef’d

Chef’d partners with famous chefs and national brands to create name-recognizable recipes that you can recreate at home. From Atkins and Weight Watchers to The New York Times Cooking and Spoon University, select recipes from meal plans are built to meet your lifestyle and wellness goals. Choose your recipes and Chef’d will send you all the needed ingredients, perfectly portioned, to cook and serve yourself or your family a delicious home-cooked meal.  A few basic cooking skills, some proper cook’s tools and salt and pepper are all you need to put restaurant-quality meals on the table in a jiffy.

But dinner is not the only meal solution. Chef’d breakfast offerings are extensive and they recently partnered with Quaker Oats to launch a breakfast meal kit featuring Quaker’s Overnight Oats. Assemble at night in a Mason jar with the included oats, Greek yogurt, honey and blueberries and a nourishing breakfast is ready for you before your morning coffee.

Munchery

At work since 2010 and in the news earlier this year for lay-offs at their San Francisco production facility, Munchery’s meal plans require no cooking skills at all. With ingredients pre-cooked and ready to be reheated, simply pop the prepared dish into the oven or microwave. Dishes like Cauliflower Shawarma and Chicken Teriyaki take little more effort than turning on the oven. They offer more than a meal here, from entrée and salad to dessert, drinks and chips (mmmm…chicharrones). If you can pour salad dressing onto greens, you’ve got this.  Mom would be proud.

Blue Apron

It is not every food company that supports regenerative agriculture (a sustainable farming system that removes carbon from the air and puts it back into the soil to nourish plants) or building menus around a crop rotation schedule. But Blue Apron is on a mission to replenish the land and grow higher quality ingredients, all while making your cooking more seasonal, efficient and less wasteful. Humanely raised beef for Beef Tacos with Radish Salsa comes pre-sliced as do the sweet potato wedges. Just toss with olive oil and pop ‘em into the oven for a fresh take on fries.

Daily Harvest

With a laser focus on whole-food smoothies and soups, Daily Harvest is aiming at the perpetual motion of traveling eaters who power up with superfoods like chia and cacao. Arriving in their own pre-portioned cups, just add liquid to the ready-to-blend smoothies and ready-to-heat soup ingredients. Pop into your freezer to prepare later or turn on your blender and toss in a cupful of smoothie goodness. (The Cacao and Avocado Smoothie is boosted with pea protein and is delicious.) For soup, pop a Mushroom Miso Restore Soup into the microwave for a minute or two. The convenience cannot be beat and there are no leftovers to worry about. Some extra space in the freezer is all you need for super-convenient powerfood nutrition.

Green Chef

Certified organic by CCOF (California Certified Organic Farmers), Green Chef goes to the next level of food packaging, using the plant-based fiber, jute (no Styrofoam here) insulation and offers a detailed explanation for how to recycle the ice packs included with each delivery. Their commitment to cleaner eating and shipping does not mean they slouch on flavor. Dishes like Saag Halloumi with Curried Spinach and Dijon Maple Chicken with Herb Roasted Parsnip Fries and Snap Pea Cabbage Slaw overlay a world of flavor. A nutrition facts label is included with each recipe, too.