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How to choose the best ready meal delivery service

Added 224 days ago. 09 April 2019

What should you consider when choosing a ready meal delivery service?

Read our guide to help you make sense of the options.

We all know that eating well means living well and mealtimes should be about joy. Tucking into a delicious meal can be the best part of the day.

But sometimes cooking from scratch can feel too stressful and complicated. There are times when you just want to take the hassle out of it, and that’s where ready meal delivery services come in.

They provide pre-prepared food delivered to your door, perfect for days when you don’t feel like cooking. In this article we show you what to look for in the best ready meal delivery services.

Hot, fresh or frozen

There are a range of services offering ready meal home delivery, and the main difference is whether the food is hot, fresh or frozen.
  • Hot: Hot food services like Meals on Wheels deliver a single meal of hot food around mealtimes. This food doesn’t need cooking as it’s ready to eat, but you only get one meal delivered at a time.
  • Fresh: Other services, including supermarkets, will deliver fresh, chilled ready meals that can be stored in the fridge until you’re ready to reheat them.
  • Frozen: Specialist services like Wiltshire Farm Foods will deliver frozen ready meals to go in the freezer. The main benefit is that frozen food can be stored for months, giving you the flexibility to eat as you please. 

Selecting the Best Ready Meals: Menu Choices

A factor to look for in ready meal delivery services is the menu choice. There should be plenty of different dishes so there’s always something to tempt you, otherwise it won’t be enjoyable. Nobody wants to be stuck eating the same thing over and over again. 

Our chefs Phil and Liam are always rustling up the best ready meals, full of flavour and inspired by a range of exotic cuisines. Here is a selection of our  most popular ready meals: 
  1. Free From Sweet and Sour Chicken - A staple dish in Chinese Cuisine, this free from sweet and sour chicken dish is bursting with Oriental flavours. Chicken in a sweet and sour sauce made with pineapple and peppers. Served with a side of rice and vegetables.

  2. Roast Beef & Yorkshire Pudding - A popular choice on our menu – tuck into tender slices of succulent beef and a classic Yorkshire pudding, accompanied with golden roast potatoes, sprouts, carrots and a mouth-watering gravy.

  3. Roast Lamb in Mint Gravy - Who says a roast is just for Sunday’s. This roasted lamb in mint gravy is a firm favourite among our customers. This pre-prepared ready meal is served with roast potatoes, mashed carrot, swede and green beans. It’s also available in our mini meal range for those with smaller appetites.  

  4. Salmon Fillet in Mint Butter Sauce - Rated ‘Chef’s Favourite’ by our cooks, Phil and Liam – this salmon fillet in mint butter sauce is sure to please. A succulent salmon fillet, served with an array of colourful vegetables, potatoes and pea puree.

  5. Cauliflower Cheese and Broccoli Bake - Enjoy a portion of your 5 a day with our Cauliflower Cheese and Broccoli Bake. Part of our vegetarian ready meals range, this dish contains baked florets of broccoli and cauliflower in a flavoursome cheese sauce. Served with parsley boiled potatoes. Suitable for low sugar and gluten free diets and is also available in our extra tender range - ideal for soft diets. 

Convenient delivery

Always check that any ready meal service you consider has a convenient way of delivering the food to your door. Whether they offer a choice of delivery days or time slots, make sure the food will arrive at a time that suits you.

For larger national services, look out for local delivery depots that have staff who know the area. Plus, a helpful and friendly driver should offer to help you put the food away for you and answer any questions you have.
 

Nutrition

The nutritional quality of the food and ingredients is really important. It’s worth checking the labels of a few of the meals to make sure that there are plenty of options to meet your specific dietary requirements.

Some supermarket ready meals are infamous for being very high in added sugars and fat. Checking the nutritional content will help make sure that the ingredients are good quality and there aren’t unnecessary additives lurking inside.

Provenance

It’s also important to know where your food comes from. Check different providers to see where they source their food, and if they are transparent about its origins. Ideally, services should use local suppliers and ingredients to ensure great quality and taste.

Cost

The cost of the ready meals can be used as an overall quality indicator. Generally speaking, very cheap ready meals will use cheap cuts of meat and lower quality ingredients to keep costs down. It doesn’t follow that expensive is always better, but it’s worth using your judgement, especially with meat products.

Also look out for add-on costs such as delivery charges and minimum order spends – these should always be clear upfront and not added to your bill at the end.

With all these pointers, you should be able to compare the different ready meal delivery services to find the one that’s right for you.

Find out more about our service with these helpful guides:

How to choose the best ready meals for you
How to cook our frozen ready meals

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