Conjuring up a different feast each night is challenging enough, but when you’re trying to eat well on a pension, it’s even harder. To make matters worse, as we get older, chores like meal planning and grocery shopping appear increasingly insurmountable and sourcing fresh ingredients can be time-consuming, costly and exhausting.
As we age and our metabolism slows down, we need fewer calories but more nutrition. Older bodies are more susceptible to food deficiencies and need a careful balance of essential amino acids, fatty acids, micronutrients, and protein.
Senior meal delivery services are a great way of ensuring you get a properly balanced diet that will give you the energy to enjoy your later years. Just think – no more meal planning or grocery shopping, just delicious, nutritious food that will ensure you carry on living a healthy life for many more years.
How the Best Senior Meal Delivery Service Can Change Your Life
Some of the issues that present themselves as we head into our golden years include the inability to get around as easily as we once did. As a result, many of us fall into the trap of buying prepackaged, processed foods that fail to give us the nutrition we need and are often packed with sugar and preservatives. Most of the meals available with a senior meal delivery service are simple and quick to make and provide a much healthier alternative to many of the products available in the supermarket.
Although no longer working, many more senior individuals find their lives full, caring for others. Those of us who have a spouse or dear friend who’s not aging as easily as ourselves often dedicate vast swathes of our time to making sure they are both comfortable and cared for. As a result, we often don’t have the time nor inclination to start cooking up a storm.
When we retire, we often have to deal with a reduced income as a consequence, which can make eating healthy, well-balanced meals all the more challenging. As we mentioned above, the best senior meal delivery services are extremely cost-effective, regularly undercutting even the most budget grocery stores. Not only are the best meal delivery services often cheaper than buying your own ingredients, but they also ensure those ingredients are both high quality and purchased from sustainable sources.
As our bodies age, so they change in terms of how they process different foods, metabolism, muscle mass and so on. This means that the nutritional requirements we have later in life are different from those we experienced previously, which can make judging quantities and portion size more difficult. A good meal delivery service for senior citizens can help as it works out portion sizes for you and only sends enough ingredients for a perfectly portioned meal.
A meal delivery service for seniors can help a lot of older people access meals they’ll enjoy at a price they can afford. Additionally, having those ingredients in the fridge and the colorful recipe cards in front of you can be inspiring and, once the baking bug has bitten, who knows what else you might start creating?
The Best Senior Meal Delivery Service
#1 Home Chef
If you’re really over traipsing around grocery stores trying to find fresh produce but still enjoy pottering in the kitchen, Home Chef’s meal prep delivery service is perfect for you. Rather than having meal plans, Home Chef lets you pick and choose your dishes from their weekly menu. Each week, Home Chef offers a range of over 20 meals, including vegetarian options, seafood, chicken and red meat. To find out more about a dish’s nutritional value, simply click on the item and all will be revealed.
Home Chef gives detailed information about every meal available so you can avoid specific foodstuffs while making sure you’re getting enough calories and protein each day to keep you going. You can also check to see how long each meal takes to prepare, how complex the preparation process is and how spicy you can expect the finished product to be.
With fresh ingredients delivered to your door every week, Home Chef eliminates the need for costly trips to the grocery store and saves you buying a whole jar of Worcester Sauce when just a teaspoon will do. In this way, senior meal delivery services can save you money and especially Home Chef which is one of the more affordable meal prep services around.
Subscribing to Home Chef’s meal delivery service is very simple and you can sign up in a matter of minutes (and while still in your pajamas if you like). After that, all you have to is choose your favorite recipes and select a delivery date. Your recyclable box of delights will arrive on your doorstep full of fresh ingredients packaged according to the recipe and ready to pop into your fridge until later. Colorful recipe cards make preparing your meals straightforward and enjoyable.
As well as being easy on the pocket, Home Chef gives you the opportunity to sample flavors from all over the world, taking you on a culinary journey while fulfilling all your nutritional needs. The balance of healthy ingredients, ease of use and interesting taste sensations make Home Chef our number one choice for the best senior meal delivery service.
For more information on Home Chef, read our extensive Home Chef review.
#2 Hello Fresh
Hello Fresh works slightly differently to Home Chef and its meal plans are appealing in their simplicity. Opt for the classic plan and enjoy a wide variety of seafood, meat and plant-based dishes; alternatively, you could cut out the meat and seafood and enjoy their vegetarian plan. Evidence suggests that a vegetarian diet can be beneficial for us, helping to combat many of the diseases and conditions that plague older individuals. Taking the vegetarian route could reduce the risk of conditions such as diabetes, heart disease as well as diminishing your stroke risk.
If you opt for Hello Fresh’s classic meal delivery service for seniors, you can choose to receive between two and four meals a week, whereas the vegetarian option is a little more limited at three meals per week. This means you can either try out other recipes in between (Hello Fresh has a recipe archive you browse through for inspiration) or treat a friend to a meal out. You don’t have to feel obliged to receive four meals every week either and can change or cancel deliveries as necessary.
Like Home Chef’s senior meal delivery service, with Hello Fresh you have to order a minimum of two servings. Although this can be inconvenient for those living alone, if you don’t mind eating the same meal twice in a matter of a few days, it could mean you select three meals per week but actually receive enough ingredients for six.
When you sign up for Hello Fresh’s senior citizen meal delivery service, you will be invited to complete a personal taste profile that will give the company insight into your food preferences and restrictions. Every week, the meals on offer will be matched to that profile so you don’t have to waste time checking to see if they’re gluten-free or low in carbohydrates.
Hello Fresh is a little more expensive than Home Chef and a little less flexible but, on the plus side, if you feel like pushing the boat out, you can include a bottle of wine or two in your order and get the benefit of Hello Fresh’s expert wine pairings and suggestions.
For more information on Hello Fresh read our extensive Hello Fresh review.
#3 Blue Apron
If neither Home Chef nor Hello Fresh is quite what the doctor ordered, then you can always opt for the Blue Apron homestyle direct senior meal delivery service instead. As with the other two services, Blue Apron requires a minimum order of two servings per person so, if you do live alone, sharing with a friend or neighbor could be a great way of saving money and sharing the joys of cooking.
Blue Apron has recently introduced a Freestyle plan in partnership with Weight watchers so, if you want to keep an eye on your weight, this could be an ideal option for you. On both the WW Freestyle plan and the two-persons’ plan, you can order either two or three plans per week. If you are in a position to make use of their four-person plan, you can get as many as four meals per week.
Many people believe that living on a pension in today’s society, they won’t be able to afford the best senior meal delivery service but that isn’t true. Research indicates that the average American spends between $125 and $180 per week on groceries. A Blue Apron plan will set you back just under $60 per week for three meals so it could well end up saving you money.
One of the limitations of the Blue Apron senior citizen meal delivery service is that it restricts you to three meals per week, as does Hello Fresh. If you want a service that can do more than that, then Home Chef is your best option. Having said that Blue Apron has calorie-conscious meals available for those battling with that dreaded weight gain and also gives you some pretty unusual ingredients to sample along the way.
Although not quite in a position to knock Home Chef off its number-one perch, Blue Apron is nonetheless a good service that’s easy to use and that will also ensure you enjoy a range of different dishes and proper nutrition throughout the week.
For more information on Blue Apron read our full Blue Apron review.
When Even the Best Senior Meal Delivery Service Isn’t Enough
For some us, even 15 minutes standing in the kitchen, chopping vegetables is around 10 minutes too long and, in those situations, even the best senior meal delivery service isn’t going to make life easier. All the meal kit delivery services we’ve looked at provide the fresh ingredients for you to prepare in the comfort of your own home. If cooking is either too physically challenging for you or you just hate spending time in the kitchen, then an alternative service that offers the best home delivery meals for seniors might be in order.
Offering a service similar to those discussed above Freshly will deliver specially packaged, fresh meals to your home so all you have to do is heat and eat. This a great option for those who don’t have the strength to stand in the kitchen preparing vegetables or are nervous about using a stove due to physical instability or other age-related problems. As with the best meal kit delivery services, Freshly prides itself on sourcing fresh, good quality, sustainable ingredients from which their professional chefs create a diverse collection of over 30 dishes per week.
Freshly is a good alternative for those who can’t stand the heat or no longer have the capacity to prepare their own meals. By taking advantage of the best home delivery meals for seniors, you could hold onto your independence for a little longer while maintaining a healthy diet that gives you the energy to enjoy your retirement.
Do I Qualify for a Free Senior Meal Delivery Service?
If you haven’t heard of Meals on Wheels, then you must have been living under a rock somewhere. This free service was started by the Women’s Volunteer Service for Civil Defence in the UK back in 1943 when the Biltz had left many people homeless and unable to cook for themselves. Since then, Meals on Wheels has expanded dramatically and, in 2016, Meals on Wheels Association of America (MOWAA) delivered over 200 million meals around the country.
People who can no longer shop or prepare their meals are eligible for MOWAA, who also deliver group meals to retirement villages and other senior centers. Recipients are asked to donate what they can afford towards the cost of the meals but no one is denied a meal because they haven’t coughed up enough cash.
To find out if you qualify for MOWAA support, contact your local program to get more information about the application process. If Meals on Wheels can’t provide the answer you were looking for, there are a couple of alternatives you could try, such as Project Angel Heart which is specifically aimed at those with life-threatening diseases.
While free meal delivery services for seniors will keep you healthy, they won’t necessarily give you the range of choice nor the daily taste sensations offered by Home Chef or one of our other recommended meal prep services. So, if you still have an appetite for good food and the wherewithal to afford it, why not make the most of one of the best senior meal delivery services discussed here and keep your palate alive with a host of new flavors and culinary influences from all over the world?
When the whole process of meal planning, shopping and preparation becomes overwhelming, a meal delivery service for seniors can ensure you still get both pleasure and nutrition from your daily diet. Cost-effective and easy to use, the best senior meal delivery services can provide you with a different flavor every night of the week, while ensuring you receive a healthy balance of vegetables and protein.
As we age, our bodies change and require different proportions, different nutrition and, in many cases, fewer calories. Adjusting to these changes can be difficult but, if we don’t, we make ourselves more vulnerable to conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and various cancers. Furthermore, one of the biggest challenges facing older people is malnutrition. You may think you’re eating enough but often it’s a lack of variety causing the problem rather than the reduced quantity.
By getting a senior meal delivery service to send boxes full of delicious ingredients and easy-to-follow recipe card to your door each week, you can make sure you get a varied diet that keeps your palate stimulated, boosts your appetite, and ensures you get all the nutrition you need without piling on the weight.
Affordable and convenient, the best senior meal delivery services are waiting to change your life for the better and give you a chance to revive both your love of cooking and your appetite for life.