A diet plan created by doctors and dieticians, most likely, is not going to seem the most delicious. But throw in some expert chefs, and you get dishes that are so flavorful you won’t believe the menu is also medically controlled. This is what Epicured meal delivery service does!
Epicured is certainly worth a shot if you’re on a low-FODMAP diet or if you’ve been dealing with health conditions such as celiac, Crohn’s, and IBS. But does this justify the higher cost of the meals?
There are plenty of Epicured alternatives out there that fit into various kinds of diets like keto, paleo, gluten-free, vegan, etc. And these healthy meal delivery services, simultaneously, are also less expensive than Epicured, even for family-friendly meals.
What Is Epicured and How Does It Work?
Even though it is a subscription-based meal service, Epicured is not like your typical food delivery. First of all, Epicured meals are low FODMAP and gluten-free. Secondly, everything works on an a la carte basis. There is the option for recurring deliveries, but meals will not vary until you choose that option.
To sign up on Epicured, you only have to enter basic personal details, your delivery location, and your payment information. They don’t ask you anything about your dietary preferences and/or restrictions; thus, there are no recommended or pre-selected meals.
There are meals and snacks on Epicured, which you pick individually. This can be a little disappointing if you’re looking to order family-sized meals. On the other hand, it’s great news for singles, and maybe even couples, who want to order as little as possible.
But a major drawback is the lack of meal customization. You get to choose your protein, but other than that, nothing else can be changed or adjusted.
Another notable setback is the higher cost of the meals. The more expensive price tag, however, is for the higher quality of food and ingredients. Nevertheless, it’s not the best for budget-friendly customers.
Epicured delivers premade meals, so only microwave heating is required of them. Just 15 minutes in your microwave and your meal will be ready!
In my opinion, Epicured is the most suitable for anyone who desires to benefit from both tasty and nourishing meals. These meals are also diabetes-friendly and good for weight loss. The menu is definitely a special one (it’s dairy-free and gluten-free!), even for vegans and vegetarians.
Epicured Cost – What Is the Pricing Strategy?
Comparatively speaking, Epicured is on the higher end of the cost spectrum. The per-serving price is relatively more expensive. So, it’s up to you to decide whether or not you can afford to pay for this meal delivery service. Regardless, here’s the Epicured cost breakdown:
- Entrees: Between $9.99 and $18.99 per serving
- Breakfasts: Between $8.25 and $14.45 per serving
- Beverages: Between $5.35 and $19.99 per serving
- Bowls and Salads: Between $11.35 and $17.55 per serving
- Soups: Between $4.99 and $11.35 per serving
- Sides: Between $3.99 and $17.99 per serving
- Snacks and Desserts: Between $5.99 and $11.42 per serving
The shipping charges are also on the exuberant side of things – between $40 and $45 per order.
Epicured Pros and Cons
- Gluten-free, low-FODMAP meals on Epicured.
- Vast menu variety with useful menu filters.
- Many diet-specific meal options that don’t taste boring.
- Best for people with allergies and digestive problems.
- The team includes dieticians, doctors, and chefs.
- It’s an expensive meal delivery service.
- Doesn’t have a weekly rotating menu.
- There’s no meal customization.
Choosing Epicured Meals – What Are the Menu Options?
It’s an a la carte experience at Epicured – 35–40 entrees (all are prepared meals and are, therefore, heat-and-eat meals), 12–15 salads and bowls, 10–12 soups, and over 25 options for grains, vegetables, and protein sides, add to that beverages, smoothies, snacks, and breakfasts as well.
The one thing you might find the most appealing is that ALL meals are gluten-free and low FODMAP. The recipes go through testing and retesting, and each ingredient is carefully measured.
It’s not a weekly rotating menu, but new, seasonal dishes are added every month so you don’t get bored.
Epicured menu filters:
- Gerd Friendly – These meals contain no tomato or citrus. Basically, foods high in acid are not a part of Gerd Friendly options.
- Low Fat – Restricting fat in your diet is associated with long-term IBS management. So, if you have IBS that gets triggered very easily, Epicured’s low-fat meals are perfect for you. These consist of fewer than 15 grams of fat per serving of meal.
- Low Saturated Fat – The body requires healthy fats to produce energy. That’s why it’s highly recommended to incorporate healthier unsaturated fats and reduce the amount of saturated fats you consume in a day. This lowers bad cholesterol and also helps with weight loss. So, how about meals that contain no more than only 5 grams of saturated fat per serving?
- Low Sodium – The daily intake here should be under 2,300 milligrams per day. But certain medical conditions leave you with no other choice than to consume even less sodium. With that in mind, it’s a relief to know that Epicured has made it a point to include low-sodium meals too (<500 milligrams of sodium per serving).
- Low Carbohydrates – This contains only fewer than 50 grams of carbs per meal! This is just what you may want to hear if you’ve been struggling with shedding belly fat.
- Low Added Sugar – Whichever Epicured meal or snack you select using this filter will have under 5 grams of added sugar.
In addition, you can choose the protein you prefer – poultry, seafood, meat, or tofu.
Then there are Epicured’s meal bundles, which include freezer-friendly meals, comfort meals plus snacks, and multi-day bundles of breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks.
Epicured Alternative #1 – ModifyHealth
ModifyHealth is one of the newest gluten-free meal delivery services on the market. And it’s quickly rising to the top of the food chain for its high-quality, organic, and healthy meals. It caters to a specific niche which is for people prioritizing a Low-FODMAP diet or a strict Mediterranean diet.
ModifyHealth’s meal selection process is customizable as you can choose which ingredients you want to exclude from your meal plan. To get started, you have to select at least 6 meals per order, and they offer breakfast and entrée meals.
There are flexible subscription options where you can choose to buy just meals or subscribe to their premium Quickstart Programs that give you access to exclusive benefits. Including features like dietician consultations, downloaded resources, cooking videos, and discounted rates per meal.
Choose your meals and place an order in just a few minutes. The meals are packed in vacuum-sealed BPA-free containers. A large cardboard box with insulation and ice packs keeps the meals fresh during transit. On the plus side, the containers, plastic seals, ice packs, trays, etc. are all recyclable.
How Much Does ModifyHealth Cost?
The Low-FODMAP diet consists of a basic meal plan with meals starting from $9.95 per breakfast and $12.95 per entrée. You have to add a minimum of 6 meals to your order. This is a great option for first timers who want to get a taste of Modify Health’s meals.
But if you want to fully commit to their meal service, the Low-FODMAP FIT Quickstart Program is for you. It is a 6-week meal program with benefits like dietician coaching, diet tools and resources, and 50% off on meals that you add to your order. The price starts from $399 for 6 weeks.
Similarly, the Mediterranean diet features two meal plan options for you to choose from. The difference here is that there are no breakfasts in this diet plan. The entrees start from $12.95 per serving.
The Mediterranean FIT Quickstart Program costs the same for a 6-week program starting from $399. All the exclusive benefits mentioned above apply to this diet plan as well.
You’d be relieved to know that shipping is free within the continental United States. And Modify Health offers a money-back guarantee if you are unsatisfied with your meals.
- Ready-to-eat meals that take minutes to heat.
- Certified Low-FODMAP and Mediterranean diet plans.
- Organic and gluten-free ingredients.
- Allergy- and gut-friendly meals.
- Home-inspired and delicious meals.
- Offers diet coaching, nutrition tips, and meal discounts.
- Larger portion sizes per serving.
- Delivery is free.
- The price per serving can be expensive.
- Limited delivery areas.
- Not ideal for families and children.
How Is the ModifyHealth Menu?
The variety of meal plans available on ModifyHealth’s menu is gut-friendly, nutrient-dense, and immune-boosting. They offer plans for people strictly looking for a diet-conscious eating lifestyle focusing on organic and gluten-free ingredients.
All the ingredients they use are organic, gluten-free, non-GMO, and low in sodium.
Their menu caters to two clean-eating diets that boost health and immunity by completely eliminating the consumption of processed foods, unhealthy carbs, excess sodium, and trans fats. You can select either their Low-FODMAP diet plan or the Mediterranean diet plan.
A Low-FODMAP diet significantly reduces the consumption of the type of carbohydrates, which triggers symptoms in individuals who have functional gut disorders like Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). People with other gut-related diseases like Crohn’s Disease and Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth can also subscribe to this plan.
A Mediterranean diet is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. It is a low-carb diet that is linked to reducing inflammation in the body. It reduces blood sugar levels and the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and can promote weight loss.
Additionally, before selecting your meals, Modify Health allows you to exclude ingredients from your meal plan. You can choose to exclude animal protein, seafood, bell peppers, dairy, soy, eggs, shellfish, and tofu.
Epicured Alternative #2 – Green Chef
For someone looking for a bit more flexibility in the cooking process, Green Chef offers easy-to-follow and delicious meal kits for 2 or 4 people. The value that Green Chef provides is excellent because it caters to a variety of dietary needs like keto, high protein, vegan, low calorie, Mediterranean, and gluten-free.
Home cooking is made simpler and faster with Green Chef. Unlike Epicured or even Modify Health where you have to pick a restrictive diet plan, Green Chef is more varied, allowing you to choose from different diets. You can order a mix of keto, paleo, high-protein, vegetarian, low-calorie, and gluten-free meals in a single order.
Select a meal kit recipe, and Green Chef delivers all the ingredients required to cook that recipe quickly and effectively at home. There’s no need to do grocery shopping apart from buying staple pantry items like salt, cooking oil, pepper, etc.
Their menu consists of 30+ different meal kit recipes including add-ons like a la carte proteins, desserts, snacks, and small bites. Add as many meals and food items as you want, and Green Chef delivers them to you fresh with instructive recipe cards in every box.
All the meal kits arrive safely in a large cardboard box. Ice packs and insulation take up room alongside the actual meal kit packages to keep the ingredients cool for longer. So, even if you cannot take in the order immediately from your doorstep, the ingredients won’t go bad.
How Much Does Green Chef Cost?
Just like the meal selection process, the pricing structure of Green Chef is straightforward. You start by choosing your ideal meal preferences, such as Protein Packed, Keto, Vegetarian, Vegan, Mediterranean, Fast & Fit, and Gluten-Free.
The box sizes vary depending on the number of servings and meals per week you want to order. Green Chef allows meal kits tailored to singles, couples, and families.
Here are your meal options:
|2 servings each||4 servings each||6 servings each|
|2 meals per week||–||$12.99 per serving||–|
|3 meals per week||$13.49 per serving||$12.49 per serving||$11.99 per serving|
|4 meals per week||$12.99 per serving||$11.99 per serving||$11.99 per serving|
All shipping and delivery costs amount to $8.99 per order. The total cost of shipping will be included in the price of your box during checkout.
- A balanced and flavorful menu.
- Preportioned meal kits with easy cooking instructions.
- Organic and gluten-free meals.
- Basic cooking skill is required.
- Supportive, durable, and eco-friendly packaging.
- Satisfying portion size with no leftovers.
- You can add extra portions of protein.
- No room for meal customization.
- Not ideal for anyone on a restrictive diet plan.
How Is the Green Chef Menu?
People who don’t want to compromise on the nutritional value of their food despite being short on time will find Green Chef’s menu varied and diet-friendly. It’s also favorable for those who want to try a variety of flavors and combinations made with high-quality, fresh ingredients.
Green Chef supports an organic and gluten-free diet, but not all their meals use 100% organic ingredients, and there are a few gluten-free meal options on their menu. Overall, Green Chef’s meals have a positive impact on eating habits. However, if you’re looking for a diet-restrictive meal plan, Green Chef may not be for you.
Speaking of diets, Green Chef’s menu supports several diet plans for people who crave a blend of high-protein, keto, paleo, low-calorie, Mediterranean, and plant-based foods. It is tailored to satisfy all food cravings, especially for larger households where every individual’s tastes are unique.
Nutritional information, ingredient list, and cooking instructions are mentioned for each meal kit recipe. You can also choose different meals depending on their cooking time, starting from 20 to 45 minutes.
Special labels like Gut & Brain, Adventurous Eats, DayTime Bundle, etc. replenish the menu choices and keep things fun and interesting!
Epicured Alternative #3 – HelloFresh
There is no doubt that HelloFresh is versatile and the easiest meal kit delivery service on the market. It features over 60 different types of meal kit recipes for singles, couples, and families. What HelloFresh offers are different pairings of recipes that are higher in variety than dietary preferences.
Their menu does feature plenty of interesting cuisines including American, Italian, Asian, Mediterranean, Mexican, Korean, Indian, and a few more. Alongside this, they also offer a few dietary options like vegan, high protein, low calorie, Mediterranean, low carb, and veggie.
But if you intend to subscribe to a meal kit delivery service that delivers fresh and high-quality pre-prepped ingredients to your home, HelloFresh is a convenient choice. It makes cooking meals faster and less complicated.
HelloFresh lets you cook the most delicious meals at home as quickly and efficiently as possible. It’s a stellar choice for eliminating the chore of meal planning and grocery shopping. If you don’t have the time to prepare elaborate and nutritional meals, HelloFresh may help.
The meal kits are packed in recyclable seal bags and containers. Meat and fish are stored in vacuum-sealed bags in cooler boxes to maintain the optimal temperature.
Whole produce is sorted according to the recipe and has proper labels on them to save time during unpacking. Anything else that is a pantry ingredient like grains, spices, beans, etc. is color-coded and packed in sealed bags.
How Much Does HelloFresh Cost?
Depending on how many meal kits you want per order, HelloFresh offers a flexible pricing plan. All their meals cost the same, but there are a few Premium picks that may be a bit higher.
- Premeasured ingredients in every meal kit.
- The recipes are super easy to follow.
- Amazing variety of meals for picky eaters.
- Meets dietary needs like low calorie, low carb, gluten-free, vegan, etc.
- Convenient meal kits for families or larger households.
- You can view the menus for 5 upcoming weeks.
- Dedicated cookbook packed with delicious recipes.
- Cooking time is less compared to other services.
- Plenty of vegan and vegetarian options.
- No meal customization.
- Does not support a restrictive diet.
- Not allergy-friendly.
- Meals cost more per serving for one or two people.
How Is the HelloFresh Menu?
One of the most helpful and interesting things on the HelloFresh menu is that their recipes are labeled in an instructive manner. You can tell right away which recipe is a one-pan recipe, which is vegan, which is easy to clean up after, which is a premium choice, etc.
When ordering your first box, you can choose your ideal meal preferences even though HelloFresh shows you all the recipes on its menu. You can always go back and alter your preferences. These include Meat & Veggies, Veggie, Family Friendly, Fit & Wholesome, Quick & Easy, and Pescatarian.
HelloFresh is diet-friendly in that some of its meals do support a low-calorie, vegan, veggie, and low-carb diet. But not all of their meal kit recipes are like this. You will find recipes that are specifically designed to save you time and simplify the cooking process.
Additionally, HelloFresh features a Cookbook menu where you get access to hundreds of delicious and nutritious recipes. The recipes are divided by ingredients, dietary preference, meal type, and cuisine. It’s like having your very own cookbook that you can refer to for inspiration.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much in the way of modifying the meal kits by ingredient or diet. You can, however, choose to substitute some ingredients with plant-based options. Each meal kit recipe is equipped with proper allergy information, an ingredients list, and nutritional facts.
Epicured Alternative #4 – Magic Kitchen
For chef-prepared meals that fall into very many different diets and lifestyle habits, Magic Kitchen is the perfect example. Their menu is highly customizable to suit the dietary needs of senior citizens, vegans, vegetarians, and people struggling with diseases of the heart, kidney, etc.
Alternatively, Magic Kitchen is also a fantastic choice if you want a meal delivery service that lasts you for weeks, not days at a time. You can order meals in bulk and store them in the freezer, so you don’t have to worry about your eating routine for a long time.
They even feature a 15-meal trial pack for people to get a taste of what they have to offer. All meals are single-serve and suit different meal programs divided by a la carte plans, menu-complete meals, meal programs, occasions, and dietary interests.
While it’s completely understandable to get lost in the maze of so many different options, the effort is worth it. You can pick different meal types starting from breakfast, entrees, lunch, dinner, to desserts.
The packaging is minimal and easy to unpack and store in the freezer. All the meals are stored using dry ice and Styrofoam packaging. You have to wait for the dry ice to melt completely before taking all the meals out of the box and storing them in the freezer.
How Much Does Magic Kitchen Cost?
The prices of Magic Kitchen are a bit confusing to follow, especially if you don’t know what you want. It varies according to the type of diet program or meal type you select.
The average cost per serving of their complete meals starts from $10 to $15 per serving. Meals with premium ingredients cost more than vegetarian meals.
However, if you select their A La Carte menu, the cost per serving starts from $5 to $28, and you have the option to choose 2 servings per meal. You can also select side dishes from their menu besides full meals.
Meal bundles or meal packages with multiple meal servings in one box cost more per box because you will receive a set number of meals at one time. This is a costlier investment than ordering single meals, especially for someone new who is trying out Magic Kitchen’s meals for the first time. The prices of such meal packages start from $75 to $250 per week.
You can order a box that costs under $100, but for that, you are required to pay an $18.95 shipping fee. For orders above $100, delivery is free. If you order meals for 3, 6, or 9 months at a time, you get free delivery plus some discount on the final bill amount.
- Portion-controlled meals with high-quality ingredients.
- Designed for people on a restrictive diet.
- Good for weight loss, diabetes, low sodium diet, and more.
- Special diet plans for senior citizens, dialysis diets, and blood sugar control.
- You can place customized orders via phone.
- Plenty of dietary preferences to pick from.
- You can save more by ordering in bulk.
- A la carte items for a personalized meal program.
- The shipping fee is too steep.
- Not allergy-friendly.
- Some meal programs come with pre-selected meals.
- Not the best choice for a single person.
- Some of the recipes may be too bland.
How Is the Magic Kitchen Menu?
To accommodate a range of dietary requirements and tastes, Magic Kitchen offers a wide selection of diet plans. They also offer multiple meal serving sizes for singles, couples, and families to enjoy. All meals are pre-prepped, cooked, and flash-frozen without any preservatives or GMOs.
You can select from different special diets, such as the following:
- Low carbohydrate
- Low fat
- Low sodium
- Renal diet
- Senior meals
- Portion controlled
You can also select from different meal types, such as the following:
- A la carte menu
- Meal bundles
- Complete meals
Magic Kitchen is one of the most flexible prepared meal delivery services. The ingredients are prepared in USDA-certified kitchens. The majority of the ingredients used are organic depending on the availability.
It’s a well-thought-out choice for people who don’t have the time to cook diet-restrictive meals at home. It accommodates various medical concerns like heart disease, kidney disease, and diabetes, and extends a helping hand for senior citizens to eat healthily without compromising on taste.
Why Pick These Alternatives Over Epicured?
For restricted gluten-free diets: Choose ModifyHealth if you want to follow a strictly gluten-free Low-FODMAP or Mediterranean diet. The meals are purposefully low in sodium and calories and high in proteins, healthy fats, and plant-based organic ingredients.
For healthy and nutritious meal kits: If you prefer to be in control of what you eat, meal kits are perhaps ideal for you. Green Chef offers easy-to-follow recipes with preportioned and high-quality ingredients. Theirs is a family meal delivery service for multiple add-ons like a la carte proteins, light lunches, snacks, and desserts.
For more meal choices and flavors: If dieting is not your top priority, you just want to eat more appetizing meals, and don’t mind cooking them yourself, HelloFresh is for you. You’ll never run out of options with HelloFresh. They offer a variety of different flavors for nonvegetarians and vegetarians.
For flash-frozen meals that last longer: Magic Kitchen serves meals that fit a wide range of diets including diabetes, low-carb, low-fat, gluten-free, low sodium, and more. The meals are freshly cooked and then frozen to preserve both flavor and nutrients. It’s good for a long-term investment in a healthy, convenient meal delivery service.
Why Choose Healthy Meal Delivery Services Like Epicured?
Because You Care About Your Health
The best meal delivery services have become an integral part of a healthy lifestyle. When you decide to subscribe to one of them, you’re proving how dedicated you are about your well-being. You’re opting for nutritious meals packed with essential vitamins and minerals instead of unhealthy takeout food.
These nutritionally balanced meals consist of different types of vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. The ingredients used are all fresh, sustainably sourced, and high quality. Processed items are found as little as possible, which means unhealthy fats, preservatives, additives, and the like are not prioritized in any way.
Meal delivery services also do portion control. They measure the ingredients and servings, and you get to view the nutritional profile of each meal, so you know how much you’re eating, what’s going into your system, and that you’re not overeating.
Furthermore, almost every meal delivery service offers customizable meal plans, so you can make your dietary preferences a part of your daily diet (e.g., vegan, gluten-free, low-carb, etc.)
Because You Care About Delicious Food
When you decide to subscribe to meal delivery services like Epicured, you’re also proving how dedicated you are toward making mealtime more enjoyable and exciting. It’s your inner foodie making a flavorful declaration that you refuse to settle for boring meals.
Top meal delivery services unpack a wide range of cuisines – from mouthwatering Mexican fiestas to elegant French delicacies, it’s a global gastronomic adventure! There are professional, expert chefs in charge of crafting the menus, so these services know how to infuse variety into the mix.
More often than not, the menu goes beyond conventional main courses. Refreshing and vibrant smoothies, satisfying and crisp salads, and healthy and delightful snacks are intentionally put on the menu, along with nutritious, comforting lunches and dinners.
Epicured meals have been highly recommended for digestive disorders like IBS, celiac, colitis, and Crohn’s. This is a healthy meal delivery service, no doubt about that. But does healthy equal boring or bland or mundane? In the case of Epicured, it does not. The Epicured menu doesn’t fail to satisfy the taste buds as well.
While Epicured is the solution to the problem of not eating healthy and tasty meals, there are still some reasons why you might want to have a look at Epicured alternatives.
First of all, everybody’s personal preferences and dietary choices differ. Secondly, the pricing of Epicured meals, because of the super high quality of the ingredients, is not the most affordable. And finally, Epicured doesn’t have larger portion sizes, which means it’s not the most suitable meal delivery service for families.
So, while Epicured may cater to specific health conditions, someone with a different set of preferences will find better options elsewhere.