Are your meal delivery services worth the money? KCTV5 puts them - KCTV5

Are your meal delivery services worth the money? KCTV5 puts them to the test

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The flood of meal kit delivery services has hit an all-time high. But are they cost effective and a good use of your food budget? (KCTV5) The flood of meal kit delivery services has hit an all-time high. But are they cost effective and a good use of your food budget? (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

The flood of meal kit delivery services has hit an all-time high.

What started as a small trend in 2012 has grown into a massive $400 million market that includes more than a dozen companies touting easier-than-ever dinners.

But are they cost effective and a good use of your food budget?

KCTV5 News ordered from Blue Apron and Hello Fresh. Both came with three meals for two people at $60 apiece, including delivery to our door.

We made a list of ingredients and shopped for them at Kansas City grocery stores and our bill looked like this:

  • $61.22 to purchase the ingredients needed to replicate the Blue Apron meals
  • $51.42 for the items needed for the Hello Fresh meals

At first glance, the math seems to add up, and the deliveries may be a cost-effective option. But, Penny Pinchin' Mom Tracie Fobes cautions you to take a closer, smarter view of that cost.

Fobes says with your own grocery run, you are purchasing the entire product (a full bottle of maple syrup, rather than just the two tablespoons that come in your delivery).

So, in her opinion, you are wisely stocking your pantry for future meals or even the opportunity to replicate that same meal.

Taking Fobes advice, we did the math and re-calculated our grocery receipt as if we could pay only for the portion of the ingredients that come in the delivery boxes.

Blue Apron's initial cost of $61.22 goes down to $32.75, and the $51.42 Hello Fresh box is only really valued at $34.42.

However, dire-hard meal-delivery customers don't seem to care much about stocking their pantry. They are just thrilled with the convenience of not having to make a grocery list and shop and they enjoy the in-home delivery convenience and the chance to make meals that they otherwise might not try.

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