Toronto Meal Kits Review 2020

While most of Canada, including Calgary, has access to “The Big 3” meal companies (see our Hello Fresh Review, Chef’s Plate Review, Goodfood Review, as well as MissFresh), Toronto not only enjoys these options but also has some pretty neat regional competitors as well. The number of customers within a fairly small geographic area allows Torontonians to enjoy cost advantages and allows special niche companies to make a profit—that simply can’t exist anywhere else in the country right now.

In addition to meal kits deliveries, residents of the GTA also have access to a wide variety of food options that offer time-for-money value at any stage of your suppertime meal production. You can obviously opt for delivery, pick-up, and numerous other types of grocery-related services, such as Longos meal kits. To try and list all of the options that exist in addition to the traditional grocery shopping and restaurant would be too time-consuming—and it’s difficult to compare “apples to apples” in many cases. So instead, we’re going to try to exclusively focus on the Toronto meal kit companies that deliver a food box or food bag to your door once a week and allow you to easily produce fresh home-cooked meals.

Ontario’s Best Meal Kits – July, 11th, 2020

#1
Overall rating 98.2%
HelloFresh Review
Plans for
  • Singles
  • Vegetarians
  • Picky eaters
  • Novice cooks
Price range/ week
$79 ‐ $165
$29 ‐ $115
Pros and cons
  • Easily skip weeks as needed
  • Wide delivery service area
  • Reusable packaging
  • Large variety of meals
#2
Overall rating 96.2%
Chefs Plate Review
Plans for
  • Singles
  • Vegetarians
  • Picky eaters
  • Novice cooks
Price range/ week
$46 ‐ $144
$11 ‐ $109
Pros and cons
  • Lowest-priced meal kit in Canada!
  • Wide variety of meals
  • Ability to easily skip any weeks we choose
  • Delivery to almost anywhere
As we started researching Toronto’s meal kit options (aka “food subscription box” companies), we once again realized that there are some major advantages to the population density found in our nation’s major metropolitan area.

Background on Toronto Area and Meal Kits Industry

Value Rank (of 10)
Population 14,446,515 1
Food stores per 100,000 ppl 66 8
Farms per 100,000 ppl 343 7
Average family size 2.9 4
Experience difficulties with food budget 35% 8
Eating fruits/vegies 5+ times a day 27% 4
Time spent eating per day 84 7
Vegans and vegetarians 10.9% 2
Beavertail Doughnut – Ontario traditional dish
Toronto is the most densely populated area in Canada, with almost 14.5 million people living here. Per every 100,000 people, there are sixty-six food stores and 343 farms that supply food to these stores and farmers’ markets. However, many Torontonians who value their time, prefer to save it by ordering meal kits directly to their homes or offices. The average family size in the GTA is 2.9 people, with 35% of households in Toronto experiencing difficulties with the food budget, and only 27% eating five or more daily servings of fruit and vegetables. Almost 11% of GTA residents are vegetarians or vegans. Vancouver Meal kit companies offer meals that start as low as $5 per meal and provide many vegetarian options to their customers. Why are GTA residents such big fans of meal kit companies? There are many reasons:
  • ZERO stress when it comes to the idea of dinnertime. That means no worries about grocery shopping, forgotten ingredients, thawing meat, or planning meals!
  • Big-time money saved on eating out several times a month.
  • No food waste to feel guilty about or stink up our fridge.
  • Constant new ideas and tasty recipes to add to our regular “supper rotation.”
  • Instant healthy eating that doesn’t sacrifice taste.
  • Easy-to-follow recipes and instructions that even a rookie (like yours truly) can master.

What Is a Meal Kit?

If you’re already familiar with meal kits or food subscription boxes and simply want to compare your Toronto-specific options to find the best meal kit in Toronto, feel free to scroll down.

If you’re new to the world of a delicious, stress-reducing box being delivered right to your door, please allow me to pull back the curtains!

This is what my weekly HelloFresh order looks like. A hardy, insulated box with cooler packs in it arrives at my doorstep every week. It is packed with meals that I pre-selected in roughly three-and-a-half minutes using the super-easy HelloFresh app on my phone. It has every item (aside from a few household basics like milk, sugar, cooking oil, and salt) that will be needed to cook an item.

You simply need to cut open the box, place each bag in the fridge, toss the meat products in the “meats” section of my refrigerator, and I don’t have to think about my supper meals for the week until 30 minutes before they need to be on the table!

It’s tough to beat what The Big Three in Canada have to offer, and if you live in Alberta, but not close to Calgary or Edmonton, then HelloFresh is likely your only option when looking at meal kit delivery in 2020.

Our team members subscribe to HelloFresh due to the fact that we love their consistency and smooth processes. We know that as the world’s biggest meal kit company that the experiences that they’ve gained delivering on several continents will come in handy as they expand in Canada.

Global Canadian Meal Kit Companies Servicing Ontario

In a recent interview, Conal Gould, HelloFresh’s Canadian head of procurement stated that while they are a truly an international company, HelloFresh works with local producers to supply the ingredients for their high-quality meals, saying: “This is the food that we prepare and share with our families and friends, using the highest quality, locally-sourced ingredients, which lead to the most delicious meals […] There is no denying that many Canadians are skipping the trip to the grocery store.” What we really like about HelloFresh in Toronto is that we are guaranteed to be the recipients of a product/service that has been refined for years across massive markets that include the USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Belgium, and the Netherlands.

The company delivers over 15 million meals every single month! You know what you’re getting with these guys, and what you’re getting is the top of the pyramid when it comes to meal kits from around the world. The other unique consideration for HelloFresh is that they don’t just deliver to Canadians that live right inside the city limits of Toronto or other Canadian urban centers. In fact, it’s difficult to find a place that they don’t deliver to. Certainly, anywhere in the GTA is fair game, and the company states that they now include delivery to 95% of Canadians. I can personally vouch for this as I live “in the middle of nowhere” and get my HelloFresh order like clockwork each week.
Any discussion of Toronto meal kits wouldn’t be complete if it didn’t talk about Chef’s Plate. Chef’s Plate was Toronto’s original meal kit and was launched in 2014. From the beginning, they stated that their aim was to emphasize “farm-to-table eating” that provided consumers with fresher food in a convenient way that was sustainable due to partnerships with local suppliers and growers. Over the years, celebrity chefs such as Vikram Vij and Ned Bell were hired to provide expertise on creating restaurant-worthy meals (with rookie-worthy instructions).

With the recent purchase of the company by HelloFresh, CEO Jaime Shea stated, “We’re also happy to announce a significant price drop for our Chefs Plate meal kits, which will make our kits more accessible for Canadians. Prices will start as low as $8.99/serving as of early December […] By lowering cost, we open up meal kits to Canadians who might’ve seen price as a barrier while continuing to increase the value of our product and long term customer satisfaction.”
Goodfood touts itself as “Canada’s #1 Meal Kit” and is based out of Montreal, Quebec. While smaller than both HelloFresh and Chef’s Plate, Goodfood is the definitive third-largest food subscription box company in Canada. Thanks to their relatively new facility in Calgary, Alberta, they are making a push to compete throughout the country and not just on their home turf. Backed by celebrities such as award-winning TV Host Anne-Marie Withenshaw, and professional snowboarder Mark McMorris, Goodfood delivers to thousands of homes throughout the GTA.

Local Meal Kit Companies in Toronto and the GTA

Big nationwide providers are not the only options available for Toronto meal kit shoppers. If you’re looking for the food subscription box that places the highest priority on sustainability and organic produce, then Fresh City Farms definitely deserves a look. Check out our in-depth Fresh City Review for more details on their unique meal options and why we feel comfortable saying that if you live in Toronto, North York, Scarborough, Etobicoke, Mississauga, Oakville, Burlington, Brampton, Dundas, Hamilton or parts of Markham and Vaughan, then you might want to give this meal kit company a try. Fresh City also has “pick-up hubs” located throughout the GTA if you wish to simply pick up your food bag (no boxes here) as opposed to having it delivered. Prepd meal kits seemed to be targeting the bargain-conscious Toronto meal kit consumer.

With very minimal packaging (unlike the “high-end” packaging of HelloFresh) and a relatively small delivery radius (east-west boundaries are Victoria Park to the 427, and then north-south stretches from the 407 to Lake Ontario), Prepd aimed to deliver meal kits to your door for a very competitive price. In October 2019, Prepd joined forces with Fresh City Farms, and now their meal kits are available under new management.

Overall Review of Toronto Meal Kit Scene

With personal taste playing such an important part of the food experience, it is quite difficult to say decisively that one specific Toronto meal kit company will fit you better than others. That said, with a few excellent promo codes and sign up offers, why not try a couple leading contenders for yourself, and go from there? Our team members have been HelloFresh customers for almost a year now and have only good things to say about it. (When the worst experience you’ve had was some frozen herbs when it was -48 outside, you really have nothing to complain about!).

The meals have been excellent, with a very gentle learning curve when it comes to preparation. It has been a fantastic value for our families. One advantage of living in Canada’s largest city is a large number of options available to you. Consequently, a meal kit company like Fresh City Farms is able to offer a very unique product aimed at a specific niche. While other Canadian cities have similar small-scale meal kit subscription providers, none are able to offer the selection that Fresh City is for those that place the highest priority on organic produce.