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Want to Try Every Meal Kit for Cheap? Here's How

Secure up to a year of cheap meal delivery for you and the family with this smart system.

box of food items from blue apron, including meat, veggies, potatoes and herbs
Have fresh and healthy meal kits sent to you for months using this sly little trick.
Blue Apron

This story is part of Home Tips, CNET's collection of practical advice for getting the most out of your home, inside and out.

One way to find the best meal kit for your taste and budget is to take my word for it. I've tested them all to curate these lists of the best meal kits and prepared meal subscriptions in every category. Another way is to try them all yourself, and you can do that for very little if you enlist this smart system. 

If you've been curious to try a cheap meal kit service, I can attest firsthand that they make meal-making a breeze, even if it's just for a few dinners each week. You won't have to labor over what to make, shop for ingredients or do loads of prep since many of them do the measuring and a good deal of the prep work for you. To try several meal delivery services and get a wide snapshot and decide which is best, there's a not-so-secret meal delivery hack you can enlist that'll net you months, even as much as a year, of meal kits at super cheap prices. 

Read moreWith Inflation, Are Meal Kits Any More Expensive Than Buying the Groceries?

All you'll need to try these convenient meal kits for as little as $2 or $3 per serving is a little coordination. The result will be months of inexpensive dinners for you and your crew at a total cost far cheaper than even buying the groceries, and definitely cheaper than ordering takeout or dining at a restaurant.

Here's how to do it.

one potato meal kit

This sneaky system will have you and your family eating healthy, homemade dinners for very little money. 

One Potato

How to score months of meal kits for next to nothing

Almost every meal kit service I've tested -- and I've tested pretty much all of them -- will allow you to try several weeks of meals for a super cheap promotional price. These hugely discounted sign-up offers are often as low as $5 or $6 for a full recipe that will feed two, four or even six people. That's just a few bucks per serving and as cheap a meal as you're going to find these days.

These meal delivery deals will be typically spread out over three, four or even five deliveries. For example, Blue Apron's offer will save you $110 but you'll have to order five weeks' worth of meals. That still amounts to 13 "free" dinners, though, and you'll get to try this easy breezy meal kit service in the process. Gobble's deal is shorter but just as tempting. That service lets you try your first six meal kits for just $36.

every plate sign up offer

EveryPlate is my favorite budget meal kit. It's already pretty affordable but this is how cheap it'll be for your first few boxes.

Screenshot by David Watsky/CNET

Even without these deals, we crunched the numbers and using a convenient meal kit is just a few dollars more expensive than shopping for the same groceries. Factor in one of the offers and it'll be significantly cheaper than buying the ingredients. Plus, you won't have to take annoying trips to the store for months -- or even as long a year if you try them all.

The best meal delivery deals?

Don't worry, I've made this easy and rounded up the best meal delivery deals here so you can make a plan to try them all for cheap. Some promotions are likely to change from month to month, so grab the ones that look best to you now and I'll be sure to update the post so you can find the best deals when it's time to try a new service.

blue apron promo offer

Make sure to read each offer carefully. Often the deal is spread out over a few deliveries so you'll be committed to a few weeks of meals. You can always cancel or pause after the discount ends.

Screenshot by David Watsky/CNET

Read more: Best Meal Delivery Deals Right Now: August 2022

Set a reminder to cancel and move on to the next one

The big catch is that if you don't cancel after the initial promotion ends, the service will almost certainly keep sending you boxes of meals but at the full price. Some will let you cancel right after you place your order while others will make you wait until the promo boxes have all been delivered. In cases where they make you wait, I'd suggest setting a reminder to cancel at the earliest possible time. 

cancel meal kit reminder

Setting reminders to cancel after the promo ends will keep this sneaky system running smoothly. 

Screenshot by David Watsky/CNET

The worst-case scenario is you'll get an extra week's delivery of meals at a higher price. Certainly not the end of the world but if you're trying to try them all for those rock-bottom offers, you'll have to stay on your game. 

Meal kits typically don't have long-term commitments

Most of these deeply discounted sign-up offers won't rope you into any long-term contracts. In fact, they make it fairly easy to pause or cancel your service, unlike those fury-inducing gyms. But for safety's sake, read the fine print for each service and for each individual promotion before you enter your credit card information. 

sunbasket sign up offer

Sunbasket is my favorite overall meal kit service. It's usually about $12 or $13 per serving but not when you take advantage of this trial offer.

Screenshot by David Watsky/CNET

Insider tipCNET's shopping browser extension will help you find any promo deals that might be hiding somewhere on the site but not populating on the front page. You can download it here.

There are also prepared meal delivery deals to try

If you don't have an interest in cooking, many of the top prepared meal delivery services have sign-up offers too. I've found that the discount, by percentage, isn't usually as good as with meal kits but there are still some cheap meals to be had. Much like meal kits, you'll be able to cancel your service after you've taken advantage of the deal -- or keep 'em coming if you like what you get. 

freshly meal on table with cocktail

Prepared meal services such as Freshly have sign-up offers too, although you'll typically get a bigger discount from meal kits. 

Freshly

Even online butchers such as Butcherbox and grocery delivery services such as Thrive Market and Hungryroot have some hefty new customer deals. I say try them all and let everyone else pay full price.

More money-saving tips for the kitchen

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.