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Prepared Meals

Find the Best Prepared Meals at the Best Value

This website will help you find the best prepared meals and meal delivery serices based on food quality and value. I have personally purchased the meals I review here, and write reviews based on the customer experience.
The reviews of the prepared meal delivery services on my website will all include everything I think is important for you to make the best decision for your needs. The chart to the right, shows just how much detail I go into, but here is a summary.
Home Bistro Roasted Rack of Lamb with Potatoes and Peas
Home Bistro Prepared Meal
FreshDirect Turkey Bolognese Lasagna
FreshDirect Prepared Meal
Mom's Meals Prepared Meal
Mom's Meals Meatloaf with Potatoes and Mixed Vegetables
MagicKitchen Prepared Meal
MagicKitchen Baby Clams With Linguini Marinara
Gobble Green Prepared Meal
Gobble Green Packaging, and Heating Instructions
DineWise Prepared Meal
DineWise Chicken Marsala with Cauliflower and Asparagus
Schwans Prepared Meal
Schwan's Chicken Enchilada with Rice
Traditions Meal Solutions Prepared Meal
Traditions Meal Solutions Chicken Parmesan
Impromptu Gourmet Four Cheese Pasta - Serves 4
Impromptu Gourmet Prepared Meal
Maybe I am the only one that notices this, but it seems like a lot of companies that sell any kind of prepared food call their meals gourmet. Let me ask you this right now and see if you know the answer:

What are Gourmet Prepared Meals?

I am surprised by how overused this term can be, and how little the consumers who purchase such products understand the true culinary meaning of the term. Just for the record, when I review meal delivery services, I am always looking closely to see if they include "gourmet" in their marketing. If they do, great. I always look forward to a good gourmet meal. However, their food has to meet these standard requirements:

Gourmet Meals

Chef Aldo Piquanti
This page was last updated: 9/13/2015
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Chef Piquanti's personal reviews are unbiased and not influenced by any past or future advertiser that may elect to promote their products and services on this website.
Visitor Comments Welcome!

You are welcome to share your thoughts, comments, and opinions for this, or any gourmet food experience you have had. Post your comments on our Gourmet Food Blog, or by using the contact us form.
Visitor Comments
A meal delivery services review by Chef Piquanti if Gourmet Reviews
  • Information about the company, which comes from their website. I am a consumer just like you, and as I mentioned above, "presentation" is important to me. The website should be easy to navigate and find what you are looking for. The pictures of the meals should be of high quality, and I have tried to detail what makes a particular company unique.

  • Pros and Cons. I look for things like a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee, and information about the company's products and services. I will also include my personal experiences. For example, I may say a company has poor heating instructions on their packaging if it says something like: "Heat until warm." I like to see menus that offer individual servings of meals, instead of requiring a consumer to buy food in quantities of two to four servings.

  • Shipping and Packaging. Did my shipment arrive as scheduled and were the contents safely delivered? I will address that in my review.

  • Photographs of Meals I Have Purchased. In most cases, I will take a snapshot of the food I have ordered. I will take a picture of the tray and a picture of the meal when it is plated. My goal is to show you exactly what the product will look like if you were to buy it yourself. Like a restaurant consumer, I do not have to eat every meal from the menu to get a feel for the quality and services of the company, but I do "taste-drive" a large sampling.

  • Coupons and Coupon Codes. As mentioned earlier, my reviews are about the value of the service. Coupons and coupon codes will add value to any order and can include anything from a percentage off the order to free shipping. If I am aware of any special offers, I will share them with you.
Consumers and Companies alike are invited to contact me and tell what they think of my reviews or share their own experiences. I thank you for visiting my website, and I hope my experiences with these companies help you to make the best buying decisions for your needs.

Meal Delivery Services

Learn how Meal Delivery Services are Reviewed
I take pictures of plated meals, and shoot videos for your convenience, in case you don't want to read. Trust me when I say not all meals are created equal. There are some very good services, and there are some that are just bad. To get started, click to any meal delivery company by using the menu to the left.

Some companies will also post coupons and coupon codes, which will provide you with immediate value, but that does not have any sway with my reviews. Please visit the Diet Meal Delivery section if you are looking for a weight loss meal plan.
  • A meal with a "thumbs up" means that I would order that meal again.

  • A meal with a "thumbs down" means that I would not reorder the meal.

It is an interesting and unique concept in that I might not reorder a good meal because I didn't think it was worth the money I paid for it.

My review strategy is based on how consumers are likely to judge a meal they have in a restaurant.
Often times, there are many good and delicious meals I have tried, but had to give them a "thumbs down," because I did not see enough value.

Conversely, a company like Schwan's can get many "thumbs up" because of lower and ecomonical pricing while offering respectable quality meals. In fact, some of their meals were way off the charts good. You can see samples of my reviews below.

Each picture will click to a close up view of the meal, and there is a link provided for you to see the rest of my reviews for the company provided.
Prepared Meal Reviews by Chef Piquanti
  • They Used High-Quality Ingredients. For example, I would not consider a mass-produced  chicken patty a gourmet meal component. Nor, would I consider select graded beef, or any protein that was not high quality.

  • If I would not use it to cook a meal, I would not call it gourmet. A prime New York Strip steak is an example gourmet food component.

  • An Ingredient Could Be Exotic. An exotic food item is something that is generally not native to the local area. I also suggest that this type of food is not something the amateur chef would not regularly cook for themselves. This could be anything from a rack of lamb to a gooey duck, but it would not be instant mashed potatoes.

  • A High Level of Culinary Skill in the Preparation of the Meal. When I go out to restaurants, the dish I order most is Spaghetti Bolognese, which very basically means spaghetti with meat sauce. However, there is a very exact and proper way a Bolognese Sauce and pasta should be prepared. Bolognese is a complex sauce that involves a mix of cooking techniques, including sweating, sauté and braising. It is the expert preparation of this dish that qualifies it as gourmet. Other examples of dishes with culinary skill may include sushi, lasagna, and even making a proper chicken broth from scratch.

  • Gourmet Presentation. This may not be an official definition of a gourmet meal, but I am a huge believer that food presentation should also be considered.

Prepared Meal Delivery Services Reviews

Determining whether a meal is gourmet or not is just part of the free service I provide. My reviews are about the value of the meals on the menu and the service they offer consumers.
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