Hitting your macros is a heck of a lot easier when you have the foods you need on hand. Meal prepping for the day or week ahead usually means doing it yourself, but sometimes, you need help keeping your nutrition on track (besides hiring a 1-on-1 nutrition coach!).

Using a meal delivery service is a great way to get the food you need while saving time, but there are a few considerations you need to make to ensure you’re getting the most out of your macros and your money.

how to use a meal delivery service 

Tips for Using a Meal Delivery Service as a Macro Tracker

1. Check the Delivery Schedule and Frequency

Most meal delivery services require you to order at least a week in advance. This means you need to know what is coming your way to order ahead of time and ensure you have the meals you need delivered on time.

A few instances you may want to order from a meal delivery service are:

  1. You have a busy or stressful workweek coming up
  2. You're traveling and want food delivered to your accommodations
  3. You're coming home from a vacation and want healthy food ready to go right when you get home
  4. You're dealing with an injury that limits your ability to prep your own food

Some meal delivery services are subscription-based, so double-check that you are either getting a one-time order or that the meals that will be repeated the following week also meet your needs. If you are traveling, be sure to contact the company to change your delivery address so you don’t end up feeding the next guests at your Airbnb!

2. Continue Planning Ahead

Chances are you’ll still need to fill your macros with a few other foods besides the prepped meals. To make it easy, log the prepped meals ahead of time in your food tracking app so you can see what macros you need to fill in the rest of your day. You may find your delivered meals are higher or lower in one macro than you would cook for yourself. Adjusting snacks accordingly is a good way to hit your targets by the end of the day.

3. Add Volume

Add veggie volume if you love the convenience of pre-prepped meals but the portions leave you feeling hungry. Here are a few quick ways to make it happen:

  1. Pick up bagged salad mixes. You can toss your proteins, cooked veggies and carb sources on top of greens to increase food volume while adding minimal work on your end.
  2. Add veggies based on the meal you chose. For example, if you ordered a pasta dish, add zoodles from the grocery store's frozen section. Is there rice in your dish? Add cauliflower rice! This keeps the spirit of each meal while adding more fiber to keep you full.

4. Cross-Reference the Macros

Handing your nutrition over to a third party can be a little nerve-wracking if you're trying to be exact since you have to trust that their labeling is accurate. Try ordering meals with fewer ingredients and weighing and logging the portions of each component to confirm the macros listed. 

If the macros are pretty close and you're seeing the progress you and your coach are looking for, you're probably fine to trust them moving forward and go with it until it no longer works for you. If the macros are pretty far off, or you and your coach are trying to nail down why progress has stalled

If you order the same meals repeatedly from the same company, measure them a few times. If they're consistent (or consistently inconsistent) you're likely fine to either trust them moving forward or adjust your food entry and use your updated macros.

Pro tip: Try to find companies that offer an a la carte option. This option allows you to order your meal components separately, allowing you to control the portions and more easily check the accuracy of your meal. 


Final Thoughts on Using a Meal Delivery Service While Counting Macros

There is a time and place for utilizing a meal delivery service. If you're stressed, busy, or traveling, these services can make hitting your macros easier and lead to faster progress. If you're seeing progress towards your goals, keep doing what you're doing!

If progress has stalled, double-check the macros on the label and how many macros you're actually eating by weighing and logging a few meals. Make needed adjustments and see how things go from there.

If you're not quite ready to order from a meal delivery service but you want some support building meals that help you hit your macros, check out or dietitian-written meal plans. Take our quiz to find out how many macros you need and get over 100 breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals that ensure you hit them by the end of the day (that is over 1,000 meal combinations!).

Or, if you want more personalized support in reaching your health and nutrition goals, WAG Nutrition Coaching is for you. We'll match you with a 1-on-1 coach based on your goals, and they'll build, monitor, and adjust your macros based on your body's response. They'll also provide personalized meal suggestions and help you build the planning and prepping habits needed to feel your best.