Search here...
0
TOP
Food & Drink

Is Daily Harvest Worth It? A Dietitian’s Review

Is Daily Harvest Worth It? A Dietitian's Review

Daily Harvest is a popular plant-based meal delivery service providing options like smoothies, lattes, breakfast bowls, soups, and flatbreads.

But is Daily Harvest really worth it? I’m a registered dietitian and I tried its different products for a week. Here is my honest, unsponsored review and recommendations.

Jump to:

Pros

Pro: Convenient

Daily Harvest’s strongest appeal is it is incredibly convenient without sacrificing quality. The convenience extends from shopping to preparing and eating your meals. 

Daily Harvest Review

The online shopping experience is fast and user-friendly. You can easily find what you are looking for and filter based on your likes and dislikes. Then, Daily Harvest delivers the food to you frozen in a large box, ready for storage in your freezer. 

When you are ready to enjoy, pull items from the freezer to prepare. Simple preparation directions are located on the packaging and are easy to follow:

  • Smoothies: Fill cup with water and pour into blender. Blend and pour back into the cup.
  • Forager Bowls (breakfast bowls), Harvest Bowls & Soups: Add liquid and microwave for under 10 minutes.
  • Harvest Bakes & Flatbreads: Cook in the oven for under 30 minutes.
  • Ice Cream & Treat Bites: Enjoy straight out of the freezer!
  • Lattes: Run hot water over the pod for 10 seconds. Pop into a mug with milk. Microwave for 1-2 minutes.

Many of these items can be prepared and enjoyed in their original packaging. Once done with them, Daily Harvest’s packaging can be recycled!

Pro: High Quality

I was very impressed by the ingredients in Daily Harvest’s products. The products contain simple, plant-based ingredients that are nutritious, organic (mostly), and interesting. I noticed a range of global ingredients that made the dishes unique. The majority were also flavorful, especially considering that they were pre-prepared, vegan dishes. Although, some had more added sodium and sugar than what I would consider “healthy.”

Some stand out products that I tried include:

  • Leek and fonio grits with pickled pepper
  • Sweet potato flatbread with tomatillo and peppers
  • Cremini and smoked paprika ropa vieja with plantains
  • Matcha and lemongrass latte with coconut cream, MCT oil, and chlorella
  • Cinnamon and cocoa, chili-spiced churro oat ice cream

Pro: Vegan – depending on your needs

Daily Harvest isn’t just “plant-based” as it is often described (the term pant-based can still include a small amount of animal products). It is entirely vegan. I did not find any products that contained animal ingredients.

If you are vegan or would like to add more vegan meals into your diet, this is an easy way to do it.

Veganism is an environmentally friendly eating style with numerous health benefits like weight loss and reducing your risk for chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.

However, it is not for everyone, which I will get into in the “Cons” section.

Cons

Con: Vegan – depending on your needs

Since all the products from Daily Harvest are vegan, you will find they are low in protein and not very filling. I found myself hungry whenever I solely ate a Daily Harvest product for a meal.

Because of this, you’ll need to use Daily Harvest as a supplement to your meals or diet. Especially if you are not used to eating vegan. If you are vegan, you may still want to consider doing this to ensure you are getting enough plant protein.

If I were to continue using Daily Harvest, as a meat-eating dietitian who also wants to eat plenty of nutritious plant foods, I would do the following:

  • Enjoy Daily Harvest lattes, smoothies, and ice creams as regular treats
  • Eat Forager Bowls for quick breakfasts, with a side of egg if I have more time
  • Use Harvest Bowls, Bakes, Flatbreads, & Soups as sides to a protein for lunch and dinner (this is an easy way to make at least half your plate plants – a frequent recommendation I give my clients!)

When it comes down to it, using Daily Harvest as only part of your meal is far from ideal because they are supposed to be convenient, quick meals. It also gets expensive to have to spend money on additional groceries.

Need meal planning help? Check out my Guide to Meal Planning and 7-Day Meal Plan!

Con: Expensive

Because Daily Harvest is highly convenient and high-quality, it is also high cost. Pre-made meal delivery services cost more than cooking a meal yourself. And while similar in price to other services like Freshly, it’s pricier once you factor in the purchase of additional groceries to make a well-rounded meal (as described in the previous Con).

To order Daily Harvest, you need to pick a box size (comes with free delivery):

  • 6-8 items
  • 9-11 items ($5 off)
  • 12-23 Items ($10 off)
  • 24-26 items ($25 off)

The cost ranges from $5.99 to $11.99 per item:

  • Smoothies: $8.49 for 1
  • Harvest Bakes: $11.99 for 1
  • Harvest Bowls: $9.79 for 1
  • Forager Bowls: $6.79 for 1
  • Soups: $8.49 for 1
  • Flatbreads: $9.79 for 1
  • Crumbles: $9.79 for 3
  • Bites: $7.99 for 7
  • Lattes: $5.99 for 2
  • Scoops: $8.99 per pint
  • Almond Mylk: $7.99 for ½ gallon

You could spend anywhere from $35.94 to $286.74 per shipment depending on your preferences. I chose to purchase 14 items including 2 smoothies, 1 bake, 4 bowls, 1 soup, 1 flatbread, 2 lattes, 2 scoops, and 1/2 gallon mylk.

In total, it cost me $106.22 and it was about 1/3 of what I ate for the week. To put that into perspective, Mint says a single person spends on average $150 to $300 per month, with a suggested budget of $251 per month.

Con: Low Variety – if you have special dietary needs

Daily Harvest allows you to filter for diet preferences, but if you have dietary needs that are remotely complex, you will not find many options available to you. That is because it’s already a specific diet (vegan) that excludes many common (animal) ingredients. Vegan food is also naturally higher in carbohydrate and lower in protein and fat.

Is Daily Harvest Worth It? Dietary Needs View

For example, my dietary needs are carb/sugar conscious from having PCOS and legume-free (nuts, beans, soy) from an intolerance. After filtering for these needs, there was a much smaller selection. To give a fair review, I had to have my husband try some of the meals on my behalf.

You won’t find much for you if you have any of the following dietary needs, especially if you have more than one:

  • High Protein
  • High Fat
  • Low Carbohydrate
  • Low Sugar
  • Low Fiber
  • Low Sodium
  • Nut Free
  • Soy Free
  • Bean Free
  • Seed Free 

The Verdict: Is Daily Harvest Worth It?

So is Daily Harvest worth it? It depends on who you are.

Daily Harvest is worth it if:

  • You’re vegan or want to add more plant-based foods to your diet
  • You value highly convenient, high-quality food
  • You are a high earner who can afford the cost of Daily Harvest & purchase additional groceries

Daily Harvest isn’t worth it if:

  • You want your meal delivery service to meet all of your diet needs
  • You want to feed a family with your meal delivery service
  • You’re not able or do not want to spend a high amount of money on your diet

All in all, Daily Harvest is a super convenient way to get more plants into your diet. If you can afford it, I recommend it as an easy way to improve your diet!

Enjoy the article? Check out my workbooks and meal plans, made with busy professionals in mind.

Samantha Shuflin, MS, RDN, LDN is a Chicago-based registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) with a master’s degree in nutrition. She helps busy professionals thrive through nutrition & wellness.

«

error: Content is protected !!