About me

I'm a geek working as a distance learning specialist for a large corporation.

My Pandora "radio station" profile
This is my favorite way to listen to music now.

My Yahoo "radio station"
(Unfortunately, only works in IE.)

Shopping

Looking to purchase something online? Support Caddickisms by going through one of these links:

Caddickisms Store

Amazon.com

Calendar

December 2006
S M T W T F S
« Nov   Jan »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31  

Topics

Posts by month

Around the site

free wi-fi hotspots wifi cafes coffee shops hotels airports RV Parks (Okay, so I'm slipping in one more post before the new year...) If you're looking for free wi-fi connection anywhere inFree wi-fi hotspots

In the spirit of ParentHacks, here's a trick we've used to get our kids to do many things they otherwise wouldn't. We came up with it in the car on aWhatever you do...

For all you dad's out there, and mine specifically, Happy Father's Day. Thanks for all you've taught us, thanks for all the fun we've had. Thanks for the trips to theHappy Father's Day

I got up this morning and read an email that referred to a comment made on Twitter... that's a Tweet, for those who've been under a technological rock for theTweet

For a story about a groundbreaking mathematical proof, Proof had virtually zero math in it. If you ask me, that's a good thing. Let me put my review in the form ofReview: Proof

Free business cards! That's pretty cool. Via the excellent Parent Hacks site (see below) I've now found two online printing companies that will print business cards for free. You have"Free" business cards

My wife and I have a tradition of watching movies on New Year's Eve. We try to do three in a row. It's ambitious for a couple with two kids,New Year's Eve triple feature

How many major "cons" are there in a year (that's "conference" for the un-geeked)? New footage is spilling out like water from WonderCon, held recently, and Green Lantern is pouringSeeing Green... Lanterns

JMSNews J. Michael Straczynski, the creator/writer/producer of Babylon 5 and Crusade, has been writing for television for twenty years. He's been pretty successful at it, too. He doesn't just write forJMS deluged with attention

If you were the head of a movie company, which movies would you choose to spend $1.5 million per 30 seconds to advertise during the Super Bowl—an event watched primarilyTuesday TubeWatch: Super Bowl Movie Roundup

For me, YouTube is like walking into a hospital with no immune system. I go in with one thing and come out with a hundred others. Lucky for you, IMore Banjo - with Steve Martin & Earl Scruggs

This is one of a series of articles I wrote for The Coalition of Awesomeness blog some time ago. The blog has since gone to an unfortunate (but very awesome)Who do you serve, and who do you trust?

I was really hoping this movie would be better than it was. Alas, it wasn't. After a promising beginning, dealing with the "death" of Captain America, and setting up some multi-decadeReview: Ultimate Avengers

It's time for my annual(ish) list of movies I want to catch this year. Strap in and let the trailers wash over you like pure adrenalin. (Not that I know whatMovieWatch 2013

Smallville's a repeat tonight after the mid-season cliffhanger two weeks ago. Not sure where the plot is going? Come on... Chloe is still possessed by Brainiac, Doomsday is a ravingSmallville fix

Is a meal preparation service a good deal?

Easy Meal Prep Association and Meal Assembly Directory

I’m looking for ways to live cheaper. I got a tip in the comments of another blog to check out a Meal Preparatory business. The link above is a directory of these kinds of businesses.

In case you aren’t familiar with the concept, the way it works is that you sign up for a session, choose the meals you want to make from that month’s menu, then go an prepare the meals in their store. They provide all the food, preparation utensils, storage containers, instructions, and a workspace. That saves you from having to go to the grocery store (as often) and spend a lot of time figuring out how much to buy of what, and getting the proportions right.

The idea is that you are taking advantage of the bulk savings the service is getting, as well as saving yourself some time. It looks like you can get through a session in about 2 hours, and come out with at least 40 servings (which in my house would be about 12-15 dinners, depending on how hungry I am). Try to create the same 15 dinners on your own and once you figure in shopping and preparation time you’re easily hitting 6 hours of time, conservatively.

I found a couple of these services in my area and looked at their websites. They both came out at about $200 for 42 servings, give or take, which is a little under $5 per serving. On Dream Dinners, though, you save some serious bucks the more servings you buy. For 96 servings, for example, my choices came to $340 (or $3.54/serving) – which is about a $120 savings.

Now, 96 servings will pretty much set me up with dinners for an entire month, as well as a number of leftover lunches, I would think. On the surface, this strikes me as a good deal. After all, I’m spending somewhere around $400-500 a month for groceries lately, so $340 is appealing. I did a pretty good sales job for this idea on my wife as well. I think I’ve got her willing to do it.

But something continued to nag at me about it. I think I finally figured out what it is.

Where the heck am I going to store 30 days worth of meals!?! Seriously… I’d have to buy a freezer just for that purpose! Aside from the initial cost of the freezer, that’s gotta add to the electric bill, too. That’s crazy. Even 15 days of meals is probably more than my current freezer could handle (after all, I still gotta have room for the ice cream, right?). Plus, what you get here is the entrees, not the drinks, salads, desserts, etc., so you still have to pick them up at the grocery store, and that’s gonna eat into what you’re saving (pun not intended). Besides, a good chunk of my grocery cost these days is tied up in baby food and formula, and this service doesn’t make a dent there.

Even so, I still think there is a place for these services, and I’d be willing to bet that with some flexibility on order quantity I could most likely come out ahead and not have to purchase another major appliance. But it’s probably not something we could use at this point. Maybe in a few years.

[tags]meal preparation, Dream Dinners, cooking, frugal, personal finance, living cheaply, eating in, groceries[/tags]

Tags: , ,

3 comments to Is a meal preparation service a good deal?

Leave a Reply

  

  

  

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge