Ultimate Guide to Choosing Baby Meal Deliveries in London
What is a baby meal delivery service?
Unless you’re a second or third time parent, you’re probably wondering…”what actually is a baby meal delivery service?”. It’s a fair question! Over the last few years we’ve seen a lot of new companies pop up offering all different types of food for babies, toddlers and older kids, all offering a range of different benefits to parents and little ones alike.
Most baby food delivery services in London are designed to try and ease the stress and workload for busy parents. Baby food is not the same as adult food, so for many parents, having to deal with cooking different meals for themselves, a baby, (and potentially older children!) is basically an impossible task without turning into a full-time chef.
And so, the most important question, how do you actually work out which one is the best for you and your baby?
Well, in this article, we’re going to try and make sense of all these questions and help you make the best decision for you and your little one.
Why can’t parents just cook for themselves?
If only it were that simple! The thing is, most parents do try and cook for their kids for the majority of the time, but, inevitably, there are times when you either just don’t have the energy, time or imagination to whip up a delicious homemade meal from scratch.
Once you add in other things like going back to work after maternity leave, a partner who is already working full time and the million other things you have to do to look after a young baby, you might be left wondering…”how the hell am I supposed to have time for all this?”
…What about batch cooking?
If you’ve tried batch-cooking, you’ll already know that it takes a lot of prep work, planning ahead and usually means that you’ll be eating the same couple of things for the next week. This might be fine for a student or a young professional but babies are a whole different story!
Variety is one of the most important things during the first 6-12 months of your baby’s life. The period provides a golden opportunity to expose your baby to the widest range of flavours possible before potential fussiness sets in at 18+ months. Trying to do this with batch cooking is, of course, going to be tricky.
So, what are the different baby food delivery services available for parents in London?
Baby food delivery services in London generally fall into 3 different categories;
- Baby pouches & jars
- Frozen pots
- Fresh, homemade meals
Pouches and jars are convenient thanks to their long shelf life and palatable flavours. They are generally used when parents are “on-the-go” and need some emergency back-up food thrown into the buggy.
Frozen pot delivery services are a good option if you like to have a nutritious and healthy back-up option in the freezer for the days you don’t have time to cook. The meals are generally limited to “saucy” dishes which freeze well and can take a bit of time to defrost, heat-up and then cool down enough to eat.
Fresh, homemade delivery services like V&Me are for parents who want proper freshly cooked meals delivered on a regular basis that have the variety and nutrition that young babies need for their development. It’s designed to be a guilt-free alternative to home cooking that is as close to home-made food as possible.
Which is the best?
As mentioned above, it totally depends how you plan to use the meal delivery service!
If you’re often out and about with your baby and find yourself needing a healthier option for emergency meals, then pouch and jar delivery services are a great choice! However, do try to avoid opting for the overly sweet flavoured meals because they often contain very high levels of free sugars and can get your baby accustomed to sweet flavours early on.
Take care to always try and feed them using a spoon as feeding straight from the nozzle can not only be a potential choking hazard for your baby, it can also extend the contact time between the food and their teeth, increasing the chances of early tooth decay.
Frozen pots are the best choice if you have plenty of freezer space and you like the peace of mind knowing that you have a last minute healthy option ready-to-go in the freezer at all times.
However, if you plan on using these regularly or daily, you might find that your baby is eating the same things on repeat and will start getting bored of the repeated flavours and textures. It can also be very tempting to only order the “safe” meals that your child likes and they end up not getting exposed to a variety of meals and ingredients.
If you’re planning to use any baby meal delivery service regularly and you want to have the peace of mind knowing they’re getting the variety, nutrition and freshness that their growing bodies need, then fresh, homemade delivery services like V&Me really are the only option for you.
To start with, the food is prepared fresh from scratch, locally, in London every day, so you know the ingredients are fresh and in season. It also means that the meals are not limited to purees or “saucy” meals so your baby can really get used to trying foods of all shapes, sizes and textures. Every day there’s a finger food to go with whatever else is on the menu to help them practise their baby led weaning skills.
But the biggest advantage of fresh delivery services like V&Me has to be the variety they have to offer. There are over 35 different meals on a seasonal menu designed to ensure that your baby never gets bored of the same old meals and challenges them to broaden their palate from an early age.
Don’t forget that building healthy eating habits starts from the very beginning and what you feed them during the early years can have a strong impact on their future relationship with food!
How much do these baby food delivery services cost?
You’re probably wondering…”Great! But how much do all these all cost…”.
Pouches and jars are definitely the cheapest option, especially if you go for the own-brand versions in supermarkets. The prices can range from anywhere between 60p and £2 per meal when delivered as part of a multi-pack.
What’s surprising however is that the difference between fresh and frozen meal delivery companies is actually very minimal. A typical frozen baby food pot will actually cost around £3.50 – £4.00 with delivery added on-top. A freshly cooked baby meal from V&Me is around £3 (as part of the £9.99 for a daily menu of three meals) and standard delivery is included in this price.
So overall the best value for money would have to be the fresh meal delivery service from V&Me for the freshness, variety and price that you get from their daily menus.
Can you just try first before signing up?
Pouches and jars are available in most supermarkets, so parents who are looking to just try a few to start with can easily add them to their next shop before signing up to regular deliveries.
Frozen pots, however, tend to come in a multi-pack when you are starting so it can be easy to end up with a freezer full of food that your baby doesn’t like.
V&Me offers a “one-off” option for parents who just want to try a day of food to start with. This includes 2 main meals and a healthy on-the-go snack. However, most parents who use V&Me know that it can take several attempts to get your little one to start liking something new, so it’s important to keep in mind that it’s totally natural if they don’t demolish all the food straightaway!
How to know if V&Me is right baby food delivery service for you:
If you haven’t already made up your mind about which service to go for, here are some key signs that V&Me’s baby food delivery service is for you:
- Are a busy parent determined to build a flexible, adventurous eater.
- Need a flexible subscription that can be changed, paused or cancelled at any time.
- Have a million other things on your plate at work or at home that also need your limited time and attention.
Live in London…
…then V&Me is the best choice for you and your baby!
How to sign up?
If you live in London and you want to join the growing number of people getting fresh baby food deliveries to their doorstep, click the link below and get your first delivery now!