Meals on Wheels vs Chefs For Seniors: Pros and Cons

Meals on Wheels

Perhaps the most well-known senior meal delivery service is Meals on Wheels, and for good reason as they provide an incredible benefit to many older adults in America. Meals on Wheels programs originated in the United Kingdom during WWII when many people lost their homes and were unable to cook their own meals.  Meals on Wheels programs generally offer very affordable meals delivered right to your door.

PROs  

  • Meals are provided at no cost or at an affordable rate, as most are subsidized by private donors and the Older American's Act. 

  • Meals are usually warm and ready to eat when they’re delivered

  • A volunteer drops off the meal in-person every day or sometimes every week.

  • There are Meals on Wheels programs in just about every community in the US (over 5000).

CONs

  • For most Meals on Wheels programs, meals cannot be customized for specific dietary concerns and/or food preferences.

  • Due to increased demand, many local Meals on Wheels programs have a long wait list for their services.

  • Many Meals on Wheels programs require that you meet certain qualifications to participate, such as "homebound" status or income below a set threshold. 

Chefs For Seniors

We host a network of professional chefs who are all passionate about bringing fresh food into the lives of seniors at an affordable cost.  Watch this 45-second overview video to get an idea of our in-home, personal chef meal service.

With our service, a chef does all of the grocery shopping, brings fresh ingredients with, cooks the meal and cleans up in the home. Many believe having a personal chef is reserved for professional athletes and celebrities, but nowadays that isn't the case.  Meals provided by a personal chef can be very affordable, with some like Chefs For Seniors able to offer prices similar to most senior meal delivery services.  

PROs

  • Taste preferences and diet needs can all be customized for each individual. 

  • There is instant feedback to the chef.

  • Fresh, healthy ingredients ensure a higher level of nutrition.

  • Meals delivered right to your door. 

  • Ingredients are fresh and never frozen, adding to the flavor. 

  • Companionship and a friendly visit - something to look forward to all week.

  • Chefs can offer feedback and updates on the client's status to off-site family members. 

CONs

  • Chefs For Seniors can be more expensive than other private pay meal delivery options in some cases. 

  • Personal chef services for older adults are not currently funded through Medicare or the Older American’s Act, although some clients can pay with Long-Term Care insurance.

  • Requires that you have a working kitchen for the chef to prepare meals in. 

  • Can be difficult to find personal chef services in every community, as it's a relatively new industry.