Absolutely Everything You Need to Know About Daily Harvest

An in-depth look at the plant-based meal delivery service, how it works, what it costs, and whether it's a good fit for you.

Courtesy of Daily Harvest
Courtesy of Daily Harvest
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You know those strangely prepared super-people who pre-assemble smoothie ingredients in freezable cups, then gleefully buzz them up each morning for a quick greens boost? You, too, can be like them—even if you don’t have the forethought to divvy up portions of frozen blueberries and kale at the beginning of each week. It’s all thanks to a little something called Daily Harvest.

What, exactly, is Daily Harvest?

Daily Harvest rolled out its first frozen smoothie cups in 2015 and has since evolved into a plant-based meal-delivery service that feeds customers “from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.” Subscribers can fill weekly or monthly boxes with superfood-rich, pre-assembled smoothies, soups, grain bowls, flatbreads, and more. Everything is vegan, gluten-free, and made with all-natural ingredients—mostly, organic fruits and vegetables that are frozen at peak ripeness at the farms where they’re harvested. At home, you’ll quickly complete the meals in the blender, on the stove, or in the oven or microwave.

How much does Daily Harvest cost (per person)?

The price of your Daily Harvest order depends on two things: Your box size and the specific menu items you choose to fill it. Boxes come in small (9 items), medium (14 items), and large (24 items) sizes, and the items range from $5.99 to $8.99 each. Here’s a breakdown:

  • $5.99: Forager Bowls, Oat Bowls, Chia Bowls, Lattes (2 per order)
  • $7.99: Smoothies, Mylk (1/2 gallon per order), Soups, Bites (7 pieces per order)
  • $8.99: Harvest Bowls, Flatbreads, Scoops (1 pint per order)

When you place your order, you’ll always get $5 off the price of a small box, $10 off a medium box (the most popular plan), and $20 off a large. The cheapest order you could make runs about $49, while the most expensive is about $196. If you order a medium box with one or two items from each category, you can expect to spend around $100. Shipping is always free.

Courtesy of Daily Harvest

What do Daily Harvest reviewers say?

Smoothies have been the Daily Harvest specialty since day one, and based on customer reviews on sites like Trustpilot and Influenster, they’re still the fan favorite. Happy reviewers say they love the taste and quality of Daily Harvest’s smoothies and other meals, how convenient they are to store and prepare, and the way the service makes it easy to meet certain health goals, like eating more fruits and vegetables and fewer processed ingredients.

Less pleased customers cite high prices (compared to other services), and a concerning number of reviews mention damaged packaging and thawed meals upon delivery. This may be due to issues with shipping, so you might want to confirm which mail carrier will deliver your box before using Daily Harvest.

Lukewarm users say they’ve craved more flavor—or more food, period—when eating Daily Harvest meals, which they fix by adding nut butter to smoothies, eggs to flatbreads, or fresh herbs and other seasonings to soups and bowls.

Is Daily Harvest easy to use?

As long as you have a relatively powerful blender and a working microwave, stove, and oven, Daily Harvest is very easy to use. Most meals need only a buzz in the Nutribullet or a quick heating session to be ready to eat in minutes. The more time-consuming items on the menu are the chia bowls, which need to soak in the fridge with your liquid of choice for six hours, and flatbreads, which bake in about 20 minutes. You’ll also need to make sure you have your preferred liquid, such as nut milk or fruit juice, on hand to make many of the drinks and bowls.

What are the standout features of Daily Harvest?

  • The ingredients: Lots of reviewers say that Daily Harvest makes them feel healthy. Reading the ingredients list on each item, you’ll see why: Ingredients are minimal in number but maximum in health benefits. They’re mostly organic fruits and vegetables—but always with an extra oomph. A cherry-almond smoothie, for example, packs in the amino-acid powerhouse sacha inchi, and a cinnamon-banana oat bowl has immunity-boosting reishi.
  • The ease: To make a Daily Harvest-esque smoothie from scratch, you’d probably have to go to the farmer’s market, then a health-food store, and finally the supermarket to grab whatever you forgot. You’d have to cut open a coconut, pit a pound of cherries, and wait for your freshly brewed coffee to freeze. All that before pressing “blend,” which makes $7.99 for a smoothie sound pretty good.
  • The mission: Daily Harvest is not the most economical meal service out there, but it may be one that you can feel good about using. Your subscription funds the company’s mission to reduce food waste, support regenerative farming practices, and create sustainable packaging. Read more about that here.

Who should sign up for Daily Harvest?

  • Vegan and/or gluten-free eaters: Consider Daily Harvest a one-stop shop for gluten-free meals and snacks that are truly plant-based—as in, not only free of animal products, but actually made almost entirely with whole fruits and vegetables.
  • Fans of organic farming: People who do their best to buy organic produce may have an easier time supporting farmers with Daily Harvest products, which are made with 95% certified organic ingredients. That percentage might grow, too, since the company also works with farms that are in the three-year transition period between conventional and organic.
  • The superfood-curious: If you’ve ever tried to mend a hangover with a $4 ginger shot, you’ll probably be excited by Daily Harvest’s meals, many of which contain at least one buzzy superfood. Instead of crowding your counter with bottles of maca powder and spirulina, you could sign up to try a little bit of a different health food, like camu camu or fonio grits, every day.

Who should avoid Daily Harvest?

  • Carnivores: You won’t find meat or seafood—or any animal products, for that matter—in Daily Harvest’s meals.
  • Very hungry people: Daily Harvest’s smoothies and oat bowls make a sweet and petite breakfast, and its soups and grain bowls fit the bill for a quick and healthy lunch. But if you prefer hot dinners that stick to your ribs, you might find the service’s savory options to be a bit too light.
  • Families: Daily Harvest seems ideal for singles, couples, and anyone who travels frequently. For families looking to feed kids or enjoy a bonding activity in the form of cooking, though, a different meal-kit delivery service might be a better fit.
Courtesy of Daily Harvest

How does Daily Harvest actually work?

To sign up for Daily Harvest, you’ll enter your zip code to confirm that your delivery area is available. If it is, you’ll choose a plan size: Small (9 items), medium (14 items), or large (24 items).

Then you’ll be taken to an extensive menu, which may or may not tempt you to spend the workday debating between smoothies and bliss balls instead of answering emails. Each item has tasting notes, nutrition facts, lots of photos, and written and video preparation instructions. Before you start adding things to your box, you should familiarize yourself with the menu categories:

Smoothies, soups, flatbreads, and lattes are self-explanatory. Then there are some Daily Harvest-specific dishes. Harvest Bowls are eaten warm for lunch or dinner and are made with vegetables, grains, and legumes, while Forager Bowls are smaller and come in sweet options, too. Scoops are pints of vegan ice cream, and Bites are cookie-dough-like snacks. Finally, an order of Mylk gets you 16 wedges of frozen almonds and sea salt, which you can blend with water to make almond milk that can be used in Daily Harvest drinks and breakfast bowls.

Don’t know what to pick? Narrow down your choices with filters based on dietary needs—like paleo, keto, or low sugar—and even on likes or dislikes of specific ingredients, from cilantro and caffeine to nuts and spicy foods. If you’re still at a loss, just press a button to fill your box with best sellers.

For the last step, you’ll enter your payment method, create an account, and choose your delivery date and whether you want to receive your order weekly or monthly. Once you place your order, your plan will automatically renew every week or month at the same price—so you’ll need to modify your box before the weekly cutoff of Sundays at 6 p.m. Eastern if you want to make any changes.

Going forward, you can choose your menu items and change or skip shipments as soon as eight weeks in advance or as late as the Sunday evening before your delivery date. You can pause, cancel, or reactivate your subscription at any time. For assistance, find answers to FAQs on the help page, get virtual assistance in the chat box, or get in touch with a team member every day between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. Eastern via text, email, or phone on the contact page.

When you get a delivery, put the food in the freezer right away, then follow instructions to safely dispose of the dry ice included in the packaging (or use it to make a spooky Halloween cocktail). You’ll find preparation instructions printed on each item. In most cases, that means filling the container with the designated amount of liquid, then quickly blending or heating before serving.

Courtesy of Daily Harvest

Are there alternative Daily Harvest meal kit services out there?

Daily Harvest isn’t the only service that delivers fast and health-conscious vegan meals. Look into these alternatives if you want…

Fresh (not frozen) food: Sakara or Thistle

Daily Harvest is proud of its “farm-to-frozen” meals, which it says retain maximum nutrients since the produce is frozen shortly after it’s picked. Still, certain dishes—like baked goods and leafy salads—are just better fresh. You can get these from vegan- and gluten-free-friendly meal-delivery services Sakara and Thistle.

A combination of microwave meals and actual cooking: Purple Carrot

If you can’t decide between a service that sends you meal kits versus fully prepared dishes, try one that does both, like plant-based Purple Carrot. While you can’t order from both plans simultaneously, you can switch off from week to week, popping mapo tofu in the microwave one Monday for lunch, then cooking 25-minute elote bowls for the next week’s dinner.

Heartier vegan meals: Veestro or Splendid Spoon

Daily Harvest is tasty, but it’s missing some things—like noodles. If you’re plant-based but still want a hug in a bowl, try Veestro for its carrot osso buco and vegan enchiladas or Splendid Spoon for kabocha squash congee and red curry noodles.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Daily Harvest’s delivery area?

Daily Harvest delivers to 95% of the continental United States, so, most zip codes in all states except for Alaska and Hawaii.

How much does shipping cost?

Shipping is always free.

What dietary needs does Daily Harvest meet?

All Daily Harvest products are vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free. Most products are soy-free, but those that contain soy or other common allergens are clearly marked on the packaging.

Can I customize a menu item to suit my dietary needs or preferences?

No, but you can filter the menu based on your diet and likes or dislikes.

Is Daily Harvest organic?

Daily Harvest uses 95% certified organic ingredients. On each item’s packaging, organic ingredients are marked with an asterisk, while those marked with a T are sourced from farms currently transitioning from conventional to organic.

How long does the food last?

Products are packaged with enough dry ice to stay frozen for one to two days after your delivery date. After that, they can stay in your freezer until the best-by date printed on the bottom of the container (usually one month to one year after shipment, depending on the ingredients).

Can I recycle the packaging?

Yes, you can recycle or compost almost all the components of Daily Harvest’s packaging. Read about the materials on the site’s recycling page, learn how to dispose of the dry ice on the FAQs page, and figure out your local recycling information here.

Are there discounts or rewards?

When you sign up, you’ll get a promo code of $20 to $35 off your first order. After that, you’ll get a $35 credit each time someone uses your referral code to sign up for Daily Harvest.

Sara Cagle is a Thrillist contributor.
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