Hello, September: that sweet, sepia-toned season of apple picking, chunky sweaters, pumpkin spice. And school. And weekend-long sports tournaments upstate. And summer’s over meetings (in Houston), and the resulting projects and deadlines… fall can feel like a lot.
Nationwide, meal-prep delivery services are a fast-growing segment of the food industry. Long Island entrepreneurs have launched dozens of businesses promising healthy diets and nutrition, delivering ready-to-eat food that spares you the trouble of recipe-searching and grocery shopping, dishwashing and dealing with leftovers. Some cater to people following niche diets, others promise local ingredients, zero-waste and low food-miles. Regardless of your food priorities, there’s a clear appeal to having fresh, healthy meals delivered to your doorstep or ready to pickup and power you through the week.
HummusFit began as a side-hustle in 2015 when Liana Mavruk — a nutritionist and sometime bodybuilder — started making meals for her gym friends out of her Holbrook restaurant, Hummus Mediterranean Kitchen. Seven years later, the business has grown to include five Suffolk County storefronts, and the Mavruk family plans to open two more this fall, co-owner Tony Mavruk said.
ON THE MENU Plates include General Tso’s chicken, teriyaki flank steak and banana-chip protein pancakes. On the HummusFit website, customers can select meals filtered by ingredient, diet, or body goal (bulk muscle; lose weight), and nutrition facts are posted. It’s all tailor-made for fitness training, although Tony Mavruk said the mission goes beyond feeding athletes and gym rats.
WHAT IT COSTS $10 individual meals, proteins and sides $5-$17 per pound.
GET IT Home delivery or pick up at locations in Ronkonkoma, Deer Park, Lindenhurst, Holbrook and Selden.
MORE INFO 631-615-2202, myhummusfit.com
In 2016, longtime friends and then-Stony Brook University undergrads Mark Ciaburri and Matthew Riss started slinging healthy eats to hungry athletes at regional college sports tournaments. A year later, they were feeding Stony Brook’s entire athletics roster. From there, they expanded to Hofstra, then to local gyms. These days, the company has seven storefronts and delivers meals to Orange Theory Fitness and Unique Fitness locations. The company prepares 20,000 meals weekly, vice president Jessica Fallica said.
ON THE MENU Penne alla vodka with grilled shrimp, Mongolian beef and Thai peanut chicken are among the entrees. Other picks include overnight oats with cookies and cream or shortbreads and strawberries.
WHAT IT COSTS $6-$11 per meal; packages of 7-20 meals are $75-$190
GET IT Pick up at stores in Babylon, Bellmore, Commack, Holbrook, Lake Grove, Port Jefferson and Syosset or arrange home/gym delivery.
MORE INFO 631-800-8199, redefinemeals.com
Eat Better Meals
In 2015, Eat Better Meals prepares and ships thousands of fresh, healthy, “farm-to-table rustic” meals each week from its commercial kitchen in Farmingdale.
ON THE MENU Ingredients come from Long Island purveyors — meats from the Port Washington Meat Center, regional fruits and veggies from Al’s Produce in Westbury — and chef Alex Schindler spins them into plates such as baked salmon cakes with arugula, corn and farro; cool tomato gazpacho; Spice-rubbed Jerk chicken with braised cabbage, Jamaican peppers and dirty brown rice.
WHAT IT COSTS $4-$13 per meal; weekly meal plans $63.40-$250
DELIVERY Home deliveries are Sundays and Wednesdays in Nassau County and as far east as Mattituck and Westhampton, plus most of Queens.
MORE INFO 516-387-6323; eatbettermeals.com
Fitness-oriented Empire Nutrition began eight years ago as a set of Total Nutrition franchises, but owners Mike Napolitano and Mike Adamcewicz decided to break off on their own.
ON THE MENU Chef Omar Soltan’s regular plates include beefy mac and cheese (think healthy Hamburger Helper); chicken meatballs tossed in Buffalo sauce, and pick-your-protein fajita bowls. New dishes debut regularly — all are labeled with ingredients and nutrition facts, and many can be made low-carb.
WHAT IT COSTS $4-$16 per pound; bundles of 5-25 meals run $55-$240; Smoothies/bowls are $7-$9.50.
GET IT Pickup at Empire’s locations in Bellmore, Garden City, Hicksville, Oceanside and Syosset. Home delivery available on Sundays.
MORE INFO 516-705-5160, empirenutritionli.com
East End chefs Jon Albrecht and Nicolas Reisini send out a new menu each week. Dishes are plant-based, local-farm-fresh, and comply with Melissa Hartwig Urban’s popular Whole30 program, which omits sugars, alcohol, grains, dairy, legumes and many common food additives.
“We provide the restaurant-private chef experience without the restaurant-private chef cost,” Reisini said. The company also operates on a zero-waste model, so each plate is packed in earth-friendly (and pretty) glass containers, which swap out with each delivery.
ON THE MENU Recent options have included crab-stuffed flounder with prosciutto, lemon and herbs; smoky harissa white-bean chili and vegetarian pho.
WHAT IT COSTS $11-$25 per meal
GET IT Pick up on Mondays and Thursdays at 105-5 Montauk Hwy, Hampton Bays; twice-weekly home delivery on the East End.
MORE INFO 631-771- 0910, honestplate.com