16 of the UK’s Best Food Delivery Boxes and Subscription Services

Your weekly food haul probably looks a little different of late (no) thanks to panic-buying, stockpiling and gold-dust supermarket delivery slots. As big brands such as Morrisons and M&S jump on the delivery-box bandwagon, we're spotlighting the independents offering farm-to-fork fare, restaurant-quality recipes and feel-good pantry provisions.

Stay home, eat well: fresh produce, recipe bundles and indulgent treats straight to your door

Carousel

The doyennes of culinary creativity at Marylebone's Carousel are bringing their rotating roster of global chefs to your doorstep this summer via a snazzy delivery service. Running the gamut from Mexico to Asia via the Med and with a pit-stop in the US, its parcels of colourful ingredients and nearly-constructed dishes will arrive at your door, ready for you to add the finishing touches then pass it off as your own. We were pretty blown away by the standard here and can't think of a better way to spend date night. Easiest brownie points we've ever earned, thanks Carousel.

What's in the box? Everything you need to make a multi-course restaurant-standard meal for two

Cost: £30

Delivery: Marylebone, Fitzrovia, Mayfair, Bayswater, Paddington, Notting Hill, Soho and Covent Garden

Mobile Newt

Bring a taste of the hotel home with The Newt's debut mobile delivery service. Reaping the bounty of its sprawling grounds, it encourages shoppers to fill their virtual baskets with produce from the gardens, bakery, butchery, creamery and, most importantly, its on-site cyder press. We've filled ours to the brim with loaves of sourdough - to show off on social - foraged wild garlic pesto, a punnet of strawberries and the meatiest sirloin steaks we've ever seen. Plus a crate of its new Fine Rosé Cyder, obviously.

What's in the box? Everything from picnic rations to pantry supplies - forget queuing up for your local supermarket, The Newt will deliver everything you need.

Cost: Minimum order £35

Delivery: BA, DT9, DT10, SP7, SP8 and TA11. All London boroughs and the City.

Chelsea Farm

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, it took two friends (and founders of B Bagel) living on Fulham Road just one week to get Chelsea Farm up and running. This delivery box service is designed to feed its West London customers with quality, seasonal, organic produce that makes them feel as good as the food tastes - farmers are paid fairly, minimal packaging is used and five per cent of the profits from each purchase goes towards supporting the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital charity, CW+.

What's in the box? Fresh fruit and veg, B Bagel baked goods, eggs and store-cupboard essentials

Cost: From £28

Delivery: London, within 5km of Fulham Road

Pasta Evangelists

Dried penne is as rare as hen's teeth on supermarket shelves. Wholewheat spaghetti? Forget it. No worries, however. Thanks to Pasta Evangelists, you can prepare the kind of dishes that would get an Italian nonna's seal of approval in as little as five minutes. Choose from a weekly menu - think: beef and truffle tortellini or pumpkin lasagne with sage bechamel - and it will arrive through your letterbox. No human contact required. Gluten-free options are available and £5 is donated to Age UK for every box sold.

What's in the box: Pasta, sauces and garnishes

Cost: From £7.20

Delivery: UK

Feed Britain

Restaurant chain Leon has temporarily closed all but 12 of its restaurants, 11 of which have been converted into mini supermarkets. Another five of its kitchens are dedicated to serving NHS workers. As part of the Feed Britain initiative, it's started an online delivery service of essential food boxes and ready meals - 100 per cent of the profits are donated to FeedNHS which provides hot, healthy meals for critical care workers.

What's in the box: Basic pantry items, fresh produce and ready meals

Cost: From £22.50

Delivery: Within the M25, with plans to expand

Pale Green Dot

Pale Green Dot usually supplies sustainably grown, seasonal produce to the South East's finest restaurants, so you know this is the good stuff. With many closed for the foreseeable, it's supporting suppliers by bringing their bounty of fruit and veg to our doorsteps instead. The Essential Fresh Produce Box is a potluck of root veg, greens, nightshades and local fruit, but there's an option to throw in a few staples - milk, eggs, bread - too.

What's in the box: Fresh fruit and veg

Cost: From £12.50

Delivery: London and East Sussex

Abel & Cole

The UK is the garden of Eden when it comes to great veg boxes, having borne food-waste fighters Oddbox and Riverford, purveyors of organic veggies. Due to high demand during the COVID-19 pandemic, many such businesses are having to limit new customers. Abel & Cole is among our favourites thanks to its affordable field-to-fork produce, award-winning eggs, pantry provisions, household products and recipe bundles in low-waste packaging.

What's in the box: Produce, pantry staples and recipe bundles

Cost: From £12

Delivery: UK mainland

Paxton & Whitfield

We're not sure if man can live on cheese alone, but we're willing to give it a shot. With 200 years in the cheesemonger business and two royal warrants, there's not much that Paxton & Whitfield doesn't know about its curds. Order the British Essentials Box for "artisan cheese staples" or join its Cheese Club to receive four bougie blocks every month.

What's in the box: Artisan cheese

Cost: British Essentials Box, £35

Delivery: UK mainland

Clos19

When it's hard to distinguish what day of the week it is, we say: every day is wine Friday. Stockpiling may be a no-no, but with a healthy cellar (read: drinks cupboard) you can indulge in a little home hedonism. Clos19 is the arbiter of good tipples, sourcing rare spirits, vintage champagnes and sniffing out the wines that will keep oenophiles happy until lockdown ends.

What's in the box: Champagne, wine and spirits

Cost: Terrazas de Los Andes Malbec 2015, case of six, £85

Delivery: UK mainland, the Isle of Man and Northern Ireland

The Ginger Pig Chop Shop

The Ginger Pig started life as a guy in Nottinghamshire with three Tamworth pigs (named Milly, Molly and Mandy) and a market stall in London. Today, this ethical butcher has the whole hog: a Yorkshire farm, eight shops in the capital and a home-delivery service. Order rare-breed, grass-fed sirloin for date night, neck-end lamb chops or those sausage rolls (if you know, you know) as well as cuts you wouldn't find in the supermarket.

What's in the box: Prime butcher's cuts

Cost: £19.65 for two 250g sirloin steaks; £8.75 for 500g back bacon

Delivery: UK mainland

Allplants

As you may have guessed from its name, this food-delivery service deals with nothing but plants. Its hand-prepared rainbow of microwave- and oven-ready meals have been frozen to lock in nutrition while all packaging used is recyclable, compostable or reusable. Make your sustainability halo shine even brighter by returning your cardboard packaging to Allplants through Collect+. We love the barbeque jackfruit burrito bowl and mushroom carbonara.

What's in the box: Ready-made, vegan meals

Cost: From £40.50 for 6 meals

Delivery: UK mainland

Hobbs House Bakery

Do you know what's the best thing since sliced bread? Bread through your letterbox. Kind of. This b-corp bakery ships freshly baked loaves, sourdough-making essentials, hot-cross buns, vegan brioche rolls and the like. Bread keeps well in the freezer, so none should go to waste and there are monthly subscriptions for sweet treats. Let them eat cake!

What's in the box: Bread and bread-making supplies

Cost: Organic Bread Box, £17.05; Sourdough starter, £15

Delivery: UK mainland

Petersham Nurseries

While Richmond's epicurean mecca is closed for dining, it's treating locked-down West Londoners a one-stop, don't-leave-the-house alternative to supermarkets. The order form is the online equivalent of stumbling into a gourmand's pantry, featuring organic fare from Haye Farm, Italian plonk from the Petersham cellar and the pasta you can't find elsewhere. Not in the catchment area? A (socially distanced) collection service is also available.

What's in the box: Meat, seasonal produce and store-cupboard essentials (including wine)

Cost: From £30

Delivery: West London

Strazzanti & Friends

Marrying her experience in Michelin-starred restaurants and her grandfather's provincial Italian kitchen, Sicilian chef Emilia Strazzanti knows how to throw a feast - and you can too thanks to Il Piccolo Pacchetto (the little parcel). Imbibe flavours of the sun-drenched isle with prepared antipasti, ingredients to cook a traditional pasta dish and Strazzanti's signature cakes. Optional add-ons include Hackney Coffee Co. ground beans and a floral bouquet.

What's in the box: Sicilian menus and recipe parcels

Cost: From £38

Delivery: London

Orwells Community Shop

While they're shut, many restaurants are getting creative in a bid to stay afloat and support their local communities. One doing a stellar job is Orwells Restaurant turned Orwells Community Shop, which is shipping three-course Sunday roasts ready to eat as well as a roll-call of delicious essentials that range from house-made wild garlic focaccia to Rude Health coconut milk, Kit-Kats to rosé.

What's in the box: Restaurant-quality ready meals and kitchen basics

Cost: Three-course Sunday roast, £25

Delivery: Henley-on-Thames

SpiceBox

This vegan curry house comes with the seal of approval from the Young British Foodies and the London Curry Awards, and its tarka dhal has been crowned Britain's best. A strong order from here includes loaded bhaji, chana chaat, jackfruit jalfrezi and shroom keema - oh, and a pickle tray on the side too. When lockdown is lifted, join its tiffin club, which cuts down on packaging by letting you have your reusable box refilled with the set menu.

What's in the box: Ready-to-eat vegan curries

Cost: Tarka Dhal Special, £7.25

Delivery: Walthamstow

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