Food & Beverage

Thistle Food Delivery Review

About Thistle Food Delivery

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Thistle is a food delivery service that, for the time being, delivers in some parts of California and some parts of six other states on the West Coast.

According to one study[1], our use of food delivery services depends on a lot of things, like the kinds of food available and how pressed for time we are. Bottom line: they make it so much easier to have healthy, freshly-cooked meals, even when we’re too busy to go grocery shopping.

Thistle has 47K followers on Instagram and specializes in bringing plant-based meals, snacks, and juices to those with busy schedules. 

They’ve been featured by media outlets such as TechCrunch, Global Newswire, and Medical News Today. Taking the direct-to-consumer route, the San Francisco-based company has served over 5 million meals to date.

Just a few months ago, they also announced an expansion in the works and planned to add a facility on the East Coast

This Thistle food delivery review will provide an in-depth analysis of the company, the ingredients in their meals, delivery options, how to sign up, pricing, and so much more.

With endless services at your fingertips, we’ll help you decide whether the Thistle menu is right for you.

Overview of Thistle Meals

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Thistle was founded in 2014 by Ashwin Cheryian and Shiri Avnery, with the goal of providing healthy, fulfilling meals to everyone through eco-conscious ways.

Sustainability is critical to Thistle’s business philosophy. Using organic, locally sourced produce is one of their top goals—along with delivering it to you fast and fresh. 

But it’s not just about the food being pure. Thistle also takes a scientific approach[2] to their plans by matching vegetables to deliver optimized nutrients.

All of Thistle’s meals are dairy-free, created with in-house creams, butter, milk, and cheese made from plants and nuts. This is one way to introduce good fats into your diet, working wonders on hormone and blood sugar levels.While the company has admirable goals, they still have a lot of growth to do.

This Thistle food delivery review will cover some of the brand’s highlights below.

Highlights

  • A variety of gluten-free, dairy-free, and mostly organic meals 
  • Many Thistle vegan meal delivery options also available
  • Meat substitutes offered for most meals 
  • Plans are being constantly updated with new menu items 
  • Thistle provides transparency on all of its ingredients 
  • Environmentally sustainable practices (produce is sourced from high-quality local farmers) 
  • Easily cancel anytime 
  • Free shipping and delivery 

How Does Thistle Work?

Thistle Food Delivery Review

The Thistle meal delivery system designs, prepares, and ships meals to both individuals and businesses. Thistle meals are innovated each week, with new items regularly being added to their menu. This makes them a unique option among similar services in the area. 

You can personalize meal plans at any time, turning that Thistle salad delivery into something else for next week, as long as you tell them in advance.

If you’re not a fan—no problem. You can easily pause or cancel your subscription whenever you want. Additionally, shipping and delivery are both free.

If you live in San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Las Vegas, Sacramento, North Bay, or Davis, then Thistle qualifies you as a local customer and delivers meals to you with ice packs, to keep them fresh. 

Thistle delivery times are either Monday or Thursday mornings, but they can also occur on Sunday and Wednesday evenings. You can also select time windows and the days you want your delivery to arrive. 

This Thistle food delivery review found 10 meal subscription options for you to choose from:

  1. Vegan Lunch delivered 3 days of the week
  2. Vegan Dinner delivered 3 days of the week
  3. Vegan Lunch delivered 5 days of the week
  4. Vegan Dinner delivered 6 days of the week
  5. Omnivore Lunch delivered 5 days of the week
  6. Omnivore Dinner delivered 6 days of the week
  7. Vegan Lunch + Dinner delivered 5 days of the week
  8. Omnivore Lunch + Dinner delivered 5 days of the week
  9. Full-Day delivered 6 days of the week
  10. Full-Day Omnivore delivered 6 days of the week

Customers elsewhere in California, as well as in areas of Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Washington, and Utah, can have their meals shipped to them, albeit with less scheduling and meal customization. 

In that case, a Thistle meal prep delivery box will show up at your door no later than 8 PM on either Monday or Thursday, and you will also receive a tracking number in advance.  

If you are outside the Thistle delivery range but want a shipment, you can choose from these options:

  1. Essentials Box delivered once per week
  2. Enhanced Box delivered once per week
  3. Cold-Pressed Juice Box delivered once per week
  4. Lite Bites Box delivered once per week

Are Thistle Meals Organic?

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Thistle tries their best to be organic. But tot all of their produce is, however, and they keep the exact amount a mystery. This Thistle food delivery review wishes the company offered more information on the broad scope of what is organic and what is not.

But, to be fair, that number may be in flux, due to ongoing partnerships with local farmers.

Where does Thistle deliver?

Thistle Food Delivery Review

At the time of this Thistle food delivery review, the company is operational in most of San Francisco and Los Angeles.

They also say, on their website, that they ship their meals to parts of California and also to some areas in Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Washington, and Utah. So if you’re in the Golden State, you are almost certainly able to receive a Thistle delivery or shipment.

Thistle Meal Plans Review

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Thistle describes themselves as “Somewhere between a start-up and a farm-to-table joint.” As mentioned earlier, their team of food industry veterans refreshes the menu weekly. The wonderful thing about Thistle food is that they post their weekly meal lineups well in advance.

Right now, you can go to their website and find the details for each dish in the lineup, including reviews, all of the ingredients, meat versus vegan varieties, and the complete nutritional breakdown. Unlike most brands, Thistle also gives full disclosure of what you’re putting into your body. We give them big kudos for that.

Our Favorites from the Menu

Thistle Food Delivery Review

This Thistle food delivery review went through the menu and picked out our favorite 4 meals. This section breaks down the ingredients, nutritional information, and experience of each one. Let’s start with some fun dietary facts.

Fiber is famous for keeping our bowels healthy. However, fiber can’t be broken down into sugar molecules like other proteins, so it passes through the body undigested. Clinical studies[3] show that dietary fiber is great for avoiding countless chronic illnesses.

Speaking of which, regular proteins[4] have a lot of important roles in the body, like maintaining our muscle tissue and coordinating our bodily functions (the job no one wants).

Sodium is labeled for those who have heart conditions[5] but serves as an essential electrolyte that helps maintain blood pressure and regulate fluid balance in the body.

Carbs[6], short for carbohydrates, are more than just a buzzword; they’re a crucial source of energy for our bodies! They get digested into simple sugars that are then absorbed into the bloodstream. Fats[7] are another fuel source that go into storage for our brain to release later. 

In recent years, nutritionists have changed their tune about including fat in your diet. It’s mostly saturated fat[8] you should be careful with, which can raise your LDL cholesterol (the kind of cholesterol associated with heart disease).

Finally, calories are the amount of energy contained in your food. Research shows that calories from healthy fats[9] (i.e. the quality calories that Thistle provides) are better than processed carbohydrates.

Okay, the science lesson is over! Let’s explore the tasty applications of these nutrients on Thistle’s menu.

Pineapple Pachadi Curry Bowl

The protein option in this meal is tofu infused with a variety of spices, including turmeric, which has anti-inflammatory properties. Cauliflower, bell peppers, onion, cinnamon, and pineapple (of course) are among the other key ingredients. 

This meal option comes with a shock of curry flavor and deliciously creamy coconut raita. The meat variety comes with curry chicken instead of tofu.

  • Fibers: 11g
  • Sugar: 17g (zero added sugar)
  • Protein: 19g
  • Carbs: 47g
  • Sodium: 502mg
  • Fat: 16g
  • Saturated fat: 3g
  • Calories: 386

Enchilada Bake

There’s nothing like a good enchilada. It’s quality comfort food, but without the guilt and regret. It comes with a healthy, albeit a bit boring, cabbage salad. The lime and cilantro add a good kick to the meal. 

Pinto beans contribute as the protein of this meal in the vegan option, while pulled chicken fills the role if you get the meat option. Either way, you will also get jalapenos, apple cider vinegar, nutritional yeast, sunflower butter, and much more.

  • Fibers: 10g
  • Sugar: 7g (zero added sugar)
  • Protein: 41g
  • Carbs: 41g
  • Sodium: 890mg
  • Fat: 22g
  • Saturated fat: 3g
  • Calories: 516

Artichoke Scampi

It’s a fact that garlic is delicious and good for your digestive tract. Combined with artichoke and parsley + chili pepper flavor and green peas, you just can’t say no.

Garlic-coated brussels bring substance to this meal for vegans, while meat-eaters will get wild shrimp. Other key ingredients include spinach, sunflower oil, and onions.

  • Fibers: 16
  • Sugar: 10g (zero added sugar)
  • Protein: 21g
  • Carbs: 52g
  • Sodium: 553mg
  • Fat: 9g
  • Saturated fat: 1g
  • Calories: 338

Vanilla Mousse with Apricots

This is one of Thistle‘s new snack options. The base is cheesecake with vanilla and apricot, combined with oats and shortbread made from coconuts, bring a dynamic taste to the whole meal. The maple syrup helps, too.

  • Fibers: 4g
  • Sugar: 29g (zero added sugar)
  • Protein: 7g
  • Carbs: 45g
  • Sodium: 87mg
  • Fat: 23g
  • Saturated fat: 18g
  • Calories: 403

How Much is Thistle?

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Thistle pricing varies depending on where you’re ordering from and (obviously) which meal plan you order. This Thistle food delivery used an address 30 minutes outside San Francisco to find the following prices for 10 meal plans.

  • Vegan Lunch for 3 days: $44 per week
  • Vegan Dinner for 3 days: $44 per week
  • Vegan Lunch for 5 days:  $70 per week
  • Vegan Dinner for 6 days: $84 per week
  • Omnivore Lunch for 5 days: $81.25 per week
  • Omnivore Dinner for 6 days: $98 per week
  • Vegan Lunch + Dinner for 5 days: $125 per week
  • Omnivore Lunch + Dinner for 5 days: $148 per week
  • Full-Day for 6 days: $207 per week
  • Full-Day Omnivore for 6 days: $234 per week

If you live in Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Washington, and Utah, then Thistle may or may not be able to ship you a meal box. They offer 4 meal boxes for long-distance shipment.

  • Lite Bites Box: 4 salads, 2 snacks, and 4 soups: $76 per box
  • Enhanced Box: 2 snacks, 2 breakfast meals, 2 dinners, and 2 lunches: $96 per box
  • Cold-Pressed Juice Box: 3 nutritional shots and 6 unique Thistle juices: $60 per box
  • Essentials Box: 2 breakfast meals, 2 dinners, and 2 lunches: $84 per box

Thistle Reviews: What Do Customers Think?

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Customers are really fond of Thistle. Compared to nation-wide meal delivery services, they are small and on the come-up. Yet, they still have tens of thousands of 5-star reviews across multiple websites. 

This Thistle food delivery review went through them, along with critical feedback. On Trustpilot, they have a 4/5 star average from 179 reviews.

Customers were impressed with the exciting feature of seeing new offerings in the menu lineup every week, and the delicious taste as well. 

It has some excellent options for vegans and vegetarians. One subscriber wrote:

I am amazed at how happy I am with Thistle. Having tried other meal delivery services, this is an elevated and satisfying experience in every way, while other services were just awful. I look forward every couple of days to the next delivery. Thistle has changed our lifestyle for the better.” 

389 mixed Yelp reviewers left an average of 4.5/5 stars. While Thistle scored points for their great variety of meals again, some customers believe that their options are overpriced.

One helpful testimonial shares that while there are little to no problems with the food, the deliveries can be unpredictable at times: 

“Overall my experience with Thistle has been good. I like the variety of vegan salads and breakfast options. I had a few minor mishaps, late delivery, leaking ice, hole in the bag. I wish they didn’t put onions especially red onions in so many salads or I would order more.  The food has been fresh, and I like the convenience.”

For those who browse Reddit threads frequently, some comments discuss the brand’s healthy meal plans[10].

However, there are also complaints about excessive plastic packaging (going against the mission for sustainability), and the fact that the food is priced too steeply for simple ingredients. 

One user brought the delivery times to this Thistle food delivery review’s attention, “The app is relatively user friendly. However the late-night delivery is weird (they quoted 3 am for my area, mine arrived at 10:30 pm and got left on the porch until this morning).” 

Is Thistle Subscription Worth It?

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Thistle is a great option for anyone in California, and it might be an even better option if you’re in Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Washington, or Utah.

Many subscribers appreciated the wide range of dishes and the appetizing flavors. Their meal options are usually better-priced than their competitors, and they also beat out the competition with easily accessible nutritional information.

So… Yes! A Thistle subscription is worth the try.

Thistle Promotions & Discounts

Thistle Food Delivery Review

This Thistle food delivery review was unable to find any promotions or discounts. There is also no Thistle free trial offered at this time. As a growing company, they might not yet have the resources to offer regular sales. 

Keep an eye on their website, Thistle.co, and their Instagram for special offers—but the best way to stay in the loop is by signing up for their mailing list.

How to Sign up for a Thistle Meal Delivery Subscription

Thistle Food Delivery Review

Signing up for Thistle is a simple process. For your convenience, this Thistle food delivery review created a list of the steps necessary for joining and getting their delicious meals to you ASAP.

  1. Go to Thistle.co and click “Get Started Now”
  2. Enter your ZIP code, so that Thistle knows which kind of service they can provide you
  3. Select one of the meal delivery or shipment options
  4. Enter your standard contact details, including your delivery address
  5. Inform Thistle about allergies
  6. Confirm your order

FAQ

Thistle Food Delivery Review

What is Thistle food?

Thistle food is mostly vegan and plant-based, but they also offer 4 meal plans for your week that have meat in them. Whichever meal you choose, know that Thistle does everything they can to ensure the ingredients are organic, fresh, and produced locally.

How much does Thistle cost?

This Thistle food delivery found that the cost depends on where you are located, and which meal plans you order. Your weekly cost could range from $44 per week for the 3-day Vegan Lunch plan to as much as $234 for the 6-day Full Day Omnivore Plan.

How do I cancel my Thistle subscription?

You can cancel a subscription at any time, as there is no commitment. Follow these easy steps to call it quits: 

  1. Access your account on the official Thistle website
  2. Click the “Cancel” button, then confirm the cancellation
  3. Remember to do so no later than Thursday at 11:50 PM, in order for it to apply to the following week

Some customers reported difficulty with canceling their subscription through Thistle’s website, in which case you are encouraged to contact customer support.

What is Thistle’s Shipping Policy?

The company’s policies are a little bit different than other similar services because they offer both delivery and shipping options.

The Thistle delivery area is limited to California, so those residing outside of this sunny state will have to settle for a meal shipment (only available in regions of 6 other states).

This Thistle food delivery review put together the following list for you to use as a reference.

Delivery

  • You can choose your meal delivery time slot during Monday/ Thursday mornings or Sunday/ Wednesday evenings
  • Available for customers in San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, Las Vegas, Sacramento, North Bay, Orange County, and Davis
  • Meals either dropped off at the door or handed to you
  • Ice packs keep your food fresh
  • 10 meal plans available
  • You can pick and choose your meals
  • Free delivery

Shipping

  • You cannot choose your meal delivery time slot, but meals will arrive on Monday or Thursday, no later than 8 PM
  • Available for customers in California and in some areas of Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Washington, and Utah
  • Your weekly meal shipment arrives in a refrigerated container
  • 4 meal boxes available
  • You cannot make any changes to your box once an order has been placed
  • Free shipping (tracking number provided by onTrac)

What is Thistle’s Return Policy?

It shouldn’t surprise you to hear that you cannot return Thistle‘s meals. The meals are perishable, and it wouldn’t be possible or safe for them to be reused. It’s not really a deal-breaker, because you can easily cancel your subscription.

In case you’ve received the wrong order or if there’s a problem with the food, contact their customer service directly (details below). 

How to Contact Thistle Customer Service

Thistle Food Delivery Review

For any inquiries beyond this Thistle food delivery review, get in touch with the company via:

  • Phone: 833-837-5662 (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 6 AM–6 PM PST) 
  • Email: [email protected]

Check out other meal delivery brands you may enjoy:

Noom

Factor 75

Blue Apron Weight Watchers

Everytable

Article Sources

[1] Keeble, M., Adams, J., Sacks, G., Vanderlee, L., White, C. M., Hammond, D., & Burgoine, T. Use of Online Food Delivery Services to Order Food Prepared Away-From-Home and Associated Sociodemographic Characteristics: A Cross-Sectional, Multi-Country Analysis MDPI Open Access Journals International journal of environmental research and public health, 17(14), 5190
[2] Voit E. O. Perspective: Dimensions of the scientific method PLoS computational biology, 15(9), e1007279
[3] Lattimer, J. M., & Haub, M. D. Effects of dietary fiber and its components on metabolic health MDPI Open Access Journals Nutrients, 2(12), 1266–1289
[4] Watford, M., & Wu, G. Protein Oxford Academic Advances in nutrition (Bethesda, Md.), 9(5), 651–653
[6] Slavin, J., & Carlson, J. Carbohydrates Oxford Academic Advances in nutrition (Bethesda, Md.), 5(6), 760–761
[7] Jensen M. D. Role of body fat distribution and the metabolic complications of obesity National Library of Medicine The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism, 93(11 Suppl 1), S57–S63
[8] Nettleton, J. A., Brouwer, I. A., Geleijnse, J. M., & Hornstra, G. Saturated Fat Consumption and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease and Ischemic Stroke: A Science Update Karger Annals of nutrition & metabolism, 70(1), 26–33
[9] Osilla EV, Safadi AO, Sharma S. Calories Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing
[10] Ducrot, P., Méjean, C., Aroumougame, V., Ibanez, G., Allès, B., Kesse-Guyot, E., Hercberg, S., & Péneau, S. Meal planning is associated with food variety, diet quality and body weight status in a large sample of French adults The international journal of behavioral nutrition and physical activity, 14(1), 12

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