The Top 4 Mistakes that Meal Takers Make

MARCH 16, 2016  /  MAUREEN WITMER  / 

The Top 4 Mistakes that Meal Takers Make

Whenever I click "sign up" on a TakeThemAMeal meal schedule I have such high hopes for my meal. I imagine a perfectly packaged, complete, healthy dinner that everyone in the family will rave over. I picture myself arriving on their doorstep with everything piping hot and ready to eat, with thoughtful extras in hand. It all goes off without a hitch.

But, in reality, I usually worry about what to make, rush around to get the meal together and out the door on time, and don't do enough planning to bring anything besides the main dish and dessert, if I'm lucky.

In the past 8 years, we at have delivered our share of meals and heard many stories. We've gained a lot of wisdom about what makes for a successful meal delivery. Here are 4 of the biggest mistakes that meal takers make in our experience:

  1. Stressing out! Don't put too much pressure on yourself or your meal. What you're doing to help a friend is a great gift to them and DOES NOT need to be perfect. Some of the best meals I've received are easy family favorites. If taking a meal is very stressful for you, here are some tips for making the process easier. Just try your best. Your friend will appreciate any effort you make.
  2. Choosing the wrong container. Too big, too small, needs to be cleaned and returned, doesn't close properly and spills all over, we've seen it (and done it!) all. Planning ahead can make a big difference. It is a big bummer to the trouble of making a nice meal and then realizing at the last minute that you don't have the right way to transport it. We recommend looking at the serving size on a recipe before choosing your container. Often times you can look at the servings (especially if it says how many cups of soup, etc) and use that to make an informed choice. If you're using a recipe from our recipe section, we've included our container recommendation for each dish on the right side of the page. Deciding how you're going to transport your dishes when you're planning your meal (not when you're about to head out the door) can make the whole process go a lot smoother.
  3. Not doubling the recipe. If you have your own family to feed, why not double the recipe and make enough for you and the person you're taking a meal to? You can alleviate extra work by cooking extra instead of preparing two separate meals.
  4. Ignoring allergies. Food allergies are common on our meal schedules. As someone with a severe food allergy, I can't stress enough the importance of checking and double checking the allergy restrictions on a meal schedule. We have added a field where you can check the box of the allergy or add in your own and it will be highlighted in red on the schedule. If you're not sure about an ingredient ask someone or look it up.

What would you add to this list?

Read other recent articles by Maureen Witmer:

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Adina & Maureen
Adina & Maureen

Welcome! We're thrilled you stopped by. Our own joys and sorrows have taught us that a well-timed meal delivered by a friend is one of the best gifts imaginable. In this space, we share our favorite recipes to take to friends, meal-taking tips, and other ways to care for those who are dear to you.

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