Freshly intros plant-based items

Meal-kit service rolled out its first-ever own-brand plant-based meal line.

As consumers look for more options that combine healthy and convenient meals, prepared meal delivery company Freshly Inc. has launched its first-ever plant-based line, consisting of six new Purely Plant meals featuring plant proteins made with clean, whole-food ingredients.

More than half of U.S. households now buy plant-based foods. According to information released by the Plant Based Foods Association and The Good Food Institute, retail sales in this category continued to climb by double digits last year, increasing 27% to $7 billion. Plus, with 65% of Freshly customers self-identifying as flexitarians, the desire to incorporate more plant-based foods into weekly meal plans has skyrocketed.

"We're thrilled to provide our customers with a convenient way to incorporate minimally processed plant-based meals into their routines," said Mike Wystrach, Freshly founder and CEO. "We recognize that it can be challenging to eat a more plant-based diet without sacrificing on taste, but with the launch of Freshly's Purely Plant, we're laser-focused on delivering a variety of delicious, convenient and better-for-you meal options, while also supporting flexitarians looking to make simple changes towards a more plant-based lifestyle."

Offering a mix of plant-based twists on classic comfort foods and globally inspired cuisine, Freshly's proprietary plant protein blends include its signature Rainbow Harvest Plant-Based Burger and Purely Plant Crumble, both crafted using clean, one-ingredient pea protein blended with fiber-rich vegetables, legumes, seeds, pulses and whole grains. Meals can be heated and served in three minutes, with no prep required.

The Purely Plant menu consists of:

  • Rainbow Harvest Plant-Based Burger with Sticky Carrot Jam & Summer Veggie Sauté: This plant burger is packed with seven veggies, spiced lentils, creamy avocado and quinoa for plant protein.
  • Unwrapped Salsa Verde Burrito with Purely Plant Crumbles: Using tangy salsa verde, brown rice and red pepper-spiced plant crumbles, Freshly's chefs have created a hearty burrito — minus the tortilla.
  • Indian-Spiced Chickpea Curry Bowl with Basmati Rice, Lentils & Veggies: Turmeric-tinged, Indian-spiced coconut curry with tomato, cauliflower, potato, and plant protein from chickpeas and lentils.
  • Farmstead Veggie Baked Pasta with Seasonal Veggies & Creamy Marinara:  Dairy- and gluten-free, this dish is made with brown rice and lentil macaroni, veggies, and creamy marinara featuring coconut milk.
  • Buffalo Cauliflower Mac & Cheeze with Garlicky Broccoli: This dairy-free, plant-powered mac is made with a sauce of tahini, nutritional yeast, almond-cashew butter and hot sauce. 
  • Middle Eastern Falafel Bowl with Garlicky Tahini Sauce & Whole Grains: Golden and saucy, these falafels feature fiber and herbs, and come paired with peppers and a protein-packed blend of lentils, quinoa, and brown and wild rice.

Freshly is focused on increasing variety with menu innovation beyond its signature single-serve microwavable meals. It recently launched multiserve Proteins & Sides, and the company will be expanding offerings this year with new meal formats and solutions for additional dayparts.

Freshly was acquired by Arlington, Va.-based Nestlé USA in 2020. The deal valued Freshly at $950 million, with potential earnouts up to $550 million contingent to the successful growth of the business. This year, the New York-based company revealed the 2022 openings of additional facilities in New Jersey and Georgia to increase production and order fulfillment capacity. Today Freshly ships more than 1 million meals per week to customers in 48 states.