March 18, 2024

TF #039: Elevate Your Meal Delivery Game: Innovative Add-Ons That Customers Love

TF #039: Elevate Your Meal Delivery Game: Innovative Add-Ons That Customers Love

Elevate Your Meal Delivery Game: Innovative Add-Ons That Customers Love

The meal delivery landscape is changing fast, adapting to consumer demands—which, thanks to the seemingly endless options available, are now sky-high. To ensure you’re staying competitive, it’s important to keep pace with what your customers are looking for—what you can offer to make their lives easier and even more delicious.  

A good place to start? Strategically selecting mealtime add-ons. Offering convenient and relevant add-ons can enhance the customer experience and significantly boost sales. From desserts to protein upgrades, the right add-ons can make your heat-and-eat meal subscriptions irresistible. Here’s how to leverage these opportunities for increased revenue and customer satisfaction.

  1. Understanding the Appeal of Add-Ons

Add-ons serve multiple purposes: they offer customers a way to customize their meals, increase their perceived value, and enhance the overall dining experience—all from the comfort of their homes. For heat-and-eat businesses, add-ons can increase the average order value without significantly raising operational costs. The key is selecting add-ons that are easy to prepare, package, and deliver, ensuring they complement your main offerings.

  1. Desserts: The Sweet Spot of Add-Ons

Desserts are a classic add-on that appeals to a broad customer base. Offering a selection of pre-made, easy-to-serve desserts such as brownies, cookies, or cheesecakes can be a simple yet effective way to increase order sizes. For a more sophisticated touch, consider partnering with local bakeries to offer artisanal desserts, adding a unique selling point to your service.

  1. Side Dishes: Enhancing Meal Satisfaction

Expanding your menu to include a variety of side dishes allows customers to build a full dining experience. Options like gourmet mac and cheese, roasted seasonal vegetables, or a premium salad mix are popular choices that complement main dishes. Additionally, offering a range of side dishes caters to different dietary preferences and restrictions, making your service more inclusive.

  1. Soup and Bread: Comfort in a Bowl

Soups and bread can be an excellent add-on, especially in colder months, or as comfort food options. Offering a rotating selection of soups can keep the menu exciting and encourage repeat orders. Pairing these with artisanal bread or rolls sourced from local bakeries elevates the dining experience further.

  1. Protein Upgrades: Customizable Luxury

Protein upgrades allow customers to tailor their meals to their preferences or dietary needs. Offering options to swap proteins (e.g., chicken for steak) or add additional proteins (e.g., shrimp to a steak dish for a surf-and-turf meal) can significantly increase the perceived value of a meal and offer easy opportunities for upsells. 

  1. Health and Wellness Boosters

With a growing focus on health and wellness, adding options like protein packs, energy balls, or vitamin-rich smoothies can attract health-conscious customers. These items can be pre-made and easily added to any order, serving as a convenient way for customers to enhance their nutritional intake.

  1. Seasonal and Themed Add-Ons

Seasonal add-ons, such as pumpkin spice desserts in fall or fresh berry compotes in summer, can create excitement and encourage customers to order to experience these limited-time offerings. Similarly, themed add-ons around holidays or events (e.g., heart-shaped chocolates for Valentine’s Day) can boost sales during specific times of the year.

  1. Beverage Pairings

Curated beverage pairings, artisanal sodas, craft beers, or boutique wines can complement the dining experience. While alcohol licensing may be required for some options, non-alcoholic pairings like gourmet teas or coffee can also be popular. Offering suggestions for pairing beverages with specific meals can enhance the customer’s enjoyment and encourage add-on sales.

  1. DIY Kits for Kids

Engaging younger customers with DIY meal kits, such as build-your-own pizza or taco kits, can be a fun family activity that adds value to your offerings. These kits can include all the necessary ingredients and simple instructions, making them an attractive option for families looking for convenient meal solutions.

  1. Packaging and Presentation

The success of add-ons also depends on their packaging and presentation. Ensure that the packaging is functional, preserving the integrity and temperature of the food, and also visually appealing. Branded packaging can enhance the unboxing experience, making your meals feel more like a treat and less like a convenience.

  1. Marketing Your Add-Ons

Effectively marketing your add-ons is crucial. Highlighting these items’ convenience, taste, or health benefits on your website, social media, and email marketing can entice customers to try them. Offering limited-time promotions or bundling add-ons with popular dishes at a discounted rate can also encourage customers to explore these options.


Incorporating add-ons into your heat-and-eat meal delivery service offers a strategic way to increase revenue and enhance customer satisfaction. You can create a more versatile and appealing menu by carefully selecting add-ons that complement your main dishes, are easy to prepare and deliver, and cater to various customer preferences.  

Remember, the goal is to sell more and provide additional value that enhances the dining experience, encouraging repeat business and positive word-of-mouth. With the right approach, add-ons can be a powerful tool in your business strategy, driving growth and success in the competitive meal delivery landscape.

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