The first day of spring is less than a week away. If you’ve held tight to your New Year’s resolutions, congrats, if not then it might be time to start thinking about getting a jumpstart on that warm-weather bikini bod. To take some of the stress out of planning and preparing a low-calorie dining plan, Veestro, a new meal delivery service, offers an entire menu of vegan, organic and all natural foods to help you eat cleaner and healthier. We tried the program to see how it stacked up against other pre-packaged diet services, and to see if vegan options could really give us the same feeling of satisfaction as our late-night Seamless orders.
Founded by brother and sister team Mark Fachler and Monica Klausner, Veestro was designed after the two failed to find the kind of whole-food, plant-based diet they had grown up with in Costa Rica, in the US. Partnering with a master chef who specializes in vegan and vegetarian cuisine, they created a meal program that would offer fresh, delicious food with a focus on weight loss and health. “We believe that food has to be delicious; it is much easier to adjust the nutrition in a meal than it is to create something delicious out of nutritional requirements,” Monica Klausner told JustLuxe. “So our development starts with our chef’s creativity and so far, it has proven to be very successful.”
Working with independent nutritionists and dieticians to develop and refine the program, Veestro offers a huge number of options for those looking for a healthier lifestyle. Plans include juice cleanses, 21-day Kickstarts, a multitude of weight loss programs, gluten-free, high-protein and low-calorie selections, all comprised of clean, organic and vegan ingredients. All of these are delivered to your door in under four days (ours were delivered in only two) and come in standard frozen-dinner packages, tightly stored in dry ice to maintain their freshness. “A whole-food, plant-based lifestyle is the optimal nutrition profile because it provides the body with nutrient-dense fuel without the addition of processed or chemically enhanced ingredients” Klausner explained. “There are also benefits to eating organic, one of which is the absence of pesticides and chemicals that can wreak havoc in one’s system. When the body is ‘fed’ properly, it is able to let go of all the ‘extras’ it has been hanging onto, and that is when you experience weight loss.”
As it takes 21 days to form a new habit, their 21-day Kickstart plans are intended to help customers new to clean eating, ease into the program. For those who prefer to jump right into weight loss, three different plans are available depending on how you want to customize your diet. “Our weight loss programs were created to be the ‘anti-diet’; by providing the flexibility to decide which meal to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner, our customers can feel like they’re in control of what they eat, and are able to enjoy delicious meals that are filling and tasty yet are low in calories and free of trans fats,” she said. Each weight loss plan is all natural with no cholesterol, no GMOs, preservative-free, dairy-free and comes with a gluten-free option. For those with allergies, keep in mind the production facility does contain wheat, soy, nuts, seeds and vegan sugar, but each meal contains specific icons showing which foods are suitable for which particular diet.
Going from cheeseburgers to quinoa salad might seem like a big jump for some, but Veestro prides themselves on making dishes that even meat eaters will love. “Our chef is always coming up with new recipes and he loves to play with seasonal items,” Klausner explained. “The process is very interesting because the recipes change quite a bit from ‘creation’ to actually landing on the menu based on nutritional and taste profile, and customer feedback. Our recipes go through a few steps before they actually make it onto the menu, including a ‘testing’ period where we send the meal to a group of customers and request feedback.” Unfortunately we were not allowed to pick specific dishes to sample, but what we were given was surprisingly good. We tried a breakfast burrito with black beans and salsa, and a golden chickpea stew which we loved. Their green juices are great, filling and come in just the right portion size. The only thing we didn’t like was the kale and quinoa salad, but to be honest, we aren’t fans of kale to begin with. Overall they had great flavor, especially for being frozen, pre-prepared foods, and were infinitely better than any late-night pizza delivery we’ve had.
Veestro ships nationally and is available online. Meal packages start at $99 for the starter pack.