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This meal delivery service is perfect for the disabled

What a Crock makes dinnertime easier for those with limited mobility.

Person pressing button on Instant Pot with finger. Credit: Getty Images / MarioGuti

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Folks who have chronic back pain, arthritis, or dexterity issues will know what I'm saying when I say that cooking can be hard for disabled folks. I actually enjoy cooking despite having to do it with my feet, rolling around on a drafting chair in my kitchen. But over time my body has communicated loud and clear that this is not an activity it can tolerate for very long.

I'm very fortunate to have a husband who doesn't mind spending time in the kitchen and has become an excellent cook. However, I don't want to leave it to him to get food on the table every single night. I want to be able to contribute. To that end, I've tried several good meal kit services. Many of them have relatively easy and quick meals, but even the easiest and quickest push the limits of what my body can handle. Several attempts later, I stumbled upon What a Crock. It was the answer to my prayers.

About What a Crock

What a Crock co-fouders Breanna and Justin West like to say, "We don't sell food, we sell time." They make large batches of home-cooked recipes with the same ingredients you'd use (no preservatives or unnatural additives), Cryovac generous portion sizes, and freeze them. So what you get is a fresh meal just like Mom would make.

What I like

On left, pasta meal in black cast iron pan. On right, spaghetti and meatballs in white dish.
Credit: What a Crock Meals

What a Crock offers a variety of meal options that range from hearty seasonal meals to light vegetarian and vegan ones.

There is zero cooking involved

While many other boxes send you the ingredients to assemble in your own kitchen, What a Crock’s meals are precooked slow cooker or Instant Pot meals that have been frozen. All you have to do is dump the meal out of the bag, still frozen, into your slow cooker or Instant Pot and turn it on. That's the entire list of instructions. A few pasta dishes will require you to either boil pasta separately or throw it into the slow cooker toward the end of its cooking time, but that is still an extremely small amount of effort for the quality of meal that you'll be putting on the table. That brings us to the next thing I like. 

Meal choices are respectable

There are a surprising amount of options to choose from on the What a Crock website. You'll find dishes like Chicken Marsala, Grandma’s Homemade Meatballs, Korean Steak Stuffed Peppers, and Chocolate Molten Cake. Most are slow cooker meals, but some can also be cooked in the Instant Pot, while others are thrown in the oven. Regardless of the method, every meal option is extremely easy to "cook." Our first meal was Beef Burgundy. I absolutely loved it, but it was a bit sophisticated for my three kids. The next two we tried we're not such a big hit, but I was knowingly choosing dishes that would expand their pallets a bit. There are plenty of home run family meals like Sloppy Joe, Three Cheese Mac & Cheese, and Brown Sugar Mashed Sweet Potatoes.

It fits any size family

One other problem I've run into with the traditional meal kits is that they are rarely enough to feed my family of five. Even the ones that claim to feed a family our size never provide enough for leftovers, which are a necessity around here. What a Crock has a serving size system that is a little different. You buy a number of portions according to their handy portion size graphic. This means that you can get a meal for two people, or you can get a meal for 10+. These are generous serving sizes, and for larger families or household with teenagers, this is a godsend. 

There are multiple ordering options

While you can pick up your meals at local store fronts in Pennsylvania, the meals can also be ordered online from their website on demand or on a subscription basis.

What I don't like 

Convenience isn't free

I try not to think about the simplicity of the ingredients in some of the What a Crock meals that I "cook." If I ponder it too long, I am forced to acknowledge the markup I pay for the convenience of having it pre-cooked and shipped to my door. These are not fancy, expensive meals, but it's not hard for me to spend $50 on one of these meals to feed my family. Granted, that $50 will give us one huge meal and plenty of leftovers, but that same meal could be cooked from scratch for a fraction of the cost. These meals are often replacing fast food meals that would cost about the same amount, so even with the higher price, the convenience is absolutely worth it for us.

Should you try What a Crock Meals? 

Old-fashioned pot roast in dish next to crock pot.
Credit: Getty Images / Angelika Heine

These tasty meals are perfect for families of all sizes and are simple enough to be prepared by kitchen beginners, too.

Yes, especially if you have limitations in the kitchen. If you're a person who really enjoys spending hours in the kitchen and trying out new cooking methods and recipes, What a Crock's service may not excite you. But if occasionally you want a home-cooked meal without the home cooking, What a Crock is right up your alley. It's perfect for larger families with busy parents being pulled in multiple directions. Regardless of the number of mouths you're feeding, What a Crock can accommodate. The best part? It's all frozen, so you could order a meal, stick it in the freezer, and forget about it until you run into a day where you could really use some help getting everybody fed.

Order from What a Crock

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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

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