My ‘cheat dinners’ that are healthier, quicker and cheaper than takeaway

Dietlicious Fox in Flats

By Andrea Michelle for Dietlicious

When I held a high pressure senior corporate role, didn’t have time to shop for groceries and would come home late and exhausted, I’d order in Thai so often that the restaurant called me ‘Customer Number 1’. I simply had to quote that to place my order.

When I had my first baby, and was muddling my way through those initial weeks of sleep deprivation and tears, take-out barbecue chicken or meals from the local Lebanese place were my go-to quick meal. And I soon became on a first name basis with the guy who worked there – “Hi Nadeem!”

And oh how I love to order a spread of home delivered Indian, or relax on the couch with a pizza, especially on rainy winter nights.

Too busy at work, having a newborn, moving house, looking after sick children, and feeling really lazy. These are just some of the reasons that we reach for takeaway solutions.”

But many of the options are high in fat – hellooooo Pad Thai (which has more calories than a Big Mac) – and I can attest to this as I piled on a couple of kilos at each of those periods in my life.

About five years ago I was told about a company called Dietlicious from a friend in my Mothers’ Group. I was preparing to return to work after the birth of my second son, and freaking out about how I would be able to manage the day-to-day household things – like feeding the family – with my new working hours. Kylie, a lawyer and mother of two told me how she had pre-made meals delivered weekly that were of restaurant-quality, yet priced comparably with take-out.

I never did try it back then. To be honest, it seemed a bit flamboyant to have ‘gourmet food’ delivered. Instead, I returned to being known as ‘Customer Number 1’ at the Thai delivery place, got to know Nadeem even better, and ate loads of BBQ chickens. As a result I gained another couple of KGs.

But back in 2011 after I started Fox in Flats and was burning the midnight oil on a big project, I broke the seal. I ordered meals from Dietlicious and became a convert.

And during the last 18 months which have been especially stressful as I’d separated from my husband and had to move home twice with my boys, I turned to Dietlicious again.

Because I knew I’d be likely to fall into bad eating habits, and recognized how important it was for me to stay healthy during a time that was pretty overwhelming.

I don’t know about you, but if I eat crappy food, it makes my mood pretty crappy too.”

Also, having crunched the numbers, I worked out that it was cheaper for me to have them deliver my meals for a period of time instead of resorting to take-out.


How it works:

You simply place your order on the Dietlicious site from the myriad of options available, and it’s then delivered to your home.

You can select individual meals for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks, 5 day lunch and dinner packs, and choose calorie controlled options.

Individual dinners are just $11.90 each – cheaper than take out meals – and you know it’s going to be much healthier for you.

Some of the meals arrive frozen, so you can pop them into the freezer and use when you need. And some is fresh (but you can freeze them too). I like to have a few meals tucked away ready to go for when I’m tempted to call in for home delivery.

You can also order veggies and salad packs with everything you need. The produce is always super fresh, and saves you from time spent shopping, and spending cash on huge bunches of things like spring onions or herbs when you really don’t need that much, so saves on food wastage also.


There are two types of dinner options available: meals that can be cooked in a frying pan or oven that only take a couple of minutes, and microwavable meals that generally take less than 10 minutes to defrost and heat up.


I’ve tried a bunch of them over the years, and these are a few of my favourites.

Tuna and harissa marinade with north african spices and chilli

I love all of the seafood options from Dietlicious as they are so fast to cook, and taste amazing. Which gives me more time to goof around in the kitchen with my kids.

easy cooking

Tuna with harissa marinade

chopping salad

You can make your own salad from fresh ingredients

being silly

adding my own fresh herbs

I LOVE the smell of fresh herbs, don't you

Sprinkle with herbs and you're ready!

a squeeze of fresh lime


Coriander chicken with yoghurt, ginger, garlic, and mild chilli

This one feeds my love of Thai food, and it’s a super-fast heat and eat option. Great for when I’m on the run.

eating at the counter

Kashmiri lamb curry with spices, yoghurt, and lentils

With only 14g of fat per serve, I can heat this one up in minutes and scoff it at my desk faster than it’d take the local Indian delivery place to turn up with my order.

eating while facebooking


You can also order 3, 5, or 10 day cleanses through Dietlicious which I’ve also tried. The food is so tasty, and there is plenty of it so you don’t feel like you are on a diet. Just the thing when there’s only a couple of weeks to go till Spring hits us in Oz.





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