Prepared Meals Delivery vs. Personal Chef vs. Private Chef. Which is best for you?

by Chef Wards

When I tell people I am a chef, sometimes their eyes widen. They have this image of me whirling around palatial mansions in one of those tall chef’s hats, slicing up vegetables and tossing them in the air like a circus performer. While it’s true that working with dozens of utensils all at once might be a bit of a dance, the truth is professional chefs do much more than slice vegetables in fancy styles. 

At The Austin Artisan, we offer a vast array of services, from prepared meals delivery to private catering to swanky dinner parties. We customize just about anything we offer for distinct tastes and needs. We continuously experiment with our recipes, and we love incorporating a new fruit or vegetable we’ve never worked with before. There’s a lot to do, from carefully curating seasonal ingredients to learning more about specific dietary needs to creating custom menus. 

Talk about wearing a lot of (chef) hats! 

For a professional chef, the culinary arts isn’t just a hobby; it’s a full-time career. But you might be wondering, what’s the difference between a private chef and a personal chef? And what is prepared meals delivery?  Well, we’re here to clear up the confusion in the personal chef vs. private chef vs. prepared meals delivery throwdown. 

At The Austin Artisan, we wear a lot of chef hats. Here’s just a few. 

Private Chef 

I love hearing about other people’s life bucket lists and goals. You learn fascinating things about the world. Who knew that you could walk on pink sand beaches? Or sleep in a treehouse in the Amazon? 

But I love that something that I often see on wishlists is a private chef. That’s not a surprise, is it? After all, there’s just something about having a professional create divine menus and craft elaborate meals that were made specifically with you in mind. 

Private chefs often have a specialty in certain ingredients or styles of cooking. Still, they know each individual’s specific taste preferences and cook to accommodate them. They consider meals that are equal parts taste and nutrition, not to mention gorgeous plating. 

Having a private chef is about as gourmet as it gets! But it isn’t just the jet-set that uses private chefs. Sometimes large groups living in the same household (think being the personal chef for an entire Greek row house) will have a private chef that caters to an entire group of people as a dedicated culinary expert. 

Personal chef pipes toppings onto food.

Personal Chef

You might hear the words “personal chef” and think that pretty much sounds like a private chef. Here’s the difference. 

While a private chef usually works full-time for a single individual, family, or group (and might even live in their house full-time as well), a personal chef offers many of the same benefits but to several families or clients. 

Personal chefs also have to keep in mind the individual taste profiles and needs of their unique clientele. This could include everything from a hatred for bell peppers to low sodium intake or other health needs. 

Logistically speaking, a personal chef may or may not work out of the client’s home, but typically they do. But in the case of a personal chef, they might split up days into several clients, or even reserve entire days for a single client at a time, preparing meals on Monday, for example, that will be eaten by the family for the whole of that week.  

Prepared Meals Delivery

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. When professional chefs walk down the frozen aisle, we cringe a little bit. It’s not because we are thinking about all of the chemicals and processed foods to be found inside those glittering cases full of boxed foods (although that alone is cringeworthy). It’s because, to our sorrow, prepared meals delivery often gets confused with your local grocery store’s frozen food aisle. I can’t tell you how many conversations I have had where I say the words “prepared meals delivery” and the response is, “Oh, you mean like TV dinners?”

The two couldn’t be more different! Prepared meals delivery involves a highly custom, personalized meal plan meant to cater specifically to you and your family’s individual taste profile and nutritional needs. The dishes themselves are made from locally sourced ingredients, whenever possiblenot from a factory far, far away. Finally, prepared meals aren’t fully cooked but are parboiled. The meals arrive partially cooked, and you complete the cooking process. In the case of TV dinners, by the time you finish nuking them in your microwave, they have pretty much been cooked twice on top of all that processing. Talk about tough chicken and soggy vegetables. Yuck. 

In short, prepared meal delivery is about as close you can get to having a personal chef without having someone working directly in your kitchen. And it is about as far away from the frozen food aisle as you can get. 

Beautiful plated prepared meals delivery example. 

Prepared meals delivery or personal chef. No matter which one you choose, you’ll get The Austin Artisan difference. 

While there is a vast difference between prepared meals delivery and private dinners, aircraft catering, and personal chef services. Which is better for you depends in large part on your lifestyle and budget. But no matter which you choose, each of these chef services shares one thing in common. They are prepared by artisan chefs who genuinely have a passion for cooking delicious food! 

If you think about it, there’s something sublime about a meal that was crafted with you in mind. And here at The Austin Artisan, we believe that mealtime should be an experience, not just another to-do in your long list of chores. 

If you are busy, intimidated by cooking, or simply just curious to try something new, give our customized meal plans a try. We serve the Austin community, including Downtown, Old West Austin, Tarrytown, Westlake Hills, and the surrounding area. 

Personal chef services are well within reach. Let us guide you on a culinary quest that is yours for the taking.

Posted in: Uncategorized