Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein (+7 Interesting features)

This info-rich post will be comparing two popular meal delivery services which mainly focus on weight loss. While Nutrisystem delivers completely cooked meals to users who want to lose weight, Ideal Protein offers food products and items which can be used to create main entrees to help users achieve their ideal weight.

In the end, we will give you our opinions on which of these two may be the better choice based on first-hand experiences.

Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein

In the table below, you will be able to find the major features of Nutrisystem and Ideal Protein. We have also mentioned their areas of operation along with the price ranges of the food items here. By checking out the following table, you will be able to choose between Nutrisystem and Ideal Protein.

 Feature  Nutrisystem Ideal Protein
 Delivery areas  98% of the United States aside from Alaska & Hawaii,Canada  Only store pick-up from Ideal Protein clinics in US and Canada
 Price per plate  $9.99 per plate minimum $16 per day
 Difficulty levels  Easy Easy
 Avg. cooking time  Only heating required Varies as per recipe 
 Avg. calorie count  200 calories per serving About 200 calories per serving 
 Supporting material  None Nutritional facts,Nutrition coaching 
 Recipes supported  Weight-loss  Weight-loss
 No. of choices  >100 Varies as per availability
 Introductory deal  50% off on first order None
 Avg. shelf life  6-18 months Not mentioned

Types of Plans: Nutrisystem vs Lean Cuisine

 Nutrisystem  Ideal Protein 
 Basic $9.99 per day + free shipping,Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks  Phase 1 Aimed at weight loss,Ideal Protein breakfast + Ideal Protein lunch with 2 cups of veggies + dinner of protein and veggies + Ideal Protein snack,Supplements 
 Uniquely Yours $13.57 per day + free shipping,150+ choices,Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks  Phase 2 Aimed at stabilization,Foods following macro code
 Partner Plan $9.99 per day + free shipping,Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks  Phase 3 Aimed at maintenance,Foods following macros code

Although Nutrisystem is a meal delivery service completely dedicated to weight loss, the plans are a little more laid back here. Depending on their health goals and their nutritional needs, the user can choose from three main types of plans. In the Nutrisystem menu, the user can find main meals, snacks as well as sides.

In Ideal Protein, the user needs to strictly follow the different phases. Each phase has a different aim, whether it is immediate weight loss, or weight stabilization or maintenance. To get the food products and items, the user needs to visit the Ideal Protein and get a consultation with a nutrition coach who will provide a macro code for the latter two phases.

Winner: Ideal Protein wins the Types of Plans segment.

Types of Ingredients: Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein

  Ingredient type   Nutrisystem  Ideal Protein
 Produce   Organic produce No info
 Meat, eggs, fish  Sustainably sourced poultry, meat and seafood  No info
 Other ingredients  Seasonings,Sauces,Condiments  No info

Nutrisystem states that all its produce and greens used to create the meals are definitely organic and therefore are safe to consume on a long-term basis. The animal protein used in the meals, such as the meat and the poultry come from antibiotic-free and hormone-free animals and birds, while the seafood is sustainably sourced.

When it comes to Ideal Protein, there is no information as to where the ingredients come from. This can be a letdown for those who are curious as to where their food comes from. However, this weight loss program states that the products are definitely FDA-approved. Most of the products in Ideal Protein are gluten-free but are not suitable for vegans and vegetarians.

Winner: Nutrisystem wins the Types of Ingredients segment.

Add-Ons: Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein

 Nutrisystem Ideal Protein 
 Grocery items,Low-fat dairy,Lean protein  Drinks,Bars,Breakfast mixes,Soup mixes,Entrée mixes,Desserts,Salty snacks,Condiments,Supplements 

Along with fully-cooked meals, Nutrisystem offers a number of add-on options for the user. Here, the user can choose from grocery items which are all suitable for weight loss, such as low-fat dairy products. Lean protein such as chicken and beef are also offered in Nutrisystem’s add-on menu.

Ideal Protein offers several add-ons for the user to choose from. In the Ideal Protein clinics, the user can purchase mixes for all types of foods including breakfast and even main entrées. There are also various sweet and salty snacks and even condiments like low-sodium seasoning and dressing.

Winner: Ideal Protein wins the Add-ons segment.

Packaging of Meal box: Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein

 Nutrisystem  Ideal Protein 
 Eco-friendly boxes  No info
 Mostly recyclable  No info 

In Nutrisystem, the meals come in coolers which are made of an environmentally-friendly foam product. These coolers can be reused by the user and even recycled curbside. The meals in Nutrisystem are packed in containers and packets which are also very easily recyclable. Nutrisystem also provides plenty of information about the recycling of its products.

In Ideal Protein, there is no information as to if the packaging of the food products is recyclable or reusable. This can be a major disadvantage or a letdown for those who are environmentally-conscious and want to know if they are getting biodegradable or eco-friendly packaging.

Winner: Nutrisystem wins the Packaging of Meal box segment.

Customer Support: Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein

 Feature  Nutrisystem Ideal Protein
 Chat support  + –
 Email support  + +
 Phone support  +  +
 Availability  All days of the week All days of the week

In Nutrisystem, the user can reach out for assistance or guidance about their meals through a number of ways. The simplest way to reach out for support in Nutrisystem is through the live chat. Apart from live chat, Nutrisystem’s customer support can be reached through emails and through phone support as well.

Ideal Protein does not have chat support and this can be disappointing for those who prefer texting over other forms of communication. Ideal Protein’s customer support can instead be reached through emails or even a toll-free phone number. Both Nutrisystem and Ideal Protein are pretty active on several social media platforms.

Winner: Nutrisystem wins the Customer Support segment.

Sample Meals: Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein

 Sample  Nutrisystem Ideal Protein
 Sample 1  Name: Dark Chocolaty Sea Salt Nut SquareNo. of calories: 190 calories  Name: Ready to serve Mango ShakeAllergens: Milk
 Sample  2  Name: Santa Fe Style ChickenNo. of calories: 240 caloriesAmt. of protein: 17g   Name: Chocolate Almond Protein BarsAllergens: Milk, soy, eggs, almonds, peanuts
 Sample  3   Name: White Cheddar Macaroni and CheeseNo. of calories: 220 caloriesAmt. of protein: 10g  Name: Blueberry Pancake MixAllergens: Milk, eggs, wheat

In Nutrisystem, the menu is definitely plentiful and aims to take care of all the dietary needs of the user throughout the day. The meals in Nutrisystem are certainly low in calories and moderate in proteins. Other than main meals, there are also snacks and even desserts available in the menu of Nutrisystem.

In Ideal Protein, the only completely ready to eat foods are the drinks, the bars and the snacks. The rest need to be cooked using the low-calorie mixes available at Ideal Protein clinics. The recipes are provided on the Ideal Protein website. This can be disappointing for those who do not have time to cook.

Winner: Nutrisystem wins the Sample Meals segment.

App rating: Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein

 Platform Nutrisystem  Ideal Protein
 Google Play Store 3.5  2.1 
 Apple App Store  4.6 3
 TWP Rating  3.5/5 3/5

Final Verdict: The winner of this showdown is Nutrisystem with its ample menu of choices and easy affordability.

Nutrisystem is a meal delivery service truly dedicated to weight loss. At the same time, it can also be useful for those who want to eat a balanced diet with reduced amounts of calories. When compared to other meal delivery services focused on weight loss, Nutrisystem is pretty affordable and also easily accessible.

Ideal Protein is a dedicated weight loss program that is not so accessible to everyone. The meals and the food products in Ideal Protein are not delivered to the home of the user. Instead, they need to be purchased at the weight loss clinics of Ideal Protein. At the same time, Ideal Protein has been reviewed as very effective for weight loss by thousands of users.

Weight loss has always been a trending factor and while many brands suggest that they are the best, it is difficult to find one that is flexible and affordable at the same time. Ideal Protein may sound ideal but it is far from perfect considering its high pricing and its inaccessibility to many. On the other hand, Nutrisystem fulfills all the criteria to be crowned the winner here.


To bring you the best reviews of each and every meal delivery service, we spoke to testers and real life users, reviewed the information provided by each service on their respective websites, carried out primary research on social media platforms and checked out the user reviews of these platforms on various social media sites. We have also used the reviews presented by current users of these services on their respective Google and Apple apps.

We are currently conducting our own internal review and we will update this page with videos and pictures of our experiences. If they differ extensively from what our external reviewers said then we will update this post so you get both points of views and can decide which service provider is more suited to your needs based on the information above.

The main types of criteria which we have used in order to assess and evaluate these meal delivery services is the simplicity of the recipes, the variety of meals in the service, the inclusiveness of diets and cuisines and even the supporting material.

In addition to these, we have also taken into regard the sustainability and recyclability of the packaging of these services. Lastly, we have also considered the delivery services and customer services of these platforms.

Frequently asked questions: “Nutrisystem vs Ideal Protein”

How long can you stay on Nutrisystem?

You can stay on Nutrisystem for as long as you need. Some users stay on Nutrisystem until they have reached their ideal weight, while others choose to embrace this program as a full-time lifestyle. The best advantage of using Nutrisystem is that the meals are definitely healthy while being limited in calories.

Do you gain weight after stopping Nutrisystem?

Yes, you will gain weight after stopping Nutrisystem. Many users who have used the meals from Nutrisystem for their weight loss have mentioned that they have gained weight after stopping this weight loss program. Therefore, several experts say that weight loss programs like Nutrisystem are only great for short-term weight loss.

Why have I stopped losing weight on Ideal Protein?

You might have stopped losing weight on Ideal Protein because you are eating more than the portions which have been recommended by your nutrition coach. Also, you might be consuming too many add-on items such as the drinks and the snacks. While these are definitely limited in calories, they can still contribute majorly to the daily calorie count.

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