Best Meal Train Ideas: Simple, Delicious, and Easy

A List of Some of Our Favorite and Easiest Ways to Bring Comfort and Deliciousness in Times of Need

Meal trains are a modern twist on an age-old tradition of providing comfort through food to those in need. In this article, we’ll delve into meal train ideas that will make you the culinary hero of your community and of course, the best platform to help spread the love and make that possible. 

TikTok’s Viral Feta Pasta

This recipe took the internet by storm, and for good reason! It’s incredibly easy – just toss cherry tomatoes and a block of feta cheese with olive oil and bake until soft and gooey. Mix it with cooked pasta, and you have a creamy, tangy, and absolutely scrumptious dish that will leave everyone asking for seconds.

The viral feta pasta has gained popularity for its simplicity and deliciousness. The roasted cherry tomatoes and melted feta cheese create a creamy and tangy sauce that coats the pasta perfectly. The addition of minced garlic and red pepper flakes adds a subtle kick of flavor, but you can adjust the seasoning to your preference. The dish is then finished with fresh basil, which adds a pop of freshness and complements the creamy sauce perfectly.

farfalle pasta and spaghetti for viral tiktok feta pasta recipe
This meal is quick, easy, and absolutely delicious

To make the Feta Pasta even more nutritious, you can easily customize it to fit different dietary preferences or restrictions. For example, you can use gluten-free pasta for a gluten-free version, or swap the regular feta cheese for a dairy-free alternative to make it vegan-friendly. Give InKind’s meal preference and dietary restriction features make it a breeze to ensure that the meals delivered through the meal train are not only delicious but also tailored to the recipient’s dietary needs.

One of the reasons why this viral feta pasta became so popular is its ease of preparation. With just a few simple ingredients and minimal cooking steps, this dish can be whipped up in no time, making it perfect for busy weeknight dinners or last-minute gatherings. Plus, the visually appealing colors and creamy texture of the pasta make it a perfect dish to share on social media, just like the original TikTok trend that made it so popular.

Feta pasta is a creamy and flavorful pasta dish that captured the attention of food enthusiasts around the world. It’s simple preparation, rich flavors, and eye-catching presentation make it a perfect option for a quick and impressive meal for anyone on a meal train.

Buddha Bowls

Buddha bowls, also known as power bowls or macro bowls, have gained immense popularity on social media platforms like Instagram for their vibrant colors, nutrient-packed ingredients, and visually appealing presentation. These bowls are not only delicious and satisfying but also a great way to incorporate a variety of healthy foods into one wholesome meal. Let’s delve into what makes these Insta-worthy Buddha bowls so special and how you can create your own stunning bowls that are both nutritious and camera-ready.

A typical Buddha bowl consists of a variety of colorful, plant-based ingredients arranged in an aesthetically pleasing way in a bowl or a plate. The base of the bowl usually includes a grain, such as brown rice, quinoa, or couscous, which provides a filling and nutritious foundation for the bowl. Next, a variety of cooked or raw vegetables, such as roasted sweet potatoes, steamed broccoli, shredded carrots, and sliced avocado, are arranged in sections, creating a visually appealing rainbow of colors.

Protein is an important component of Buddha bowls, and there are endless options to choose from. You can include plant-based proteins like beans, lentils, tofu, or tempeh for a vegan or vegetarian bowl, or incorporate animal-based proteins like grilled chicken, salmon, or boiled eggs for a non-vegetarian option. These proteins not only add flavor and texture but also make the bowl more filling and satisfying.

buddha bowl with chickpeas and eggs
These Buddha bowls are sure to bring peace to anyone who receives one

To elevate the flavor profile of the bowl, a variety of dressings, sauces, or condiments can be added. These can include homemade or store-bought options like tahini sauce, peanut sauce, miso dressing, or balsamic glaze. These dressings not only add a burst of flavor but also help to tie all the ingredients together and create a harmonious taste experience.

One of the reasons why Buddha bowls are so popular on social media is their visual appeal. The colorful arrangement of ingredients in the bowl creates an eye-catching and photogenic meal that’s perfect for sharing on Instagram or other social media platforms. Food bloggers, health enthusiasts, and nutritionists alike have taken to posting their own unique creations of Insta-worthy Buddha bowls, showcasing their creativity and culinary skills.

Sheet Pan Lemon-Herb Chicken
Homemade Keto Sheet Pan Chicken with Rainbow Vegetables

This one-pan wonder is a breeze to make and delivers big on flavor. Place bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs on a sheet pan with a medley of colorful veggies like bell peppers, zucchini, and red onions. Season with lemon juice, herbs like thyme and rosemary, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until the chicken is golden and the veggies are tender. The result? A mouthwatering meal with minimal cleanup that’s sure to be a hit at any meal train.

This sheet pan lemon herb chicken is not only incredibly delicious, but it’s also a breeze to make. The fresh herbs and tangy lemon slices infuse the chicken with amazing flavor, while the sheet pan cooking method makes cleanup a breeze. Plus, the aroma of the roasted herbs and chicken will fill the recipient’s home with irresistible smells, bringing comfort and warmth during difficult times.

One of the best parts of making a sheet pan meal is the convenience of cooking everything on a single pan. Along with the marinated chicken, you can add an array of colorful and seasonal vegetables to the sheet pan, such as bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, and red onions. The vegetables roast alongside the chicken, soaking up the delicious flavors of the marinade and becoming caramelized and tender. The sheet pan method also offers an easy cleanup, as there’s only one pan to wash, saving you time and effort in the kitchen. It’s a great option for busy weeknight dinners or when you’re feeding a crowd but want minimal fuss in the kitchen.

Sheet Pan Lemon Herb Chicken is incredibly versatile, and you can customize it based on your preferences. You can use bone-in or boneless chicken thighs or breasts, depending on your preference for dark or white meat. You can also adjust the herbs and spices in the marinade to suit your taste buds. The dish can be easily adapted to be gluten-free, dairy-free, or even keto-friendly, depending on your dietary requirements.

Sheet Pan Lemon Herb Chicken is a one-pan wonder that makes for a simple, flavorful, and wholesome meal. With minimal effort and cleanup, you can create a delicious and impressive dinner that’s perfect for helping those in need.

Plant-Based Power Bowls
fresh veggies cut up for the best meal train meal: power bowls
These plant bowls are the perfect vegan or vegetarian option

For those who prefer a plant-based option, power bowls are a fantastic choice. Start with a base of cooked grains like quinoa or brown rice, then top it with an array of colorful veggies like roasted sweet potatoes, sautéed kale, and avocado slices. Add in some plant-based protein like crispy tofu or chickpeas, and finish it off with a drizzle of tahini or a sprinkle of nutritional yeast for a burst of flavor. These bowls are delicious, packed with nutrients, and are sure to please even the most discerning of palates.

These power bowls are not only visually appealing, but they are also loaded with wholesome ingredients that are sure to provide the recipient with a nourishing and satisfying meal. The combination of protein-rich quinoa, fiber-packed vegetables and beans, healthy fats from avocado and nuts or seeds, and a tangy dressing creates a delicious and wholesome meal that’s perfect for those who prefer a plant-based or vegan diet.

Plant-Based Power Bowls are not only visually appealing with their colorful array of vegetables, grains, and proteins, but they are also incredibly nutritious. These bowls typically consist of a base of whole grains like quinoa, brown rice, or couscous, topped with an assortment of roasted or raw vegetables, plant-based proteins like beans or tofu, and a flavorful dressing or sauce. The combinations are endless, allowing you to get creative and customize the bowls to suit the recipient’s taste preferences and dietary needs.

One of the great things about Power Bowls is their versatility. You can use a variety of vegetables, such as roasted sweet potatoes, steamed broccoli, sautéed bell peppers, or fresh greens, to add a variety of textures and flavors to the bowl. You can also choose from a wide range of plant-based proteins, such as beans, lentils, chickpeas, or tofu, to provide ample protein and fiber. The dressing or sauce can be made from scratch with simple ingredients like lemon juice, tahini, or balsamic vinegar, adding a burst of flavor and creaminess to the bowl.

Plant-Based Power Bowls are not only a nourishing and wholesome option for meal trains, but they are also eco-friendly and sustainable. Choosing plant-based meals can have a positive impact on the environment, as it reduces the carbon footprint associated with meat production and consumption. By providing Plant-Based Power Bowls for a meal train, you can show your care and consideration for the recipient’s health, the planet, and animals, all in one delicious meal!

Give InKind: A Basic Rundown 
some of Give InKind's best meal train ideas
Meal trains are easier than ever thanks to Give InKind

Now that you’re armed with the best meal train ideas, let’s take it up a notch with Give InKind, the ultimate meal train platform that makes coordinating and organizing meal trains a breeze. With its exciting features, Give InKind  takes meal trains to the next level, making it easier than ever to provide the best meal train meals to those in need.

  • Meal Preferences and Dietary Restrictions: Give InKind allows users to input meal preferences and dietary restrictions for the recipient, ensuring that the meals delivered are not only delicious but also cater to any specific dietary needs. Whether it’s a gluten-free, dairy-free, or vegetarian meal, Give InKind helps you customize the meal train to fit the recipient’s preferences and needs, making it a truly thoughtful gesture.
  • Meal Scheduling and Coordination: Give InKind’s intuitive platform allows users to schedule and coordinate meal deliveries with ease. You can select specific dates and times for meal deliveries, ensuring that the recipient receives a steady supply of meals without overwhelming them. Plus, with its user-friendly interface, you can easily manage the entire meal train process in one place.
  • Meal Tracking and Updates: Stay in the loop with Give InKind’s meal tracking and updates feature. Easily track the meals that have been delivered, see upcoming meal deliveries, and receive updates on the recipient’s status. This helps you stay informed and ensures that the recipient is receiving the support they need during their time of need.
  • Donation and Gift Card Options: In addition to meal deliveries, Give InKind also offers options to make monetary donations or send gift cards to the recipient. This allows for even more flexibility in providing support, as the recipient can use the donations or gift cards to purchase groceries, order takeout, or fulfill any other needs they may have.
fruit smoothie bowl, one of the best meal train ideas
Give InKind makes giving back simple | Image courtesy of Give InKind.

Meal trains are a wonderful way to show care and support to those in need, and with the help of social media, they’ve gained viral popularity in recent times. By providing homemade meals that are simple, delicious, and nutritious, you can make a meaningful impact on someone’s life during a challenging time. With the help of Give InKind, you can take your meal train game to the next level. From customizable meal preferences and dietary restrictions to meal scheduling, tracking, and updates, Give InKind streamlines the process of organizing and coordinating meal trains, making it easier than ever to provide the best meal train meals. So, gather your apron, fire up your stove, and get ready to become the meal train hero in your community with these best meal train ideas. Happy cooking, foodies!


Give InKind does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. We have an affiliate relationship with many of the advertisers on our site, and may receive a commission from any products purchased from links in this article. See Terms & Conditions.

Call for Submissions

Share Your Story

Give InKind offers a platform for anyone to submit their stories, to help and inspire others to get through any of life’s disruptions.