Meal Train 101: Everything you Need to Know to Organize Support

When life is turned upside down, the simplicity of a Meal Train calendar is the answer.

When someone in your life is going through a difficult time, it can be hard to know how to best support them. Whether they just had a baby, lost a family member, or had a major surgery, making sure they have their basic needs met—food being one of them—is step number one.

That’s where Meal Train comes in.

What is a Meal Train page and how does it work? We’ll be answering those questions and more in this article. Let’s get started.

What is Meal Train®?

Meal Train is an organized way for friends and family to deliver home-cooked meals to someone who’s going through a challenging time. It’s a caring way to ensure the recipient doesn’t have to think about grocery shopping or preparing meals while going through a major life event.

Who should have a Meal Train page?

Anyone going through a busy or challenging time could benefit from having home-cooked meals on hand. Below are a few questions that can help you determine if someone in your life could use help with meals:

  • Is their new reality stressful for the family?
  • Are they struggling to find time to go to the grocery store?
  • Are they experiencing a physical limitation that’s preventing them from grocery shopping or cooking?
  • Are they skipping meals due to being too busy, tired, or stressed?
  • Are they ordering takeout or getting fast food most days/nights?

How does setting up a Meal Train page work?

After identifying someone in your life who could use some support, it’s time to set up a Meal Train page. This can be accomplished with a few simple steps and considerations:

Determine the recipient's preferences and needs

It’s important to consider if the recipient (or anyone in their household) has any food allergies, dislikes, or preferences. If the recipient has kids, ask if they’d find it helpful to receive kid-friendly meals as well.

Establish how to deliver meals

Some recipients are ready to see a friendly face while others prefer a no-contact approach when receiving meals. Ask the recipient if they prefer meals to be left in a cooler on the porch or if it’s okay for people to knock on the door.

Create a meal delivery schedule

With, you can set up a page, create a schedule, list the recipient’s preferences, and invite participants—all in one spot, for free.

Invite friends and family

One or two people usually take the lead and recruit other people to participate in the train. To find participants, consider people close to the recipient, including family members, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and congregation members.

There are many ways to invite others to participate, including email, text, Facebook, and Instagram. After accepting the invitation, participants can sign up for a date and provide a meal. Participants can also see what other people are bringing, which prevents your recipient from getting lasagna three nights in a row.

Offer your support with home-cooked meals

When someone you know is going through a challenging time, it’s natural to want to help that person and let them know you care. Using Meal Train is an excellent way to achieve those goals.

Coordinating meal deliveries might sound a little complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. can help you quickly and easily organize a train and create a schedule with just a few clicks. To set up a Meal Train page for someone in your life who could use some home-cooked love, set up a free Meal Train page now!

Sample Meal Train page:

Sample Meal Train Page