Thirty-five years ago, Iku launched its first plant-based eatery in Glebe, and in the following years opened multiple stores across Sydney. It’s always been a great option for people who stick to vegan or vegetarian diets, as well as those with allergies and intolerances. Thanks to the pandemic, it’s closed the majority of its eateries (there’s three left: in the MLC Centre, Neutral Bay and Rozelle) – but now you can stock your fridge with wholesome meals, thanks to Iku’s new, very tasty, meal-delivery service.

The range of 50-plus meals includes bestsellers from its stores and a host of new options, including breakfast. There’s also snacks (including polenta slices and millet fritters) and treats such as cookies, friands and puddings.

“Our head of food Tom Walton is creating new meals to launch every couple of weeks,” Russell Johnson, Iku’s managing director, tells Broadsheet. “We are excited about our Kakadu plum and bush-tomato chutney once the Kakadu plums are harvested in a couple of months’ time.”

For breakfast, choose dishes such as scrambled tofu with smoky tempeh, Bircher bowls and granola. Lighter meals for later in the day include caramelised-onion or spinach and white-miso tarts, soba noodle salad and a range of soups (including minestrone and leek and sweet potato). For dinner or a heavier lunch, there’s lima-bean casserole, pumpkin curry, creamy laksa, spinach and eggplant lasagne, and eggplant rogan josh. Everything’s packed with veggies, and you can filter out dishes that contain allergens such as gluten, nuts and soy.

And if you’re worried about the amount of packaging from meal delivery services, Iku’s across it. Everything is 100 per cent compostable, re-usable or recyclable.

“We spent months sourcing compostable, reusable or recycled packaging, as many of these solutions were new to market or hadn’t even been created yet,” says Johnson. “The film our meals trays are sealed with is compostable, the meal trays are plant-based or made of bagasse, a by-product of the sugarcane industry. Our ‘plastic’ film, which wraps the burgers, is made from plants and is 100 per cent compostable; the tape we seal our boxes with is biodegradable and the insulation we use within our boxes has won sustainability awards.”

Johnson says, in the future, Iku hopes to implement a “fully circular” packaging program, in which customers will be able to use then return their containers for refilling.

The meals and snacks are available to buy separately (from $3.50 to $11.95; minimum five items) or in sets, including a best-seller set, a high-protein pack or a gut-health set. Each one comes with the option of ordering three, five or seven days of lunches and dinners. For now, it’s delivering across Sydney but plans are afoot to expand nationally down the track.

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