Dream Dinners

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Dream Dinners
Private
Industry Meal Assembly
Founded March 2002 (2002-03) in Mill Creek, Washington, United States
Founder Stephanie Allen, Tina Kuna
Headquarters Snohomish, Washington, USA
Area served
USA
Website dreamdinners.com

Dream Dinners is a US food preparation franchise operation based in Snohomish, Washington. It specializes in providing space to prepare meals ahead of time for freezing and cooking at home. There are currently 105 locations in 30 states in the United States.[1] The company was founded by Stephanie Allen and Tina Kuna and was the first in the category of "Meal Assembly" franchises.

The concept of Dream Dinners is to give busy families the opportunity to prepare home-cooked meals ahead of time. Each month a different seventeen-item menu is made available throughout the chain. The meals are purchased by servings, with a minimum of 36 servings. First time customers can order 18 servings or 9 servings, depending on the offer available at the store. A medium size meal is (3) servings while a large size meal is (6) servings. Customers are offered either public or private sessions to prepare these meals, and the store provides recipes and all required ingredients. Regular sessions provide all seventeen meals from that month's menu, while first time customers have a reduced number of choices. The firm's official website suggests a cost of "approximately $240, or under $6.75 per serving" for 12 regular or 6 large meals.

Some meals are 'complete' (include side dishes), while others are not (need a salad or other vegetable side - for an additional fee). The more servings a customer orders in a single session, the lower the per-serving cost. Individual franchise locations may offer additional promotions or further discounts. Stores further offer a brochure describing a "self catering" service for parties.

Dream Dinners has been featured in the Oprah magazine, The View, profiled by the Food Network show Recipe for Success[2] and GMA Live.[3]

Media Coverage[edit]

Forbes Magazine profiled Dream Dinners and other franchise businesses in the meal assembly category in a May issue.[4] The article dated May 8, 2008 described the segment's rapid expansion followed by a precipitous rate of closings of the businesses, and detailed litigation between Dream Dinners and a group of franchisees alleging the firm misrepresented the potential value of the franchises, and improper disclosure to potential franchise buyers.

In 2010, all litigation surrounding the franchise disputes was settled out of court. The trade magazine Franchise Times ran a detailed article in their November/December 2010 issue outlining the outcome and history of the complex case, which included attorney liability allegations. According to that article, “…sources stated that it was the attorneys and law firms that stepped in to take responsibility for the settlement payments”.[5]

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