The Joy Of Not Cooking

Americans spend less time cooking every year. Yet the $100 billion home-meal replacement market has produced few winners

You're driving from the office, the fuel tank is nearing empty, and so is your refrigerator at home. For Americans ravenous of appetite but starved of time (and in need of an oil change), a quick turn into the Chevron station off Interstate 680 in San Ramon, Calif., is the answer. That's right, Chevron, purveyor of premium gasoline, is serving fresh panini, three-cheese pesto and double espressos along with its usual selection of octanes.

Chevron cooked up its Foodini's Fresh Meal Market earlier this year, the latest player in the $100 billion bake-off known, charmingly enough, as home-meal replacement. You...

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