Last week, we tried out Hello Fresh, the meal prep home delivery service. I had a coupon code and wanted to try and mix things up from our weekly routine. Here is what we thought of the various aspects of the service.
Ordering: On on their website, you can look at the menus for the Classic, Veggie, or Family box. You can look at various upcoming weeks and decide if there’s one that you want to jump in on. Oh and of the weekly meals, it looks like at least one is a meal created by chef Jamie Oliver. I love his food and they’re all so fresh and healthy! But overall, I like that you can see the upcoming menus for several weeks, and get an exact idea of what they offer.
Once you have an account, you can select the box and choose the meals that you want. Depending on which plan you select, you can order anywhere from 2-5 meals for the week. Make sure you pick the week that you want to start with (based on the menu) ahead of time, then go in and start your first order. Once you pay, you select the meals that you want. One thing that I would have liked the first time I ordered it, was a quick overview on the initial order page of the meals being offered that week. I accidentally selected the wrong week and didn’t realize that it wasn’t the menu that I had originally planned for until after I paid. I was still able to find meals I wanted to make for that week, but I was a little disappointed that it wasn’t the week that I had originally wanted.
Delivery: When you order, you select your delivery time. They gave me an all day range and I knew we wouldn’t be around for some of it, but based on their delivery description, I knew that the food would be fine on our porch. When we did get home to find the giant Hello Fresh box there, I was very happy with how it was all packed. Plenty of ice, insulation around everything and each meal was boxed up individually for easy storage and sorting.
Meal Prep and Time: When it came time to make the meals, we just unpacked the individual meal box and read through the enclosed menu instruction packet. There were detailed instructions and photos guiding you through the prep. The instructions were simple to follow and were spot on. Two of my meals took under 30 minutes to prepare from start to finish (and a lot of that time was inactive cooking time where I just had to keep an eye on the stove). The last meal was a risotto but I had fair warning that it would be more time consuming based on the ratings on the website and reading the instructions ahead of time. It was my first time making risotto on my own (it was Jamie Oliver’s risotto recipe and funnily enough, I made risotto with him years ago when he was doing a demo and I was selected to be his ‘assistant’ on stage).
Taste: The taste did not disappoint! Everything was perfectly seasoned and was just as described in the individual meal plans. The best part for us was that almost everything we made was something we hadn’t done before, or had at least one new item that we hadn’t cooked previously, like cous cous or fajitas made from scratch.
Some of the meal plans we did add on to on our own. For example, with the fajitas we had fresh corn on the cob as I had some on hand already. With the risotto, we added rotisserie chicken, but just because I wanted a little more protein and it was easy to pick up an already prepared chicken without adding extra prep time. But we could have had both meals on their own without adding anything else and been fine.
Overall Impression: We really enjoyed it and would definitely order from them again! It’s pricey, but it was a great way to mix up our menu and add some variety into our weekly routine. I liked that we didn’t have to get anything else from the grocery store – it was all conveniently packaged with everything that we needed to make the meal. The instructions were clear and easy to follow, and the prep/cook time specified was pretty exact.
At $10 a meal (per person), it really isn’t that bad of a deal, though our initial purchase discount definitely made it more appealing. They offer a coupon of $40 off of your first order with a referral code (the link is one) and with referrals, you will get a discount of $20 on subsequent orders. I think that would make it something where we would be able to do it once, maybe twice a month. And it does seem like they mix up their meal plans pretty regularly so you could always be trying something new.
Oh, I also loved that I was able to find the meals in My Fitness Pal. I just searched ‘Hello Fresh’ and the recipe name, and the meals were listed in there. It made it very easy to log and track my calories for the day. When reviewing the meals on the website too, you can look at more details which includes the nutritional value breakdown.
So overall, I think Hello Fresh was a great value and a nice addition to our lifestyle. I wouldn’t be able to do it every week, but I do look forward to trying it again soon.