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Hello Fresh

I was not paid by Hello fresh for this. I pay them, in fact, to get my food. They don’t even know I exist beyond getting my money. This is all my opinion and should be taken as such. Your experiences may vary. 

Food is my down fall.  Coming up with what to buy makes me want to poke my eyes out with a blunt object. Actually shopping for it is my own personal form of Dante’s Inferno. Did you know that you move the same object seven times before you eat it?? Shelf to cart –> cart to register –> buggy to car –> car to inside the house –>counter to place it is kept –> back onto the counter to use it –> then onto your plate. Ridiculous!

At the end of 2017 I began looking into my options for a healthier, fresher way to eat. Paleo? Keto? Whole 30? Stop caring and become fat? Nothing was hitting the mark for what I wanted which was a way to eat better and spend more time at home (less eating out which is something I waste a crap ton of time and money on every month) all while increasing our food range in regards to flavors and meals. Not too much to ask, is it?

Who doesn’t like receiving a box every week?

Finally I hit on the meal kits which have flooded the market. I did a bunch of research, asked my friends for their experiences and landed on Hello Fresh. Mostly because their menu options were more regular food items that I could envision my son eating. I signed up for the family plan which has a minimum of four servings per meal and began at three meals a week, then switched to two meals a week because this farm didn’t come with a money tree.

I’ve been using them for over a month now and have to say I love it. I was skeptical as I am wont to be in general, but it has surpassed my expectations. A quick run down for those who don’t know how it works:

  • Every week you get to choose what meals you want. The family plan is the most limited in terms of options. I get roughly 5-6 meals to choose my two from. The menu is set for 3 weeks in advance, so you don’t need to remember a specific day, but you do need to choose by the Thursday the week before or it defaults for you.
  • You also pick the day of the week Mon-Sat you want it delivered. I chose Monday to make the beginning of the week better.
  • I come home from work to a lovely big box filled with my week’s meals on my doorstep. Yum!
  • There is a nice Hello Fresh app that makes all this super easy
Neatly organized inside the box

What I like about the service:

  • No shopping!! Well, that is not 100% true because I only get two meals a week, but it does limit my shopping significantly. I wish they had a 4 meal a week option because that would eliminate all my meal shopping.
  • The meals come in separate bags in the box with the exact ingredients needed for that meal. When I want to make the cheesy hamburgers with onion jam, all I need to do is pull out the brown bag labeled with that meal and grab the meat. The bag contains the exact amount of garlic, peppers etc…
Each meal fully contained in its own brown bagThe food has all been extremely good tasting and fresh.  I was a bit worried that the meat would be poor quality and the veggies near out of life, but so far that hasn’t been the case at all.

 

  • Easy to cook meals. I am not a chef. I don’t aspire to be a chef. The meals on the family plan with Hello Fresh have been simple, do not require a bunch of cooking tools I don’t own and the cook times have been spot on.
Easy to read, large recipe cards
  • I can replicate the meals on my won. Aside from a few meals that have some generic “southwest spice packet”, most of the meals have been with regular ingredients that I could easily make on my own outside of the service in the future.
All the ingredients needed inside the bag. They do not supply butter, oil or sugar. 

Some of the cons:

  • No left overs. The meals are filling and nobody leaves the table hungry, not even my husband who eats enough for four. There aren’t many meals with left overs for the next day though so I do end up having to plan more meals for the week versus cooking on my own where every meal can last two or three days.
Food pictures gross me out, but I can’t not post them after writing all about food. So here you go. Mega turkey meatballs. 
  • Needs more veggies. The meat portions are spot on, but they are pretty stingy when it comes to the veggies. More of them would be nice. For instance, when the meal comes with a salad all it is is spring mix lettuce. No cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers etc…Veggies aren’t that expensive and it would level up the meal.
  • Speaking of salad, they need a new “dressing”. A squeeze of a lemon and olive oil isn’t a dressing. It is gross. I make my own dressing anyway and substitute that, but for the price they could have you make a vinaigrette or something edible.
  • Chicken and pork only. This is a family plan problem as my friend who does the classic has seafood and steak options that I don’t.
Cooking away
  • Prep time lies. While the cooking times have been spot on, the prep apparently assumes you are a chef. 5 minute prep time, my butt. These meals are being toted as taking only 30 minutes to cook, but mine take about an hour. It is going a bit faster now that I am in the groove, but yeah…double the prep time in reality.
  • The app/website is finicky. Every time I update it, it kicks out my log in and then claims I don’t exist. I then have to call the company and have them fix it.

All in all I am really enjoying the entire experience from choosing the meals to receiving it to the cooking and eating. Wyatt has enjoyed all the meals except the BBQ chicken which I figured he wouldn’t as he doesn’t like BBQ sauce. We are full, there is sometimes enough for me to take for lunch the next day and it makes me happy to see my box and cook something real. I am learning a lot of new techniques and Wyatt is enjoying a mom who actually cooks.

The delicious finished product that Wyatt chowed down on. 

I’d highly recommend trying it. My cost is $8.75/serving/meal which is probably a bit higher than if I bought it all myself for some of the meals, but way less than eating out which is what we are using this as a substitute for. Try getting fajitas at a restaurant for $8.75 and have them be half as tasty as the pork ones I made at home.

15 thoughts on “Hello Fresh”

  1. I’ve done a couple services mainly when they were free trials or extremely cheap. For me and our current lifestyle they don’t make sense (I have lots of time, only feeding 2 people) but I absolutely see where they are absolute lifesavers!

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  2. I have Blue Apron but very similar and love it. More veggies would be good but we get 2-3 meals a week and there are always left overs. I agree that the prep time is longer than they say!! Mark eats most of it (He is like Wyatt a five year old in a 47 year old body LMAO)….i like it. I was looking at Hello Fresh too so thanks for the review. I have some more free meals if anyone wants to try Blue Apron (you get a free box of food to try it no strings). I am also not paid by Blue Apron 😉 HA! (And i love that your farm doesnt have a money tree. THAT IS going on my list of what my farm needs)!!

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  3. I really like the idea of these services. i would love to have someone shop and deliver all the stuff for me. Unfortunately, my pickiness (no red meat, I hate tofu, etc) and actual food allergies (tomatoes and mushrooms) make getting meals I can eat/will enjoy really difficult. For example, I couldn’t eat any of the things you pictured. We tried one for a while and it was a struggle to pick meals that I could eat/could be modified (leave out the tomatoes if they weren’t essential) was too annoying.

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  4. So we just paused our meal plans as #3 is due bit have been doing Blue Apron and now Home Chef for quite some time. Blue Apron, even the family is too different for my picky kids. We just fix them nuggets those nights. My hubby does cooking, he would love to hear not only one that takes double the prep time. The meals opened up a world of food though I never would have tried.

    Home Chef sounds more similar to Hello Fresh, meals you could replicate but dont want to shop for. But braving store makes it cheaper so them i feel bad paying more.

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  5. I do hello fresh as well! I pick the veggie option as usually I’m eating just for me, and really have been happy with the meals. I tried blue apron and the cooking time was so ridiculously long. This is perfect post work!

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