Who doesn’t love stuff shipped to their house?! I mean, is it a bad thing I know Postman Pete by his first name? For months I have seen ads for HelloFresh, and for months, I’ve thought “Hey, that sounds cool. Maybe next time.” Finally, I decided to bite the bullet and see what the fuss is about, and ordered my first week of meals. If you’ve ever wondered how it works or whether it is worth it, here is some information and my review. *disclaimer alert* HelloFresh did not pay me in any form for this review. Any information and opinions given are expressly my own. Affiliate links ARE included and help to keep this blog rolling (in addition to making your life a little easier in finding this product.
What is HelloFresh?
HelloFresh is a subscription service to provide you with ingredients needed to make healthy, fresh meals. There are three different types of boxes to choose from:
- Classic Box – Serves 2 or 4 people (you choose). These are standard meals, and you are given the option to choose from a list of meals.
- Veggie Box – Serves 2 or 4 people (you choose). Perfect for vegetarians!
- Family Box – Serves 2 adults and 2 children. Family friendly meals with choice of 2 or 3 meals.
When you sign up for the service, you can choose your delivery dates and your meal selections. (I ordered the Classic box my first week, and didn’t realize I could pick the meals!) They will send you shipping information with tracking (mine was delivered via UPS).
The box comes well insulated with special ice packs (we kept the ice packs out overnight to see what would happen – still rock solid the next day!), so your food arrives cold and fresh.
Like I said, I originally didn’t realize that I could choose my meals until my first delivery had shipped. Once I realized, I quickly went online to select next week’s shipment before I forgot! Choosing meals online was super easy to do (besides choosing WHICH items to use!). I had no other problems with shipping or delivery.
Unboxing was super simple, and each recipe’s contents were divided by recipe. (This is AWESOME!) The meat was not packed within the boxes, so the produce was able to be kept separate. Inside each box all of the necessary ingredients were inside, from produce to herbs to condiments like white wine vinegar in these cute little bottles! The ONLY thing that was not included were some major staples, such as salt, pepper, olive oil, and an egg. The meals came with a recipe booklet (you could separate each recipe card), which pictured instructions. The recipe cards are great, because you could keep them for a future use! Also, if you happen to lose your recipe cards, the recipes can easily be downloaded from their website.
Meal #1 Herbed Lemon Chicken Caesar Salad
Of course, the shrimp meal box said to cook first, but I decided to rebel and cook the chicken inside. (That and the fact that I didn’t see the “Cook me first” sticker on the shrimp box!! Haha!
Do you know what I liked about this Caesar salad? No anchovies! (They’re my mega nemesis). The recipe card stated it would take 25 minutes to prepare, and it was pretty close to accurate. I LOVED that instead of providing pre-made over crunchy croutons, they provided a ciabatta roll for you to slice and make your own croutons!
The meal turned out delicious, and I wouldn’t have changed anything. However, the Romaine lettuce looked a little sad upon arrival, so I chopped off the bottom end and stuck it in water to spruce it up before eating. Also, these meals serve more than two people! For 21 Day Fix, I filled a red, two greens, and counted an orange for the dressing/parmesan cheese.
Meal 2: Warm Shrimp and Farro Salad
Remember how I said I didn’t realize you could choose the meals? I don’t like shrimp (or any other seafood for that matter!). Had I have known I could choose, I wouldn’t have picked this meal. However, my mom is in town and LOVES shrimp, so it all worked out!
Since she loves shrimp (and I don’t), I gave her the honor of making this dish. Again, she had no problems with the preparation (besides the fact she’s not a fan of arugula!), and she said the meal tasted very good.
Again, this meal did provide more than 2 servings. I think if you were to order these dishes at a restaurant, their idea of a serving would probably be close to the same size as HelloFresh’s servings.
Meal 3: Marinated Steak Bibimbap
Bibimbap is Korean for delicious. (I’m kidding. But it was delicious!) One of my good friends in Seminary was from Korea, so I was excited to see this dish. (Note: I was never excited about kimchee, but that’s another story!!) It was nice to prep this dish by pickling the scallions (although the instructions said to pick the white part of the scallions and the scallions were mostly green so I had to make an educated guess). I don’t usually cook with scallions (my husband is not a fan). Also, we skipped the mushrooms (neither of us are fans), but my mom had no problem putting them into her shrimp dish (above).
The meal called for a fried egg on top (egg not included), and was the perfect finish for a meal. Don’t skip the egg – it provides an extra layer of richness to the dish! As for the serving size – the meat literally contained two red container servings of steak. However, for 21 Day Fix I used half a red of the steak combined with the egg to make a full red, then measured out a yellow for the rice, and a green for the vegetable (and 2 tsp for oil). Doing it this way, I was able to portion out 4 meals (and there was extra rice).
The cost varies depending on how many servings you order (and how many meals are provided). For my Classic box (2 generous servings), the cost is $69 (shipping is included). This breaks down to $11.50 per person per meal. When you consider the factors of 1) not having to go to the store 2) not having to buy extra ingredients that you don’t normally use and 3) you’re saving a lot of time building a shopping list and putting all of your items together during prep time, then this is an incredible value. It’s certainly cheaper than eating out, and you’re able to get yourself out of a cooking rut!
Also, HelloFresh will often run promotions for your initial order. For the month of May, you can receive $25 off per box for your first two boxes (that’s a $50 savings!) The promo code for this month is HelloMay50.
My overall thoughts
Overall, I am in LOVE with this service. It is not perfect by any means (we are not a fan of certain foods, so I can’t just substitute ingredients), but overall the convenience factor is amazing. It saves so much time and energy that as a busy mom, I’m not sure why I didn’t try this before! Since the food is healthy, I can cater it easily to 21 Day Fix (it’s not always a *perfect* match, but it’s pretty close). As for the family box, I’m not quite sure how my toddlers would react to the exotic foods (to a toddler, most food is exotic), but I’m excited to at least let them try new things. Someday it may catch on, right??