A Dietitian’s Review of HelloFresh

Home » Nutrition » A Dietitian’s Review of HelloFresh

Have you been intrigued by the trend of home-delivered meal kits? Me too. Who doesn’t want an easier time of putting a healthy meal on the table for their family? So, I tried HelloFresh recently! If you’re considering trying it too, I hope you find this review helpful.

How Does It Work?

HelloFresh is very easy to sign up for; you can even use your Facebook profile to do so. Once you’re in, you’ll have the option of three different meal plans: classic, veggie, and family. Within those plans, you can choose the number of people being served and the number of meals per week. You provide your credit card number, and you’re automatically enrolled in the reoccurring weekly program. However, they make it easy to skip a week or cancel the service.

Meals are delivered Wednesday through Friday for all areas, and seven days a week in others. The delivery window is from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm, and although that’s a large time span, the box of food can be left on your doorstep and is packaged with ice and insulation to maintain a safe temperature. The ingredients needed for the meal come accompanied by a step-by-step recipe with pictures as well as nutritional info.

How Much Does It Cost?

The classic and veggie plans cost $9.99 per serving, and the family plan costs $8.74 per serving (presumably because the portions are slightly smaller for the kids). The minimum number of meals per week for the classic and veggie plan is three, and two for the family plan. Therefore, the minimum cost for the classic or veggie plan is $59.94 (three meals for two adults) and $69.92 for the family plan (two meals for two adults and two children).

I used a coupon for $40.00 of my first order that I received in a shopping bag from Motherhood Maternity. There are many discounts to be found on first orders by Googling “Hello Fresh coupon.” You can also ask your friends; Hello Fresh provides a referral code for all users which provides a $40.00 discount for new users and a $20.00 credit to the person who provided the referral.

How Did It Go?

I was surprised to see how big the box was when it landed on my doorstep. After all, I only ordered two meals under the family plan. But there is a good deal of packaging and plenty of large ice packs inside to keep the meat cold. In fact, the bottom of the box buckled under the pressure and had started splitting at the seam, making it slightly awkward to carry inside.

Everything was packaged very well and the food was fresh (it better be with a name like HelloFresh, right!?). Each of the meals’ ingredients came in its own labeled box, with the meat for all meals packaged separately on ice. I was struck by how much packaging material there was and had concerns for the sustainability of this method of obtaining meals. More on that later.

When it came time to cook, I found it to be very handy to have all the ingredients in one place. The instructions were very easy to follow, and most of the ingredients came packaged in quantities that were exactly what the recipe called for, so there was not much measuring. There was a good deal of washing and chopping vegetables, but this is necessary if you’re looking for fresh meals. Consider it an opportunity to sharpen your knife skills (pun intended).

The two meals I made were “One-Pan Pork Carnitas Tacos” and “No-Fuss Pesto Chicken.” It helped to have some experience with cooking, but both recipes were easy to prepare. There were a few instances that I relied on my cooking experience to modify the recipes. For example, to finish the pork carnitas, the recipe called for two tablespoons of water but I needed about half a cup to attain the right consistency. With the pesto chicken meal, I found the roasted potatoes needed much more time in the over than prescribed, but oven temperatures vary.

Both meals tasted delicious! My husband gave his thumbs up too. My four-year-old enjoys foods separately, so for him I omitted the pesto topping on the chicken, for example. But he also found a good number of foods to enjoy from the meal. The portions were generous and we had a few leftovers after each meal.

Is it Healthy?

Short answer: yes. The meals that I chose did a pretty good job following the Health Plate model. The chicken meal came with a spring salad, but the carnitas did not have a side salad, although it had some vegetable toppings including romaine lettuce and red onion. If I had planned the meal, I probably would have included some sort of mixed salad on the side too.

According to the HelloFresh website, a team of chefs and dietitians develop each recipe with taste, nutrition, and seasonality in mind. I love to hear that they have dietitians involved with the recipe creation.

What I Liked

  • It was so convenient to open one box and have all needed ingredients for a meal at my fingertips.
  • I loved that there was not a lot of measuring involved because most ingredients were pre-portioned.
  • I loved that it inspired me to try new techniques that I haven’t tried before (eg. a quick pickle on red onion as a taco topping).
  • The meals were well balanced from all food groups.
  • The meals were delicious and my entire family enjoyed them!

What I Didn’t Like

  • I wish you could choose between meal plans, because the family plan had meat in every meal. It would be nice for the family or classic plan to have the option of choosing a plant-based meal.
  • The amount of packaging seems wasteful. The cotton liner and other materials, such as the box, are recyclable/biodegradable. But it came with three huge ice packs that said they were reusable, but I didn’t have space in my freezer! Sadly, those had to be trashed.
  • The cost per meal at Hello Fresh is $9.99. You can get a meal out where I live for about that price (and the restaurant will cook it for you!).

Have you tried HelloFresh? What did you think?

Now that I’ve tried out HelloFresh, I plan to try a few different meal kit services over the next few weeks. I’ll be sure to keep you posted with a review! Which others should I try? I’d love to hear from you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Best Nutritionists in Phoenix

For your health and well being.