In the age of convenience where we can have almost anything in an instant, meal prep kits are on the rise. There are several different companies offering pre-portioned meals that you cook at home that promise to be easy and quick recipes but the only one I have tried is Hello Fresh. Disclaimer: this post is NOT sponsored although -Hello Fresh: if you’re down to collab I’m open.
So, here’s how it works. When you sign up you will choose one of three options: Veggie Plan, Classic, or Family. Then, you select the number of people and the amount of meals you would like to receive per week. Meals are delivered to your door securely packed with dry ice. You are automatically charged each week, unless you skip that week before the designated date in your plan. I’ve found that using the Hello Fresh app makes updating my preferences on the go much easier.
Since my husband is a pescatarian (kind of like a vegetarian but he eats seafood on occasion) we use the Veggie plan. So far I have enjoyed most of the meals, although I will say I naturally like vegetables and am not a picky eater so that does help. We have been members for almost a year and here are a few things that keep us coming back:
- Ingredients – everything you need in order to make each recipe is included. Most of it is also already measured out! This is especially helpful because sometimes you go to make a new recipe and buy all of the things you need for it and never end up using them otherwise. The only ingredients you may need to provide, depending on the recipe is butter, olive oil, and almost always salt and pepper. If there are other seasonings needed they will be in the box. I personally haven’t had any issue with any ingredient being arriving spoiled or stale.
- Convenience – We have two very busy schedules with work or church or hobbies and other time commitments during the week. Planning out our meals is one less thing to worry about. Just clearing that from my mental load has made life a little more enjoyable. We usually plan our entire week of meals on a Sunday that way we know what to grocery shop for in advance and we don’t have to think when we come home tired.
- Exposed to New Foods – Hello Fresh has helped us try so many new meals. I never would have thought to make flatbreads or tostadas. I never heard of grilling cheese (no, not “grilled cheese”) or faro either. I’m proud to say I have expanded my culinary horizons *adjusts imaginary chef’s hat* Also, even if I didn’t like everything, it was still fun experimenting. Luckily my husband likes trying new things too so it works out well for us.
- Improved Cooking Skills – I wasn’t expecting it but this meal kit service has made me a better cook. I’ve been able to learn new techniques, improve my knife skills (YouTube has also helped with this), and learn different shortcuts in the kitchen. Below are some pictures I took while making Roasted Corn Toastadas.
It hasn’t all been perfect though. My one criticism is at the beginning we were getting a lot of the same meals. We choose not to have a delivery every week. Maybe we have a lot of nights that we’ll be eating out with friends or working late or going out of town and we will just skip those weeks. But then on the week we start back up, we would end up getting something that we just had recently. If it was a really good one I wouldn’t mind but the ones we didn’t like so much- I couldn’t justify getting a whole box just for two of the options.
However, a recent change may be helping us with this . You see with the Veggie plan you couldn’t really select meals, there are three options and that’s it. But now, they have provided an option where you can add the occasional meal that includes meat. So since my husband eats fish occasionally, we were able to swap a meal we already had (and didn’t care for that much) for something new that includes fish. This change has made me even more impressed with their brand. I’m looking forward to seeing what else is new and what new recipes will be added to the menus.
If you’ve been on the fence about trying Hello Fresh, I hope this information was helpful! Let me know in the comments if you’ve tried it before. Was your experience good or bad? Do you recommend any other meal kit services?