No Recipe Here – Just A HelloFresh Review!

Thinking about trying a meal kit delivery service? Well, this HelloFresh Review may or may not change  your mind. Please know, this HelloFresh Review has opinions that are all my own and I am not affiliated in any way with HelloFresh. This was definitely something different and new from my normal MO. So much so, a couple of friends called me out on it. L 🙂 L

Subscribing to the service, picking the meals and setting up delivery was fairly easy. Notifications of when the box was shipped were provided as well. I must admit, I had slight anxiety about food, specifically meat, getting shipped through the mail. Lots of questions were running through my head:  what time would it get delivered? would it still be cold?  would it come while I was home? When the box arrived, all 14 lbs. of it, after having been on the UPS truck since 6:00 a.m., the box was well packed and the food was still cold, despite traveling for two days.

For the sake of this review, I followed the directions to a “T” and this was truly a challenge for me. I wanted the true experience not only for myself, but also to provide my readers with a firm foundation of what to expect in the event you too are looking at trying HelloFresh, or some other food delivery service. Without further anticipation, here’s The Good, The Bad, The Ugly and last, but certainly not least, The Meals.

The Good.

  • Convenience. With HelloFresh, you do not have to step foot in anybody’s Kroger, Harris Teeter, Food Lion, Publix, Whole Foods, Target, and my least favorite, Wal-Mart. With the exception of oils, salt and pepper, everything you need to cook these meals comes in separately labeled boxes with ingredients specific to each meal.

  • Portion Sizes. HelloFresh will not allow you or anyone in your household to go hungry. All ingredients were pre-measured and the servings were hearty. Most times, I was unable to eat the serving in one setting. The portion size could be a catch-22 because the minimum servings you can buy is two; however, if you’re a single person home, packaging a meal up for lunch or dinner could make it a win-win.

  • Cooking Experience Not Required. Not able to boil water? No problem, because HelloFresh provides full color, step by step, recipe card for each meal. Absent burning someone or something, it would be hard to mess these meals up. Each meal I tried involved some form of chopping, mincing, searing or sautĂ©ing, but even a novice could handle it.

  • Variety. From the meals I ordered, to what I saw available, no two meals were alike. They might have utilized the same meats or vegetables, but they all had a spin of their own.

  • Fresh. HelloFresh lived up to every ounce of it’s name when it comes to the freshness of ingredients. I only noticed a few imperfections with some of the vegetables due to moisture after getting sealed loosely in a bag.

The Bad.

  • Basic. Don’t expect pizzazz with Hello Fresh – if your goal is to get food on the table for your family, great, but if it’s anything more, like trying to impress the date of your dreams and you told them you could cook, don’t count on HelloFresh to come thru. Some, not all (e.g., DIY Dumplings), of the meals are good for quick meals. However, they all take a little bit of preparation and if you’re not into chopping vegetables or mincing garlic and herbs, or willing to for that matter,  HelloFresh may not be for you.

  • Price. HelloFresh is not nice on the pocket book, and it will definitely feel lighter if you sign up for weekly deliveries; however, if you’re willing to forego some of your hard earned coins for convenience, as mentioned in number one of “The Good,” HelloFresh will be your best friend. The regular price of 3 meals for 2 persons per week is $59.95, which breaks down to $10.00 per serving. THAT. IS. HIGH. HelloFresh offered options for meals that were considered premium, which added an additional $5.00 per serving. The premium option for the week I ordered was Lobster Ravioli. If it makes you, or your pocket book, feel better, delivery is free and I’m certain you can find a coupon for your first box, but just make sure to cancel so the service does not continue at regular price.

The Ugly.

  • Price. Please. See. Above. L 🙂 L

 

The Meals.

Meal # 1 – Blackened Catfish with Roasted Potatoes and Blistered Vegetables

This meal was an almost hit. The first day. The fish was fresh and the size of the serving was hearty. I also enjoyed the flavor pairings they used, such as, adding cilantro to the vegetables, which were green beans, onions and red bell pepper. Not something I thought of before. I simply tossed the potatoes in olive oil, salt and pepper, but I struggled and fought myself to not add rosemary and thyme to the potatoes. I was unable to eat the entire serving, so I packaged and refrigerated it. Upon reheating the dish to eat, I was only able to fully enjoy the roasted potatoes. This meal was best eaten in one setting on the day it’s made, especially the portion of fish.

HelloFresh Review

Meal # 2 – DIY Pork Dumplings with Quick Pickled Slaw and Soy Dipping Sauce

This meal was a miss. It was time consuming and would not work well for someone who was in a hurry on a week night. Although all of the ingredients stayed true to the brand of HelloFresh, I was a little taken aback when I originally opened the box and saw a package of pork. The slaw was good and allowed me to try something new, but as the old folks say, it was nothing to write home about. Also, dumplings, slaw or not, are more of an appetizer than a meal, but this “meal” was a whopping 800 calories. I will say by the time I was done playing DIY with this meal, I unexpectedly worked for those calories.

HelloFresh Review

Meal # 3 – Lean Green Steak Machine with Mint Chive Dressing and Veggie Succotash

This meal was a hit. It was perfect for the season and a nice breath of fresh air from the typical vegetables I eat day in and day out. It combined asparagus, peas and zucchini seasoned with salt, pepper, lemon juice and zest. The steak was a tri-tip, not a cut I usually buy, but after topping it with a mint chive dressing, it became palatable for my tastebuds.

HelloFresh Review

Overall, the meals were good. I would re-create the meals, but purchase my own ingredients and more than likely add some of my own flair. Although it takes the guess work out of the age old question, “what’s for dinner?” there was nothing in the 14lb box that I could not go to the grocery store and purchase for double the food and half the price.

For someone like myself, that is used to (and loves) going to the grocery store, creating food pairings and developing meals from scratch, I would not fully rely on this service. HelloFresh would work well for people who don’t have time to go to the grocery store, or don’t like going for that matter. It would also work well for someone who is looking for variety or is just learning to cook. HelloFresh has a great variety of recipes available for delivery and a database through their app with full color, step by step, recipe cards that are beautiful and easy to follow. The recipe cards are also great for adding to your recipe arsenal, but still don’t make the service worth the price.

It appears from my HelloFresh Review that the good outweighs the bad and the ugly; however, it’s all personal preference and you have to decide what’s truly more important. The price alone, is a huge turn off for me, so much so, I had to mention it twice. Additionally, customer service is lacking, and the cancellation timelines are BSC, which made cancelling a no brainer. I must also mention that not getting to use my love of grocery shopping and creativity in the kitchen was a buzz kill.

Have you already tried HelloFresh or still thinking about it and have questions about my experience? Leave a comment, we love hearing from you!

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27 comments on “No Recipe Here – Just A HelloFresh Review!

  1. I am just trying the service this week, and honestly the time it takes me to collapse all of the cardboard and stuff from packaging would be better spent drawing up a fast meal plan with my “system” and ordering groceries online. I also found (as an experienced cook) that some of the meals took significantly longer to make than the 30 minutes of allotted time. I also don’t have plastic bag recycling yet in my area, so the waste from the packaging is phenomenal. Overall, it wasn’t a service that worked for my lifestyle. Although, I agree the portions sizes were generous, it was well organized and it had some interesting meals (although not toddler approved).

    • Dene' V. Alexander

      May 17, 2017 at 11:01 pm Reply

      Thank you for your feedback, Heather!! It’s valuable and good to know I was not alone with determining it wasn’t for me. I was fairly shocked by the packaging they chose to use and also the amount of time it took to prepare some of the meals, too! I plan to dive into the world of online grocery ordering…I have heard stories from both sides about how great it is or how it’s the worst experience ever!! Lol!!

  2. I have been so curious about Hellofresh and Blue Apron. I love to cook but never quite sure about being told what I was eating that day considering how fickle as a pickle I am. Great review!

    • Dene' V. Alexander

      May 17, 2017 at 11:03 pm Reply

      It gives you a little more lead time than the day of, but not by much! You can apparently pick the meals you want weekly and it takes the guesswork out of what you’d be eating! Thank so much for your feedback!!

  3. Wow i never would have thought that the hello fresh food would look so good. Thanks for sharing your review, I might become a convert to this new way of shopping/cooking

    • Dene' V. Alexander

      May 17, 2017 at 11:04 pm Reply

      Thanks, I think it’s cool if everyone tries everything at least once in life!! These are meals I plated and pictures I took, so I’m not certain if it would truly hold up to your expectations! LOL – thanks for your feedback!! 🙂

  4. Helpful review! I have heard of HelloFresh, but there are actually several other ‘meal delivery’ services in my area that are more popular. You’re brave to try it out as the whole shipping meat thing gives me anxiety. It’s an intriguing idea, as there are literally subscription boxes out there for everything now, but for the price, I just could never commit to something like this long term. It may be fun to try on occasion, though, to switch things up!

  5. The meals look delicious. I think it’s important to add your own flavor when cooking. I don’t mind prep, as long as it’s quick. There are a few companies like this in Jamaica, but their prices are out of my range. The convenience these services provide I think is worth the extra dollars.

  6. I love your thorough review. I’ve tried Sun Basket (LOVE), Blue Apron (did not love), and meal delivery places like Munchery (also love), but haven’t tried Hello Fresh yet. Mainly because I sort of know the whole meal prep kit thing is not for me. That steak dish though looks AMAZING.

  7. I’ve always wondered about some of these services so Thanks for the review. But I don’t think this would be for me since I definitely like to go to the store and pick out my own ingredients and plan my meals myself 🙂

  8. What a beautiful menu, all looks so fresh and tasty. I must give a try to Hello Fresh soon. Loved you photos too =)

  9. Always been curious about these Hellofresh and Blue Apron.. love the menu. looks so fresh. Will look for this soon. Just curious.

  10. Such pretty pictures!
    I’ve thought about trying this sort of option, thanks for a clear explanation of what you received and how it worked out for you.

  11. I love HelloFresh! This looks delicious. Also, you styled it beautifully!

  12. Well this was a great review. Although it is something I would not subscribe to…you know the food blog thing, I do see this appealing to someone like my daughter. People who don’t like experiment in the kitchen, and hate shopping would love this. Still cheaper than eating out all the time I’m sure.

  13. Thank you for all the information. I always wondered about Hello Fresh. I actually love to cook and don’t mind doing it – but yes, once in a while would be nice to just have the convenience of it all. That been said, the price is steep! Gorgeous photos though!!!

  14. The dishes do look good! I have been using another service, “Plated” a couple days per week and find them to be good also. It really helps when I am out of town and husband is home by himself. He doesn’t mind cooking the dishes. It is convenient but a lot of recycling necessary.

  15. Nicely presented. and I would to love to review like you. Great job on that. Thanks for all the information

  16. Very interesting review. I don’t think I’d ever order one just because I love the challenge of cooking and preparing meals. Now, if I were in a pinch it might be nice for the convenience. Thank you for the feedback.

  17. Thanks for sharing information about Hello Fresh, I don’t think I will order it, I like to cook from scratch everything if possible. Yes this one is good for people who doesn’t want to cook. Love your picture.

  18. What a wonderful review.. Everything looks so fresh and tasty and your photos are beautiful.

  19. I really appreciate your honest review. I’ve been considering using a meal delivery service like this for a few nights out of the week, but I’ve really been on the fence about it. I think you’ve given me a few new things to consider.

  20. The meals look so good and I’d definitely try the catfish menu. Loved reading the HelloFresh review and feels like a service we can use once or twice in few months.

  21. Thanks for sharing your review with us.. I have only tries blue apron… But this meal looks delicious!! Your post has helped me alot ..have one more option to choose from 🙂

  22. I appreciate the thorough, honest review! I haven’t tried Hello Fresh before and have similar reservations to the things that you mentioned. Maybe I will still give it a go though.

  23. I can see how this would be quite helpful to those who want homemade meals for their families, but don’t want to take the time to meal plan and grocery shop. It certainly looks like delicious options!

  24. I love that you reviewed this so honestly and with such gorgeous pictures! It sure looks yummy!

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