I have been hearing about healthy meal delivery services and was curious to try Hello Fresh.
I had gone back to work full time last year and the concept of cooking dinner for my daughters when we get home from school and work is always a challenge.
I liked Hello Fresh’s appeal and the fact that they offered different types of recipes. They have a classic plan, veggie plan and family plan. We tried the family plan that provides food for 2 adults and 2 children.
I went online and picked our recipes for the trial and scheduled a delivery date and time. You don’t need to be home to accept a delivery – their boxes are layered with an isolating wool and ice packs to keep ingredients farm fresh and cool until you get home.
When we received the box, we opened it to find three boxes with ingredients for each of our three meals. The meats were below the boxes and were kept cool with the ice packs. The veggies were fresh and the meats were high quality.
I put the boxes and the packs of meat in the fridge. We decided which recipe to try first and we started cooking the following night.
We received recipe books with easy to follow instructions and tips and what other ingredients and utensils you will need for the recipe.
The prep time to prepare the vegetables and sides took around 20 minutes and the cooking time varied depending on the recipe but usually took 15 – 30 minutes. You could prep ahead of time and that would help on busy evenings.
A few recipes we tried include: honey and orange chicken jambalaya, seared pork tenderloin with roast potatoes, green beans and applesauce, mini pork meatloaves with red cabbage and sweet potato wedges, little ears pasta with chicken sausage and baby broccoli, and our favorite, chicken paillard with chimichurri, sweet potato wedges and salad.
My daughter and I enjoyed preparing the meals and we felt like gourmet cooks after trying a few recipes.
I learned to butterfly chicken – it marinades better because more surface area is covered – and cooks faster!
I also learned that making potato wedges are fun and convenient and a good way to eat sweet potatoes. I still need to get better at chopping and dicing vegetables, but that comes with time.
I learned not to stress too much. Sometimes if there was an ingredient that my daughters didn’t like, I just didn’t add it.
At first I put pressure on myself about trying to do it perfectly, but the real joy was cooking with my daughter and seeing them eat healthy meals and enjoy them.
The plans they offer run about $8.74-$9.99 a meal so for 3 people, 3 or more times a week, it can seem pricey. I find it is easier to make it fit my budget if I don’t go to the store a few times a week, where you can drop $40 each time.
The good news is that you can try the service and cancel anytime. They also offer a newsletter and share recipes and healthy tips.
We used it for a few deliveries and have taken a break for now as our spring activities leave little room for cooking during the week.
Another thing I have learned in this process is to try to plan my meals for the week over the weekend. By shopping and having an idea of what we will be eating makes it easier to prepare. I am trying to cook ahead when I can and cook enough for leftovers with a different recipe to change things up.
I do plan on ordering again. It’s an interesting concept and I really think the farm to table movement is great for families of all sizes. Being a busy working mom, it’s nice to have healthy groceries delivered to the door with recipes planned and in hand.
I may try the Classic plan for 2 people for three meals a week next. We fall in between the 2 and 4 person meal plan, so it is good to try a few different plans out and see what works best.
Hello Fresh offers coupons and tips if you sign up for their email newsletter. I like receiving them and will use a code the next time I order.
They also have an app, which I have yet to use so you can select your meals right from your phone.
If you decide to try the healthy meal delivery service route, good luck! And remember, anyone can cook! (from one of my favorite Disney movies)
Disclosure: Hello Fresh sent me one free family delivery box of three meals. I ordered and paid for the other two boxes. This is an honest review of my opinion. The link in this blog post is an affiliate link – you can get one of your own to share with family and friends to save on your budget! Use my link and get $40 off your first box!