I wanted to try a meal service like Hello Fresh, but I kept on going back and forth on whether or not it would be right for our family. I was hesitant to try, but I’m glad I did!
The meals looked tasty and I liked the idea of meals showing up on my doorstep, but the price held me back. (Thankfully they offer a deal on the first box!)
My main hesitation was that the meal service didn’t cut time from the actual meal prep. While there is a convenience factor, I wasn’t sure how much that convenience would help a family with small children. When cooking dinner with a one-year-old hanging on my legs…it’s key to have meals that don’t take too long to put together. (Tip: order one pot meals)
Many meal service subscription boxes give deals on the first box for new customers. Once I started hearing good things from other moms, I knew I had to try it. I signed up with a discount code and picked my meals.
If you want a deal on your first box, get $30 off here.
I immediately saw the appeal of a service like this. Once you pick your meal size (2 or 4 people) and the number of deliveries per week, you get access to the recipes for the week. I enjoyed picking out the recipes and was excited to have the ingredients for Super Soy Chicken Tenders and Tomato-y Tortellini Soup show up on my doorstep a few days later.
Before I get into my review, I wanted to share: What is HelloFresh?
It’s a weekly delivery service for delicious, nutritious recipes and all the necessary ingredients to prepare the meals. The flexible subscription service is easy to use and can be canceled at any time. You get to pick the recipes that appeal to you. It’s easy to skip a week or cancel, but I’ll share more about that below.
There is also a referral program, so if you share with your friends you both save! If your friends sign up with your link, they will receive a discount on their first box. You will also receive a $20 credit.
I was happy with how everything was packaged at first glance. With the insulating liners, ice packs, and cooling material everything arrived cold. (I had a small problem with one of the ingredients…more below.)
The first meal I made was the Tomato-y Tortelloni Soup.
Pro: It was tasty and easy to prepare! My one-year loved it and ate more than his sisters combined. It was a one-pot meal, which is always nice when I feel like I spend all day in the kitchen. (My girls eat so slow! Between meal prep, dinner, and clean-up, I really do feel like I never leave the kitchen.) The sausage was nitrate free, which was an added bonus.
Con: The tortelloni package was open and so the tortelloni was dry and unusable. This was a bummer considering that I was excited about the tortelloni! I tossed in noodles that I had on hand. I would have been frustrated if I didn’t have the noodles as I cannot easily run out for an ingredient while cooking with three children. I shot Hello Fresh an e-mail and they promptly issued a credit towards my next meal.
Then I made the Super Soy Chicken Tenders.
Pro: All 5 of us enjoyed this meal. It’s wonderful when this happens. :) I enjoyed the fresh green beans and there was some leftover chicken.
Con: We could have used a few more fresh green beans. It seemed like a small amount for 4 servings. This meal had much more prep and used more pans than the above soup. This is not a criticism of the meal, but something I learned for future orders. Look for the One Pot meals!
Did I enjoy the recipes? We enjoyed the Tomato-y Tortelloni Soup so much that I made it the next week! Each meal comes with a recipe card so it’s easy to keep the recipe on hand. (We enjoyed it a second time without the actual tortelloni…someday I’ll try it with tortelloni. Did you know that tortelloni and tortellini are two different ingredients? I thought they misspelled tortelloni, so I had to google it. Wikipedia.)
Was it worth the cost? With the initial discount…yes! I was able to tweak a few things with the soup to extend the leftovers the second day, so I actually got 3 meals from our order. Without the initial discount? It’s too spendy to keep as a weekly order. (Sharing with friends for the referral bonus would help though!)
Where the meals healthy? I was happy with the two meals I selected. I do not do a good job of serving a variety of vegetables at dinner. It’s often a last-minute addition, or I don’t have a veggie on hand to serve. It was nice to have vegetables in both meals with the spinach and fresh green beans. The green beans were a hit! I was also excited to have nitrate-free sausage.
What about the package waste? Yes, there is a fair amount of packaging for each delivery, but there is less food waste. Because they send you just the right amount of each ingredient, you won’t have random ingredients in our fridge to use. For example: you get the exact amount for herbs and sauces, so you don’t risk wasting unused ingredients.
Another added bonus: Trying Hello Fresh may easily introduce you and your family to new foods and recipes. Instead of pinning hundreds of recipes you may or may not ever come back to, you just pick the recipe and it’s sent to you.
Would I order from Hello Fresh again? I enjoyed my first experience with Hello Fresh and would love to order from them again. Initially, I wasn’t sure if Hello Fresh would add convenience or time-savings for our family. I realized that the convenience isn’t necessarily in the meal preparing, it’s in the planning. It’s much more enjoyable to select a few Hello Fresh recipes than to sit down and plan the week’s meals. I was able to make the 2 meals into 3 (by adding more noodles when preparing then adding broth and tomatoes the second day), so that was 3 dinners I didn’t have to plan! When you don’t enjoy meal planning, this is a huge plus.
What is my biggest Hello Fresh tip? If you have a family and already feel like you spend too much time in the kitchen: Order One Pot Meals.
If you want to step away from meal planning or stop the last-minute grocery runs and dining out when you don’t have a plan, try a meal delivery service to see if it helps you manage your time each week.
If you want a deal on your first box, get $30 off here. I’m sure you will enjoy picking the recipes you want to try. If you like it share with your friends and see if you can get credits towards your future boxes.
Remember that Hello Fresh is a subscription program. It’s easy to skip a week or cancel. Select “Skip Week” to skip a week or in your account settings, click on “cancel my subscription” to cancel. If you want to get Hello Fresh every few weeks as a treat, you can log in and skip a few weeks at a time so you don’t have to log into your account every week. Quick and easy!
Get $30 off your first box with Hello Fresh.
Let me know what you think!
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