Like many others, I had been curious about food delivery companies that have been popping up as of late, but since I’m not much of a cook and I have a personal chef (who also doubles as my partner in life), I had some reservations. Plus, with so many subscription food delivery options out there, which ones are the best? So, when a friend on Instagram posted a referral code offering a discounted price, I jumped at the chance to see for myself. Then a week later, another friend posted a good deal for a different company, and I couldn’t resist. Since I know there are other people wondering how these boxes work, I figured I would document my experiences. First up is Hello Fresh, a company that is very popular in Europe, and is trying to be a contender in the US.
Placing my order was simple enough, and within a week I had a box delivered to my door via UPS. The box had strategically placed insulated ice packs on the bottom ensuring that the proteins wouldn’t go bad during shipment, and the produce was on the top. The produce and condiments were all in separate bags, and all I had to do was match the bags to the protein. I took these photos as it started sprinkling outside, but you get the idea.
I tasked my personal chef with preparing these dinners and on day one, he set out to prep the mise en place for the first meal, Pan-Roasted Salmon with Mustard-Butter Bean Salad . The prep was simple enough, just some chopping here and there. The box comes with detailed recipe cards and all you need to have at home is salt, pepper, oil, and water (and cooking pans and utensils obviously). They include everything else in the box.
Six steps later (the recipe on the card is super simple and clear), dinner was ready! The box comes with two portions of 3 different dishes. For this particular dish, it was 697 calories per person. Not bad. All the nutritional information is also included on the recipe card.
It actually tasted great! It felt like we were eating out at a restaurant, until it came time to do the dishes. Ha! The recipe card says that this dish takes about 35 minutes to prepare from start to finish, and that’s fairly accurate.
The next dish was Parmesan Crusted Chicken with Tangy Balsamic Potato Salad, which according to the menu card would take 35 minutes to make and would be 578 calories per serving. This dish even came with a mini bottle of balsamic vinegar!
Once again, the prep didn’t take long at all, and thirty minutes later dinner was served.
It was good, although not as good as the salmon dish from the night before. The portion was small for dinner, so next time I would add a salad or something to complement the dish.
The last dish was Spicy Poblano Bolognese, which came in at 839 calories per serving. Clocking in at about 30 minutes from start to finish, this dish was good, but once again, not as good as the salmon from the first night. It was really filling though, if only I had paired it with some bread.
I enjoyed my first foray into the world of subscription delivery services, it was fun and simple, and it was nice not to have to go to the grocery store. I would like to try more dishes, since I know that Hello Fresh changes their menu from week to week. For those people that are avid home cooks (like my personal chef) then this probably will not appeal to you, but for people like me who work all day and are exhausted by the time we get home, then this is convenient. My personal chef can’t cook for me everyday, and sometimes I have to fend for myself when it comes to dinner, so I look forward to trying out more services like this one, and I’ll be documenting it all right here on eatSCV.
Hello Fresh has options for 2 or 4 people (3 meals per week) and costs less than $70. I had a $40 discount code, so my out of pocket was much less. By using my referral code G884S5 at checkout on Hello Fresh, you’ll get a sweet discount too ($40 off your first order)! And yes, they have vegetarian options as well.
Next up will be Plated, which arrived yesterday, neatly packed and ready to go.