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HelloFresh is a meal kit delivery service that saves people time planning meals and shopping for groceries. With an emphasis on fresh foods, the service may appeal to busy individuals and families.
This article explores how HelloFresh works and what menu options the service offers. It also discusses who the meals may be suitable for and the potential health benefits of meal delivery kits.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried this service. All quotes are provided by an independent reviewer, Kelli McGrane MS, RD., who received a free kit from HelloFresh to review.
“The recipe cards are all easy to read and follow. In addition to step-by-step directions with photos, the card also includes estimated prep and cook times, [the] number of calories, and helpful tidbits, such as a list of required kitchen equipment.” – Kelli McGrane.
HelloFresh is a meal kit delivery service. It delivers a box to customers containing pre-portioned fresh ingredients and step-by-step recipes for a person to cook at home.
The company also claims its service helps individuals save money and reduce food waste.
People can sign up to HelloFresh online. They will need to share personal information such as their name, address, and payment details.
Customers then choose a meal plan according to their dietary needs and preferences. They can select between two and six meals per week that serve either two or four people.
Each week, individuals can select from a rotating menu of over 20 different meal kits. It is possible to choose the same meal kit multiple times in the same week.
“Ingredients are individually packed by meal, making it easy to store everything in the fridge.” – Kelli McGrane.
HelloFresh delivers three times a week to ensure its ingredients are fresh upon arrival. Customers can allocate their desired delivery date or change delivery dates before midnight on the allocated delivery day.
Deliveries can arrive between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m, and customers receive a tracking number for each box.
While users can have Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday deliveries, deliveries on Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday are only available in some locations. Users can specify delivery instructions or change delivery details through their online accounts.
HelloFresh delivers anywhere in mainland United States, but the service does not ship orders to Alaska and Hawaii.
Its delivery packages feature insulated liners and cooling technology to keep the contents fresh and cool for up to 48 hours after delivery.
“Unlike other services, I like how HelloFresh allows you to pick and choose meals from any of its six meal plans.” – Kelli McGrane.
People can personalize their menu plan according to the following preferences:
- Meat and veggies: Includes meals with meat, fish, and vegetables.
- Veggie: Comprises vegetarian-friendly meals.
- Family friendly: Includes meals suitable for children.
- Calorie smart: Each meal in this plan is around 650 calories.
- Quick and easy: Features meals with minimal preparation and cooking time.
- Pescatarian: Consists of seafood and plant-based meals, but no meat.
Each theme offers a choice of over 20 weekly recipes from chefs and nutrition specialists.
Some recipes are also free from gluten, dairy, and nuts. However, HelloFresh does not offer vegan plans. Similarly, there are no paleo or keto plans with this service.
The following is an example of recipes with their preparation and cooking times:
- One-pan beef stir-fry tacos: Comes with tangy slaw, sriracha mayo, and crispy fried onions. Ready in 15 minutes.
- Cheesy quinoa-stuffed peppers: Comes with pico de gallo and smoky red pepper crema. Ready in 40 minutes.
- Shrimp and chorizo paella: With peas, bell peppers, and garlic aioli. Ready in 40 minutes.
- Lemon cream chicken cutlets: With dilly potatoes and green beans. Ready in 40 minutes.
- ’Shroom and gouda burgers: Comes with potato wedges and garlic aioli. Ready in 35 minutes.
On average, the meals take 40 minutes to prepare and cook.
Meal selection and filtering
At the time of publishing, it is not possible to filter the meals available on HelloFresh’s menu for dietary requirements.
Certain meals have labels with their description that indicate their taste profile and convenience. For example, some meals may be labeled ‘Gourmet Plus’ to note the meal is a premium recipe. Or they may feature an ‘Easy Prep’ label to note meals that are relatively quick to prepare.
“I appreciated labels, such as “Easy Cleanup” and “Easy Prep,” as I generally prioritize convenience, especially during the week.” – Kelli McGrane.
The price of HelloFresh subscriptions depends on the meal plan and frequency a person chooses.
The table below shows the total cost of a HelloFresh delivery based on multiple recipe and serving combinations:
|Recipes per week||Plan for 2 people||Plan for 4 people|
The total cost for all the above options includes the standard $8.99 shipping fee.
The price per serving suggestion varies depending on the person’s plan and their desired delivery frequency. The lowest cost per serving is $7.49, while the most expensive is $12.49.
The table below shows a breakdown of the cost per serving for each meal plan and delivery frequency option:
|Recipes per week||Plan for 2 people||Plan for 4 people|
HelloFresh also offers weekly special meals at an additional cost, so if a person selects one of the meals from the following list, they may have varying additional charges:
- Gourmet Plus
- Surf and Turf
- Taste Tours
- Craft Burger
HelloFresh accepts all major credit cards and electronic payments, including VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, and PayPal.
This information is correct at the time of publication.
Cancellations and refunds
HelloFresh lets people skip a week or cancel at no extra cost at their discretion. Customers can do this on their online accounts.
The company recommends users make any changes to their account or orders, such as updating card details or canceling orders, at least 5 days before the next scheduled delivery. This is because orders will begin processing after this period.
HelloFresh may suit people who wish to cook a range of different meals but have limited time or resources to plan recipes and buy ingredients.
A meal delivery kit provides convenience and variety while still allowing individuals to look after meal preparation and cooking.
Additionally, individuals with families who wish to involve children or others in the cooking process may benefit from HelloFresh. It is a good way to learn cooking skills and gain confidence in preparing different meals.
Who may it not suit?
HelloFresh may not suit those on a strict budget, as the cost per serving size is potentially greater than buying ingredients and cooking from scratch.
HelloFresh is also not suitable for a wide range of dietary specializations. For example, it does not cater to people following a vegan diet or those with very particular tastes or several food allergies.
Using HelloFresh means that a person is cooking from scratch using fresh ingredients and no processed foods. Processed foods are often higher in sugar and fat and can lack the nutrients that fresh foods retain. According to
People trying to lose weight may benefit from HelloFresh. Its low calorie meal plan has dietitian-approved meals that each contain about 650 calories. Health experts advise that individuals need to reduce their calorie and fat intake to lose weight. With this in mind, a person can choose low calorie and low fat meals in their weekly HelloFresh delivery.
Learn how to lose weight successfully.
Considerations for special diets
HelloFresh does not offer specific options for people following vegan or gluten-free diets or those adhering to keto, paleo, or low sugar diets.
While the service provides nutritional information for individuals to choose suitable meals, people cannot swap out ingredients they need to avoid.
There are several alternative meal kit delivery services available online. A person may wish to check their menus and plans before committing to any service, as they may find limited options for their dietary needs.
Some similar meal kit delivery services include:
- Home Chef: Provides meals kits that are simple to follow. The meals take under 30 minutes to prepare and cook, which is quicker than some HelloFresh meals. Learn more about Home Chef.
- Sunbasket: Offers organic meals and meal kits. It may suit people with concerns about using organic ingredients, which HelloFresh does not. Learn more about Sunbasket.
- Splendid Spoon: Specializes in plant-based meals suitable for vegans, while HelloFresh does not cater to vegan diets. Learn more about Splendid Spoon.
- Daily Harvest: Similar to Splendid Spoon, this company caters to plant-based diets. It also sells healthy snacks and drinks. Learn about Daily Harvest.
- Blue Apron: Provides fewer meal plans than HelloFresh but features diabetes-friendly and carb-conscious options. Learn more about Blue Apron.
Alternatives to meal delivery
Alternatively, a person can help ensure they follow a nutritious diet while saving time and waste by:
- planning a weekly menu and shopping for groceries with an online delivery service
- using online resources to find quick and easy recipes and meal ideas
- using leftovers to add to salads, wraps, or bowls for quick lunches
- batch cooking and freezing food in portions
- making one-pot meals such as chilis, soup, and stews
- preparing breakfasts the night before, such as overnight oats
- washing and chopping a variety of raw vegetables and salads to store in the refrigerator
- using frozen vegetables to add to recipes and frozen fruit for smoothies
HelloFresh offers people an easy way to eat freshly prepared food through the use of meal kits. Customers can choose meals in advance and receive fresh ingredients delivered to their homes along with step-by-step recipes to follow.
The menu options are varied and may appeal to families. However, other meal delivery services may cater better to specific dietary requirements.
HelloFresh may suit families, people who wish to improve their cooking skills, and those who may find planning recipes or buying ingredients from stores challenging or inconvenient.