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HelloFresh is a meal kit delivery service that saves people time planning meals and grocery shopping. 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. Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.
All quotes and images are provided by an independent reviewer, Kelli McGrane MS, RD., who received a free kit from HelloFresh to review.
HelloFresh is a meal kit delivery service. It delivers boxes containing pre-portioned fresh ingredients and step-by-step recipes for a person to cook at home.
The service offers plans for people who:
- eat meat
- follow a vegetarian or pescatarian diet
- those counting calories
- want quick meals
- want meals suitable for families
HelloFresh labels all its meals with nutritional information.
The company also claims its service helps individuals save money and reduce food waste.
“The recipe cards from HelloFresh 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 has a mixed reputation online. At the time of publishing, there are over 41,200 reviews on Trustpilot with an average customer rating of 3.8 out of 5 stars.
Customers leaving positive comments write that they enjoy learning how to cook new meals and the food is easy to prepare and tastes good. People also mention it helps them reduce food waste and saves them time.
However, negative comments mention lost orders, missing ingredients, and ingredients that were not fresh. Some people found the service too expensive and the portions too small. Many customers had problems with customer service and unexpected charges.
HelloFresh does not have a profile on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website.
People can sign up for HelloFresh online. They must 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 serving two or four people.
Individuals can select from a rotating menu of over 20 different meal kits each week. It is possible to choose the same meal kit multiple times during the same week.
HelloFresh delivers Wednesday through Friday. Customers in certain locations can get delivery on the weekend and Mondays and Thursdays. People can allocate their desired delivery date and change delivery dates before midnight on their chosen delivery day.
Deliveries can arrive between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., and customers receive a tracking number for each box.
“Ingredients are individually packed by meal, making it easy to store everything in the fridge.” – Kelli McGrane.
HelloFresh delivers anywhere in the mainland United States. It does not ship orders to Alaska or 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 plan offers a choice of over 100 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 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 on quick-to-prepare meals.
“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 desired delivery frequency. The lowest cost per serving is $8.99, 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 five 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 allowing individuals to take charge of meal preparation and cooking.
Additionally, individuals with families who wish to involve children or others in cooking may benefit from HelloFresh. It is a good way to learn cooking skills and gain confidence in preparing different meals.
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 unsuitable 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.
Below, we look at the main pros and cons of the HelloFresh meal delivery service.
- may save people time
- can help people learn new cooking skills
- may offer nutritious meals
- offers vegetarian, low calorie, and pescatarian meals
- flexible deliveries
- mixed online reputation
- does not offer plans for vegan, keto, or paleo diets
- does not deliver every day of the week to all locations
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 containing about 650 calories. Health experts advise that individuals 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.
Many other meal delivery services offer weight loss menus a person can consider trying.
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: This brand provides meal 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: Sunbasket offers organic meals and meal kits. It may suit people who wish to use 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: This brand provides fewer meal plans than HelloFresh but features diabetes-friendly and carb-conscious options. Learn more about Blue Apron.
Below, we look at how HelloFresh compares with the competitors listed above.
|Plan||Diets||Cost of weekly delivery||Price per serving||Shipping cost|
|Home Chef||Home Chef|
Fresh and Easy
|minimum $49.95||from $7.99||$8.99|
Fresh & Ready
|from around $23–230||$9.99–17.99||$9.99|
|Splendid Spoon||Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner|
Breakfast & Lunch
• free with larger orders
|Daily Harvest||9, 14, or 24-meal plans||vegan|
|from around $54 for nine $5.99 meals to $288 for 24 $11.99 meals, with no large-order discounts applied||$5.99–11.99||free|
|Blue Apron||Chef Favorites|
Fast & Easy
Alternatively, a person can help ensure they follow a nutritious diet while saving time and food 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
Below, we answer some of the top frequently asked questions about HelloFresh.
Is HelloFresh really worth it?
People who want to save time and explore new dishes may find HelloFresh worth it. It can provide varied meals catered to a range of different dietary preferences. It can also help people who are new to cooking learn valuable skills in the kitchen.
However, it may be unsuitable for smaller budgets, and HelloFresh does not cater to specific diets, such as paleo and keto.
How much does HelloFresh really cost?
HelloFresh is transparent about its pricing and shows customers a breakdown of costs before they sign up. Weekly orders can cost between $60.95–226.75. The price per serving across the different meal plans ranges from $8.99–12.49. There is also an $8.99 shipping fee that applies to each order.
Is HelloFresh a good way to lose weight?
HelloFresh has a Calorie Smart menu with low calorie meals that could suit someone wanting to lose weight. This menu can help people track their calorie intake. However, it may not suit smaller budgets.
A person should ensure they are getting a balanced diet and exercising regularly while working toward their weight loss goal. They should also aim to lose weight slowly at a safe and sustainable pace.
HelloFresh offers people an easy way to eat freshly prepared food through 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.