Meal Kit Delivery Services

A current trend in the United States are Meal Kit Delivery Services.  There are a lot of choices out there from Gourmet, Paleo, Family style or Globally Inspired.  Some are marketed as Affordable while others boast High Quality, Top Chef Inspired recipes.

I have been into trying new things this year, so I thought I would  give one a try, see what they are all about.  I’m usually not the first person to try stuff out, but with this I found myself ahead of most of my friends.  Jumping in blind!

HOME CHEF

Home Chef was the first Meal Kit Delivery Service that I tried out.

  • I had a discount code so I got a pretty good deal on my first box.
  • The box contained quality ingredients
  • The recipe was easy to follow
  • We liked the food
  • Interacted with Customer Service once during my time with them and had very postive results

After testing my first box and with 2 successful meals under my belt, I ordered another box.  Since I am a pretty good cook, I like to choose recipes that are outside my usual repetoir.  That makes it more fun and I learn something new. I ordered Home Chef a few more times before discovering that they sort of cycle recipes through again and again.  The other problem I found was that they are very much focused on portion control.  My Husband liked the food but was often still hungry after finishing one of their meals.

They provide a Recipe Card with every meal you order and a Recipe Binder comes in your first order to keep them in.  Instead of reordering the same thing again, I found myself buying the ingredients and making it from the recipe card.  The cost to do it on my own was about 1/2 the cost of the shipped meal box.  I kept my eye on the menu’s for a bit, but didn’t find many fresh new items there to try.  So I lost interest.

HELLO FRESH

Full of enthusiasm from trying Home Chef, I thought I would move on to Hello Fresh.  My hope was that they would have some different meal selections for me to try out.

  • I had a discount code and got a good deal on my first box
  • The produce in the box was not good quality with a main ingredient being partially rotten.
  • I reported it to the company, but they seemed unconcerned.
  • The receipe was easy to follow
  • The food was ok

The Hello Fresh recipes are very similar to Home Chef and they offer less menu options per week.  They also send you a Recipe card but provide no binder to keep them in.  Since I had a negative experience with the Ingredients, a negative experience with their Customer Service and the Variety was not any better I decided not to try any further boxes from Hello Fresh.

BLUE APRON

I did not try Blue Apron myself, but have a friend who did. Becky actually tried all 3 of these Meal Kit Companies.

She liked that Blue Apron offers fun series with themed recipes like the World Tour and the Master Chef mystery recipes. She found their app the most interactive of the 3 allowing you to update preferences, contact Customer Service, research menus and download recipes.

App Quality

  1. Blue Apron
  2. Hello Fresh
  3. Home Chef

Home Chef consistently delivers the best quality ingredients. Like me she had some issues with Home Fresh items not being useable. Customer Service was fine for her, but it defeats the home delivery aspect if you have to go to the store to replace items. With Blue Apron she had to dispose of an entire box due to delivery issues once and her Boyfriend had one come with exploded ice packs.

Quality

  1. Home Chef
  2. Hello Fresh
  3. Blue Apron

Blue Apron loose packs everything in their boxes and you have to figure out what items go with what meals. Home Chef and Hello Fresh pack their ingredients by recipe into bags and mark the bags clearly as to which recipe they are for. Much easier!

Becky liked the Blue Apron recipe cards the least of the 3. She found herself lost following their directions. Home Chef has the best recipe cards that are hole punched, come with a binder, easy to follow instructions and include a Best Used by date. Both Hello Fresh and Blue Apron also offer wine pairing suggestions on their cards. Hello Fresh even has a Wine Club option that you can add to your plan.

Recipe Cards

Layout and Ease of Cooking

  1. Home Chef
  2. Hello Fresh
  3. Blue Apron

Price Comparison

The price for Home Chef is $9.99 per serving and you have to get 2 servings.  In order to avoid paying a $10 shipping charge your minimum order is $45.  That means that you have to order 3 Recipe’s per box coming to $59.94.

The price for Hello Fresh is  $9.99 per serving but there is not shipping charge and you can choose 2, 3 or 4 meals per week.   So 3 Recipe’s is still $59.94 but you could order 2 for $39.96.

The Price for Blue Apron is $9.99 per serving with no shipping charge.  You can choose 2 or 3 meals per week.

There is ALWAYS a deal or coupon you can use to get started. You probably have a friend who would love to give you their Referral Code so you can get a discount and so do they! Just ask around!

Get $40 off Blue Apron with Becky’s Referral Link

Get $30 off Home Chef with my Referral Link

Save $40 with my Hello Fresh Referral Link

 

All the plans are flexible allowing you to order only when you want and cancel or pause at any time.    Although they all had bulky cooler boxes  full of materials that should be recycled, I thought that the Hello Fresh box was actually a little easier to dispose of properly.  I felt bad using these kits because there was so much package waste and we aren’t in a great place for recycling.

If you take a break for a while, you may get e-mail discount offers or mailers sent to you to entice you to start back up. I just got this one yesterday. Time to order a box!

These boxes are more about fun, learning skills and convenience than cost saving. Although they are a little pricey, they can be an adventure. Let your Teens try out following a recipe and preparing a meal as a learning experience. Have a glass of wine and make one with a Friend or Boyfriend for a fun evening In.

Although our focus was on the most popular and affordable 3 services, there are countless others available to try.  Martha Stewart has one called Marley Spoon, there is a Paleo Box called Sun Basket, and Purple Carrot offers vegan meals.  As always, do a little research first to see which one has the best offers and looks like the best fit for your lifestyle.

Try one out and see what YOU think. I would love for you to share a Comment on your Experiences.

2 thoughts on “Meal Kit Delivery Services

  1. The other one that keeps popping up on my Facebook ads is Butcher Box. But rather than a meal kit it looks like it’s just quality meats. Which Mark might like lol. Fire up the grill!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s