Hello Fresh : 2019 Review

Welcome to yet another Hello Fresh review from a blogger on the internet!

That sounds really cynical and it kind of is. I feel like I see these reviews absolutely everywhere, both as ads and not. I figured throwing another one into the mix wouldn’t hurt anything and I’m going to bring up a few things that I haven’t seen other people talk about.

The first time we got Hello Fresh was actually a few years back, maybe 2017. I remember getting it and thinking I would write a review… the experience was so terrible I couldn’t bring myself to write the review. Every box we received had rotten produce, we had to go buy more ingredients to be able to actually make the meals, and it took some serious arm twisting to get our money back.

Since then, every time I see a video or blog post about it, I’m really skeptical.

We were talking about meal prepping our dinners – we already meal prep lunches every week – or maybe just doing a better job of planning our dinner menus and Hello Fresh came up. Since its been a few years, we decided to give it another shot.

Hello Fresh 1

Now we’re going to talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly…

The Good

The best thing about the dinner meal kits, Hello Fresh included, is that everything is portioned out for you. You’re going to have exactly enough to feed two people without much extra ‘stuff’ sitting in the pantry. If something needs chili flakes, the box should have exactly the amount of chili flakes for that recipe.

We got three meals for two people, this easily fed all three of us (Hubby, me, and sister) because we don’t mind smaller dinner portions.

It was very easy to select what meals I wanted, select ‘skip a week,’ etc. No trouble there.

My favorite thing about Hello Fresh is how simple it is to cook everything. At the same time, we learn new cooking techniques every week, techniques that we can carry over into our own go-to meals. It’s really fun to find new ways to cook chicken, or dress vegetables.

The Bad

Remember before, I mentioned that the Hello Fresh box SHOULD have exactly the amount of an ingredient you need for a recipe? Well, that isn’t always the case. To be more efficient, they have some ingredients that are packed in doubles so they can be used in both the two person subscription and the four person subscription, so we have this teeny cute little bottle of white vinegar that now just sits in our spice cabinet and I’m not really sure what purpose it serves and I feel bad to waste it.

Hello Fresh is expensive. $60 a week, that’s three meals for two people. That’s $120 every two weeks. And almost $250 a month. Our monthly grocery budget caps out at $400 for three people, three meals a day plus snacks, coffee, and Taco Bell. On average we can spend $1.48 per person per meal. Hello Fresh, and most other meal subscription services, are just not budget friendly. To put it into perspective, our lunches (we have a carb, veggie, and protein), on average, without buying products on sale, in bulk, etc, costs us ~$0.58 per person per meal.

The Ugly

Everything needs to be cooked fairly soon after you get the box, they don’t advise you to freeze any of the meat, the produce isn’t packaged in any kind of green wrap or anything (not that I think it needs to be packaged, I just think it needs to be properly stored for longevity, Hello Fresh doesn’t give any kind of storage tips) so it’s just sitting in a paper bag until you use it. We get our box delivered on Friday, we’ve found that leaving all three meals to cook until Monday, leaves us with rancid meat by Wednesday.

It really bothers me when we open the bag and there’s rotten produce on day one. This means we have to substitute veggies, go without fresh herbs, or go and buy replacements which just costs more money on top of the already expensive subscription cost. This is an issue we had years ago, it’s an issue we continued to have in the last three weeks. Customer service was a bit of a struggle to get them to understand we did not want credits for future weeks, but they were responsive and resolved our issue.

Final Thoughts

We cancelled our Hello Fresh subscription and we don’t intend to sign up again. When you’re paying this much money, you should be able to rely on the product. It was so disappointing to open up the meal bag and find a rotten lime. Or to start the meal and cut open the package of chicken, only for the entire kitchen to smell like rancid meat. When I write down, ‘Wednesday Dinner : Hello Fresh meal’ I don’t exactly have a backup planned.

At the end of the day, we wouldn’t recommend this unless you can get a free box from a friend of family member to try out, there are some good points to this kind of service.

Have you tried Hello Fresh? Did you enjoy it? Maybe you’ve tried another meal subscription service, what was it? Would you recommend it?

Until next time – Xx

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