If you are on the internet at all, you have likely seen ads for meal subscription services like Hello Fresh or Blue Apron. You may have received a mailing encouraging you to sign up for these services. My husband and I got a coupon for Hello Fresh with my new phone.
Such services are becoming more and more popular these days, but the perennial question I keep seeing and have asked myself is, is such a service worth the money? I set out to scour the review blogs to find out.
The consensus? It depends.
But first, let’s talk about what you get. I’m going to focus on the service Hello Fresh, since it seems to be the most popular. Hello Fresh offers three different meal plans: Vegetarian, Classic, and Family. Each plan has the option to feed four people, and the Classic and Vegetarian have the option to feed two. Both the Family and Vegetarian plans deliver up to three meals a week, and the Classic can deliver up to four. While you have the option to choose which recipes you want on the Classic and Family plans, the Vegetarian plan does not have that option. Are you confused yet? Wait, there’s more! You can customize how often you receive deliveries, your food preference, and switch back and forth between plans if you like. All the information is on their website.
That’s all well and good, but how much is it? Each meal costs about ten to eleven dollars per person, so it is roughly the same as a restaurant meal. Here is where most reviewers started weighing in. For many, the convenience outweighed the cost. Hello Fresh sends high-quality, pre-measured ingredients right to your door, along with the recipes for each meal. This saves time trying to meal plan and navigate the grocery store before taking everything home to cook it. Some even said Hello Fresh helped them branch out and try new things, got them better ingredients than they would otherwise have bought, and tasted even better than restaurant food.
So why isn’t everyone trying Hello Fresh? Personally, my husband and I didn’t because we are on a tight budget; going out often means Taco Bell for us, so ten dollars per person three times a week was pretty steep. I also don’t mind meal planning and grocery shopping. Believe it or not, it’s something we both do together because it’s more fun that way. If you are in a similar boat, or you love couponing, Hello Fresh probably isn’t the best option. One further consideration may be dietary restrictions. While the service reportedly does a good job providing healthy recipes that can be somewhat tailored to your needs, if you are on a very strict diet and have to cut out whole food groups this may not help you.
However, don’t take my work for it. Check out further detailed reviews if you want to know more.