Ever since Hadley has been born, I've been looking for ways to make my life easier. Nick is now responsible for walking and feeding Brady, I have signed up for most of our non-perishable items to be delivered via Amazon Prime and my newest favorite, HelloFresh (still working on getting that cleaning lady.. just kidding. Kind of ;)). I've heard a lot about these meal planning & delivery businesses in the past and thought it sounded great, but not necessary for me. Well now that I'm taking care of a baby around the clock and don't have all the time to meal plan, grocery shop, etc., I decided to give it a second thought. And then when a friend offered up a $40 coupon along with a strong recommendation, I was sold! Last week we got our first Hello Fresh delivery and I'm here to tell you why we're officially obsessed. Side note: this isn't a sponsored post. I tried HF with my own money and just want to share.
First up, how it works. Each week, you choose three or five meals (we do three) from six options. We do the Classic Plan which includes meat, fish and veggie recipes for two or four adults. There is also a Veggie Plan or a Family Plan that serves children as well. You select the day in which you would like delivery - either Saturday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. We did Tuesday the first time, but I have since switched to Saturday so we can have our meals on M/T/W. Our first box arrived on Tuesday at 5pm, which was cutting it close to dinner. As for the packaging, below is the insulated box it came in and weighed about 15 pounds. Inside was three separate boxes for the three recipes we received. Underneath that were large ice packs that kept the perishables (our chicken, shrimp and beef) cold.
I love that each separate recipe is contained in its own box, so I can just pull one out of the fridge each night to begin cooking - instead of having to look for all of the ingredients in one big box. All about the time saving. Also included was the pamphlet with the weeks recipes in it and tips for preparing them (like did you know it's easier to mince garlic with a fork than a knife?).
Now let's get to the food! First of all, I was really, really impressed with the quality of ingredients. All of the meat & seafood we've received have been great cuts, the veggies have been super fresh, the herbs never wilted. The majority of the recipes are pretty healthy and it always makes me feel good to be cooking with fresh food. You do still have to chop and dice and all that, but the preparation/cooking time is never more than about 30 minutes so it's not bad. I do it during a nap time. The pamphlet breaks down each recipe with steps and pictures that make it really easy to follow. It also outlines the nutritional info which is a bonus.
Our first week, we had yogurt-marinated chicken, beef quinoa stuffed peppers, and shrimp bahn mi burgers. Everything was DELICIOUS! The burgers were a bit out of our comfort zone, but that's what I like about HelloFresh. It pushes you outside of your normal 10 meal rotation and lets you try new things that you might not come up with on your own. And funny enough, that may have been my favorite meal of the week.
My biggest worry before trying this? It wasn't going to be enough food. Luckily, that wasn't the case at all! Nick and I were both full after every meal and actually had leftovers at the end of the week. I love a good leftover night. Our box (the classic plan, 3 meals for 2 people) is $69 a week. At first I thought this was a little pricey, but when I added things up at the grocery store, I realized that's about how much we spend on three meals a week anyways. Plus, the bonus of not having to meal plan or grocery shop for these items is worth a little extra cost right now to me. Another thing I really appreciate is that you can pause your subscription - or even cancel it - at any time with no penalty.
Again, this isn't sponsored, but if you want to try HelloFresh, feel free to use promo code 6XD34H for $40 off of your first box! This is the same promo code I used for my first box and it's totally worth it. I mean even if you cancel it after the first try, only $29 for three meals? You can't beat that at the grocery store! Let me know what you think - or if you've tried other meal subscription services as well! I'd love to hear how they compare.