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Food boxes full of ingredients for specific recipes are a product that have surged in popularity in recent years. Hello Fresh was one of the first companies to offer such food boxes, but many Hello Fresh alternatives have cropped up too. They all proclaim to offer slightly different things to Hello Fresh, but it is this company’s food boxes that continue to sell.
But is Hello Fresh worth it? Do their boxes really justify repeated use? We investigate here so you can decide whether you should go for Hello Fresh alternatives, or simply buy food boxes from the original meal kit delivery company.
Here are the reasons we think give a definite yes to why ‘is HelloFresh worth it’.
We all know what midweek cooking is like if we are left to our own devices. We usually all move between stir-fries, bolognese based dishes, and the odd tray bake before using up leftovers in a mishmash of concoctions towards the end of the week. The result is our diet is neither exciting nor satisfying, and, consequently, it makes catering a chore.
With Hello Fresh, you can quickly choose from a huge variety of meals on offer each and every week. As a result, you can make something new every night, keeping your taste buds very happy - in addition to anyone else’s in your household.
It also means you eat a wide variety of ingredients too which is so much better for you. Plus, it’s likely to be better for the environment as Hello Fresh only likes to use seasonal food and produce. It means that the recipes you make are far more likely to be nutrient dense as seasonal food, that has not been force grown, has been shown to have more vitamins and minerals in them.
How much time do you spend going to and from the supermarket each week, buying food to make for supper that evening or throughout the week? Probably quite a lot. Driving there, often through traffic, filling up your trolley with every single thing you need and going through the check out are incredibly time consuming tasks. Not to mention the fact that there will always be something that is out of stock or that you simply forget to buy.
Now, imagine all of that hassle taken care of for you. Plus the meal planning that goes behind all your supermarket shopping. You know, the planning where you have to take into account whoever else is in that week and on what nights. Or, if you are trying to ensure that you eat healthily throughout the week, what meals are best and what meals stick to any dietary regime you are on. That all takes a huge amount of dedication to do on your own each week.
Hello Fresh does that all easily for you. With just a few clicks to choose the food you want to make that week, you can quickly pick out meals that are tantalising to you, but yet take minimal effort to organise.
Hello Fresh works with highly experienced chefs to ensure that your food is well balanced and, therefore, good for you. Some people may find that surprising given that none of their meals feel like ‘diet food’. Yet, they can all be enjoyed as part of a wider balanced diet that can help you lead a healthier lifestyle. Chefs are well trained in creating tasty dishes from a selection of ingredients that are good for you. They know ways round the problem of adding flavour or enjoyment without adding unnecessary amounts of sugar or fat.
That’s a great comfort to many users as it means they can be confident that they, and their household, are eating well. Plus, as they’re so easy to pick, you don’t have to spend time ensuring you are eating enough carbs or protein that week. You just get to enjoy the delicious food!
Not to be confused with the convenience that these food boxes from Hello Fresh offer, the ease that comes with signing up for a subscription plan with Hello Fresh cannot be overlooked. Ease comes from the straightforward recipes that are breeze to make. There will be no need for highly skilled culinary brilliance in the kitchen. Instead, the easy to follow recipe cards all explain how to make these recipes time after time, with success.
What’s a great side effect to that is the fact that, while they’re simple to follow, they also do push your boundaries of knowledge. You will soon widen your repertoire of recipes therefore, as well as your skill set. So, for the nights that you are not cooking Hello Fresh food, you’ll be far better placed to cook a meal that isn’t a stir fry or a bolognese.
Finally, as HelloFresh only delivers the amount of food you need for each recipe, it helps reduce the food waste from your household. Household food waste reportedly adds up to around £800 a year, which is a huge amount - whatever your salary - that you could be saving. Plus, the impact that that has on the environment cannot be overestimated either. The carbon emissions produced by food production are vast, and if they can be cut down in anyway, that could help in the world’s efforts to be carbon neutral. Cutting down on the food we buy is a key way we can do that.
There are very few disadvantages to Hello Fresh, which is why we think it is such a definite yes to the question ‘**is Hello Fresh worth it?**’. To us, there are only a couple of drawbacks which we think are either easy to circumnavigate or are simply tolerable in the face of everything that we gain.
For starters, the cost of a Hello Fresh box is unarguably more than the same supermarket shop when food is broken down into cost per portion. However, what that does not take into account is all the food that you throw out with your supermarket shop - but that you buy anyway. That’s actually far more expensive than buying just what you need with Hello Fresh. Plus, the time savings that you get from Hello Fresh also means that that is time you can spend elsewhere. It’s not time wasted. Instead, you could use that time to work a little longer or, alternatively, spend quality time with your loved ones.
Additionally, in comparison to Hello Fresh alternatives it also offers really good value for money. **Hello Fresh alternatives **usually lower their prices by including a huge amount of ‘filler’ ingredients like bread or pasta, or simply using lower quality ingredients. Hello Fresh, in comparison, fills its **food boxes **with ingredients that are fresh and from suppliers the company knows and trusts to deliver high standards.
The second drawback is that there does appear to be more plastic wrapping waste than with a regular supermarket shop. While that will not be the case for all households - some people will naturally buy more plastic wrapped products than others at the supermarket - the individual or smaller pack wrapping that HelloFresh products necessitate can mean you feel like you are creating more plastic waste than you would otherwise.
However, the company is constantly looking for ways to minimise their plastic waste and use innovative ways to wrap food that remains within health and safety laws. They’ve already reduced a lot of their packaging waste already - turning to items such as paper masking tape and using cardboard wherever possible.
It’s also possible for you to recycle the clear plastic soft wrapping that a lot of food comes in. Simply collate it and take it to a nearby recycling point every month to get rid of the waste in an environmentally friendly way.
Cancelling HelloFresh is easy, which can’t be said for many HelloFresh alternatives. You simply follow the instructions in your account set up or, if you are unsure how to do that, contact the company through their contact us page.
You’ll likely find that the company is sad to see you go so try to persuade you to stay, but you are under no obligation with the business. One of its main advantages, remember, is how flexible it is. If you need to pause it one week you can, and that’s the same with cancelling your subscription. You do not have to sign up for an entire month or year.
You can simply stop your plan as and when you need to.
Hello Fresh works out per portion as only a few pounds - if that. There are usually huge discounts to be had for your first few boxes which can really bring the cost down. For example, it’s not unusual for the company to offer 60% off a customer’s first box, and then 30% off the next three or four boxes.
As discussed briefly above, per portion, Hello Fresh does technically work out as more expensive (when paying full price) than your traditional supermarket shop. But it’s not really a fair comparison. For, if you were to compare the value you derive from your average supermarket shop versus Hello Fresh, Hello Fresh would win every time.
Hello Fresh customers usually sign up and stay with the company thanks to enjoying all the benefits that the company has to offer. That’s not always the case for HelloFresh alternatives who deliver lower quality food boxes, are less reliable, and also offer less variety of food.