Just to start off this blog is not sponsored by Hello Fresh. This was something we decided to do without even thinking about writing a review until after we got the box in the mail. And it was actually Tyler’s idea to type up a post about it too.
I have been asking Tyler to try a meal delivery kit for awhile now. I just wanted to know if it was even worth it and what all the hype was about. One of the vloggers I love watching on YouTube is Lindsay DeFranco and her channel TheDefrancoFam. She just recently became a mom of two and gives an extremely honest and open view into what it’s like being a parent. Before having her second son, her and her first born would put out Hello Fresh videos. It always seemed easy to do, even with a little kid running around, and the food always looked good but it was a sponsored series so how true was it? They had a coupon on their videos for 30 bucks off your first order. Knowing how much Tyler loves a good deal I brought it up to him and he went for it.
Usually a box of three meals for two people comes in at 53.93 including shipping. With the coupon we paid 23.93, which really isn’t that bad. But paying full-price is usually a little less than what we pay for 6 meals that usually have leftovers. So right away we knew this was something we were just going to try and then be done with. I also hoped it wouldn’t even be that good so we wouldn’t want to keep doing it. They have a good amount of options to pick from, not to many and not to little, and offered a good variety of cuisines. We decided to try their Fish and Chips, Bangers and Mash, and Sweet-as-Honey Chicken. The first two were part of their British Invasion menu and we knew they were both something we usually wouldn’t try to make ourselves and the chicken seemed like a safe bet. We put the order in to be delivered on a Friday because the weekends are when we normally go out on meals and waited for them arrive.
The meals come in a specially made box to keep everything cool while shipping. The produce is separated into brown bags by meal and the meat is stored under a reusable ice pack on the bottom of the box. They provide everything you need in the appropriate sizes, include recipe sheets that guide you step-by-step, and include a nutrition sheet. We were really surprised at how nutritious and low calorie the meals ended up being. As we were going through the meals, we quickly realized it might not be enough food for Tyler. He usually eats twice us much as me and there seemed to be only enough for one serving each. Luckily we had a apple crumb pie waiting in the freezer. We put the groceries away and waited for dinner to have out first meal.
We decided to do the Bangers and Mash first and as a dinner. The meal came with little potatoes, a zucchini, three sweet Italian sausages, grape tomatoes, green onion, and chicken demi-glace and thyme for the gravy. Tyler was in charge of the Bangers and I was in charge of the Mash. Honestly, there was not enough potatoes for two good sized servings, I think it was six mini potatoes total. I also messed them up. I followed the directions to a tee though. It said place them in a pot with water and salt, bring to boil, and cook for 12 minutes or until easily pierced with a knife. I did just that but being easily pierced by a knife is a lot different than being easily pierced with a fork or easily mashed. Knifes are sharp and are meant to pierce things easily. After we fixed the potatoes the best we could, we ended up with an extremely amazing meal. The sausages, zucchini and grape tomatoes are broiled together in the oven and came out perfect, the mash was okay, but the star of the show was the gravy. It was savory and perfect on everything.
The following day for lunch we made the Fish and Chips. That’s when I saw that the bag said, Make First, but oh well. I did this one all by myself. It was the longest of the dishes we had to make but it wasn’t too bad since you do all of the prep before you even start cooking. This meal came with two giant tilapia filets, baby potatoes, zucchini, a pickle, lemon, tartar sauce ingredients, and the fish batter ingredients. The potatoes get thrown into the oven first with a little bit of the seasoning for the fish batter. Then you get the fish going. I am not a big fan of frying. I am always terrified of the oil spilling or popping or catching on fire. Luckily this was an extremely shallow fry, I mean barely any oil goes into the pan. The recipe said we should get about six fish fingers total but we ended up with nine giant ones. You simply throw them in the wet batter until coated, let a little drip off, and throw them in the oil for five minutes each side. While that is going the potatoes get flipped and the tartar sauce gets made. I never knew how easy it was to make tartar sauce. It was just a quarter of the pickle diced up, sour cream, mayo, and lemon juice. The mayo came in a really cute tiny jar but it was so hard to get it out, a little squeeze packet would have been better. I was finishing up my second batch of fish when the potatoes were done. They come out and the zucchini goes in until brown. I ended up having to throw the potatoes and fish into the oven to warm them back up because they had to sit while I finished the last batch of fish. This ended up being another amazing meal. The fish was fall apart tender and crispy, the potatoes had great flavor, zucchini is always good, and the tartar sauce was excellent.
Our last meal was the Sweet-as-Honey Chicken. Again, I did this one by myself and it was okay. It was the simplest to put together, just chicken with a honey ginger soy glaze, rice, and green beans. The chicken was pitiful. We had one whole breast and one mangled small breast. The small one ended up a little dry, even though I took it off the heat early. The glaze was really good but didn’t live up to the name. Yes it was sweet but it was more ginger forward than honey. The green beans were delicious and I would have much rather just ate them covered in the sauce than the chicken. I was quite nervous about cooking the rice on the stove top because every time I had before was a disaster. This time turned out really well but it was only a half cup of rice which was barely enough for both of us. This recipe was on the bottom of the list of all the food we made this weekend, even the non-Hello Fresh meals.
Overall, our experience with Hello Fresh was quite positive. I really like that they send the recipe cards so you can still make the food without getting it in a kit. We deactivated our account to stop deliveries but still have access to see their menu and recipes. We are thinking of trying some on our own to see how it turns out. Tyler and I are already adding the Bangers and Mash and the Fish and Chips to our regular meal rotation. The Sweet-as-Honey Chicken will probably never happen again unless we swap the chicken breast with chicken thighs and maybe add another veggie to make more of a stir-fry.
If you’ve been dying to try Hello Fresh, or any meal kit, I would recommend checking it out. They usually have a coupon to get money off your first order or you can dig around on the internet and find your own!
Edit: I wrote this review write after each meal but wanted to add that we have already made the Bangers and Mash again but with ingredients we bought ourselves. It was just as amazing as the first time!