Hello Fresh!

So this ones going to be a little different, and probably a little shorter & sweeter than the usual.

A couple of months ago, my friend and I had a G&T at Cheltenham Food Festival, which resulted in both of us buying our first week of Hello Fresh! At the time, we were tempted in by the salesman’s pitch (he did a great job), me less so (Lucy would buy anything, a little habit I love about her) but by the time she’d finished signing up I was in (much to D’s dismay when I arrived home that night). Their first week deal is great – £17.50 for your first week, followed by a full price week @ £35, and your third week for £17.50 again. My mind was made, I was going to try it for three weeks.

I wasn’t hugely tempted in by all of the recipes in our first week, but this was down to my naivety of how great the recipes are. Now as we’ve discussed before, I’m a fussy eater. And whilst I’ve got over most of my fears, there’s still many a food item I’m yet to try. Hello Fresh was another hurdle to me getting over my phobia, and I feel it has helped me come even further.

The recipes we had over the 3 weeks we ended up with Hello Fresh are as follows (bare in mind we skipped a few weeks due to holidays / work plans):

Week 1

  • Tandoori Chicken with Spiced Quinoa & Kachumber Salad
  • Pork Ragu with Pappardelle & Parmesan
  • Springtime Chicken with Roasted Veggies, Tomato Salad and Minty Salsa

Week 2

  • Pork Burgers with Rustic Wedges and Peanutty Carrot Slaw
  • Simply Seared Steak with Green Bean, Cherry Tomato & Roast Potato Salad
  • Chinese 5 Spice Chicken with Charred Bok Choy and Rice

Week 3 

  • Soy & Orange Pork with Mediterranean Vegetables & Couscous
  • Steak Tagliata with Rosemary Roasted Potatoes, Broccoli and Peppercorn Sauce
  • Chicken Caesar Salad with Ciabatta Croutons

There were a number of food items out of my comfort zone here; couscous, quinoa, bok choy and peanut slaw being the main items. But once these meals have been put together, they are simply delicious.

I cannot complain, one 1 occasion there was butter missing, and if I’d contacted Hello Fresh I know they would have resolved this, but I had butted in my fridge so no worries. I love the way absolutely everything you need, in the correct quantities (sometimes with a little left over) arrives in your package each week. Well packaged, in special bags to keep it cold, the food is fresh and actually lasts far longer than you need it to.

The recipes are well thought out, with something for everyone, and they feel fresh and healthy. The best part is… no waste! And, it made me try lots of new recipes that we will continue to create again and again.

We did have another week of recipes – here’s some more pics for you to enjoy:

I thought the simplest way to round it up would be for a little pros & cons list – so here goes:

Pros

  • It arrives on a day / time of your choice and you don’t have to go shopping – saves a lot of time
  • Everything is fresh, no frozen food and it’s nice and healthy. And lets you know how many of your 5 a day each meal is – so you know what you’re working towards!
  • You get to keep the recipe cards – which is a great start to your own recipe book collection
  • You try lots of new things – food I wouldn’t even have thought of pairing before
  • It’s fun – D and I have had a lot of fun preparing these meals together
  • There’s minimal waste
  • There’s actually quite a lot of food – although this serves 2, we often had leftovers for lunch the next day
  • Whilst you’re on the plan, you get freebies to hand out to your friends! My mum, D’s mum and D’s dad all managed to try it too!
  • You’re not tied in. You can pause for as long as you like, or cancel and reactivate at your convenience. I love this, as it actually took us around 6 weeks to have our 3 boxes as we’re often out and about, so it’s great to fit around your lifestyle.

Cons (or lets call them potential improvements)

  • It is costly. £35 for 2 people for 3 meals, thats over £5pppm (and probably what we’d spend on a weekly shop) Bare in mind when you’re signing up you can get some good deals though (check out the code in my signature for £25 off your first box – that means its only £10!) My recommendation would be to drop this to circa £25 – I’m sure more people would go for it. It would stop making it feel like a treat, and more like a regular thing
  • The meals are for 2, 3 or 4 people. My mum and D’s dad are both single, and said they would have loved to carry it on but it’s too much food and too expensive for 1 person. Offer something for the singletons out there and bingo – a whole new captive audience. 
  • There isn’t a huge amount of choice for people with food allergies / requirements. There’s a couple of vegetarian options, but that’s it. There has been a huge rise in dietary requirements over the past few years, so it would be great if Hello Fresh could offer Gluten Free, dairy free, vegan etc options for those people who can’t eat some of the delicious recipes available. 

What I will say is in the past D and I have been gifted various food subscription boxes; Simply Cook, The Spice box to name a couple, and Hello Fresh most certainly wins when it comes to convenience and likelihood of utilisation!!

I’m very impressed, and if we’re stuck one week and know we’ve not got lots of dinners out, we’re likely to switch our subscription back on sporadically.

It’s the sheer cost that puts me off a high score for these guys (and the few small improvements I mentioned above) but I’d definitely recommend, and return to in the future.

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