Has anyone else found themselves wondering which of the many (and I mean many) meal delivery services is the best option? Or even if any of them are actually worth the money?? They sound so dang convenient and helpful, but are they really all they claim to be?
To at least partially answer this question I chose three meal plans to try out for 4 weeks each!! I wanted to see how they compared to each other as far as cost per serving, convenience, quality of food, and variety of recipes. The services I chose to test out were HelloFresh, EveryPlate, and HomeChef. Here’s a break down of each one and what I liked or didn’t like about them!
Thanks to very good advertising (way to go, HelloFresh!), this was the first meal service I saw and was interested in! According to the website, HelloFresh is the #1 meal service as well so I felt like I needed to try it out to see if that title is well earned or not.
HelloFresh is well priced, varying from $7.49 to $10.99 per serving depending on what plan you choose (how many people and how many meals per week). For example, for three meals a week for two people, you pay $8.99 per serving. This seems to be a pretty average price for most meal services so it seems to be a pretty fair price for what you receive.
After you choose your plan, you get to start choosing your weekly meals! Each week HelloFresh has 20 different recipes to choose from. You’ll also see some labeled calorie smart, gourmet (cost extra), or hall of fame to show the recipes that are more healthy, fancy, or well liked. Best of all, Tyler and I both really enjoyed the meals we chose each week. It was nice to eat something different than what I’d usually cook without having to figure out what to buy myself.
Each box I got from them was well organized with each recipe having it’s own sealed paper bag containing all the ingredients needed, though they were a little bulky in my opinion. The ingredients were always fresh in my experience, which was something I was concerned about with my first meal delivery experience.
After stopping HelloFresh and having a great experience, I wanted to try one of the cheaper options when it comes to meal delivery. After looking at the options, I chose EveryPlate because it seemed to be the most affordable! Who doesn’t want that?? If I can save some money, I’m all for it.
EveryPlate is amazingly only $4.99 per serving! Sometimes they also run promotional deals where you can get meals for $2.99 per serving for three weeks (this is what I did). This is by far the cheapest pricing I’ve seen but there are definitely some differences in quality and variety because of the price difference.
Each week, you can choose from 9 different meals. The menu for every week includes one premium meal (costs extra) and one vegetarian meal along with the other eight regular options. Unfortunately, they don’t offer any calorie conscious meals from what I saw. There were definitely some meals we really enjoyed, but then there were also ones neither of us were a fan of. Unfortunately, I feel like we were more likely to get meals we didn’t like from EveryPlate just based on our taste.
The package we received each week from EveryPlate was pretty unorganized compared to HelloFresh and HomeChef. Inside was a smaller cardboard box that had all the ingredients thrown in it all together. Frequently, I found myself digging for a missing ingredient for one of the recipes because each recipe didn’t have it’s own bag or pouch like the other two services. I also got a few ingredients that weren’t super fresh or had gotten smashed/damaged during shipping.
I chose to try HomeChef basically solely off the fact that they offer oven-ready options each week haha. I mean who wouldn’t love a meal that you basically don’t do any work in order to enjoy it?? Cause this girl right here is all about it! Some serious happy dances have occurred when I remembered I didn’t have to actually cook dinner and could enjoy one of their super easy oven-ready meals. They’re that good.
Each meal from home chef will cost you about $9.95 per serving, compared to the other options. I definitely feel like it’s at the higher end of the price range for meal kit services, but I honestly think it may be worth it. If you really need a meal kit service in your life and don’t care about price, this one is top notch and so good.
There are 18 meals to choose from each week, 12 classic meals and 6 quick meals (two recipes that take 15 minutes, two oven-ready, and two entree salads). They also offer calorie and carb conscious meals each week, for those of us who are trying to eat both delicious and nutritious. Every single recipe we tried was seriously so delicious! I’m a bit of a picky eater (no shame) but Tyler is adventurous and loves to try new foods/ recipes and the options that HomeChef provides every week consistently struck a great balance for both of us. The recipes are safe enough that pretty much everyone will enjoy them, but different enough that people like my husbands will be happy and satisfied!
HomeChef’s packaging is legitimately perfect. Inside your first box you’ll even find a recipe book to put all your recipe cards in. Each recipe is contained in it’s own clear, resealable bag and is clearly labeled with the recipe name. The only thing not in the individual bags is any meats or seafoods, which are packaged separately to avoid contaminating the other ingredients. They even provide you with a disposable baking dish for all oven-ready meals!
Is It Worth It?
After reading all about the meal kit services I tried out, you may still be wondering if it’s really worth it for you. Here’s the honest truth… It depends. If you’re a person or family on a strict budget, deciding if meal kits are worth the cost depends on the type of person or family you are. If you’re they type to go to the grocery store and buy a bunch of stuff and somehow you spend a ton of money and then barely eat what you go, there’s a good chance it’s worth your money. You’ll save money because when you purchase the meal kit, you’re only given what you need for the recipes and you’ll decrease your waste. For me, it’ helps me save money by giving me easy meals I can cook instead of going out to dinner and then also getting a margarita while I’m out, because why wouldn’t I??
If you’re not like me, and you’re super organized and meal prep every week and you minimize your waste, you’re probably paying less for groceries at the store than you would if you added in some meal kits. Since that’s the case, I would say to stick with what you’re doing unless saving money isn’t a big priority and you want to incorporate something different into your meals! If that’s the case, go for it!! The meals you get, especially from HomeChef, are delicious, so easy to cook, and you’ll never be disappointed.
The same goes for anyone who’s not as concerned about the price for the meal kits and is just concerned with ease and convenience. You’ll never find something more convenient than having yummy and even healthy meals sent to your home in convenient packaging with easy to follow instructions.
If you’re wondering which one I ended up loving the most, I’d definitely say HomeChef!! It was easy, delicious, and the most convenient since they offer the oven-ready and quick meal options! After several weeks of trying out different recipes, I can easily say that Tyler and I were never disappointed and always walked away from a meal feeling satisfied. If you decide to try one of the meal it services, happy eating and don’t forget to leave me a comment to tell me which one you tried and if this was helpful for you!