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One Mom’s Quest to Find the Best Meal Delivery Service

This post is not sponsored by any of the meal delivery services listed below. It’s simply one busy mom sharing her experiences. Please enjoy.

I am completely obsessed with meal delivery services.

Meal delivery services work well for me because I am a busy working mom and a self proclaimed bad cook. For me, meal delivery services have been the perfect solution to feeding my family. I first started using a meal delivery service about a year ago and at the time, there were only a few companies offering this service, however it seems that this concept has really taken off. Each week, I see a new company advertising a meal delivery service on my social media, so this fall, I decided to start a quest to find the best meal delivery service for my family.

For my challenge, I decided to receive boxes from the following companies: Hello Fresh, Home Chef, Blue Apron, and Green Chef.

My quest for the best home delivery service for my family was rated on the following factors: price, freshness of ingredients, packaging, recipe instructions, time to cook the meal, serving size, and taste. Here is how each of the following meal delivery services stacked up against each other.

Hello Fresh – Overall Grade A

Box Price:   69.00 (Box includes three meals for two people.)

Freshness: A

Packaging: A-

Time: B+

Serving size: A

Taste: A

I really enjoyed my Hello Fresh box. Each meal comes packaged together with all the required ingredients in their own bags. The produce and protein provided was also very fresh. I had a cucumber missing from one of my recipes and I called customer service. Customer service was very friendly and helpful, and due to the error, Hello Fresh gave me a credit towards my next box to compensate for the mistake. Most of the recipes from Hello Fresh took around forty-five minutes for me to complete, however on the recipe card, the estimated time was much shorter. I did see that Hello Fresh is now offering twenty five minute meal recipes which would greatly reduce the amount of cooking time. The serving sizes for the Hello Fresh dinners were extremely generous. Each dinner provided enough food to feed both me and my two children for dinner with leftovers for the next day’s lunch. All of the recipes in the box were super tasty and a hit for even the pickiest of eaters.

food prep, dinner, cooking, cutting board

Home Chef – Overall Grade A

Box Price: $59.70 (Box includes three meals for two people.)

Freshness: A

Packaging: A+

Time: B+

Serving size: A

Taste: A-

The Home Chef box was by far the most organized meal delivery service that I tried. Each meal came in it own clear bag that was very easy to use. Home Chef sent a binder to add your favorite recipes to, which is a great idea! Another pro of this meal kit is that it is very easy to tailor the meals to your dietary needs, as there are meal options available for all dietary restrictions including gluten free, vegetarian, and low carb. This meal delivery services also provides an option to purchase smoothies, lunches, and fruit as well. One con to this meal delivery service was how long it took to cook each meal. Most of the meals took 45 minutes to an hour to cook, which is a long time to invest in dinner for a busy mom like myself. However, the serving sizes were very generous and each of the meals tasted delicious.

home chef meal, knife, cutting board

 Blue Apron – Overall grade A –

Box Price: $59.94 – (Box includes three meals for two people.)

Freshness – A

Packaging – B

Time – A –

Serving Size – A

Taste – A+

The Blue Apron box had the most creative and tasty recipes of all the meal delivery services I tried. I greatly enjoyed the beef buns and I would never have been able to create that meal at home if it wasn’t for this meal delivery service. I think out of all the meal delivery services this would be the best box to order for a special occasion or date night. Some of the meals can be on the heavy side and personally I think they are better for indulgent times. One frustrating thing about Blue Apron is how they package their dinners, because everything comes together in one bag. Because of this, it hard to organize your meals for the week, and I actually ended up using two sweet potatoes on one recipe, when I should have saved one for another recipe. Overall though, I will be ordering another box the next time I want to go on a date night, but can’t find a sitter.

unpacked meal delivery food

Plated – Overall grade B

Box Price: $59.95 (Box includes three meals for two people.)

Freshness – A

Packaging – B +

Time – B

Serving size – A –

Taste – B

Plated was by far my least favorite home delivery service that I tried. One of my least favorite things about Plated was how poorly the recipes were organized. For example, one meal had you heat up the tortillas for the fish tacos before you cooked the fish, which led to cold and hard tortillas. Plated recipes also gave time estimates that were frequently off. Another thing I disliked from the Plated box was that all the recipes took over an hour to make, which is far too much time on a busy night. Lastly, while their packaging was organized, they sent tiny portions of some of ingredients such as six packets of butter which seemed like a waste of time and material. Overall, I would not recommend using this meal delivery service.

food on counter 

Green Chef – A –

Box Price: $71.94 (Box includes three meals for two people.)

Freshness – A

Packaging – B +

Time – A

Serving size – A –

Taste – A

Green Chef offers organic meals for a variety of dietary needs. Green Chef has paleo, vegan, gluten free, omnivore, carnivore, and vegetarian options. The price of the box depends on the type of option you choose. The packaging of the box was confusing at first as the individual meals were not separated, however I realized that the stickers on the packages correlated with the color on the recipe card. The meals from Green Chef took about 35 minutes to make and the recipes were very easy to follow. A majority of the ingredients from the Green Chef box had pre-made marinates or seasoning packets which would make the recipes provided by Green Chef impossible to make again, which is a bummer. I did enjoy the meals from Green Chef, however the higher cost of this box makes it unlikely that I will continue to buy meals from this company.

dinner, salad, shrimp

I enjoyed my quest to find the best delivery meal service. While each family is uniquely different with their dietary needs and price points, I hope that I provided an overview of the pros and cons of each delivery service. For my family, the best meal delivery service is Hello Fresh. I greatly enjoyed their packaging, easy to follow recipes, and lower price point. However, I would say that I am still open to trying new meal delivery services and if you have one that you enjoy, please leave a comment below.

blue apron
Home Chef
Green Chef
IMG_0968 2
Hello Fresh

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2 Responses to One Mom’s Quest to Find the Best Meal Delivery Service

  1. Tanya Wells January 16, 2018 at 10:56 am #

    We’ve tried a bunch too and also like Hello Fresh the best. And Hello Fresh delivers by UPS whereas the others come by FedEx which is super unreliable where we live.

    • Sarah Fabrizio
      Sarah Fabrizio January 16, 2018 at 11:03 am #

      That’s awesome, I just received another box this week and I am really loving the 20 minute meals!

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