Between work, volunteering, gym, spending time with friends, and errands I always find myself asking where has the time gone? I find myself running around frantically throughout my day to get as many things as I can accomplished. If I had a genie in a bottle the first wish would be for more TIME! That is when I found Hello Fresh, I thought the all mighty and powerful genie from Aladdin was hearing my cries for help! Eating healthy on a busy schedule is not an easy thing to keep up with, but Hello Fresh helps solve this problem.
Every Monday I come home from work, gym, and errands to find my Hello Fresh shipment awaiting at my doorstep. You can select whichever day you want your Hello Fresh shipment to arrive each week. The flexibility of this option is perfect for my hectic schedule. When I leave for San Diego on Thursday I put a hold on my account, but will receive a package the day after I return. This is another great feature Hello Fresh offers, which works great for people who travel.
Each shipment I receive contains three meals to serve two people. You have the option to receive five meals, or increase your quantities to accommodate the amount of people in your household. Each meal comes in nicely labeled containers. I tried Blue Apron and I found their packing, among other things, to be far inferior to Hello Fresh. Hello Fresh labels and packages each ingredient in mini plastic containers, except for some fresh produce with skin and peels. I find that the packaging not only has a nicer presentation, but is organized much better. I reuse these white boxes while cooking to hold scraps and trash which help minimize clean up. They also stack nicely in my fridge and do not take up a lot of space.
I like to get a fish, red meat, and white meat in each shipment. There is a “make me first” sticker on the box and recipe, usually the fish, of the meal they recommend you cook first to ensure optimal taste and freshness.
The recipes come printed on thick cardstock, which is perfect to save if you want to purchase the ingredients on your own and recreate the dish. I personally put them in pocket protectors and place them in my recipe binder. Blue Apron’s recipes just came on computer paper. While I may be a good cook, I am not the cleanest, so the computer paper recipes ended up looking like one of Picasso’s painting post meal creation. Hello Fresh even includes coupons towards future orders and other promotional items from various companies inside a Hello Perk$ envelope that comes with each shipment. You can use the coupons for yourself or share them with your family and friends.
All of the recipes from Hello Fresh list the level of difficulty on them. I have been receiving the Level 1, which is the easiest level. This way I can create a date night with my boyfriend and we can cook together. He is a great sous chef, but requires guidance. I let him cook on his own once and came home to the melody of smoke alarms, still trying to get that ringing out of my ears. Needless to say, I learned my lesson and we now stick to level 1 recipes!
Another great thing is that they list the time it will take to prepare the meal. I have found that most of them are 30-40 minutes, but they set it up so that you are chopping and preparing everything while the water boils and/or the oven preheats. This way you are not wasting any time! They even list the allergens on the recipes so if you are hosting someone with allergies, you will know whether or not the meal is safe for them to consume. When you initially set up your account with Hello Fresh they will ask you any allergies or dietary restrictions and ensure to work around them when shipping your meals. This is very helpful because my boyfriend is allergic to numerous things such as raw carrots, sunflower seeds, and almonds! Sometimes I think he says he is allergic just to test my cooking skills, so maybe I will slip an almond in there just to double check.
The meat, fish and poultry are packaged underneath the three meal boxes as well as several ice packs that you can reuse. These are perfect for coolers at a football tailgate or just for transporting food that needs to be kept cold over the holidays!
While cooking the meals I find that it is easy to use the white boxes that the meal ingredients come packaged in as a mini trash bin for all the empty containers, peels, and packaging. This makes clean-up easy!
All in all, Hello Fresh has changed my life in a major way. I can now balance my hectic schedule and eating healthy without a magic genie. However, if you do find a magic genie I do have plenty of other wishes that need granting so please send him my way!