I just realized the title makes this seem like a sponsored or paid post. You know I don’t do those, right? I only review things on this blog I stumble upon myself. But since the title SEEMS like a sponsored post, I figured I’d add the disclaimer just in case. THIS IS ALL ME. I promise.
Donnie got an email recently where our bank was offering a coupon to try out Hello Fresh food delivery service. This appealed to Donnie because it’s all fresh ingredients and healthy/new/interesting recipes. This did not appeal to me because the cheapest package still worked out to be about $10 a meal and I can eat healthily at my favorite local restaurant for that much.
But, since we had a coupon, we gave it a shot. There are tons of different packages to choose from, we went with the one that is Dinner for 2, 3 nights a week. You pay one week at a time, but you can “pause” any week in advance if you don’t feel like paying for it. You can choose meals before the ship, if you don’t lie the “default” choices for the week.
We’ve been doing it for about 4 weeks now so I thought I’d do a review on it.
Here’s the thing. In general? I HATE COOKING. I like meals that require less than 5 minutes of prep and then I walk away. Either because it’s done, or because it’s cooking in a way that doesn’t need my attention – like being baked in the oven or cooking in the crockpot. I don’t like having to keep an eye on things, I don’t like having to cut things, I don’t like more than a few steps, in general? I don’t like cooking.
Sometimes I’ll do more. But only on MY terms. I’ll search for some good recipes, something that appeals to me, with ingredients that aren’t complicated and hopefully don’t require cutting.
So, the first week? I HATED THIS STUPID PROGRAM.
As you see, everything comes unprepared. It’s packaged well, exactly what you need in the amounts you need. Beautiful recipe cards. Pictures, easy steps, very difficult to screw up.
But still! You have to dice! And cut! And keep an eye on things because most of them are being cooked stovetop. And there are a million steps and I hated it. No matter how good it was, I hated it.
So, we paused for a week and re-evaluated.
Here’s another thing: Donnie loves to cook. LOVES it. He just hates to shop and plan and find recipes. So, we decided to work it out so that he would cook at LEAST two of the three meals a week. Hopefully three. Because to me? No matter how yummy it was? It wasn’t worth the cost or effort. I’d rather spend that $10 per dinner per person for us to go out to eat, which we only do once a week. But Donnie likes to cook, so he took over.
And with that plan? We’ve stuck to it. He really enjoys it. He loves the prep, he loves the excitement of new meals, he loves the dicing and the cutting and the monitoring…he loves it ALL.
He sent me this picture one night, he was VERY proud of this dinner. He loves it.
And don’t get me wrong…the food is DELISH. I think there’s only been one or two meals I didn’t just LOVE, but most of it? Exceptional. The kids even like most of it, but we don’t pay for the meals for them because it’s too much money. I swear, most of the cost is probably packaging!
And yes, we could buy the ingredients ourselves for cheaper and cook the meals, but that’s part of the problem. Donnie hates grocery shopping. And you can’t buy in the exact quantities you need so you end up with extras and THEN what do you do?
Now, for me? This program is not worth it. I’d rather take my $10 and go have a meal at my favorite local restaurant which is fresh and healthy. But if you like cooking but hate shopping/planning? This is for you. Seriously. It’s perfect. Perfect quantities, you don’t have to fret with what to do with extras, you don’t have to look up recipes, you don’t have to interpret poorly written recipes. If you can budget it and love to cook but hate to plan? This is for you. Donnie LOVES it.
But if you are like me and hate prep, it’s not for you. Also? I am not a picky eater. I’d rather spend $10 on baked chicken breasts and some frozen vegetables and feed my whole family. Donnie likes variety. I could do the chicken breasts and veggies 5 meals a week.
So, it’s a win for Donnie, a lose for me. But since he’s doing the cooking of most meals? I work with the budget and just make sure I’m cooking REALLY cheap meals the other nights to make it work because it’s not a BAD thing for us to have some variety. And he finds the prep/cooking etc therapeutic.
Has anyone else ever tried something like this before?