What’s For Dinner
Like most families, mine is on the go, something every night kind. I started weekly menu planning before we even had kids; it was something I had grown up with and it seemed to be one less thing to think about each day. Without menu planning, we would be spending way too much money eating out and at the grocery. I plan our weekly menu every Thursday night and go to the grocery on Fridays, but even with cookbooks and an overly full Pinterest board of recipes, I felt like we were constantly rotating through the same meals, and that is boring. Then I did it, I accepted a free trial of Hello Fresh, the meal kit delivery service, and now I am hooked.
How It Works
Hello Fresh is the meal kit delivery service that we use, however, there are so many out there, catering to all different dietary restrictions and preferences, palate preferences, and budgets. I chose the Family Friendly plan; we get two meals for four people each week, delivered on Wednesdays. There are also Meat and Veggie, Vegetarian, and Calorie Conscious options, and plans can be changed as desired. There is also an option to skip a week, take a break, and the ability to change plans and delivery dates as needed. When I am menu planning I reserve Wednesday and Thursday for Hello Fresh meals and then plan and shop for the rest of the week. Hello Fresh is delivered by UPS in an insulated box, with heavy-duty ice packs, that hold up to our hot weather. In the box is all the meat, vegetables, and seasonings that you need to make the meal, and not provided are things like: butter, oil, salt, and pepper. There is a colorful and easy to follow card with instructions on making the meal. Most of the meals take less than 30 minutes to prepare and cook, which is great for busy lifestyles.
But Is It Good?
The meals we have cooked have been given the approval of myself, my kids and my husband; we haven’t had one we did not like. The quality and freshness of the ingredients are the same as the ones I would purchase at the grocery. The amount of food per serving is perfect, we do occasionally have leftovers, but it is never not enough. My kids are not picky when it comes to meals, but in the event of a picky eater, there is even something in the meal that most kids will eat – rice, potato wedges, chicken, burgers, tacos. The meals are flavorful, but not overpowering, overly spicy, or too adventurous.
How’s the Value?
The truth is, meal delivery kits may not save you any money, but I do think it prevents wasting of food. In the kit is the exact amount of what you need to make the meal, nothing more and nothing less. I am guilty of buying an ingredient for a recipe and then use the little amount I need and unless I make the recipe again or another that calls for the ingredient, it just sits in my fridge or cabinet. Or I will buy something with full intentions of making it and life gets in the way and it goes bad before I have made it. Like I mentioned before we occasionally have leftovers, but not always, which in my house is good because we aren’t the best at eating the leftovers we do have, so in the trash they go. The biggest thing I am saving is my sanity, two fewer meals to plan and shop for. It may not sound like much, but sometimes thinking of what to have for dinner is the hardest part of being a parent (I mean really breakfast, lunch, and dinner planning every day for 18 years, I will take any help I can get).
Not Convinced Yet
I admit I was a hard sell on the idea of meal delivery kits. It took me a long time and finally a free trial to get on board. I know how to cook, I love trying new recipes, I don’t mind going to the grocery, but like I said I was getting caught in the same weekly rut. If you’re still on the fence, check on Groupon, ask a friend, do a quick google search and I am sure you’ll run into a free trial or good coupon for a meal delivery service. Try it and let someone else do the planning and shopping for your next dinner. The meals are quick, easy, and delicious, bonus if you have a budding chef in the house, the meal prep cards are easy enough for them to follow.