HelloFresh and Home Chef are two of the biggest players in the home meal kit delivery game. They’re both highly rated services, and both make claims of being the top meal kit delivery service in one way or another. So how do you choose between the two?
When it comes to choosing a meal kit delivery service, the thing that makes choosing one over the other so hard is understanding what exactly you’re getting. HelloFresh and Home Chef are very similar in many criteria. In our experience, what makes someone choose one over the other is how the brands break down their offerings.
People have different food demands, and no one company can’t please everyone. But both of these firms do an outstanding job of making an effort to do so. Let’s break down some of the major considering factors and the differences (if there are any at all) between the two services.
Comparing the better value between the two companies is a bit tough because the prices can vary depending on preference.
Based on a meal plan for two at 4 recipes a week, HelloFresh (without discounts) has a flat rate of $9 a meal with a $10 shipping fee. If you bump up the quantity to four servings, you get a slight bulk discount at $7.49 per serving. These rates are standard across all menu options.
Home Chef does it a little differently. Like HelloFresh, you start picking your meal quantity and frequency at a $9 per serving rate, with no discounts for larger quantities. However, when selecting your recipes, you have the option to substitute or exclude ingredients. These substitutions can increase or decrease the cost.
So, even though Home Chef’s end cost could actually wind up lower, based on preferences, HelloFresh’s prices are more consistent. Therefore you know exactly what you’re paying. For that reason, we have to go with HelloFresh in the Price category.
Home Chef Wins
With HelloFresh, you can choose any quantity of recipes between two and six per week. As far as quantity goes, you only have the option of selecting between two and four servings per recipe.
Home Chef is a little more family-friendly in its choices, or leftover-friendly if you so choose. Home Chef gives you the option of choosing between two, three, four, five, or six servings per recipe. For that reason, we pick Home Chef in the food quantity category.
Home Chef Wins
With HelloFresh, you can choose between three of six menu preferences when you sign up: Meat and Veggie, Family Friendly, Quick and Easy, Veggie, Calorie Smart, and Pescatarian. The more you specify your preferences, the more you narrow your menu choices.
With Home Chef, the customization options are similar, but they go a little above and beyond. When you initially sign up, you pick between convenience, balanced meals, or the ability to try new recipes. Then, you can choose ingredients you’d like to stay away from. Based on those choices, you get meal recommendations. But, an added plus with home chef is that you have the option to sub out proteins. So if you want Beyond Meat instead of ground beef, you can get it. Because of that, Home Chef edges out HelloFresh in our book.
When it comes to dietary restrictions for a vegan meal kit, keto-friendly, paleo, gluten-free, and many other common nutritional expectations these days, neither Home Chef nor HelloFresh are the best places to look. Although they have a few options that fall under these categories, and you can sub-in veggie options with some Home Chef recipes, there aren’t enough options to feel like there’s a choice to what you’re getting. Also, if you have any allergy restrictions, the process of sorting out those ingredients is clunky. These days, many other brands focus on niche dietary needs that would be better fitting.
Home Chef Wins
Both companies do a great job of creating dishes that satisfy a wide range of tastes through both culturally traditional and fusion-style dishes.
Also, both brands offer a “gourmet” meal option that they charge a premium for. These meals seem to be a bit more advanced and have more premium ingredients. On that note, they also might require a bit more cooking skills.
Home Chef once again edges out HelloFresh in this category because of choice. If you’re interested in cutting down on cooking one week, Home Chef offers oven-ready meals that you simply pop in the oven and heat.
Even for the novice home cook, neither brand seems to offer dishes that are too overwhelming to prepare. We think it’s an even playing field when it comes to recipe approachability.
Both brands try their best to minimize packaging and its carbon footprint as much as possible. Both companies do an excellent job trying to reduce plastic and reduce packaging as much as possible. Most of what both companies use for packaging is either recyclable or compostable.
Home Chef doesn’t feature a traditional market option like other meal services. When you select your weekly meals, you can add on extra proteins and a few pre-made options like desserts and frozen pizzas. However, with Home Chef, you do have the opportunity to buy pre-made meals at local grocery stores. But, this involves going to the grocery store or utilizing a separate delivery service.
The HelloFresh market is pretty extensive, offering extra produce or proteins you can add to your meals along with premade snacks and sides. We liked how its market is geared towards enhancing your weekly meals. For that reason, we picked HelloFresh for this category.
In the end, both of these services are excellent options to streamline meal planning at home. Although Home Chef edges out HelloFresh in most categories, it’s worth the time and money to try out both for yourself before committing to one or the other.
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