There are a few companies offering meal kit delivery.

They are in the news a bit at the moment, with the best-known provider of such a service, Blue Apron, being in a bit of a legal pickle.

It’s an ideal time for competitors to try and capture some of the market share that Blue Apron may well lose considering their current negative press. A great alternative on the other hand is Home Chef.

I’ll be honest, I was incredibly skeptical of such a service. I live in New York City: it’s not difficult to find a store selling well-priced fresh food.

At the same time, to get the best deals on grocery shopping, you need to buy in bulk. Well, in my household, it’s just me and my fiancée in an apartment. We simply don’t have room for bulk buying to save dollars.

My pet peeve is the amount of food waste. The average American wastes one third of food per year. When you consider the amount of people who could really use that food, that’s shameful. But, in saying that, when I end up buying a bunch of cilantro, it’s not the sort of thing you can donate to a food back when it starts to wither, and you know you won’t use it. 

The Solution

home-chef-reviews

Home Chef provide you with the right amount of ingredients to prepare your meal. There isn’t any food provided to waste – everything gets used.

That makes me feel a lot better.

I’m also a bit of a nut when it comes to space management, so I when I have food coming from Home Chef on a set day, I know I need to make sure I have room in my pantry and refrigerator. Again, it’s easy to know what’s coming, because, well, you’ve ordered it!

In their “How It Works” section of their website, they highlight sustainability throughout as a selling point, but I had to do some digging elsewhere to find out exactly what this meant.

In terms of their vendors, they only work with those who are also committed to sustainability, and who look after their staff well. Any excess food in preparing the boxes they deliver to you are sent to charities to feed those in need – which as I said earlier, is one of the main sticklers for me in buying from the supermarket.

And finally, in getting to you, they package it in insulated and recycled materials as much as possible.

Home delivery and fresh food, and the convenience and health benefits of combining those, are put front and center of their marketing and sales efforts, it’s not the biggest pull for me. My nearest supermarket is a thirty second walk, and has an outstanding selection of well-priced fresh food, so those aren’t selling points that resonate with me.

Because of what I do, I’m aware that none of my meals will ever look as appetizing as the picture that accompanies any recipe, whether it’s from a book, the internet, or a service like Home Chef!

Starting Off

If you’re interested in becoming a customer of Home Chef, I recommend starting off by reading this home chef review where the customer show cases some of the meals cooked, as well as sharing a coupon code for your first order.

As you go through the sign-up process – and this is a key element – you get to select dietary requirements so that you won’t be sent recipes or ingredients that you can’t or won’t eat, like shellfish or mushrooms.

And that’s pretty much it. The rest of the ordering process is as simple as can be. If you can use the internet – which you probably can if you’re reading this – then you can do this. The website is very clear and intuitive to use, as easy as any other ecommerce site around.

Costs

I mentioned ecommerce in the previous section. So, how much will Home Chef set you back?

When you’re setting your dietary requirements for your account, you can also decide how many meals you receive, and for how many servings. You’re charged per delivery, so you can adjust your requirements as necessary. Depending on the delivery day you select, you’ll be told what day before that you’ll be charged.

So, for my example, I opted for three meals per week, with two servings per meal, to be delivered on Tuesdays. That would set me back $59.70, but with my starter discounts, it costs only $19.70. That’s sweet!

The $59.70 as a regular price seems expensive, but when you break it down, it’s three meals for two people – so six meals in total – so that works out at less than $10 per meal. I think that’s pretty good going.

It’s about the cost of an OK burger during a happy hour in a bar. Yes, of course it’ll be cheaper if you get the ingredients from the store. But, for me, this comes back to my reluctance to waste food.

If I need just a little bit of parsley for a recipe, Home Chef will send me just a little bit of Parsley. The store will sell me a big bunch of parsley. It’ll work out so cheap, and will last me for several meals… but only if I use it. And you get so much, you’d have to literally eat something with parsley in it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Conclusion

With three meals per week delivered in cool storage, your food is going to be relatively fresh, and as you’re only sent what you need, there won’t be any waste.

There’s no contract, so you can have more or less, or none at all from week to week. It’s completely flexible and up to you.

I would definitely say it’s worth a look. Give it a go, avail of the introductory offer at least, and see how it goes!

 

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Mark is the Editor-in-Chief of So Good Blog.

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