Meal Kit Monday: A Review of Home Chef
Meal kit services have been around for years, but there are so many options that it can be overwhelming to figure out which one to choose. To help cut through the noise, I tried nine different meal kits that cater to various types of home chefs so you don't have to. I’ll be posting an honest review about my experience with a different meal kit every Monday.
If you're interested in signing up for a meal kit but you're not sure which one is right for you, consider Home Chef. The company caters to people with different skill levels and dietary preferences, from meat eaters and vegetarians to people watching their carb or calorie intake. Home Chef sends ingredients and recipes straight to your door for a weekly cost and you can cancel at any time. I recently tried one week's worth of Home Chef's meals; this is what I thought.
Home Chef Details
Home Chef prides itself on keeping things simple — that’s literally the company’s slogan. The service’s meal kits start at $49.95, which includes shipping and two recipes per week, each of which serves two people. But HomeChef also has kits that come with up to six recipes and has some meals that can serve up to six people.
Although HomeChef doesn’t have specific meal plans for people with different dietary needs, the site does give customers the option to list their preferences before signing up. Customers can specify if they’re vegetarian, or if they want to avoid certain foods, limit their carb or calorie intake and more. There are 13 recipes to choose from each week, and several of them are typically vegetarian. HomeChef also has “easy prep meal kits” that require minimal preparation.
Home Chef Experience
My HomeChef meal kit arrived via FedEx in an insulated cardboard box. The contents of the box were still cold upon opening, and each recipe had a separate zip-lock bag for its ingredients. The bags fit conveniently in the refrigerator, which I found especially useful because I share a fridge with three other people. But the extra plastic seemed wasteful, especially when considering the recyclable paper bags other meal kit services send.
I sampled three HomeChef recipes: teriyaki steak and peppers, pesto chicken thigh mini pizzas, and crispy prosciutto and white cheddar cream campanelle. I also tried the spaghetti and Italian sausage meatballs, one of the company’s easy-prep meals.
All of HomeChef’s recipes are broken down into different difficulty levels. I sampled two “easy” recipes and one “intermediate” recipe, although I thought all three were simple enough for any beginner cook to follow. The recipe cards were large and easy to read and the cooking process was streamlined. None of the recipes took me longer to cook than the time listed.
My favorite recipe was the crispy prosciutto and white cheddar cream campanelle. The dish was the perfect level of salty and savory and taught me the fundamentals of making a good, creamy sauce. Even though this was the most involved recipe, I still dirtied only a few dishes.
For just about all of HomeChef’s recipes, you’ll need olive oil, salt and pepper. If you don’t have those ingredients or common kitchen appliances handy, the easy-prep meals are a great alternative. For the spaghetti and Italian sausage meatballs, all I had to do was combine the ingredients in a provided dish, roll the sausage into meatballs and bake for about 20 minutes.
Overall, I enjoyed how easy HomeChef was. If you’re a beginner in the kitchen who likes comfort food, or if you want pre-prepared meals that require no slicing and dicing, then HomeChef is a great option.
However, if you’re someone who is willing to pay a little extra for organic products, or if you want a wide variety of vegan, paleo, keto or vegetarian options, a different meal kit service might be preferable to HomeChef.
Disclosure: The meal kit was provided by the company, but all opinions are honest and belong solely to the reviewer.
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