Subscription Review: Blue Apron, Hello Fresh, and Purple Carrot

This past spring, I tried 3 meal subscriptions where ingredients are delivered to your door. Every company has pros and cons, but one is definitely a winner.

Each subscription does their meal service slightly different, but around 95% of it is the same. Once a week you receive a package with pre-portioned & measured ingredients for 3 different recipes. You can choose to make the meals whenever you want, but sooner is better, as the ingredients are perishable.

You don’t have a ton of say in the recipes you receive, but you can do certain plans (e.g., vegetarian). Additionally, if you’re uninterested in the meals that are scheduled to arrive, you can cancel ahead of time for no additional cost. However, this must be done 6-8 days before your scheduled delivery date, so it is super easy to forget.

Note: I have no affiliation with any of these companies—I am not paid to do any advertisements!

Hello Fresh

Hello Fresh includes a picture for each step in the recipe, which is extremely helpful when preparing food. They also sort your ingredients so you easily know what ingredients is for which recipe. From my experience, Hello Fresh had stellar customer service. I was very impressed.

My biggest complaint about the company, though, is the lack of creativity in their food. I was looking forward to different ingredients and meal I hadn’t thought of before. However, I did not find this with Hello Fresh, as the meals were basic. I felt that I easily could have come up with these recipes without my subscription to Hello Fresh.

Like other companies, Hello Fresh had a ton of packaging, which I didn’t like, as it felt extremely unnecessary.

There are three “plans” available at Hello Fresh: Classic, Veggie, and Family. One thing I did like about the company was they sort the ingredients based upon what recipe it is for. See picture below.

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Pro: Hello Fresh shorts the ingredients

Purple Carrot

The biggest difference, in my opinion, of Purple Carrot versus other companies is that Purple Carrot is 100% vegan. This doesn’t make a major difference in the tastes of the recipes, but it does make a difference in the ingredients. You will definitely see ingredients such as tempeh or vegan ricotta.

Three plans available at Purple Carrot: 1-2 Person, 3-4 Person, and Performance (high protein). I enjoyed most (not all) of their recipes. My favorite was the green pea flatbread, which I modified a bit and have the recipe here. See picture below.

My biggest complaint is the utterly terrible customer service. I was extremely unimpressed and canceled my meal subscription after 2 weeks.

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Fav recipe from Purple Carrot (recipe here)

Blue Apron

I would definitely make a few changes to some of these recipes. Some were absolutely amazing on their own; some were not, but have potential. I loved the variety of the ingredients and recipes–I obtained tons of ideas & ingredients I would not have thought or made on my own!

One con was the high amount of packaging: It felt unnecessary and only hurt the environment! I also wish it would be possible to subscribe for only 2 meals a week, as sometimes 3 meals was too much. Blue Apron does not sort the ingredients for you; they come in a pile, so you must do that yourself.

Two plans available: 2 Person and Family. Once subscribed, you put in any ingredients preferences (such as vegetarian).

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Note: Insulation is present at the bottom of each package, so food does not spoil in the process of being delivered.
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Ingredients lined up, sorted by myself

Overall: The Verdict

Your earliest option for a weekly delivery day is Wednesday (sometimes Tuesday, depending on company), which I didn’t like. I prefer ingredients to come on a Monday so I have all week to make them.

Meal subscriptions are super nice to enhance your knowledge on food and give your taste buds some variety. It is nice to have ingredients at your door and decrease your time searching the aisles at the grocery store. That being said, these sort of meal subscriptions are not quick & easy recipes. Sometimes it can take up to 45 minutes to make a meal, which can be difficult on a week night.

Overall, I loved the recipes from Blue Apron most. They were creative, innovative, and fun to make.

In order of best customer service…
1. Hello Fresh
2. Blue Apron
3. Purple Carrot

In order of best tasting meals…
1. Blue Apron
2. Purple Carrot
3. Hello Fresh

In order of easiest recipes…
1. Hello Fresh
2. Purple Carrot
3. Blue Apron

In order of best variety of food…
1. Blue Apron
2. Purple Carrot
3. Hello Fresh

One Comment Add yours

  1. franceshopps says:

    Great assessment of the three different meal delivery providers!


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