Product Review: My Week with Hello Fresh

Is one of your New Year’s Resolutions to eat healthier, but the time and energy you’re investing into composing a plan causing you a headache?

I’ve been there!

I have spent hours searching for the perfect recipes and shopping for the right ingredients only to be left feeling like I spent a stressful day at the office. It takes some serious dedication to eat healthy, but is there an easier way to get great recipes and healthy ingredients without investing hours of planning?


Last week, I tried out Hello Fresh, a food delivery service that sends healthy recipes and the pre-measured ingredients right to your door!

 Like many, you may have wondered “Is it worth it?” Well, I was blessed that Hello Fresh let me try a box so I could find out for myself.

First, I was super amped about the apron I received and immediately put it on.

But I was more excited about the meals that were supplied.

I loved how each meal was separated into their very own box. It saved me time from sorting through and finding exactly what I needed for that night’s meal.

They also provided a recipe booklet which broke down the nutritional values, ingredients, and of course, your directions on how to make each meal.

The first one I had was the Winter Risotto. It was calling my name from the moment I set eyes on it.

Although we haven’t been having winter-y weather (70 degrees on Christmas Eve...WTF!!!), I wasn’t going to hold off on this one.

I'm not a huge fan of kale (there was an incident where I ate way too much), but this meal was quite good and the kale flavor didn't show through as much as I imagined it would. I thought the fennel seeds were more overpowering actually. I like the taste of black licorice, which is what this resembled taste-wise, but I think it would have been more pleasing in another meal. Still, I scarfed it down and will definitely keep the recipe. :)

The second dinner was the Pan Seared Chicken and Orecchiette. Although I like being gluten-free, it's not a necessity and I was okay with trying this out.

I was a little confused that the recipe called for broccoli, but I was provided peas instead. No explanation. Luckily, I did have some broccoli that needed to be used so I threw that in with the peas.

**NOTE** I informed Hello Fresh of the ingredient mix up on their Facebook and they responded that they would fix this for me, but because this was a trial, I wasn't going to hold it against them. Besides...IT WAS STILL GOOD!

Although the recipe was measured to serve 2, Peter and I were able to get 2 generous servings each out of it. For Hello Fresh users, this would be a money saver!! It also saves me from having to figure out what to bring for work the next day. Plus, this meal was really good. May have been my favorite out of all the meals.

The final meal was the Turkish Meatballs.

I was excited about this because we don't often eat beef. It's not that I avoid red meat, but we just don't get as much when we do our shopping.

Preparation seemed easier for this one than the others, but the overall time it took to cook was a lot longer than noted. This actually seemed to be a trend with all of the recipes. I found myself picking at the carrots and parsnip while impatiently waiting for the meatballs to cook through.

Like the pan seared chicken, this recipe had an ingredient change. It noted that it included polenta, but I did not receive it. I got cornmeal instead but had no idea if it was like polenta. I never cooked with polenta before. It was nothing google couldn't solve, but it would have been nice to get some kind of note that said "Hey, you're getting this instead."

In the end, it was perfect!

I also got a generous serving and was able to halve it for leftovers. Peter did the same. So again, it was like getting an extra meal and that was just fine by me!!!

So after trying Hello Fresh, here is my "Pros and Cons" list:

  • Convenience 
  • Healthy
  • YUMMY!
  • Exposure to meals/food you may have never tried otherwise
  • Meals provide large helpings
  • Easy to follow recipes with pictures
  • May luck out and get leftovers
  • Boxes for vegetarians
  • Flexible subscription (you can skip weeks you don't want meals)
  • Top notch ingredients

  • Some may think price is an issue
  • No explanation of ingredient changes
  • Time it took was longer than noted (That may be a problem with my cooking abilities though)
  • No gluten-free box option

After my experience, I will definitely be doing Hello Fresh. I decided I would choose one week out of the month for a delivery and skip the rest. It will save me time in grocery shopping and meal planning for at least one busy week out of the month.

If you are interested in exploring Hello Fresh for yourself, they are offering $35 off your first box! That's a steal! Just go to and they will hook you up!

Have you tried Hello Fresh or a similar service? What were your thoughts?

Out of all of these meals, which would you like to try the most?

Grandma Lindsey

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So my body decided that overnight, I would go from 27 years old to 72!!! Somewhere between Saturday and Sunday, I KILLED my back. It was hurting before, but after finding relief from resting, it came back and with a vengeance. I was in excruciating pain and was restricted to a reclining chair for most of the day. My couch and bed were way too cushioned to be comfortable on my back...if that makes sense. But this reclining is da bomb!!!

Obviously, I have bowed out of running and P90X. It's not like I have put in that many workouts since the JFK 50 and I'm really not stressing it. I thought I would be more concerned because I should be training for my next marathon, but I think I can handle a shortened marathon schedule. What I cannot handle is more pain. After dealing with foot and knee issues through ultra training, I am not going to push through back pain for this.

On Monday, conditions didn't improve much, but I still managed to roll (SLOWLY) out of bed and walk old lady style through work. Peter reminded me of the Scrubs episode where Dr. Cox hurt his back and I thought this described me perfectly. It at least brought my spirits up.

I was on some decent pain relievers that made things so much better, but take note that I truly HATE taking pain pills. I will only do so if I am desperate. It is the one thing that is getting me through to my next chiro appointment.

Last night, after being knocked out on pain killers, I woke up this morning to more back pain and with it, a horrible stomach ache.

I was so close to making myself sick over the toilet until my back objected to my coughing. So I suffered. I thought maybe eating breakfast would help, but after two bites of my waffle, I had to lay down. I laid around from about 5:45 until 7, when I decided I would just pull on a pair of pants, remove my make up from the day before and put my hair up. That's the most I was going to move. 

Funny how after all the pain and agony I suffered though in the morning, it subsided once I got to work. I am glad it did though. I hate missing work. Especially for this stuff. I would rather be out of work and doing what I want to do. Not laying around in pain and discomfort.

I'm not entirely sure how long I will be out. I'm thinking I may just end up not running until Christmas, then ease back into things. I am not sweating it. These are all signs I still need to take a break from my extensive training.

Ever been out with a back injury? What helped make it better?

Who's currently taking a break from running!? What keeps you sane? 

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