HelloFresh vs Blue Apron: Is HelloFresh Better Than Blue Apron?

article by Nicky Hoseck
March 22, 2020
Two of the biggest names in the meal kit delivery service industry, HelloFresh and Blue Apron go head to head. Avoiding takeout by eating at home has gotten easier due to the rise of meal kits, but with so many options out there it can be hard to know which one is the right meal kit service for you.
Putting HelloFresh vs Blue Apron head to head we looked at the most important criteria to find out which of these two will come out on top

HelloFresh vs Blue Apron Battle

 Visit Hello Fresh SiteVisit Blue Apron Site
Ease of Use
Recipe Variety and Selection
Ingredient Quality and Taste
Convenience
Cost

Ease of Use

HelloFresh makes it simple to sign up to its meal delivery service. All you need to do is head over to their website and find the plans tab. There you will be able to choose your meal preferences (meat and veggies, veggie, family-friendly or low calorie), as well as customizing the size of your plan. This means choosing between two, three or four recipes per week for two or four people.

With Blue Apron you choose whether you wish to order the Signature plan for two people, either twice or three times weekly, the signature for four, which can be delivered two, three or four times a week or the two-person vegetarian menu that comes twice or three times each week.

When comparing the two, HelloFresh is a little easier to use than Blue Apron. This is because HelloFresh is focused more on delivering no-fuss meals that can be ready in just a few minutes. When it comes to recipe simplicity, HelloFresh makes things that much easier to follow, which is great for those that aren’t too confident in the kitchen but are deciding to test out the culinary waters.

In saying that, both Blue Apron and HelloFresh offer clear directions, however, it seems as though HelloFresh often has fewer steps in its recipes. This is ideal for beginners as well as those who are in a rush.

Additionally, both the HelloFresh and Blue Apron website are very user-friendly and simple to navigate. HelloFresh allows users to skip, cancel or reactivate a subscription quickly and easily. In order to cancel your Blue Apron subscription, you either need to give them a call or send them an email, which is an added and sometimes inconvenient step in terms of flexibility.

Winner: HelloFresh

Recipe Variety and Selection

Obviously each household is different, and with that, each family will have different wants and needs at the dinner table, but we bet you want to know how it works?

As mentioned previously, HelloFresh offers four different meal plans for two or four people, with deliveries coming in either two, three or four times per week.

In comparison, Blue Apron has two different plan sized for two or four people that are limited to two or three times a week unless you order the family plan which will include as many as four meals per week.

At times, Blue Apron users are able to choose from Blue Apron Whole30 recipes, a strict 30-day diet while emphasized whole foods, and avoiding things like alcohol, sugar, grains, soy, and dairy. However, Blue Apron Whole30 isn’t available for the whole year.

When it comes to recipe variety and selection, users are spoilt for choice when it comes to ordering delicious meals with HelloFresh. Popular meals include:

  • Balsamic and Fig Beef Tenderloin
  • Lea Michele’s Fave Baked Veggies
  • Harissa Sweet Potato Pockets
  • Salsa Verde Enchiladas
  • Ginger Lime Salmon
  • El Paso Pork Burgers
  • Shrimp Spaghetti with a Kick
  • Velvety Mushroom Prosciutto Chicken
  • Rio Rancho Pulled Pork Tacos
  • Veggie Baked Penne

Alternatively, Blue apron also has some tasty dishes on offer including:

  • Za’atar-Spiced Chicken & Farro Salad
  • Crispy Tilapia and Caper Mayo
  • Greek-Style Beet and Broccoli Pitas
  • Seared Steaks and Guajillo-Date Sauce
  • Curry Peanut Chicken
  • Three Cheese Flatbread
  • Smoky Salmon and Shallot Date Sauce
  • Steaks and Tomatillo Sour Cream
  • Spiced Pork and Glazed Apple
  • Monterey Jack Beyond Burger

Winner: HelloFresh

Ingredient Quality and Taste

Arguably, the most important factor of your meal delivery service is the taste of the recipes as well as how HelloFresh and Blue Apron source their ingredients.

Blue Apron is incredibly impressive in this regard as it goes the extra mile to provide each user with the healthiest, most nutritious ingredients available. The meats sourced by this meal kit company are free of hormones, antibiotics, and other harmful substances, and you will be happy to know that the meat on offer is grass-fed.

The seafood you eat from Blue Apron is harvested sustainably, and all the ingredients that you will be preparing are both non-GMO and organic. This is because Blue Apron relies on small-scale sustainable producers that are able to provide the company with an ample supply of ingredients. On top of all of that, Blue Apron also has a resident agro-ecologist that works with family-run farms ensuring the best crops possible by timing their harvests.

HelloFresh, on the other hand, includes menus that are expertly designed and monitored by expert chefs, ensuring that each meal is both tasty and nutritious. Using high-quality ingredients that are sourced from farms, this company works with trusted, experienced and sustainable business partners to make sure that high-quality seasonal produce is delivered at peak freshness.

While HelloFresh produce is fresh and there is no doubt as to its ingredients quality, it isn’t organic. “Rather than focus on whether or not the produce is organic, we are trying to help our customers take the necessary steps to add in more fruits and veggies in their everyday lives,” the company says.

In saying that, all seafood is sourced sustainably and the meat is carefully selected and is antibiotic-free. Both Blue Apron and HelloFresh are focused on using high-quality, responsibly sourced ingredients, so you won’t go wrong with either choice. In saying that, Blue Apron has more certifications than HelloFresh and also has a bigger emphasis on organic ingredients.

Winner: Blue Apron

Convenience

With Blue Apron, there are insulated backpacking liners and refrigerants to keep your produce fresh while maintaining safe temperatures. The great this is that the company assess packaging on a regular basis, making the necessary adjustments based on various factors like weather conditions when needed.

“We carefully pack our boxes with insulated thermal liners and refrigerants to maintain appropriate temperatures during transit and delivery, and our team of packaging and food safety experts regularly assesses the efficacy of our packaging, which we modify as needed. For example, we alter the size or quantity of refrigerants, or use thermal liners with varying levels of insulation, based on the season, weather conditions, box contents, and delivery destination to ensure all of our ingredients arrive at the appropriate temperatures, according to the USDA’s guidance on safe temperature zones.”

Within your Blue Apron box, you have pre measures and clearly labeled ingredients that are needed for each mean as well as comprehensive recipe guides which include vital information such as step-by-step instructions, nutritional value, and pictures. It is assumed that you have basic condiments at home such as salt, pepper and olive oil, to make your blue apron meals so those ingredients are not included.

The day that your shipment arrives depends greatly on where you live, however, both companies allow users to choose the day of their delivery, offering drop-offs seven days a week in most delivery areas.

HelloFresh also assume you have ingredients such as salt, pepper, butter, and oil in your home, so these items are not included in your delivery. Your box comes with pre-portions, packing the ingredients for each meal in individual kits making it easy to pull out your ingredients to make your meal each night.

Produce is kept fresh with insulating liners, gel packs and other cooling materials that keep everything fresh. There is also a recipe card with an ingredients list, step-by-step instructions, and nutritional information within your box, as well as a list of kitchen tools you will need to get the job done.

If you aren’t comfortable in the kitchen, HelloFresh makes it convenient to choose the right recipes for your skill level separating recipes into three categories:

  • Level 1: Simple and familiar, these dishes involve little multi-tasking and not a lot of equipment.
  • Level 2: Recipes that need a little more multi-tasking and might include some less predictable cooking techniques or ingredients.
  • Level 3: These recipes typically require you to keep a few pans or mechanisms going at once and get the most daring with cooking methods and ingredients.

With that said, it should be remembered that even level three dishes are designed with new cooks in mind. The pre-portioned ingredients and thorough instructions allow you to make an impressive meal without the stress, but they will take longer to cook than the first two levels.

If you are conscious of environmental sustainability you will be happy to know that HelloFresh uses 100% biodegradable and recyclable items. On their website, you can clearly see how to dispose of the box and packaging. Finding “How do I recycle my Blue Apron packaging?” on the Blue Apron website was more challenging. Blue Apron does offer tips and tricks on what to do with the packaging, but don’t have completely recyclable packaging.

Winner: HelloFresh

Cost

One of the biggest questions on everyone’s lips is which is cheaper, Blue Apron or HelloFresh?

Blue Apron’s meals are simply calculated according to per serving cost. Additionally, you will also be given a weekly total of all of the plan options available so you will know how much one serving costs and how much it will be setting you back for the week in total.

The two-person meal plan service costs $9.99 per serving and includes free shipping when you opt to order three meals per week, however, if you choose to go for just two meal deliveries for two people, you will have to pay a shipping fee of $7.99.

When looking at the four-person meal plan you won’t have to calculate shipping as there is none, but the more meals you opt, the cheaper they get. For example, when you choose to go for the two meals per week, you pay $8.99 per meal. Three meals will cost you $7.99 per meal, while four will come at just $7.49. That is a fantastic deal not only in comparison to HelloFresh but many other popular meal kits available right now.

With HelloFresh, the pricing for two meals for two people is $10.99 per serving. Three meals for two people will cost $8.99 per serve, while four dishes per week for two people also cost $8.99.

When ordering for four people, two meals per week will cost $8.99, while three and four recipes will cost you $7.49. it should be noted that all the deliveries come with a shipping cost of $6.99.

There are promo codes that you can find on the internet that you can enter in the promo code field, and if you sign up to receive the latest recipes with your email, you get $15 off.

When it comes to HelloFresh vs Blue Apron price, there isn’t a huge difference, but the fact that HelloFresh has shipping costs for all meals allows Blue Apron to sneak ahead.

Winner: Blue Apron

Overall Winner: HelloFresh

Although it is a close race, the overall winner in the HelloFresh vs Blue Apron Challenge is HelloFresh.

Allowing users various dietary styles and plans, more variety in terms of use and recipes, these healthy meals come in excellent packaging that you will have no trouble recycling and keeping low food waste.

There are vegetarian and calorie-smart options on offer as well as excellent customer support and service with a strong focus on customer feedback, which is always important. You can skip weeks easily and will have no trouble if you wish to cancel your subscription.

Blue Apron is a solid choice, with better pricing, but fewer options. While offering strictly organic produce there is less variety and it can be difficult to find meal options for those people with food allergies.

As far as we’re concerned, HelloFresh is the clear winner here but if you want to find out more about this meal kit delivery service, and it’s delivery area, check out our full review here.