Food & Wine
Green Chef: Can Yet Another Meal Delivery Option Really Impress?
I heard about Green Chef last year, but back then they were only available in a few states, so I tried them out when I was visiting friends in Wyoming last summer. I was excited to see a few weeks ago that Green Chef is now available in Virginia and was interesting to see if it lived up to my original opinion.
Meal delivery — companies that send weekly boxes of fresh ingredients and step by step recipies are one of the new big things. As a frequent traveler, I’ve fallen in love.
- I can arrange for a box to be delivered within a day or two of getting home and cook fresh meals without having to make time for the grocery store.
- It’s a good social option with recipes easy enough that all my friends can join me in the kitchen for an evening’s entertainment (and it is entertaining!).
- Best of all, they send just enough ingredients so I’m not cleaning out my fridge lest it go bad before my next trip.
How did Green Chef turn out?
Last summer my recently relocated friends were still waiting on their moving truck (a month later), so I attempted to cook with one sauce pan, one cookie sheet, two knives, and one mixing bowl.
It wasn’t easy, but SUCCESS! Surprisingly everything turned out well and it made for a nice break from going out to eat. My experience last week was equally satisfying and easier with all the right utensils.
Blue Apron is still the cheapest at ~$10 and Green Chef is a little more expensive than Plated and Hello Fresh at ~$11.99 per person/meal + $9 shipping for 2 meats & 1 vegetarian. Almost all the ingredients are certified organic and you can also pay a little more to get Gluten Free and Paleo options. It’s the $9 shipping that gets you, making 3 meals for 2 people about $80.
This is where Green Chef is really unique. With other companies they show you the full range of options and let you pick. With Green Chef your options are assigned based on your protein selection. So if you want more options you have to play around with unchecking various boxes until you get the preferred line up.
Here’s my order when everything but fish is selected.
I added fish and removed chicken.
Then I removed pork, chicken, and fish and wound up with only vegetarian options so apparently no beef, game or shellfish was on the menu.
The box arrived and like Blue Apron, all the ingredients are individually wrapped.
Wait, there’s more!
For me this is a downside because then you’re “grocery shopping” in your fridge to hunt everything down. And the chances you’ll forget something if you’re taking it to a friend’s house is higher.
The plus side? Alot of their ingredients are pre-mixed or pre-chopped which saves alot of time! Whereas Hello Fresh will teach you how to make yogurt sauces and salad dressing, Green Chef sends them almost ready to go.
Green Chef is a USDA-certified organic meal kit company, with almost everything being organic. And all the ingredients, particularly the produce seemed high quality, lasting a full 7 days with no wilting or aging until I could make the last recipe.
I loved the flavors and options for my meals! I got to make a Honey Balsamic Chicken with Portobellos and Black Lentils, Ginger Tamari Steak with Black Ramen Salad and Quinoa & Spinach Fritters.
The recipes were pretty straightforward and simple to make, though Green Chef underestimates the time it will take to chop and prep, which all the boxes do.
Occasionally the preparation order seemed off, but for the most part it was simple and some of the quickest meals I’ve made. Impressive since they were on the more exotic side, which was also the downside. It would be hard to replicate since the sauces were pre-made and things like black ramen aren’t common.
Overall Impression of Green Chef
I’ve tried out Hello Fresh, Plated, and Blue Apron meal deliveries.
- Blue Apron is by far my favorite. They tend towards more sophisticated recipes and flavors without complicated prep.
- Hello Fresh is also awesome. Their recipes are more basic, but ones you can easily repeat without having to hunt down unusual ingredients.
- Plated is good. They’re more sophisticated than Hello Fresh but not as much as Blue Apron.
I really liked Green Chef and it would tie for first with Blue Apron based on menu flavors and freshness of ingredients if it weren’t for the price. Since I don’t seek organic out, paying the $8-10 more per delivery isn’t worth it to me.
Full Disclosure: I may receive affiliate credit from links in this post or on this site which will help fund my travels. Thank you for your support!