Food & Wine

Trying Hello Fresh’s Jamie Oliver Recipes? You May Want a Sous Chef

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I’m a big fan of the meal delivery services — they’re not cheap per se but definitely save time, especially when doing a lot of travel, and make it convenient to cook at home.

New innovations are constantly rolling out, but even my favorites, Blue Apron and Hello Fresh have room for improvement. Take Hello Fresh’s option with recipes created by Jamie Oliver. In practice it sounds ideal — a simple approach to cooking even more exotic or fancy flavors! Apparently in reality it misses the mark.

My friends expressed it best in this humorous Facebook review that I have to share:

So we (my wife and I) are HelloFresh meal ingredient delivery people. It has many positive benefits – exact meal proportions, sometimes interesting recipes etc. But recently this guy named Jamie Oliver (no, not of Islesboro origin) has thrust upon the recipe scene.

Here is my review of his recipes vs. the others and the impact upon the desirability of the service as a whole.

His recipes have 12 steps instead of the 5.5 average of the other recipes.


His recipes generate nearly twice as many dirty prep dishes – with many of them generated by needlessly trivial steps which don’t add to the meals tastiness, but just to the cleanup (who likes more cleanup?).

The instructions are not thought out well – regarding timing of readiness vs prep of other steps.

Most recently his recipe called for making skewers out of a chicken breast by pounding, then spearing, then frying, then cutting them — all to make them be skewers.

Please HelloFresh, hire someone and get some real ideas with an emphasis on good and easy and not a mess. #hellojamie – goodbye please.

I’m willing to put in more effort if it yields significantly better meals, but I can’t imagine a chicken skewer being worth it. So for now I will skip the 12 step featured recipes and stick to the 5-6 step options I’m used to.

A Hello Fresh chicken skewer recipe from earlier this summer

A Hello Fresh chicken skewer recipe from earlier this summer

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  1. NB

    October 28, 2016 at 8:03 am

    There’s always a balance to strike between overall quality, variety and interest on the one hand, and convenience and speed on the other- even leaving aside price. Clearly you fall more on the latter, whereas equally clearly Jamie Oliver will tend towards the former.

  2. Toni Dunlop

    October 28, 2016 at 9:22 pm

    I’m glad its not just me! Unless the Jamie recipes are drop dead amazing dishes I tend to avoid them. They often involve far too much faff and things I don’t have in my kitchen (griddle or pestle n mortar). I love the usual HelloFresh recipes and so do my family.

  3. Ross

    October 28, 2016 at 9:24 pm

    Interesting article as we’ve been as Hello Fresh customer for 3 months now. While I’ve not taken much notice of the additional steps, Jamie’s receipts do in general take longer, but what I noticed the most was a some of them were not as tasty as the general hello fresh recipes. Actually to the point where the worst dish we ate was his creation.

    I’m not trolling here, we own a number of Jamie’s cook book (so many I’m fact I’ve lost count).

    I think the issue is these are existing recipes that someone (doubtfully the man himself) has edited to try and condense into a recipe card and few ingredients and it just doesn’t work that well.

  4. gJ

    February 5, 2017 at 3:31 pm

    I found the same. Way to many steps, dirty dishes, and too much time spent even on a good deal of vegetarian dishes. Driving up the cost per plate, making it not worth it.

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