Wouldn’t it be nice to take the guesswork out of meal planning?
That’s exactly why we tried the HelloFresh Carb Smart Box in the first place!
I missed being in the kitchen SO much after Nadia was born but now that she’s 3.5 months old (and napping better!), I wanted to get back to it.
Besides providing us with delicious and nutritious meals, HelloFresh also helped us with:
- saving more time during meal prep
- having to do less grocery shopping
- trying meals we would have never come up with
- creating less food waste
However, while this Keto meal box is amazing in so many ways, it isn’t perfect!
Keep reading to see everything we enjoyed plus a few things we think could be improved.
Disclosure: Affiliate links are used throughout this post. You can read our full disclosure here.
HelloFresh Carb Smart Box Review (Our Honest Thoughts)
Full disclosure – I first discovered HelloFresh on Instagram in 2018 when I created a sponsored post for them.
Back then, I had just one baby and there were NO HelloFresh low carb boxes on the menu.
It was a fun gig in exchange for two weeks of meals but after the two-week timeline, I canceled the subscription before we were charged and moved on.
Our First Experience with HelloFresh (2018)
The meals were good and utilized fresh ingredients as much as possible but I just couldn’t justify spending the money for a meal prep delivery service.
I had only one child back then and it was easy to take her on grocery store shopping adventures.
We were also in the midst of fixing up our newly purchased house (in need of an EXTREME amount of TLC) so we were on a SERIOUS budget.
Why we canceled our Original HelloFresh Plan
I canceled our first ever HelloFresh Plan from because:
- it was too expensive for our needs
- grocery shopping with a child wasn’t an issue for me
- meals were good but not out of this world
- not enough food delivered to justify this expense*
* If it meant I didn’t have to go grocery shopping for a week at a time, I might have considered continuing this subscription box meal service in 2018.
Welcome HelloFresh Low Carb Boxes
After almost three years of living in our almost completely renovated home, my husband brought up a flyer that was dropped into our mailbox one fateful day.
It was a HelloFresh coupon code for 40% off two boxes!
He knows I’m a sucker for a good deal.
We had just recently started eating a predominantly keto diet and were so excited to see they now offered Carb Smart Meals (25-50g of carbs or less per serving).
So, I took a closer look.
Explore delicious recipe ideas:
- Roasted Red Pepper Greek Yogurt Corn Dip
- Croatian Style Cucumber Salad with Shallots
- Black Bean & Corn Summer Mason Jar Salads
How much is HelloFresh for a week?
HelloFresh costs between $98.89 and $128.83 USD a week, depending on how many meals you’re ordering and how many servings they’ll provide.
At the time of writing this post, the current costs of HelloFresh’s best value meal plans are:
- $7.49 a serving for 4 recipes that feed 4 people
- $8.99 a serving for 5 recipes that feed 2 people
If you choose the minimum 2 meal option for the week, the prices change to $8.99 for 4 people and $12.49 for 2 people per serving.
So, for us, this worked out to:
$7.49 a serving x 4 servings x 4 people = $119.84 USD
Plus $8.99 shipping =$128.83 USD /4 meals
That’s $32.21 a meal or $8.05 a serving with all fees included.
Certainly a heck of a lot cheaper than takeout!
Cooking HelloFresh Meals
I can honestly say, the HelloFresh menu has improved SO MUCH since we first tried the service in 2018.
Opening your first meal kit bag is a pretty cool experience too!
You’ll have most of the ingredients you need in there with the exception of your protein (packaged separately for sanitary reasons) and a few necessary supplies that aren’t included like:
You should make sure you stock up on all of these things before you order your HelloFresh meal kit.
Is HelloFresh a lot of work?
There is a decent amount of chopping involved in most meals ESPECIALLY the Carb Smart menu.
But that’s what happens when you want to eat fresh food!
On occasion, I have received pre-chopped onions and garlic in a meal kit but it’s not very often.
When food is pre-chopped, it has a shorter shelf-life, after all.
How long do the meals take to cook?
Most meals are ready to go from bag to dinner table in between 30 minutes to one hour.
I say one hour because I’m often in between handling my kids when I’m cooking though.
Our Favorite HelloFresh Keto-Friendly Recipes
Here are a few of our favorite HelloFresh Carb Smart recipes.
You don’t need to order the meal kit to access these wonderful recipes online 🙂
Is HelloFresh Cheaper than Grocery Shopping?
It can be – but it’s REALLY limited.
HelloFresh DOES NOT provide you with:
- Staples like milk, eggs, etc.
If you choose 4 meals a week like we do, you can either use them to:
- make lunch and dinner for 2 days
- make lunch for 4 days
- make dinner for 4 days
So, you still have at least one meal, some snacks, and 3 other days of the week to worry about!
BUT if you cook every meal in the HelloFresh kit and eat all leftovers, you may experience less food waste compared to grocery shopping alone (like we did).
Fresh food is very important to us but when we have a HelloFresh box on the way, our small shop for the week is mostly staples and frozen items.
Is HelloFresh Worth it?
In our opinion, absolutely.
But it might not be an every-week type of thing!
There aren’t too many options for keto meal delivery in Canada so that’s the biggest selling feature behind our decision to use HelloFresh’s meal plan service.
Every single week, we’re able to find at least 4 different Carb Smart meals!
And while I think the serving sizes are a little off sometimes (or maybe we’re just big eaters), we’re always left with AT LEAST one leftover portion for our 4 serving sized meals.
That means we both enjoy a different set of leftovers together twice that week.
Is HelloFresh Worth it for One Person?
In my personal opinion, NO.
Unless you plan on eating the same thing day after day or freezing a TON of leftovers – which I feel kind of defeats the purpose.
My husband works in the film industry and when he’s on set, all of his meals are provided to him by the show’s catering.
That means for the 5 days a week he’s at work for 15+ hours a day, it’s just me and two small kids aged 4 years and 3.5 months old.
And I’m telling you right now, the HelloFresh Keto box meal kits do not appeal to my 4-year-old AT ALL, haha.
This leads me to my next point!
Is HelloFresh Worth it for a Family?
If you have at least two adults who will be enjoying each meal together (and actually eating the leftovers), I think it’s worth it.
That’s exactly what we do when J’s in between shows.
But when it’s only me and the kids, it’s hard to justify all of the prep work it takes to make these beautiful meals for one person (and a small child who may or may not eat with me).
If you have older children or more open-minded youngsters, HelloFresh is definitely worth it for a family.
What are some other comparable meal kit delivery options?
There are a few:
- Chefs Plate
- Blue Apron
- Fresh Prep
We’ve also tried Chefs Plate but found the meal options here carb-heavy.
From the menu shown this week on their website, GoodFood also appears to lack many low carb options.
Final Thoughts on HelloFresh Keto Box Plans
We love our HelloFresh low-carb boxes when J isn’t working on set because they:
- save us time with grocery shopping
- allow us to try meals we would have otherwise never cooked
- teach different ways of cooking things you’re familiar with
- offer new ingredients you may not have experienced before
- provide us with healthy recipes we’ve actually used outside of the subscription
- portion sizes make for zero waste
- use high-quality fresh ingredients
- the small packaging size of some ingredients makes for easy cleanup
- the paper bag that ingredients are contained in is perfect as a compost container while you cook
- once you’ve done the pre-work, meals are ready FAST
- many meals utilize just one pot and one baking tray
Some things we didn’t love about HelloFresh are:
- on the expensive side
- rare, but some ingredients were not in tip-top shape
- lots of chopping involved
- only provides 4 meals a week
- Carb Smart menu is NOT friendly for picky children
- only 4 Carb Smart options to choose from each week
- does not include some ingredients you’ll need to use
- meals contain 25-50g of carbs per serving so, if you’re strict about keto, you can only enjoy one kit a day
Have any other questions about HelloFresh? Let me know in the comments below!
More recipes + ideas for healthy living: