I’m not a great cook. I don’t have inspiration or intuition to whip up delicious meals out of thin air. What I can do though, is follow instructions. That’s why I am a big fan of recipes, cookbooks and magazines, but even that is sometimes tricky.
First of all, picking a recipe is an interesting experience, as I am pescetarian and my boyfriend loves meat but hates veggies. A match made in heaven, right? So after battling through a ton of recipes and agreeing what we are going to have for dinner I have another challenge – ingredients. For example, a recipe requires 2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar, which I don’t have, I end up buying a whole bottle and then never use it again.
So one day, when a £20 Hello Fresh gift card was handed to me as I exited a tube station, I thought “this is something new and exciting!”. Exact ingredients. Delicious meals created by chefs. All of that packed in a box and delivered straight to my doorstep. Sounded convincing and I decided to give it a go.
I started my cooking adventures with Hello Fresh. One evening I came home to a huge box full of fresh goodies.
I also found three recipe cards and a little book about Hello Fresh.
Hello Fresh is a small company specialising in creating delicious meals, sourcing the best ingredients and delivering all of that to your door. Hello Fresh tries to cater for everyone’s taste buds as they offer a Classic and a Veggie box. Once the box is at your doorstep it is then up to you to create the magic!
At first I wasn’t very confident. I knew from my past experiences that a cooking disaster could be lurking around the corner. I do have that talent. But I was surprised at how easy it was to follow instructions. Yes, it was a bit slow, but at the same time very relaxing and enjoyable! Very soon I started feeling more confident to experiment and so I gave my best shot at cooking!
And boy, was I proud when I served my first meal! To me, it was worth five Michelin stars!
And that’s how I got hooked! What I really like about Hello Fresh is the quality of ingredients and their general attention to detail. Their recipe cards are beautiful, products that could very quickly go off are carefully packed in protective packaging – and that is just to name a few! What’s even more cool, Hello Fresh cares about environment and urges their customers to send all the packaging back (for free!) so that it could be recycled – that’s a +1 as far as I’m concerned.
So as we were making our way through 5th Hello Fresh box, I received another flyer in my post box. Being a foodie there was no way I could not notice beautiful, close up shots of vegetables, fruits and other healthy ingredients in the background together with “Try Gousto with 50% off!” headline.
Gousto, ironically, have almost identical service to Hello Fresh, except that you can choose your meals (currently Hello Fresh supports meal swap only for the Classic box *sad face*). I was obviously sold on the discount too and I thought there is no harm in trying something new.
I was beyond excited when Gousto box arrived.
So, what do Gousto guys do? They let you choose recipes, they source all ingredients (all of their vegetables are organic!) and pack them with lovely recipe cards in one huge box, which finds its way to your home once a week.
I’m pescetarian, I don’t eat meat, but I love seafood. Five Hello Fresh vegetarian boxes obviously were delicious, but when I saw that Gousto box has two meals containing fish, I was so enthusiastic that I started cooking straight away!
This time I was making delicious Grilled Jerusalem Fish, containing Jerusalem artichokes which I’ve never tried before!
In just under 30 minutes I managed to create a delicious and, may I add, a very healthy lunch, which I’d be proud to serve for Come Dine With Me show.
It was nice to mix up the meals a little bit, and thanks to Gousto this worked really well for our household. I loved that I could choose the recipes, even though I like surprises, sometimes you can get really disappointed if you are not a big fan of certain ingredients. Overall, Gousto was a really enjoyable experience too!
So what’s the verdict?
Both Hello Fresh and Gousto do so much more than deliver ingredients for tasty meals. For me, it was the best learning experience. I discovered new ingredients, new cooking techniques and I got more confident with food. Who doesn’t love to create a dine out experience at home with not a single gram of food waste?
What’s even more great is the fact that by cooking meals yourself you actually know what goes in them. In todays over-processed food industry, where each meal is made to last longer than mother nature has actually intended, you have to have a degree in chemistry to understand food labels. With Hello Fresh and Gousto you create the meals, from carefully picked organic ingredients. And you enjoy every mouthful of them, without worrying why Potassium Sorbate is needed in your sauce.
With all that having said, a general food shopping is still required (don’t forget balanced nutrition) so ordering Hello Fresh or Gousto boxes on the side could increase your food bills a little bit.
Other improvements? Yes, I’d love to manage my orders and account on the go so an app would really help! And perhaps a more customisable service, to notify what I am allergic to and which ingredients I absolutely hate. Oh, and I’d love more meal choices, such as ordering my breakfast, lighter meals and snacks.
I love both services to be honest. I like to mix it up a bit so occasionally I pause one while I use the other one. My recommendations? You have to try both – that’s the only way to find out what will work for you. And that’s where the great news come in! You can try Hello Fresh and Gousto with £20 off on your first boxes with the link/codes below:
Hello Fresh – click here or enter QCP8N6 at the check out
Gousto – enter KAROL37962 code at the check out
Have you found a food service you absolutely love? Get in touch, the inner foodie in me can’t wait to try them out! 🙂