It’s Hungryroot vs. Green Chef, the battle of the Meal Delivery titans. Hungryroot offers grocery store-like variety. Green Chef offers specific dietary menus for particular dietary goals. Both provide meal kits for a variety of needs.
I’ve crunched the numbers and run through the details. And, I’m giving the nod to Hungryroot. Maybe it’s me, but I really like the flexibility, customization, and wealth of options that come with Hungryroot’s grocery store-like model. Not only can you get your meals, but you can also get a host of extra groceries as well.
With 150+ options, though, you may find that it’s too much variety. If so, you may want to stick with Green Chef. It’s a formidable service in its own right.
Hungryroot Price: Missing Product hungryroot per serving)
🍔 Menu Variety:
Hungryroot (150 choices per week)
⏰ Prep Time:
Hungryroot (=< 25 minutes)
Hungryroot (3 dietary options plus an incredible filter)
👍 Ordering and Delivery
🙋 Customer Support:
Right out of the gate, Hungryroot wins this first category. It simply offers more variety and selection than Green Chef. Hungryroot is kind of a hybrid between a grocery store and a meal delivery service. As such, it incorporates the best of both worlds. And that makes it hard to beat.
Hungryroot has well over 150 meal recipes, plus all the ingredients required for such, ready to purchase. In contrast, Green Chef carries only 30. Although 30 meals is a respectable number for a meal delivery service, it can’t compare to 150.
As for dietary options, Hungryroot offers vegetarian, vegan, and pescatarian options on its filter. However, there are so many options to choose from and its filter is so effective, you can probably use it to construct a menu tailored to your liking with relative ease. The meal kit recipes are just for main meals but in the Groceries section of the website, there’s a Sweets tab so you can add on a prepared dessert if you wish.
Green Chef offers six different menu options for its meal kits: Keto + Paleo, Gluten-free, Fast & Fit, Mediterranean, Vegan, and Vegetarian. Plus, it has added a mix-and-match feature so that you can receive recipes from whichever diet/s you like. Green Chef doesn’t offer any sides or extras – only meal kits.
Hungryroot also has a few “special kits” accessible via its filters. These are the “Ready To Eat” selection on its Grocery filter and its “Roast + Ready” on its Recipes filter. Green Chef has a small selection of “10-Minute Lunches.” At the time of this writing, there were two set to be released in two weeks' time.
Both companies do a fairly good job in terms of the cuisines offered.
Well, actually, Hungryroot doesn’t offer lists or tags for different ethnic cuisines unless you include the filter options for “Pastas” (Italian), “Burgers” (American), and “Stir-Fries” (Asian). However, since it’s got such a massive selection, including ingredients, you can likely construct virtually any cuisine you want. You just have to put in the effort.
Green Chef, although it doesn’t have the selection Hungryroot has, it does a pretty good job in terms of cuisine. I went through the first 21 options on one of its menus and found the breakdown to be about: six American, four Middle Eastern, three Mediterranean, two Asian, four Tex Mex, and two Indian meals.
Again, with its grocery-store-like model, Hungryroot offers an enormous selection of extras. This includes bulk meat, snacks, and a whole slew of sides. Basically, whatever you can find in a grocery store. Green Chef doesn’t offer any extras.
In terms of prep time, Hungryroot, again, wins. Hungryroot’s filter has options for “5 Minutes or Less” as well as “10 Minutes or Less.” I also did a visual scan of a multitude of recipes. The ones I looked at went as high as 25 minutes.
In contrast, Green Chef offers meals that range from a 10-minute prep time to a 45-minute prep time. Not bad. But not as fast as Hungryroot.
As far as family-friendly or kid-friendly meals are concerned, Hungryroot does have a fair number of them. However, there’s no filter tag for such meals. You have to sort through the menu yourself and find kid-friendly meals by inspection. An example of such a meal would be the Classic Turkey + Cheese Sandwich shown above.
In contrast, most of the Green Chef cuisines have fancy-sounding names. Of course, that’s really not a reason why kids couldn’t enjoy them. They just might not know what you’re feeding them. Regardless, Green Chef has one or two simple dishes like the Pork Chops with Glazed Carrots above.
Again, Hungryroot steals the show with its incredibly versatile filter. Green Chef doesn’t permit much in the way of customization. So, this category also goes to Hungryroot.
Neither company has a specifically designed meal-customization process, tool, or feature. However, in the case of Hungryroot, you can pretty much substitute whatever ingredients you deem appropriate as the site is set up like a virtual grocery store.
You just purchase the ingredients you want and substitute them in the recipe as you desire. You just have to accept the fact that you’re in complete control of and totally responsible for such customizations.
Hungryroot has, probably, one of the best filters I’ve ever seen. It makes navigating the site and tailoring your menu a breeze. Tailoring for a vegan, vegetarian, pescatarian, or gluten-free diet (plus a few others) is accomplished with a single click. Or two, if you want to cross-filter. It’s great.
Green Chef offers its six dietary menus. Again, these are Keto + Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, Mediterranean, Gluten-Free, Fast & Fit. The neat thing is, though, you can select more than one of these options to get a combination.
Looking for both Keto + Paleo, and Vegetarian? Not a problem. Just select both options. Want to add in Mediterranean? Easy. Just click that, too. Most other meal delivery services don’t have that kind of functionality. Well, Hungryroot does – but most others? No.
As far as allergens are concerned, again, Hungryroot’s filter excels. You can filter meals according to their content of dairy, gluten, soy, tree nuts, peanuts, eggs, and/or shellfish. Green Chef lacks that kind of filter. However, it only has 30 meals in its offering. Visually inspecting the ingredient list of every meal, while a little time-consuming, is not impossible.
Each company notes that it processes most (or even all) of its ingredients in the same facility. This leads to the possibility of cross-contamination even for foods that are supposed to be completely free of some ingredients.
In light of that, if you have severe allergies, you might want to avoid using either company. Hungryroot does say that you can check individual products by clicking on their image and looking at its “Groceries” page.
As noted above, Hungryroot has a pretty impressive filter. You can filter according to Protein Type (10 options), Spice Level, (four options), Dietary Needs (10 options), plus the Number of Servings, Cook Time, and/or Nutrition.
In addition to this, Hungryroot has 15 menus listed on top of its Recipe filter from Grain Bowls to Wraps to what-have-you. It also has a Grocery filter which filters based on “Featured,” “Protein,” “Spice Level,” and “Dietary Needs” – much like the Recipe filter. And the Grocery page has 13 menus for groceries listed across the top.
The only filter Green Chef has is its menu filter which allows you to choose one or more options from its list of six dietary menus. With only 30 menu items, that’s all it really needs.
Winner: Green Chef
Green Chef wins this category because its ordering process is far more succinct than Hungryroot’s and its delivered ingredients are better organized. Indeed, the ingredients are even color-coded. That’s hard to beat.
Hungryroot uses a lengthy, but pretty straightforward ordering process that consists of several consecutive filters. It runs through a series of questions you must answer to tailor the preferences to your individual tastes.
The first question is “Who are you feeding?” (Me, Me +1, Me + More). It continues to ask about your food goals, how much you want to spend every week, and so on. There are a total of 14 screens before you get to the checkout.
Green Chef is also straightforward. And much shorter. It requires only five steps.
If you need to change an order on Hungryroot, it’s a pretty easy process. The FAQ details the steps you must take. It gives procedures for both the online site and for people using its app. It even allows you to edit individual recipes.
Green Chef also allows you to change your meals (but not the individual recipe). You just have to make the alterations by 11:59 p.m. EST seven days before the delivery. It, too, uses an FAQ to describe the process.
The minimum order on Hungryroot is six servings which comes out to around $65. On Green Chef, it is three meals for two people (which, again, is six servings). Before applying any discounts, six servings from Green Chef costs $80.94.
Hungryroot delivers to most zip codes in the 48 contiguous United States. At the current time, it doesn’t deliver to Alaska or Hawaii. Delivery times depend on the order finalization date.
If your order is finalized on Monday, you can expect your delivery on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday. If your order is finalized on Thursday, you can expect your delivery on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday.
Green Chef also delivers to most areas in the 48 contiguous United States. It delivers Monday through Saturday from 8 am to 8 pm.
If you need to reschedule your Hungryroot delivery, you must make the changes before 7 pm EST on the Monday or Thursday prior to your delivery. It’s a pretty simple process. You just have to be aware that once the order is finalized, it can’t be changed.
If you need to reschedule or change a Green Chef delivery, you do so on the Settings page. You can change the number of your servings, your delivery date, your email/snail mail addresses, your password, and/or payment information. You can also skip/unskip weeks as desired. Just make sure you make all your changes by 11:59 pm EST seven days prior to your delivery.
Hungryroot also has a handy App that makes managing your delivery process and account even easier. Green Chef doesn’t have an app.
The Hungryroot box consists of a box, paper cooler and food protector, Enviroice or Earthwise Ice Pack, and your food. Your delivery can consist of three to eight recipes. Each recipe can serve either two or four people. There may also be as many individual grocery items as you ordered. These can be snacks, fruit, or whatever.
A Green Chef box contains all your premium pre-measured, pre-prepped ingredients, plus the easy-to-follow recipes required. The recipe cards and the kit bags are all color–coded. That makes cooking a breeze! Lastly, all the packaging materials are reusable, recyclable, and/or compostable.
Hungryroot ingredients are fairly well-organized. The shelf-stable items are separated from the refrigerated items. The refrigerated items are packed with recyclable Enviroice (Or Earthwise Ice Packs) to keep them cold.
However, Green Chef really excels here. As noted above, the recipe cards and ingredients are color-coded to make cooking a snap. That’s hard to beat.
All the Hungryroot items are clearly labeled. Plus, since the refrigerated items come in a cooler, it’s easy to just store them in the fridge as soon as you get them. Green Chef is, likewise, clearly labeled with excellent storage instructions.
As a rule, all Hungryroot items that come in the cooler should be cold to the touch. If not, you should contact Customer Service to assist you. Otherwise, the items should be put in the refrigerator as soon as possible.
The same can be said for Green Chef and whatever perishable items you receive in your Green Chef order. Refrigerate them as soon as possible (by the end of the day on the day they were delivered at the very latest).
I touched on this briefly above, but it bears repeating. Most of the Hungryroot packaging is recyclable. The individual items may require inspection for the details, but the Enviroice can be poured down the drain or into the garden, while the box, paper cooler, and protector can all be recycled with your cardboard.
All the Green Chef packaging is made from materials that are either compostable, reusable, or recyclable. The only exception is those cases in which food safety protocols prevent such. The example the FAQ uses is tofu sent in vacuum-sealed plastic wrap.
This category was a tie. While Hungryroot offered some shelf-stable and ready-to-eat foods like smoothies and cereal, Green Chef excelled in providing pre-prepped ingredients. Beyond that, the two companies were comparable in other metrics of Meal Prep.
Hungryroot meals must be prepared from the delivered ingredients. They don’t come pre-prepped and frozen. However, you have the option of freezing the meals yourself and they’ll last three months.
Because Hungryroot is basically a grocery store, it offers a number of smoothies and similar items such as cereal, pancake mix, and a variety of other kinds of foods that are easily prepared. Green Chef doesn’t provide shelf-stable or ready-to-eat food. It only offers full meal kits that need to be prepped from start to finish.
I sent an email asking Hungryroot if the company had any microwave meals. The company replied that it did in the < 10-minute and < 5-minute menus. I checked both menus and couldn’t find any microwavable meals.
If Hungryroot offers microwavable meals, they must be a rare occurrence. There is, however, a small number of ingredients that can be cooked in the microwave. These include two types of potatoes as well as popcorn.
Some Hungryroot sauces come in bottles and are, therefore, premade. Others, though, come in packets that require you to mix them up. Although that’s usually relatively easy, those sauces don’t qualify as pre-made. Similarly, some types of ingredients, like broccoli florets, come pre-chopped. But that’s not necessarily true of all ingredients offered.
In contrast, Green Chef offers a large variety of pre-chopped ingredients and pre-made sauces. The company takes its pre-prep work very seriously.
I wasn’t impressed with the Customer Support of either company. Hungryroot provided the following options to reach its Customer Support department: email form, text, and a limited chatbot that simply searched the FAQs.
In contrast, Green Chef offered a Live Chat and a phone number. However, when I tried out Green Chef’s “Live Chat,” I managed to send a message through it but got no response. A few days later, I sent a similar message and the bot just pulled up an FAQ. I was never able to speak to a real person.
So, although, Hungroot’s Customer Support department wasn’t stellar, it won this category. If Green Chef had a live chat that was actually “live,” it probably would’ve won. But, as I never spoke to a human, I can’t really conclude it was “live” or not. So, Hungryroot wins.
Cancellation on Hungryroot wasn’t difficult. The process is detailed in the FAQs.
Go to your Account and click Settings
Scroll down and click Account Details
Click Cancel Account
Click Continue to Cancel on the Hold Menu
Provide your reason for canceling and click Continue to Cancel again
Give more details on your reason and click Continue to Cancel again
Provide some feedback and click Continue to Cancel one last time
Cancellation on Green Chef was pretty basic, too.
Log into your account
Open menu in the top right corner
Scroll down to Account
Click Deactivate Your Plan
Provide a reason
Click Deactivate Now
This category is difficult to call because special discounts make the competing prices a little murky. However, without special discounts, the lowest price per serving is just over $9 for Hungryroot and $11.99 for Green Chef.
Additionally, Hungryroot also offers add-ons and has a lower shipping fee. When taken all together, I feel obliged to give the win to Hungryroot, again.
Hungryroot’s lowest price per serving comes with the 16-serving (eight lunch, eight dinners) meal plan at Price: Missing Product hungryroot per serving. Green Chef’s lowest price per serving comes with its four meals for six people plan (24 servings) and is $5.99 per serving.
Hungryroot also has a whole slew of add-ons like snacks and even accessories. It is, basically, an online grocery store … with one caveat. You must purchase a meal kit of recipes to purchase the groceries. The groceries are purchased in conjunction with your meal plan. The costs run as low as $2 to $3.50 or so per serving. You can’t purchase grocery items a la carte.
Green Chef has no add-ons so the price you see on the screen is for the meal kits and that’s what you’ll pay.
Hungryroot offers free shipping on any order above $70 (which is most orders). Orders below $70 have a $6.99 shipping fee. Green Chef has a standard shipping fee of $9.99.
People looking for lots of options (basically, a grocery store-type atmosphere on-line)
Mediterranean dieters and Keto & Paleo dieters
Price: Missing Product hungryroot per serving
$5.99 per serving
Free on orders >$70 or $6.99 for smaller orders
2 lunches with 4 dinners
2 meals with 2 servings
150+ choices per week
30 choices per week
=< 25 minutes
10 to 45 minutes
Simple recipes in filter: <10 minutes and <5 minutes
Allergies catered to
Dairy, Gluten, Soy, Tree Nut, Peanut, Egg, Shellfish
Vegan, Vegetarian, Pescatarian
Keto + Paleo, Vegetarian, Vegan, Mediterranean, Fast & Fit
Email Form, Text, and Limited Chat Bot (searches FAQs for you)
Live Chat, Phone
Hungryroot wins this head-to-head for primarily two reasons. One, it has an incredible selection of over 150 recipes. And two, it has an incredibly well-designed filter that lets you search, sort, and select that list of recipes with remarkable ease. Those two aspects of the Hungryroot service make it very hard to beat.
Having said all that, 150 options may actually be too many. If you feel that way, Green Chef may be the better choice for you. It’s got 30 options, which is respectable without being overwhelming and has the flexibility to allow you to sort and sift through those options according to the dietary preference you prefer.
Hungryroot groceries might be considered expensive if you’re on a very strict low-income budget. Meals generally run in the $9 to $12 range per serving and the groceries themselves, when bought separately, probably fit best in a middle-class budget.
When you take into account the convenience of ordering from your computer, the savings in gas, and the low shipping cost, it’s entirely conceivable that the average American may actually find that they save money when shopping at Hungryroot.
Hungryroot does provide healthy meals but it doesn’t market itself as a primarily health-oriented meal delivery service. Having said that, Hungryroot’s meals are perfectly fine in terms of health. It’s basically the equivalent of an online grocery store.
The company takes all the necessary precautions to keep its food within dietary regulations.
The minimum number of people Green Chef will take orders for is two. Having said that, there’s no reason why you can’t save the second serving for another day. Or, if you have a large appetite, you consume both meals in the same sitting.
So, Green Chef is fine for a single person as long as that person knows they’ll eat each meal more than once or have an extra-large serving size.