15 - 30 min. meal kits, oven- & grill-ready meal kits, prepared meals
An affordable meal delivery service offering delicious recipes, neatly packaged ingredients, and easy-to-follow cooking instructions. However, allergy-friendly options are somewhat limited.
Clear and easy-to-follow recipes
Customize the protein in any meal
Pause your account with a single click
No option for single-person ordering (only two, four, or six people)
No real options for specific diets, such as vegan or keto
Nowhere to add in any allergies you might have
For the main Home Chef Plan, which specifically includes meals for dinner, individual portions tend to range from just under $7 to about $15.
These prices could get a little higher if you decide you want to “customize” your meal. For example, you can choose the “Pork Meatballs and Apple Mustard Sauce,” and sub for “ground beef” or “ground chicken” at no extra cost – or you could sub with an “impossible burger” for an additional four bucks per serving.
You can also “upgrade” your protein, for example, sub your regular boneless, skinless chicken breasts for organic or antibiotic-free chicken.
If your subtotal is more than $50, your shipping costs are lowered from $13.99 to $6.99. However, this can depend on where you’re located.
Luckily, it seems like Home Chef often has some sort of deal going on for new customers. Also, if you’re a first responder, hospital worker, teacher, or in the military, you can get an additional discount.
There are two different plans to choose from that have a small difference: the Home Chef plan lets you choose the recipes you want to make, each with varying cook times. Then there’s the Fresh and Easy plan, which actually became so popular it’s now its own sub-brand. This plan creates a menu for you, using only the quickest recipes.
Back to the main Home Chef plan – each week, you have around 20 meals to choose from. These meal options are automatically organized by “meal type,” which is basically how much effort the cooking process takes. Categories such as “culinary collection” are more involved, while “oven-ready,” requires very little effort. You can also filter by cook time.
In terms of extras, your only option is...meat. This might make sense if there were more vegetarian meals to choose from, but there really aren’t many. Anyways, you can add a whole bunch of extra meat to your order if you want.
Overall, I found the menu options intuitive to navigate – and fun! I spent a good amount of time reading about each one before making my final decisions (yes, it was tough to choose). Here are the four Home Chef meals I ended up with:
Salmon and Lemon Herb Beurre Blanc
Cheddar & Crispy Potato Crusted Chicken
Mediterranean Turkey Meatballs and Gemelli
BBQ Ranch Chicken Tacos with Crispy Jalapeños
This is one area Home Chef nailed.
You can choose your delivery day for each week – so if you usually get your meals delivered on Tuesdays, but know you’re going to be out of town that day, you can change it to Wednesday. Delivery options are Monday through Friday, but this depends on where you live. For example, when scheduling delivery to Richmond, VA, my options were Tuesday through Friday.
I received text message updates that included FedEx tracking information. The messages started the day before my scheduled delivery, and I got two notifications on the day: one confirming my meals would be delivered that day and one letting me know they’d been delivered.
I’m not sure if the company plans for your meals to be delivered at a specific time during the day, but my package arrived at 3:51 pm, which I thought was perfect. It wasn’t too far away from dinner time and not in the middle of the day when you’re more likely to be out and about.
I also appreciated that the package was left right at my doorstep. I live in a small apartment building, and was happy to not have to carry it up the stairs or worry about a hungry neighbor taking advantage of some free food!
When it comes to my Home Chef experience, I really don’t have much to complain about. The delivery was on-time, the ingredients were fresh, and the recipes were straightforward.
My biggest gripe is that Home Chef doesn’t cater to anyone with dietary restraints, including allergies. However, if you’re someone like me, who can pretty much eat anything, you’ll find lots of delicious choices here. And despite not being able to order a single serving size (I live alone), I was more than happy to have leftovers from each delicious meal.