Home Chef Subscription Box Review + Coupon – July 2017
Home Chef is a subscription meal delivery service that delivers you a weekly box of the pre-portioned ingredients you need to make two to six meals that feed two, four, or six people. Home Chef advertises easy recipes that can be made in about 30 minutes. They say their ingredients are fresh (though they don’t provide a lot of information about their sourcing practices), and they offer vegetarian, gluten-free, and calorie/carb-conscious recipes.
This is a review of the vegetarian plan (starting at $9.95 per serving) for two people, twice a week ($39.80 per week + shipping). Delivery is free for orders over $45. Shipping is $10 for orders less than $45.
Check out all of our reviews of Meal Delivery Services to see every meal kit subscription box option!
My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)
The Subscription Box: Home Chef
The Cost: Meals start at $9.95 per serving, and delivery is free for orders over $40.
Limited Time Coupon: Now through 7/18, use coupon code XMAS to save $35 off your first Home Chef delivery and $15 off your second delivery! (Meals start at $9.95 per serving, and delivery is free for orders over $45.)
COUPON: Get $30 off your first box from Home Chef. No coupon required, just use this link.
The Products: Fresh ingredients and chef-designed recipes— everything you need to make restaurant-quality meals at home.
Ships to: 90% of the U.S. (You can check to see if Home Chef delivers to your zip code here.)
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
When you first sign up for Home Chef, you take a short quiz about your meal preferences and dietary restrictions. I like that they ask what you like to eat, as well a what you like to avoid. Based on your answers, Home Chef will choose recipes for you to get each week. As is the case with most meal kit services, you can log in and hand-select the recipes you’d like to receive. Note though, that the more particular you are with your diet, the fewer options you’ll have. For instance, it looks like there are only around 3 veggie meals each week. So the ability to customize things kind of disappears.
That said, there are usually about 10 items on the menu, total, and some “Add On” items like fruit or breakfast picks that you can choose to include in your box.
Included in the box, which is all insulated and nestled atop big ice packs, is a coupon for Bright Cellars wine. The recipe cards are all three-hole punched so that they fit inside the plastic binder they send in your first box!
Indian Samosa Burrito
Time to Table, According to Home Chef: 35-45 minutes
Actual Time to Table: About 35 minutes
I love a samosa, but I try to avoid super fried foods (which traditional samosa tend to be). This burrito-style alternative seems like a healthier way to enjoy these flavors. But I was worried as to whether it would be quite as satisfying as the samosas I get at restaurants. Plus, this recipe was listed as “Intermediate,” so as an amateur cook going into this, I was concerned that the process would get the best of me.
I was delighted to find that the hardest part of this dish was folding up the burritos. I think I did a so-so job—they held together well, though I don’t think Chipotle will be headhunting me anytime soon. The process is essentially cooking potatoes, peas, and onions in a pan, then transferring that to tortillas, which you then brown in a pan. There’s also a simple salsa that you make simultaneously and onions that you pickle (which is just soaking them in vinegar, salt, and pepper). Most of the recipe takes place in the same pan, which makes for an easy clean-up. This “intermediate” recipe was actually easier to make than many of the Plated or Blue Apron meals I’ve prepared!
So, this burrito lacks the creamy mashed-potato-ness of an actual samosa, but the flavor is right on. I do think that the mango salsa and the pickled onions are what make this dish—their fresh, sweet flavors cut the hearty, savory, saltiness of the potato-heavy burrito, giving it a complexity that’s really satisfying. I felt like this recipe was well-balanced in terms of fresh and starchy, carb-heavy ingredients, again thanks to the addition of the mango salsa and the wealth of peas. I would totally make this dish again—it’s an easy, lighter way to enjoy the Indian-inspired flavors I love in a pinch!
Chile Rellenos Rice Casserole
Time to Table According to Home Chef: 40-50 minutes
Actual Time to Table: About 45 minutes
I love Latin-inspired flavors, so I was excited to try this dish. It’s listed as “easy,” though I found it comparable to the samosa burrito recipe in terms of difficulty. There’s a good bit of downtime involved, as you wait for the corn and peppers to roast, and then while you wait for the rice to cook, but you do have to jump between a few different pans, bowls, and cutting boards. The tasks are easy, though—chopping and mixing, roasting and peeling, stirring and scooping. The trickiest part is peeling the pepper, by which I mean, the skin doesn’t come off in one big sheet, so it takes a moment to pick some of the smaller bits off. So… not really that hard at all, hehe.
The dish itself is just as mouthwatering and tasty as any restaurant dish could be, but I felt like the starch/carb content in this recipe was a little higher than I would’ve liked. The cheesy rice is delicious, but I wanted more fresh, acidic flavors to cut the savory texture—maybe more tomato or some other kind of crunchy veggie. The peppers definitely add some green, but since they’re roasted, they end up blending in with the rest of the savory bits. All of that said, I really liked these flavors, though the crispy jalapenos that you sprinkle on top are really spicy! Take caution if that’s not your thing!
Verdict: I liked this edition of Home Chef. The recipes required some bouncing between pans and plate, but overall, I found them to be on-par with other meal kits in terms of difficulty. And most importantly, they tasted great! These meals weren’t as great at packing in the veggies as others I’ve tried (they were pretty much built around the starches rather than the greens), but if you’re just looking for satisfying, hearty, creative meals, you’ll find that here. And price-wise, Home Chef meals start at $9.95 per serving, which is cheaper than Plated ($12 per serving) and on par with Blue Apron ($9.99 per serving) and Hello Fresh ($9.99 per serving).
Would you want to try either of these Home Chef recipes? And if you have tried them, what did you think?