Hungryroot Meal Kit Review – September 2017
Hungryroot is a healthy meal kit service that delivers you pre-prepped ingredients to use in a handful of super easy Hungryroot-supplied recipes—or however you’d like! Think of it as a box of plant-based groceries to help get you through the week. But these groceries are anything but basic.
According to Hungryroot, all of their products are “vegan, gluten-free, high in nutrients, fiber, and good fats, and low in sugar, sodium and calories.” They’re also beautifully packaged, fresh, and fun! There are crinkle-cut veggies, succulent sauces, and best of all, desserts like brownie batter and cookie dough that you’re encouraged to enjoy baked or raw!
Hungryroot offers two subscription levels. There’s the Starter Set (three meals—two servings each—plus four sides, snacks or sweets) for $69.00 + free shipping per box, and the Good Life box (five meals—two servings each—plus five sides, snacks or sweets) for $99.00 + free shipping per box. You can curate your box yourself or let Hungryroot pick what goes inside.
Everything comes packaged in 100% recycled and biodegradable cold gel packs and insulated liners. That means the products are fresh when they arrive. Just pop ’em in the fridge until you’re ready to eat! Hungryroot will even include recipe cards (or you can sign up to get digital recipe cards).
This is a review of the Hungryroot Starter Set, which is $69.00 + free shipping per box.
The Subscription Box: Hungryroot Starter Set
The Cost: $69.00 + free shipping per box. Hungryroot also offers a larger box called The Good Life, which is $99.00 per box.
The Products: Plant-based, vegan, gluten-free products to make three meals (two servings each) plus four sides, snacks, or sweets. (Want more? Try the Good Life box, which is slightly larger.)
Ships to: Most areas of the US for free.
Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!
Hungryroot comes with this pocket of recipe cards that make use of the products you received. We’ll get to those recipes in a bit. First, let’s see the groceries that Hungryroot picked for me! (You can also customize your order, but since this was my first box, I figured I’d let Hungryroot show me the ropes!)
Banana Bread Overnight Oats, 2.5 oz
I like the convenience of this little cup. The ingredients are super simple, too—just gluten-free rolled oats, banana, walnuts, maple sugar, and sea salt. Most flavored oatmeals at the store are sweetened with cane sugar if not refined sugar, and they’re almost too sweet to me. This blend is a little milder in terms of sweetness, but the flavor factor is definitely still there! You can cook these like you would regular oatmeal, using hot water, or you can prepare them with your choice of milk and yogurt and make overnight oats. I’ll show you how that went in just a bit!
Here are the overnight-style oats. The process is super simple—just mix the oats with a bit of your favorite milk, some yogurt, and a pinch of cinnamon. I thought the result was really delicious! The oats were a bit soupy, but the consistency was thick and luscious. The texture of the nuts and banana help break up the creaminess of the dish. I tend to like a firmer oatmeal, so if I was to make this again, I might go lighter on the liquids. The other thing to note is that they suggest you enjoy it right out of the fridge, meaning you enjoy it cold. It is delicious cold, but I wonder how it would fare warmed up on the stovetop…
Roasted Corn Edamame Salad, 8 oz
I think this mix of corn and soybeans is supposed to be a side dish, but this is honestly filling enough to make a great main! This is the one product that’s completely prepared right out of the box. I wouldn’t have minded having one or two more of those ready-to-eat items, just for those lazy nights when I come home from work and don’t feel like whipping something up.
I really liked the zip that the vinegar and pepper provided. It wasn’t huge, but enough to make this simple salad taste special and deliciously fresh! I feel like this mixture could be awesome warmed up a bit and served taco-style inside a tortilla.
Roasted Red Pepper Quinoa Bowl, 7.9 oz
This little pack of pre-made quinoa and marinara-like sauce would be awesome on their own. The quinoa is nutty and perfectly al dente. The sauce is really red peppery and tasty—it was as satisfying as any jarred red sauce I’ve picked up at the store, but probably with way less sodium. I used this product to make a “pasta” dish with a few of the other ingredients in the box. Stay tuned! I’ll show it off in just a sec.
Chickpea Alfredo, 8 oz
This sauce was awesome, though I don’t think that calling it “alfredo” is doing it any favors. Alfredo is such a specific, delicious flavor in my mind, but this very tahini-like sauce didn’t quite hit it. It did, however, taste awesome. It’s got quite a zip to it, but not in a cheesy way. Even so, I would totally pour this over a bowl of mixed veggies, drizzle it over a baked sweet potato, or use it anywhere that I wanted a (literally) healthy kick of flavor.
Sweet Potato Ribbons, 10 oz
I keep trying to get into vegetable noodles, and it sounds silly, but they usually end up tasting a little too much like vegetables to me. I did have sweet potato “noodles” at a restaurant once, and I really enjoyed them. But I didn’t have any idea how to prepare them myself. So I was really excited to see this bag of pre-cut sweet potato “ribbons” in the box! These were shockingly easy to make. A few minutes in the pan with a bit of olive oil, followed by a few more minutes spent cooking in a bit of water gets these sweet potato noodles feeling almost identical to strands of pasta. The sweetness of these veggies is also pretty mild so that they really do mimic the flavor of pasta!
All of the previous ingredients get mixed together in this “alfredo” dish. Again, the flavor isn’t actually cheesy, but the Chickpea Alfredo does add some extra creaminess and zest to this quinoa-dotted dish. I thought this “pasta” recipe was delicious. I couldn’t stop eating it! I had it for lunch and dinner one day. There’s just something about the red pepper sauce and the tender bite of the sweet potato that really nods to the comfort foods I love.
Thai Peanut, 8 oz
This sauce was delish! It’s super peanutty and has a tiny kick of rich spice (as in flavor, not heat). This is another one of those items that I could see dousing random veggies in or using as a dipping sauce for tofu. I wish I could have a few of these tubs stocked in my fridge at all times!
Superblend Salad, 10 oz
This bag contains a ton of nutrient-dense veggies—brussels sprouts, napa cabbage, kohlrabi, broccoli, carrots, and kale. It’s all shredded and bite-sized like a slaw might be. I get a lot of salad bags like this one at the store. They’re so easy to toss in a bowl, shake some dressing over, and eat for a meal. I ended up using this salad raw, but according to the bag, it’s great sauteed, too!
This recipe had me dilute the Thai Peanut sauce in a bit of water to make it into more of a dressing for the salad blend. I thought this was a delicious alternative to a peanut noodle dish. It was really flavorful and full of refreshing crunch, and best of all, it didn’t leave me wanting to take a nap after I finished it!
Butternut Squash French Fries, 10 oz
What a cool new spin on butternut squash! These crinkle-cut chunks have a unique, tasty mouthfeel. I sauteed them for the recipe I used them in, but the back of the bag has directions for baking them, too. In my mind, butternut squash is a fall must-have. I would love to serve these baked up with some rosemary, thyme, or some other autumnal blend. Sort of like fall fries!
This dish combines the sauteed squash and some of the chickpea sauce. This was the only dish that fell flat for me. I think the squash was just a bit too fiber-y to convince me that it was a pasta stand-in (which is what I was hoping for). And again, the sauce was a little too hummus-ish to taste super decadent. Knowing what this dish really does taste like, I think I might like it better if I tried it again—I just expected something a little more creamy and starchy.
Sweet Potato Mac, 16 oz
We’ve got another bag of sweet potato! This bag calls itself “mac” as in “macaroni”, but really it’s just chunks of sweet potato. Pretty straightforward. I love getting pre-chopped veggies like this at the grocery store since it takes one step out of any prepping process.
The dish for the sweet potatoes involves cooking them on the stovetop, then drenching them in the Thai Peanut sauce. This guy didn’t really scream “breakfast” to me, but I did enjoy having the peanut sauce in a warm, comfort-food-ish setting. I could’ve used some kind of additional texture in the dish—if I made this again, I might toss in a few chopped peanuts, too.
Black Bean Brownie Batter, 9.7 oz
Okay, everybody. This is what we’ve all been waiting for. Or at least, this is the stuff I’ve been most excited to try! This batter looks as thick and delectable as any traditional brownie batter, but unlike normal batter, it’s egg-free and ready to eat. There are little chocolatey chips mixed through this batter, too, making it extra tasty (and gooey when cooked). It was so hard not to just eat all of this with a spoon (I wanted to try the recipe for baked brownies!), but I can attest that the bit I ate off of the lid was aaaaamazing!
Creamy Avocado Chocolate Mousse, 8 oz
The second dessert ingredient I got was this pudding-like treat. There’s plenty in this tub, in case you wanted to try it just as a snack as well as a topping for the brownies that I’ll be showing off in a sec. It’s super creamy, very chocolatey, and deliciously smooth, but it does taste a little “green” if you will.
So! What do the Hungryroot Black Bean Brownies taste like? Do they taste like beans? Are they any good?
Folks, these brownies were incredible. They’re rather oily and don’t hold their shape very well (be careful when prying them out of your muffin tin!), but for a fan of gooey brownies, they. Are. Fantastic. I really liked the avocado mousse as frosting, but some of the other people in the office said they weren’t so hot on it. It does have a bit of a bitter aftertaste, but I thought the fudgy richness of the brownie overshadowed that. Either way, I am in love with this stuff—I want to place an order of just this.
The Verdict: Hungryroot seems like the perfect thing for someone who wants to experiment with plant-based cooking. The pre-made products like the brownie batter and sauces really opened my eyes to just how delicious these sorts of foods can be, and while they weren’t that unlike veggies I could find at my local grocery store, the pre-cut veggies supplied me with what I needed to make a week’s worth of tasty meals. I think my favorite part about this box is that unlike other meal kits, Hungryroot focuses on quick, two or three-step recipes that are done in a pinch. While I have a lot of fun preparing the meals in boxes like Blue Apron, Hello Fresh, or Sunbasket, I don’t always have the time, nor the patience to cook a proper meal—especially if I’m just cooking for myself, I really appreciate the idea of making a quick, ten-minute dinner that’s still nourishing and flavorful.
To Wrap Up:
Can you still get this box if you sign up today? Yes! Shop it here! Remember, you can curate what’s in your box, so that you can pick similar products as the one above. Or if you want, you can let Hungryroot pick. Just know that you may get slightly different products if you leave it up to them!
Coupon – Order now to get your first Starter Set box for $59.00, or your first Good Life box for $79.00!
Value Breakdown: Since this was my first box, I got it for $59.00 + free shipping. Inside, I got ten items, meaning the cost I paid, on average, would be $5.90 per product. Without the first box discount, the average cost would’ve been $6.90. That feels a little high for some of the items (especially the veggie bags that seem similar to things I could find in the grocery store), but it’s probably fair considering the convenience and the recipes that come with the box.
What do you think of Hungryroot?