Somehow it’s been months since I’ve written a full-on review of a HelloFresh veggie box! To be fair, I don’t get these boxes regularly—I only order them when all three menu options for the week sound easy to make and when I feel too lazy to come up with dinner ideas on my own. This week we got a veggie box that we were very happy with, so I want to share the experience here with you.
If you’re not familiar with HelloFresh, it’s a subscription-based meal kit service that delivers recipes, along with all the ingredients needed, right to your door. You can read more details about how the service works down at the bottom of this post.
This week’s vegetarian meals were:
Sweet Potato Niçoise Salad with Lemon-Dijon Dressing
Rigatoni Al Forno with Roasted Eggplant, Fresh Mozzarella, and Basil
Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl with Kale Chips, Olives, and Feta
The first meal I chose to make was the Niçoise Salad, which sounded very hearty and healthy. This dish had the most ingredients of this week’s meals, but it was still quite simple to make and involved very little hands-on cooking.
I spent the bulk of the time on prep—washing, drying, and chopping the vegetables. I roasted the sweet potato in the toaster oven for 25 minutes, and that was the most actual cooking required here. Making the lemon-Dijon vinaigrette involved a new method for me: I mashed up a quarter of the chickpeas with a fork and whisked them with the rest of the dressing ingredients. I’ve never made a vinaigrette using mashed chickpeas before, and I think it turned out pretty well, though I wish I’d made the chickpea mash a little smoother.
The recipe card said, “You can arrange the ingredients in rows to create a classic Niçoise presentation!” So that’s what I did! I was very proud of myself for taking a couple extra minutes to do so, because my standard method of plating is to dump food on a plate or in a bowl and call it a day. My husband was impressed with my handiwork! Below you can see the composed salad before and after being dressed.
I accidentally semi-burned the sweet potato cubes while roasting, but that was a very happy mistake because the cubes ended up with one or two crunchy, caramelized sides that added extra texture and flavor to the salad. The only thing I would have done differently with this recipe would be to have used less garlic in the dressing. Raw garlic can be way over the top for me!
The next night I chose to make the Rigatoni Al Forno. I’m always game for pasta and was looking forward to this dish because it included a short ingredient list and TWO cheeses. Score!
This baked pasta dish was another hit for us! Prep was simple and so was cooking the vegetables. The combined, cooked ingredients went into the 500°F oven just for a couple minutes to finish them off and out came the steaming deliciousness you see below.
I will say that the tomatoes we received weren’t super ripe (it’s not really tomato season yet) so they didn’t break down while cooking to make much of a sauce in the way the recipe described. Canned crushed tomatoes might have been a better option to make a saucier dish, but what we ended up with tasted great, so that was not a big deal.
The third and final dish I made this week was the Mediterranean Quinoa Bowl. I’m pretty sure I’ve made something very similar from HelloFresh in the past, but a quick and flavorful meal like this is always welcome. With only ten ingredients and minimal prep, this dish took the least amount of time of the three to make.
The flavors in this quinoa bowl came together nicely, and I love that it had two different crunchy elements: the pine nuts and the baked kale chips. The red wine vinegar added a little zing and the parsley brought a bright, herby note. Plus, CHEESE! This is a meal I would totally make again, and you could keep it interesting by using any number of ingredient combos.
My husband and I were both very happy with all three of this week’s HelloFresh vegetarian dishes. Every time we get a HelloFresh box, we comment on how much better the service is than two other, comparable meal kit services we’ve tried and which shall remain nameless (but you can hunt through my blog for details, haha).
Ready to try HelloFresh for yourself? HelloFresh is currently running a summer special: get $50 off your first two boxes (Classic, Veggie, or Family)! Use promo code HF50SUMMER when you order your first box; offer ends 7/31/16. Valid for new customers only.
- Veggie: three meals for two or four people. Starts at $9.08 per person/meal.
- Classic: three, four, or five meals for two people OR three meals for four people. Starts at $9.90 per person/meal.
- Family: two or three meals for two adults and two children. Starts at $8.75 per person/meal.
You pick a delivery date, and voilà—a box appears on your doorstep between 8am and 8pm that day! The ingredients are chilled and insulated quite well so if you’re not home when the box arrives, the ingredients won’t go bad. The service is available across the continental U.S. And subscriptions are flexible, so you can turn off your delivery for a week (or several) if needed. No grocery shopping, no buying more of an ingredient than you actually need for a recipe. It’s home cooking made super easy!