HelloFresh vs. Plated: Which is the Better Meal Kit?
Meal kit delivery services, like HelloFresh and Plated, are designed to deliver fresh ingredients, easy (but fun) recipes and the goal is to save you time and money. You may be wondering if they are worth it — and of course, wondering which one is worth your moolah.
When you initially compare HelloFresh vs. Plated, you will notice they have similar offerings, but when you delve into the nitty gritty, you will find they do have some key differences — which may swing you one way or the other, depending on what you’re craving.
First Things First: Cost
I don’t like to use cost as a first comparison, but I’m going to to get things kicked off here. But, by no means should you use the price as your sole means for comparing these two companies. You would be surprised at what price gets you with meal kit subscriptions in the first place – and sometimes the lower price isn’t necessarily the best bang for your buck.
HelloFresh does have a higher price tag, especially if you’re feeding two people. The only saving grace they have is that you pay less per serving with the more you order – always a bonus. HelloFresh’s pricing breaks down like so:
- Two Person Classic Box: Gives you three meals per week at $69 per week or $11.50 per meal.
- Four Person Plan: Gives you three meals per week at $129 per week or $10.75 per meal.
- Family Box: Gives you two adult portions and two kiddo portions (with three meals per week) for $105 per week or $8.75 per serving.
As you can see, HelloFresh gives you more food with the Family Plan for less per serving cost.
Plated doesn’t have family plans; instead, they are all two-person plans. You can order more servings to equate to four servings per meal, but they don’t have that nifty family plan or four-person plan automatically. Their pricing breaks down to:
- 2 Dinners for 2 People: $48 per week plus $6 in shipping or $13.50 per serving.
- 3 Dinners for 2 People: $72 per week or $12 per serving.
- 4 Dinners for 2 People: $96 per week or $12 per serving.
Plated does get a tiny bit cheaper the more you order, but they come out more expensive than HelloFresh on all angles.
Winner: HelloFresh wins on the “affordability” factor here.
This is important. How items are packaged can make a difference when you’re sorting through a box full of ingredients and trying to figure out what goes where.
HelloFresh packages each recipe ingredients in their own box – just pop it into the fridge and you’re done. Meats are packaged separately – which is a good thing.
Plated has their meals individually wrapped in bags instead of boxes. They clearly label what each product is and where it goes.
Winner: Tie – both companies have convenient, excellent packaging.
For most meal kit delivery services, you don’t have to have any cooking skill. But, some companies have more challenging recipes or offer better teaching opportunities. When we compare HelloFresh vs. Plated, you need to see what makes each of these unique in terms of recipe difficulty – and what you can expect to learn from them afterward.
- Kitchen tool list included
- Estimated nutrition
- Concrete recommendations – such as using a ½ teaspoon of salt
- Simple, easy to follow recipes
- No cooking lessons or pro tips – you don’t walk away really learning much here
- No tips on how to plate your food; instead, you need to follow the picture
- Covers the basics and includes brief descriptions
- Teaches you the unusual ways to use usual ingredients – like grilling red leaf lettuce!
- Time-saving steps
- You get more information online than on the recipe card
- Limited information for new, odd ingredients – such as how to chop a mango properly
Winner: HelloFresh has easier-to-follow recipes, they give you more tidbits and make it easy to make the recipe again yourself.
Food Quality and Variety
There is no point in paying a premium price for a meal kit subscription when you receive low quality ingredients. Quality, by far, is one of the most important things to consider here. Most companies claim they send you ingredients that are fresher than the grocery store – though I argue that with all of these companies, but that is just my opinion.
The ingredients elevate the recipe, but the variety of recipes and styles of food you’re cooking matter just as much as the quality. So, we’re combining quality and variety here to help you choose the better kit:
- Uses ingredients that are in season
- Pairs unusual grains to help you explore new flavors
- Tastes fresh and healthy
- Very decent serving sizes
- Very flavorful
- Not very experimental in the recipe department
- Authentic, traditional recipes
- Combination of fun, unique ingredients
- More exciting vegetarian options
- Ability to specify what ingredients you don’t want, such as spicy foods, shellfish, dairy, etc.
Winner: Plated. They have a better variety of dishes and they are more satisfying than what you get with HelloFresh – also, you get to pick exactly what you want to eat.
Meal Options and Flexibility
Lastly, we explore the meal options in general. Some companies have a rather boring selection – and others pigeonhole you into picking only certain recipes together. Part of the point of these services is to expose yourself to new, fun things.
HelloFresh defaults recipe selections for you based on your preferences. You can then choose three out of five available meal choices for the week, but there are no combination limits. For example, at the time I am writing this comparison, here are some recipes available for the week to choose from:
- Smoky Chicken Tacos
- Rosemary Beef Skewers
- Brioche Shrimp Rolls
- Jamie Oliver’s Grilled Chicken
- Personal Pizzas
- Israeli Couscous Bowl
You would then get to pick your recipes from that selection – depending on the plan you have, you may select up to five meals.
Plated seems to have more choices. They give you up to nine meals each week to choose from and you can order in two, four or six serving quantities. You get a wider range of foods too – including gluten-free options (something HelloFresh doesn’t offer). Just some recipes they offered at the time I wrote this comparison include:
- Mexican Kale Caesar Salad
- Asian Quinoa Bowl
- Caprese Chicken
- Fusilli with Homemade Ricotta
- Thai Steak and Noodle Salad
- Smoked Salmon Pizza
- Gochujang Pork Bibimbap
Winner: It’s hard to say. Plated definitely has more variety in their recipes, but some of those options could turn a person off. If you are feeding kids, it might be hard to convince them to eat Gochujang Pork Bibimbap. If you’re a picky eater, you may find Plated’s choices too far out there. HelloFresh offers variety too, but they have simpler, recognizable recipes. You know what a personal pizza is and you may be more willing to jump into an Israeli Couscous Bowl. Both have good variety and recipes, so honestly, I’d tie them up – because it depends on your personal preference here.
So, Who Wins?
When it comes to price, HelloFresh is the ultimate winner. But, both companies offer an excellent variety of recipes, options and high-quality ingredients. Therefore, in the end HelloFresh vs. Plated comes down to you.
Both are great meal kit delivery services to choose from. Luckily, you could try both using coupon discounts from Revuezzle to see which you prefer.
Both don’t have contracts, so you could order up a week and then cancel without penalty. So, order up one and then try the other next week!
While you’re at it, review all of our meal kit delivery service reviews right here on Revuezzle. We personally ordered, cooked and tasted each company we feature on our site. You can even check out our taste test result blog to see how the recipes from HelloFresh and Plated actually turn out.