Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. We are members of the Amazon Associates Program. We receive a commission for qualified purchases at no additional cost to you. More information on our disclaimer page.

For the longest time, we lived the college student cooking life. To be completely honest, spaghetti is still a staple in our meal rotation. For awhile we tried to upgrade our dinners by trying Pinterest recipes. A lot of them were super weird, not very instructive, or just didn’t work. Obviously I am a blogger and sometimes I share recipes (such as our most popular recipe post, Instant Pot Chicken and Rice), but in general, I don’t really read blogs or trust blogger recipes anymore just because of all the DIY and recipe fails I’ve experienced. Recently, we started trying HelloFresh recipes. Most are pretty good. A few have not been great. So, here’s our experience with cooking HelloFresh recipes together. This is not an affiliate or sponsored post by HelloFresh (although we have one sponsored Amazon link in here), just wanted to share what we like and dislike about HelloFresh recipes.

HelloFresh Recipes Without Subscription

As you probably know, we don’t like spending money. So paying for a meal box subscription isn’t in our top priorities. We first started trying HelloFresh recipes because Evan was considering subscribing and I suggested just googling to see if someone has posted HelloFresh recipes somewhere. HelloFresh themselves posts the recipes and even have an app with the recipes (albeit, it’s pretty basic and a bit glitchy), but hey free recipes with easy to follow instructions. We just buy the ingredients from the recipes and save a bit of dough. Maybe later on we will actually subscribe, but for now we’re fine with just buying the ingredients on our own.

Grocery Shopping

We usually shop at a neighborhood Walmart because it’s close and cheap. However, they don’t have a big variety of some items, nothing really “gourmet”, and a meager produce selection. Since we started cooking HelloFresh recipes, we go to Smiths to get any ingredients we can’t find at Walmart or to get better produce. There aren’t a ton of unusual ingredients, mainly just some different spices or fresh herbs. We also bought 3 Better than Bouillon bases, which we’re using instead of HelloFresh’s broth concentrate. HelloFresh has multiple spice blends. They’ve tweeted some of the spice combos, but just to access the proportions easily, we use this Reddit post, which lists them all.

Cooking Together

On weeknights, Evan cooks dinner because I work and he’s home doing virtual school. Two days are leftovers and the other three are usually either chicken a la king, enchilada casserole, or spaghetti. On weekends however, we spend roughly an hour or so in the kitchen together. Our kitchen is tiny, which makes space challenging, but it’s much more efficient and more enjoyable to cook HelloFresh recipes together. One of us preps the veggies while the other gets the meat ready. One of us works on the sauce and sides and the other cooks the meat. It’s definitely a team effort. Most of the recipes we pick are said to be under 30 mins, bu it usually takes us closer to an hour. We always select the 4 servings option so that we have leftovers for the week. Now, which recipes that we’ve tried have been good and what would we do differently? I’ve posted photos from some of the recipes, but some of them didn’t look pretty, so we didn’t save them.

Thai Coconut Curry Chicken

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rated 4/4

hellofresh recipes: thai coconut curry chicken

This had a lot of different flavors that we don’t usually use. I enjoy cilantro lime rice quite a bit. It was probably one of my favorite parts of Chipotle bowls when I used to eat at Chipotle. It’s so easy too, just add cilantro and lime zest. I don’t know why we don’t do that with our meal prep rice. The chicken and sauce was good. It wasn’t spicy or had a super strong flavor, but it had a bunch of different seasonings going on, which made it interesting.

Wasabi Lime Salmon

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rate 3/4

hellofresh recipes: wasabi lime salmon

The only thing we didn’t really care for in this HelloFresh recipe was the sauce. Neither of us care for mayo. We’ll eat a little on sandwiches, but that’s about it. The sauce is heavily mayo based and the proportions of everything else didn’t seem quite right. We added in way more wasabi and ginger than the recipe said to add. It still seemed to taste mainly of mayo. Evan hadn’t tried baby bok choy before, so that was new for him. I used to make stir fries pretty often, so I would eat a lot of bok choy. The soy sauce rice was better than just plain rice with this meal. It all tasted good together. It was a suitable amount of food for the two of us. One thing HelloFresh does pretty well is the serving size. Sometimes we’ll look at a dinner and think it’s not enough, but we’re usually proved wrong by these HelloFresh recipes.

Southwestern Stuffed Peppers

Recipe on HelloFresh We rated 4/4

hellofresh recipes: southwestern stuffed peppers

While this is not the prettiest HelloFresh recipe, it was very tasty. We’re actually making it again this weekend. According to HelloFresh, it takes 30 mins. I think it took us longer, as most recipes do. This recipe includes quinoa, which Evan hadn’t tried before. Growing up gluten-free, it was one of those alternative grains I ate plenty of. I remember my grandma called it “Keen-ya”. Anyway, this recipe makes A LOTTTT of food. A serving size is one whole pepper, but the first night I ate one half a pepper and was full. It’s pretty healthy and makes enough food for at least 2 people for 2 nights.

Taqueria Pork Bowls

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rate 4/4

We don’t eat much pork, but this was good. This recipe was easy with few steps. It reheated well too. It’s pretty much just corn, ground pork, chili mayo, cheese, and rice. We eat burrito-bowl type meals often. Our lunches are always chicken and rice, so even though this was kind of similar, it was different and flavorful enough to want to do again.

Creamy Dill Chicken

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rate 3/4

hellofresh recipes: creamy dill chicken

We rated this 3/4 because the green beans cooked weird. They were kind of dry and chewy, which is not what you want from green beans. We’re making this dinner this weekend, so we’ll try cooking them differently and see if they turn out better. Everything else was great. We love all the dijon mustard sauces that HelloFresh has in their recipes. We prefer dijon or stone ground to yellow mustard any day. Dill isn’t an herb we use too often, but it was excellent in this dinner. The roasted potatoes were crispy on the edges, which I loved. I mean I love any potatoes though, so that’s not much of a gauge. Anyway, it looked like a grown-up dinner, tasted great, and wasn’t difficult.

Blackened Chicken Penne

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rate 4/4

Not a clue why we didn’t take photos of this recipe. It was a good pasta recipe that wasn’t Italian, which made it unique. The way we made it, it was a spicy dish. We added in two serrano peppers. Next time I think we’ll just use one. Even if we didn’t add those, it would’ve been good. They just stepped it up a notch. It’s another of those recipes that’s pretty much prep the veggies, cook the meat, boil the pasta, create the sauce, and add it all. The recipe calls for hot sauce, but we didn’t use any. Just used the serrano peppers. So, the peppers the recipe called for were poblanos, which I’m not sure if either of us have eaten before. They were bigger than we expected. I don’t think we used the blackening seasoning like we were supposed to. Since we used the Instant Pot, we cooked it differently than the recipe said, so it wasn’t charred or cooked like that. That would probably have made it even more flavorful, but it was good even without cooking it the way the recipe said.

Korean Beef Bibimbap

Recipe on HelloFresh – We rate 1/4

This was the only recipe that we really did not like. Also was’t pretty, so no photos. It was time consuming and didn’t taste great. Peeling carrots takes a little bit. It calls for several different veggies and we love veggies (although we don’t eat them enough), so we thought we’d like it. It also didn’t reheat very well. The first night, the carrots were pretty good, but the second night, they tasted too carrot-y if you know what I mean. Just kind of an imbalance of flavors.

Chicken Under a Zucchini Blanket

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rate 2/4

hellofresh recipes: chicken under a zucchini blanket

This HelloFresh recipe was rather bland. We added extra garlic to the mashed potatoes to make them better. They were fine. Our grocery store was out of green beans, so we used snow peas instead. Cooked them the same way the recipe said to cook the green beans and they were fine. Not very flavorful though. The weirdest part of the recipe was the zucchini blanket. It was supposed to crisp up in the oven, but it was just kind of soft and soggy even though we pressed the water out of it. There just wasn’t much oomph in any of the aspects of this meal. Evan’s mom likes simple food, so she asked us to make it for her when we move up there, so we’ll end up eating it again, but we wouldn’t make it on our own.

Creamy Chive Chicken

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rate 4/4

This was a pretty easy chicken and rice recipe. I’m not sure why we didn’t take pictures. We’ve started cooking our chicken for dinners in the Instant Pot (which you can get on our Amazon storefront) because out stove cooks things so unevenly, our chicken never comes out done at the same time. This recipe has three parts, a salad, chicken, and rice. The salad is just mixed greens with apple and an easy vinaigrette. We got extra lettuce, but we ate it all because we love salad and don’t eat it often enough. The lemon rice was super simple. Just jasmine rice with lemon zest. The sauce was not mayo-based, so we were happy with that. It was a good meal we would be willing to serve to others.

Creamy Parmesan Chicken Spaghetti

Recipe on HelloFresh. We rate 2/4

helllofresh recipes: creamy parmesan chicken spaghetti

This was an easy HelloFresh recipe, but not very flavorful. It looks nice and the tomatoes were good, but that’s about all this dinner had going for it. The sauce was just bland. Jarred alfredo sauce tastes better to us. I think if you upgraded the sauce, it would be a good meal. However, it was just pretty lacking. I love basil and roasted or sun-dried tomatoes, so if it had a bit more kick, I think I would’ve loved it. If you’re looking to have a basic pasta recipe to use as a base to experiment with, this one would be a good option. Have some fun trying different creamy pasta sauces.


The author of Cute Canny Couple

Write A Comment

Pin It

Hi there! We use cookies to provide you with the best experience we can. By continuing to use the site, we assume you're ok with it