cardboard box with food in the foreground

Why Is HelloFresh So Expensive?

HelloFresh is one of the most recognizable brands of meal delivery services in America. They provide a time-saving solution for home cooking and have a great variety of delicious recipes to choose from. Many who see their adverts consider trying the service out but get underwhelmed by its pricing. 

HelloFresh is so expensive because you mostly pay for convenience. The service does all the shopping and meal planning for you and delivers a box right to your doorstep, making cooking less stressful. You can choose your meals from various chef-made recipes and try something new every evening. 

If you’re considering trying HelloFresh out or switching to their services entirely, this article will help make your mind up. I’m going to talk about the actual difference in price between grocery shopping and HelloFresh services, explain what you get for such a high price, and give you recommendations on whether or not this may be a good deal in your specific situation.

every plate meal kit on a white kitchen table

Reasons HelloFresh Is So Expensive

The main goal of signing up for meal kits is to make cooking more convenient and fun. Though you would spend less money buying the same groceries at the store, food delivery is not the only service HelloFresh is selling you. Let’s dig deeper into what comes with the price. 

Original Recipes

HelloFesh’s menu consists of chef-made recipes with lots of options to choose from. It is a great way to make your diet more diverse: you can have baked fish today, fancy pasta tomorrow, and shrimp tacos on Friday. The service allows you to enjoy delicious homemade dinners and have fun making them. 

Meal Planning

A box of HelloFresh comes with just the right amount of food for the number of servings you need for as many different meals as you wish to have this week. You wouldn’t typically commit to buying so many extra ingredients for each recipe, as dealing with all the leftovers requires a lot of meal planning. HelloFresh can be an elegant solution if you’re tired of wasting food and don’t want to stress about it anymore. 


It’s also essential to add all of the advertising to the price. There’s a reason HelloFresh is the most well-known meal service in America. The more marketing a company does, the higher their price goes. 

Is HelloFresh Expensive?

Without discounts and special offers, HelloFresh costs roughly $10 per serving. That’s cheaper than dining out, but restaurant pricing includes the work of professionals cooking and preparing the food for you. With HelloFresh, you have to find time to do it yourself. However, if you wonder if HelloFresh could be a good alternative for grocery shopping, the price might seem excessive. 

HelloFresh is expensive compared to grocery shopping. Six meals a week for two people will cost you roughly $480, and you also have to take care of breakfast, lunch, and snacks. Yet, HelloFresh is more budget-friendly than restaurant meals, so if you eat out a lot, it could save you some money.

cart with fresh vegs and fruits

How expensive is it, exactly? How much do you pay extra for this service’s conveniences, and is it more budget-friendly to do the shopping yourself? 

HelloFresh and Grocery Shopping: Comparing the Prices

HelloFresh recipes are available for free on their website. I chose two random dishes (guided by my personal preference) and found all the necessary ingredients for them at Walmart. I did my best to pick average-priced products, leaning more towards the budget-friendly ones, and counted each meal’s price for two people according to the quantities stated in the recipes. 

However, you can’t really buy 0.35 ounces (10 g) of mustard, you have to get a package. So I also counted the minimum price you’ll have to pay at the grocery store for all the ingredients for each meal. 

Here’s what I got: 

IngredientQuantity per two servingsPrice per two servingsPrice per package
Creamy Dijon Dill Chicken
Chicken cutlets10 ounce / 283.5 g$3.13$8.07
Potatoes12 ounce / 340 g$0.60$3.58
Broccoli8 ounce / 226.8 g$0.90$0.90
Chicken stock concentrate1 unit$0.60$0.60
Sour cream1 ounce / 28 g$0.20$1.48
Dijon mustard0.35 ounce / 10 g$0.05$1.94
Stuffed-Meatball Rigatoni Bake
Mozzarella cheese3 ounce / 85 g$0.80$2.22
Panko bread crumbs1.75 ounce / 50 g$0.40$2.00
Parmesan cheese1 ounce / 28 g$0.37$2.22
Rigatoni pasta6 ounce / 170 g$0.60$1.58
Ground beef10 ounce / 283.5 g$3.50$5.57
Marinara sauce14 ounce / 397 g$0.85$1.40
Tuscan heat spice0.125 ounce / 3.5 g$0.30$2.00

Let’s compare the numbers: 

  • While two HelloFresh servings cost about $20, their actual price is $6-7 bucks. That is, on average, $3.50 per serving. 
  • Buying all the ingredients yourself is also not that expensive. With the meals I chose you actually save $3 and have plenty of food left. This, however, will depend on the complexity of the recipe. Still, for around $20 you can make the meal and get much more food than HelloFresh will provide you. 

Don’t forget to add $10 you’ll have to pay for delivery. With that said – yes, HelloFresh really is expensive. 

Reasons You Should (or Shouldn’t) Try HelloFresh

HelloFresh mobile app icon on phone screen

Here are my overall recommendations on whether or not signing up for HelloFresh would be profitable for you depending on what you would like to achieve by using the service.

HelloFresh Can Be a Good Deal for You if…

  • You want meal planning and grocery shopping done for you while you can redistribute your time focusing on other things. 
  • You’d like to enrich your diet and try new things without having to buy loads of extra groceries and specific ingredients. 
  • You want to try new recipes and make meals you probably wouldn’t take a chance with otherwise. 
  • You’d like to make the cooking process more fun, as HelloFresh indeed changes the routine into something that feels more like a game. 
  • You’re living alone and don’t like cooking that much, so you end up eating out a lot — in that case, HelloFresh can save you some money
  • Your goal is convenience over budgeting. 

HelloFresh Isn’t the Best Choice for You if…

  • You’re comfortable in the kitchen. You don’t need extra challenges, to try something new, or to diversify your diet. 
  • You have food allergies or a special diet. Though HelloFresh puts alerts about allergens in each of their meals, their boxes are universal and don’t include alternatives for people who are lactose intolerant or follow a gluten-free diet. 
  • You’re on a budget and trying to figure out a way of saving some money on food shopping. Meal delivery services are not an option that would help you with it. 
  • You want to save time grocery shopping but also keep a reasonable budget. Check which of your local stores have delivery services or pick up options. 
  • Your goal is to improve your meal planning so you don’t waste much food and don’t have to deal with leftovers. Try meal planning services like Budget Bytes


Though meal kit services aren’t priced in a way that would make them a great budgeting solution, they provide their own wonders. Meal delivery services definitely save you a lot of time, and, as people say, time is money. I would recommend trying HelloFresh out on a discount or using a special offer to get an understanding of whether or not it works well for you.

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