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Jul 26, 2023

Green Chef Review: The Organic Kit Delivers Flavor and Freshness

Home Recipes Cooking Style

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Back in 2019, I decided to cut meat out of my diet for environmental reasons. As a longtime charcuterie-, burger- and steak-lover, this was a big deal, but I felt the impact that prioritizing plant-based foods (and reusable kitchen products) could have on the planet was well worth it. I’ve slowly integrated sustainably sourced meat back into my meal rotation, but that desire to eat green has stuck with me. After reading Green Chef reviews, I found the meal kit service and I were on the same mission, so I just had to try it out.

With so many meal kit services on the market, from Mosaic to Marley Spoon, it’s difficult to differentiate them all. Green Chef reviews stand out among the rest as a company that focuses on clean, organic ingredients and sustainable practices, such as offsetting delivery emissions.

Like its meal delivery competitors, Green Chef has customers pick a meal plan that dictates the number of recipes and servings they’ll receive each week. From there, users select meals from a menu with nearly 50 options. These tasty, unassembled breakfasts, lunches and/or dinners then arrive on their doorsteps on the chosen delivery date.

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The Green Chef website is fitted out with some smart features. When selecting your box size (i.e., the number of meals and servings per meal), you can also highlight lifestyle preferences. Options include “Mediterranean,” “Calorie Smart,” “Protein Packed” and “Delicious Discoveries,” the last of which highlights global flavors. By selecting preferences, you’ll be shown recipes that fit into those categories first each week.

After registering and adding your address and payment details, you’ll then select your recipes from a list of mostly dinners but also 10-minute lunches and breakfasts. Furthermore, Green Chef offers add-ons, which are shipped separately from the standard meal boxes. Add-ons include beverages, snacks and proteins like chicken, seafood and grass-fed beef. (See where else to buy meat online.) According to Green Chef reviews, the goal here is to eliminate the need for a weekly grocery run more or less.

When your chilled and insulated meal box arrives, you’ll find the ingredients for each meal neatly tucked into their own designated brown paper bag. The only exception is the proteins, which you’ll find packed separately. Additionally, there are recipe cards that include a cook time, calorie count, recipe description, list of ingredients and tools, allergens and step-by-step instructions.

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I received my shipment of Green Chef meals on a Tuesday morning and prepared them on a Thursday. As I was unpacking the box, I instantly noticed the use of plastic—and lots of it. Albeit, the material seems to be a necessary evil in order to ultimately reduce food waste. For example, I received half a green bell pepper and a few romaine leaves, neither of which could be sent loose. On to cooking!

First up were the Birria-Style Black Bean Tacos. Green Chef is known for its healthy options, so I just had to try one of the vegetarian selections. The ingredients were high quality. Except for a small brown spot on one of the green onions, the produce was ripe, the cheese seemed freshly shaved and free from the common anti-caking agents and the tortillas were restaurant-level.

That being said, there were some drawbacks. For instance, I received two tomatoes instead of one, the second of which ended up being tossed. The recipe called for some tools, such as a Microplane and a meat thermometer, that I don’t feel are necessarily household staples. And the tacos took me nearly 45 minutes to prepare rather than the quoted 30.

The end result of this easy-to-make stovetop meal was tasty, tender tacos coated in a slew of sauces and dressings, including fresh pico de gallo, scallion crema and birria broth. The snafus certainly weren’t considerable enough to detract from the delicious finished product. I shared them with my vegetarian friend for lunch, and she was totally smitten.

Next, I made the Blackened Chicken Salad with Dijoinnaise. This winner took me close to the specified total prep time of 15 minutes, but the quoted cook times weren’t as accurate. The chicken “tenders” included in the box were actually finely chopped pieces of white meat (this threw me for a loop!), so they took less time to cook than estimated.

Aside from that, the preparation process went super smoothly. This salad was chock-full of mix-ins, yet there was hardly any chopping to be done. I was tasked with cutting up the tomato, celery and romaine—that’s it! (Plus, I learned a faster way to cut romaine from the instructions on the recipe card.) All that was left to be done after that was cooking the chicken and tossing the fixings.

The condiments for this dish came pre-made, and there was no shortage of them—just how I like! The chicken was doused in a Creole-inspired mixture of Dijon and mayo, and the salad, as a whole, received a tangy ranch. This meal was so fresh, texturally interesting and flavorful—I was obsessed! Every bite was like a surprise inside. This was, without a doubt, my favorite meal.

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I’m not a huge fan of chicken breast. I’d never even heard of pistou (a French sauce similar to pesto), and the stir-ins seemed interesting, to say the least. The Chicken with Basil Pistou was a risk for sure, but it paid off! As with the other Green Chef reviews and recipes, the instructions were easy to follow, and the dish was ready within 30 minutes, as was stated on the recipe card.

Those whom I shared it with were skeptical of the ingredients as well. We would’ve never thought to pair artichokes, fennel, chard, red peppers and dates, but alas, it worked! That’s the beauty of these meal kits: getting you and your family outside of your comfort zone without much creativity on your part.

Green Chef is not the same as HelloFresh, though they are both owned by the HelloFresh Group. Green Chef has an added emphasis on organic ingredients and special diets, such as keto and plant-based, whereas HelloFresh is more general use. Because they’re owned by the same company, though, the websites are formatted very similarly, and there is some crossover in offerings.

The cost of Green Chef per week depends on the amount of meals and servings you purchase. And it’s pretty pricey—unless you snag one of these meal kit deals! For instance, six servings (i.e., three meals for two people) cost around $80, plus shipping, per week. And 24 servings (i.e., four meals for six people), which is the maximum, would cost around $288, plus shipping, per week.

No, Green Chef is not only vegan. Although it can cater to those following a vegan diet, many of the recipes include meat, dairy and/or eggs. Helpful tags, such as “veggie,” “vegan” and “protein-packed,” signify which recipes are friendly for which consumers.

When you read Green Chef reviews, you see that thousands of home chefs are going gaga over Green Chef—and for all different reasons.

One customer, Penelope Jane, loves having her decision fatigue surrounding meal planning relieved. “I really appreciate not having to think about what to eat for every meal, what groceries I need, etc.,” she says. “This service saves me a lot of time and mental energy.”

Five-star reviewer Ginny, on the other hand, is hooked on the quality of the recipes. “They are easy, well-balanced and absolutely delicious,” she says. “I love that they have keto meals and so many other options. My husband thinks I’m a gourmet chef.”

And Cat, a faithful fan of Green Chef, has tried out her fair share of meal kit services. This one comes out on top: “The food is excellent and healthy, and the quality control on proper packing is really good. Other meal services, we constantly had to call for missing items, rotten food or incorrect meals.”

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What distinguishes Green Chef from many competitors, even some of its counterparts in the HelloFresh Group, is its emphasis on organic ingredients and accommodations for varying lifestyles and diets. After all, Green Chef is a certified organic company.

But because of this, Green Chef comes at a higher price. For comparison, the cheapest meals from HelloFresh cost $9. Those from Rachael Ray’s Home Chef meal service cost $10. And those from Dinnerly cost $5. All of which are cheaper than Green Chef’s $12 meals.

However, again, you’re paying for quality and even ingenuity. Green Chef reviews don’t lie. The meals are full of fresh, clean produce, as well as novel flavors. They readily stack up to and, in some cases, beat out the other meal kits on the market.

After my Green Chef reviews and recipes, I can honestly say that cooking the meals was such a treat. The salad was better than many I’ve had from restaurants; the birria tacos were a healthier take on a dish I know and love; and the chicken was a deliciously different underdog. Sadly, Green Chef will have to stay a treat for me, as the higher price point doesn’t fit into my budget. Although its business practices are sustainable (which I love!), for me, the cost is not.

If this isn’t a concern for you, I’d certainly recommend this meal kit service for your family, especially if you have dietary restrictions. The finished meals were as delicious as they were nutritious, not to mention easy to make and filling to boot. Also, the website was simple to navigate and use. Plus, the ingenious add-ons allow for a more well-rounded meal kit experience if that’s what you’re after.

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Snag your first Green Chef box directly from the company’s website, with meals starting at $12 per serving. You’ll be a clean, green cooking machine in no time!

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