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Home Chef Review

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7.5
Expert ScoreRead review

Dinner meals from Home Chef meal kits are generally priced at $9.95 per serving, while their lunch meal kits by Home Chef  cost $7.99 per serving. Free Shipping on $40+ orders but costs $10 for orders less than $40.  You can upgrade your orders with premium meals (when available) or make some substitutions.  (Tons of flexibility.)  And, you can add optional extras (smoothies are a favorite!) to any order for $4.95 per serving.

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Home Chef Review
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Dinner meals from Home Chef meal kits are generally priced at $9.95 per serving, while their lunch meal kits by Home Chef  cost $7.99 per serving. Free Shipping on $40+ orders but costs $10 for orders less than $40.  You can upgrade your orders with premium meals (when available) or make some substitutions.  (Tons of flexibility.)  And, you can add optional extras (smoothies are a favorite!) to any order for $4.95 per serving.
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Home Chef Review: Home Chef (now owned by Kroger)

Home Chef is a very popular meal kit provider, offering a wide variety of meal kits for home delivery and available at local Kroger-owned grocery stores around the country.  Home Chef has pretty-much everything, making their service very flexible and can accommodate the needs of a wide range of food preferences and dietary needs.  Although they offer “assembled ingredient kits” that you cook at home, they also offer pre-cooked meals to reheat in the microwave, or “ready to bake” dishes you put right into the oven.  Another really cool menu option they include are “slow cooker kits”, where you receive all the ingredients for a slow cooker meal that you simply “throw it all into the crock pot“, with the perfect amount of ingredients.

  • Very popular
  • Great recipe options from varied menus
  • Good prices
  • Eco-Friendly Packaging
  • Excellent Customer Service
  • No Commitment
7.5Expert Score
Wide variety, mass appeal, cooked and uncooked lunch and dinner options, and smoothies!
Home Chef offers something for everyone, and has excellent pricing. They offer "everything", including a wide variety of pre-cooked (ready to heat) meals, and ready-to-bake casseroles, plus their famous "Assembled Ingredient" meal kits for you to cook at home. Their pricing is excellent, and some of their meal kits are available at your local Kroger grocery store! Highly recommended
PROS
  • So many choices! Almost every food preference and basic dietary need are covered with delicious options.
  • Free shipping on orders over $40
  • Assembled ingredient meal kits allow you to cook at home with pre-measured ingredients. (Home fresh offers tons of assembled ingredient meal kits!)
  • Slow cooker meal kits are available too! Just throw all the pre-measured ingredients and spices into your crock pot for a delicious meal later in the day.
  • Partially-cooked "ready to bake" dishes and casseroles are available for those days when you don't have much time but want yummy food without a ton of effort.
  • Pre-cooked "ready to reheat" meals are also available for those super-hectic days or for those days you need to eat at work and only have access to a microwave.
  • Dinner meal kit prices are all excellent, and generally $9.95 (with upgrades occasionally available).
  • Lunch meal kits are only $7.95 and you can also add smoothies for only $4.95 to your order.
  • Can accommodate families of 2 - 8
CONS
  • Shipping is $10 on orders under $40, so if you can't justify ordering enough to breach that $40 threshold when shipping becomes free, then you'll be paying $10 for deliveries.
  • Not organic. Although they offer some organic ingredients when possible, they do not make any claims to be 100% organic and they don't have organic options.
  • Sodium levels seem, in general, to be rather high in their nutritional information. (Full nutritional contents are listed for every meal, and we've noticed the sodium levels seem high.)
  • Not perfect for athletes or "clean eating" preferences.
  • If you're super-frugal you may be able to source your own ingredients on similar recipes slightly cheaper than via meal kit service.
  • If you're an actual Chef, this may not be for you. :). (They let the rest of us "feel" like home chefs!)

Home Chef has been in the meal kit delivery service business since 2011 and is arguably one of the largest providers in this space. Their merger with Kroger in 2018 was a smart strategic decision to keep them well-positioned in this ever-growing industry.

Home Chef is a very flexible, reasonably priced meal kit provider.

The quick summary of what you get with Home Chef.

Every week, you can choose from a huge variety of meals for lunch and dinner, and optional smoothies.  (You can choose up to 5 weeks in advance, by the way.) Home Chef offers 16 dinners, 2 lunch salads, 2 ready-to-cook protein packs (for you low-carb meat eaters), and 1 smoothy add-on every week. You can order a set number of meals (2 – 6 meal kits / recipes) per week, for a set number of people (2 – 8). Your weekly deliveries include all the prepared meals or assembled meal kits you've chosen for the week.  You'll receive the recipes of your choice and the needed fresh, pre-measured ingredients.  If you ordered prepared foods as part of your weekly selections, then you'd receive the prepared meal frozen, with heating or final cooking instructions.

Home Chef is extremely flexible.  (they can probably accommodate you.)

Home Chef is super flexible, so their pricing isn't a “one size fits all” kind of thing.  Why?  Because unlike some other meal kit providers that keep things simple, Home Chef focuses on flexibility.  Although the price is very reasonable, you may not know your final price until you account for any options, add-ons, premium meals, additional meals, or substitutions you may select.

Just know, that in general, meals are $9.95 for dinner and $7.99 for lunch, both of which are very reasonable And, know that they have a huge selection of meals from which to select each week.  The number of options is just right:  not too many to overwhelm you, yet plenty of options for everyone in the family

And, since you can select some products like a “weekly protein pack” (nothing but fresh meats from the butcher), or salads or smoothies — and since you can select prepared meals for microwaving or to prepare in the oven, your final price will be unique to you, based upon your unique choices.

In short:  The food is good, the choices are good, and the options are good.  And everything is reasonably priced.


How does Home Chef work?

First, you can easily indicate the type of food you want, and the type of food you want to avoid (like if you refuse to eat fish, it will never be suggested to you).  From there, you choose any customizations you'd want (double the protein, swap chicken for steak on a certain meal, add a smoothie or lunch salad, etc.).  Then, await your freshly-assembled meal kit and recipe to be delivered on schedule so you can cook your delicious dinner!

HomeChef Review: How it works ordering homechef. Tons of options!

Home Chef offers pre-cooked meals too.

To cook, or not to cook?  That is the question.

This is a relatively new option.  HomeChef offers “pre-cooked” meals for you to simply pop in the oven and bake and other “pre-cooked” meals allowing you to reheat in the microwave.

If you want to cook, then you'll simply choose meal kits that are pre-assembled with perfectly portioned, fresh ingredients with easy-to-follow recipes, all within high quality, recyclable packaging.  However, if you want to throw in a couple meals that are pre-cooked, too?  They've got you covered.  They have delicious lunches and dinners that are pre-cooked, ready in minutes by reheating in the microwave.  It's the ultimate convenience; just pop your chef-prepared, flash-frozen, delicious meal in the microwave, and 3 minutes later, you're eating.  Or, if you want something to bake in the oven, they also offer “just bake it” dishes and in an hour or less in the oven, your family's dinner will be piping hot and making the whole family happy.  And now, they've added “slow cooker kits”, providing you with all the ingredients you need to cook with your crock pot.  They really have all the options!

So, as you can see, you can choose to cook 100% of the time (either with a slow cooker kit for your crock pot, or a traditionally-cooked meal kit).  Or, you don't cook at all, and select all of your meals to be “prepared meals”, where you'll receive frozen meals to reheat in the microwave, or you'll receive frozen casseroles, lasagnes and other dishes for the oven, that you'll cook in your oven as directed.

Or, you can mix and match, depending on your schedule.  For instance, during the school year, you may have more sports, clubs, tutors, and other scheduled activities for your kids, and you just won't have time to cook on certain nights of the week.  You can change your meal selections accordingly, so you can cook on the days you know everyone is home, and you can have ready-to-heat meals for those busy nights.

You can pick up Home Chef in your local Kroger.

Now this is pretty convenient.  If you aren't a regular customer of Hello Fresh, but want to try out a meal, or if you simply cannot establish a regular schedule where you will get a set number of meals for a set number of people (customizable each week if needed), and your hectic lifestyle prevents you from being able to predict your family's meals from week to week, then you can go to your local Kroger-owned grocery store and use their “grab and go” kiosk for Home Chef.

Home Chef Review – my local Kroger kiosk for Home Chef's “grab and go” meals.

What kind of meals does Home Chef offer?

Home Chef offers delicious meals that you cook at home, with pre-measured, pre-portioned ingredients (no wasted food) with easy to follow, flavorful recipes, that can accommodate most dietary needs and taste preferences.

Home Chef also offers pre-cooked meals that you can heat and serve, as part of your weekly delivery.  They offer “take and bake” type meals where you simply bake the pre-assembled, pre-partially cooked dish (like a lasagne or casserole) as instructed for a delicious, homemade dinner.

They also offer “microwave and serve” type meals, as well, for those busy nights or lunches.  Just pop your meal in the microwave, and. you're eating like a king in no time.

What kind of menus and recipes does Home Chef offer?

Their menu selections are extensive.  Each week, you'll have plenty of choices that you will enjoy.

What are the recipes like?

Every meal has all the perfectly portioned, fresh ingredients — all properly packaged and kept cold as needed.  For each of these meals, you'll receive a recipe card.  The recipe cards are full color, high production value and very well made.

They're very easy to follow, using tons of graphics and images for convenient step by step cooking success!  Each step will have a photo and easy to follow directions.  They also clearly show you what you'll need from your spice cupboard and the pans or mixing bowls you'll need for the recipe.

Also on the recipe card, you'll see a good photo of what the meal should look like and all the nutritional information about your meal, including macros (if you're tracking your macros).  They also layout your anticipated cooking time and how easy or difficult the dish will be to cook.  It's a very comprehensive recipe card.  (They expect you to keep it in the folder you'll receive in your first delivery to keep them all organized.)

What meals of the day does Home Chef offer?

Although Home Chef primarily focuses on dinner meals, they also have lunch meals available.  All the lunch meals are “prepared meals”, so you won't be ordering fresh ingredients to cook at lunch, unless of course, you cook a dinner meal at lunch time.

What kinds of add-ons can I choose with Home Chef meal kit deliveries?

This is where Home Chef really shines with its unique “add on” options.  Smoothies are extremely popular to add on to your deliveries, and only cost $4.95!  Yum.  Also, they offer weekly “protein packs” of straight up meat that you carnivorous low-carb, keto diet lovers will enjoy.  And, on occasion, upgraded “premium meals” are sometimes available for an additional cost.

What are the menu features that Home Chef offers?

Does Home Chef offer salads, too?

Yep.  Every week, they offer 2 different salad options that you can have included in your weekly delivery!

What if I don't like a particular recipe and want substitutions?

I like this part of Home Chef's weekly delivery options.  Before you select your meals, you'll see a button on the meal card that shows you alternatives you can select.  For instance, if you don't like fish, but there's a delicious salmon recipe, they may offer chicken as an alternative.

Does Home Chef cater to specialty diets like Vegetarian, Keto, Paleo and others?

Yep, kinda.  You'll have to do some substitutions, but yep — they can cater to most diets.

Where can I find Home Chef?

Online with our link, and at your local Kroger-owned super market.

How much does Home Chef cost?

In general, expect $9.95 per meal for dinner and $7.95 for lunch.  $4.95 is the cost for a smoothie and they offer additional upgrades and add-ons that you can optionally include in your deliveries.  (You can try some add ons one week, and not include them in other weeks.  It's very flexible.)

How much would I expect to spend with Home Chef each week?

Does Home Chef require a subscription or commitment?

Yes and no.  Yes, because that's what you sign up for.  They expect you to keep your weekly deliveries ongoing, but you can skip or cancel weekly deliveries at any time, or cancel at any time.  NOTE:  You must make any “skip a week” or “cancel my account” requests before Friday at noon the previous week.  If you meet that deadline, you'll be all set.  If not, you didn't cancel in time and you'll get the meals you ordered.

How do I cancel Home Chef?

Keep in mind that cancelling your subscription will not cancel an order that’s already been processed, including your first scheduled order. Be sure to log in and cancel your subscription before the Friday 12PM Central deadline if you do not want a delivery for the upcoming week.

When would I expect deliveries of Home Chef?

You can select your prefered day of the week to receive your weekly delivery of Home Chef.  If you're not home, the packaging is designed to keep your food cold, fresh, and safe from the elements for several hours.  (You'd already know when your delivery is coming, as it will be delivered the same day of the week, every week.)

How are deliveries of Home Chef packaged?

 

How to give the gift of Home Chef.

Home Chef offers simple gift denominations of $60, $120 and $240.  Essentially, each $60 gift card will feed 2 people for 1 week, with 3 Home Chef recipes.  If you choose the $120 option, that means two weeks.  If you choose the $240 option, that's 4 weeks.

Home Chef Review: If you want to give the gift of food, consider a convenient gift card from Home Chef!

Who Home Chef is best for.

It looks like Home Chef is one of those meal kit providers that can work for pretty-much everyone in the mainstream.  Families, couples, even singles could enjoy Home Chef.

Who is most likely not a good fit for Home Chef?

If you're on a very strict diet, then you may want to choose a more “specialty meal kit” provider.

7.5Expert Score
Wide variety, mass appeal, cooked and uncooked lunch and dinner options, and smoothies!
Home Chef offers something for everyone, and has excellent pricing. They offer "everything", including a wide variety of pre-cooked (ready to heat) meals, and ready-to-bake casseroles, plus their famous "Assembled Ingredient" meal kits for you to cook at home. Their pricing is excellent, and some of their meal kits are available at your local Kroger grocery store! Highly recommended
PROS
  • So many choices! Almost every food preference and basic dietary need are covered with delicious options.
  • Free shipping on orders over $40
  • Assembled ingredient meal kits allow you to cook at home with pre-measured ingredients. (Home fresh offers tons of assembled ingredient meal kits!)
  • Slow cooker meal kits are available too! Just throw all the pre-measured ingredients and spices into your crock pot for a delicious meal later in the day.
  • Partially-cooked "ready to bake" dishes and casseroles are available for those days when you don't have much time but want yummy food without a ton of effort.
  • Pre-cooked "ready to reheat" meals are also available for those super-hectic days or for those days you need to eat at work and only have access to a microwave.
  • Dinner meal kit prices are all excellent, and generally $9.95 (with upgrades occasionally available).
  • Lunch meal kits are only $7.95 and you can also add smoothies for only $4.95 to your order.
  • Can accommodate families of 2 - 8
CONS
  • Shipping is $10 on orders under $40, so if you can't justify ordering enough to breach that $40 threshold when shipping becomes free, then you'll be paying $10 for deliveries.
  • Not organic. Although they offer some organic ingredients when possible, they do not make any claims to be 100% organic and they don't have organic options.
  • Sodium levels seem, in general, to be rather high in their nutritional information. (Full nutritional contents are listed for every meal, and we've noticed the sodium levels seem high.)
  • Not perfect for athletes or "clean eating" preferences.
  • If you're super-frugal you may be able to source your own ingredients on similar recipes slightly cheaper than via meal kit service.
  • If you're an actual Chef, this may not be for you. :). (They let the rest of us "feel" like home chefs!)

 

Specification: Home Chef Review

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  1. Todd

    A very flexible meal kit and “ready to bake” provider.

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