Home Chef Vs. Freshly 2023: Who’s the winner?

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Full Pricing:

$9.99 First shipping is FREE

Updated In:
June 19, 2024
Freshly logo
Full Pricing:
$8.49 to $11.49 Per serving
Updated In:
July 5, 2024

If you are looking for a way to spice up your dining experiences without wasting too much time or money, then meal kits and meal delivery services offer an excellent solution.

Some meal services, such as Home Chef or Green Chef, offer very easy-to-cook meals, while other meal delivery services, like Freshly, offer only ready-to-eat meal delivery.

Meal delivery services are surprisingly affordable and provide portioned-sized meals. As they do the meal planning, grocery shopping, and, in some instances, meal preparation for you, then you will also save a lot of time! Lastly, by using a meal delivery service, you will be introduced to different culinary styles from all over the world, which will broaden your tasting horizons.

Today we will look at two well-established companies – Home Chef and Freshly.

We have enjoyed tasting the delicious meals offered by both Freshly and Home Chef.

Unfortunately, Freshly updated its website in late December 2022, announcing that the meal delivery service will cease operations. 


In this comparison, we will highlight all the strong and weak spots of these two meal delivery companies to help you better understand why in any case, Home Chef is a better meal delivery option to try.

In a Nutshell, Main Differences That Make Home Chef Our Winner

  • Home Chef offers an extensive menu of fast meal kits, oven-ready, grill-ready, and pre-made meals.
  • Home Chef meals offer the freshest ingredients.
  • Home Chef meals are designed with health in mind.
  • Home Chef caters to a number of dietary restrictions like vegetarian, low-carb, low-calorie, Mediterranean, and more.

Meal Plans & Pricing

Home Chef meal delivery service provides a flexible subscription service to its customers.

Customers can choose from 2-6 servings per meal and 2-6 meals per week. Prices change and range from about $7 to $10 per serving, depending on the number of meals you take per week. The service also charges a delivery fee per order (like all meal kit services).

The company also offers a Fresh and easy plan – created especially for people with no time to cook. In this plan, you will find oven-ready and grill-ready meals, easy-prep salads, and speedy meals that are designed to be cooked in only 15 minutes. The meal pricing of this plan is similar to the Home Chef regular plan.

Home Chef offers the flexibility to skip weeks, pause or cancel your subscription at any time. It’s important to note that prices may vary depending on your location and specific dietary needs.

Additionally, Home Chef usually offers amazing promotions or discounts for new customers, which can help to lower the overall cost of the meal delivery service.

Special 2024 OFFER: Up To 18 Free Meals - 45% OFF Your First 5 Boxes
Veggie Baked Penne with Sautéed Zucchini and Spinach by Freshly
Veggie Baked Penne with Sautéed Zucchini and Spinach by Freshly

Sometimes all you need is a comforting pasta for a perfect evening meal. This veggie pasta dish was great – creamy yet still light.

The dish is also super easy to heat – you just need to put it in the microwave for a couple of minutes – and it is ready to serve! This easy preparation is the same for all Freshly meals.

This meal was made out of gluten-free pasta, a rich marinara sauce that was sweetened with a touch of honey instead of refined sugars, and ricotta. A handful of lovely vegetables made this dish even heartier – sautéed zucchini, grape tomatoes, and leafy spinach. On top of the pasta was a lovely cheese blend of mozzarella and Parmesan

We ate it without accompaniments, and it was delicious, but you could easily upgrade it with some fresh basil or more grated cheese. Super yummy!

This pasta dish is gluten-free and soy-free – like all the Freshly menu items. What is also great about this particular dish is that it tastes like regular wheat pasta, you won’t even notice that it’s gluten-free! Another amazing fact about this dish is that it contains only 480 calories per serving!

Freshly logo
Try Factor!

Freshly meal delivery service used to provide four different plans that can deliver from four to 12 single meals every week, depending on your choice, with the following pricing:

  • 4 single-portion meals per week were priced at $11.49 per meal.
  • 6 single-portion meals per week were priced at $8.99 per meal.
  • 10 single-portion meals per week were priced at $8.49 per meal.
  • 12 single-portion meals per week were priced at $7.99 per meal.

Freshly Vs. Home Chef Meal Variety

As a Home Chef customer, you will have the choice of over 30 dishes and protein packs to choose from per week. Among these options, you will find vegetarian meal options, low-calorie healthy meals, low-carb meals, 15-minute meals, and oven-ready meals.

As a Freshly customer, you also had the choice of 30 dishes per week, which provides dinner and lunch options. All of the Freshly dishes are gluten-free and peanut-free, and they offer a good variety of low-carb, low-cal, and high-protein meals.

Home Chef Menu Sample

Style of Dishes In The Home Chef and Freshly Menu

Home Chef delicious meals tend to be more classic and well-known, and they usually include a generous portion of vegetables. Home Chef is passionate about helping its customers increase their fresh produce intake, so you will find that seasonal vegetables are a big part of the Home Chef menu.

Even though their recipes are quite popular, the chefs usually make sure to include a modern twist to keep things different. The recipes are always with effortless meal prep, but they still have an upscaled feel to them, like an order-in dinner or lunch from a nice restaurant.

Some Great Meals We Tried From Home Chef Meal Kits

  • Boom Boom Salmon Tacos with Quick-Pickled Vegetables – 15 min meal kit
  • Garlic Sesame Beef Lo Mein with Crispy Wontons – Fresh and ready-to-eat meal
  • Honey-Ginger Chicken Katsu with jasmine rice and mushrooms
  • Santa Fe Pork and Potato Stew with cheddar-jack cheese and corn
  • Garlic Butter Shrimp with Lemon Rice Pilaf and Peas – oven-ready meal

Freshly was all about convenience, so their meals arrive fully prepared and only take a few minutes to heat before they are ready to serve.

The Freshly menu used to be extensive, so you could find all sorts of culinary styles included, such as Asian, Mexican, Italian, and more.

Some Prepared Meals We Tried From Freshly Meal Delivery Service

  • Sausage baked penne with Zucchini and Spinach
  • Buffalo chicken with Loaded Cauliflower
  • Homestyle Chicken with Butternut Mac & Cheese
  • White bean turkey chili with lime rice
Thai Pork Spring Roll in a Bowl Home Chef
Thai Pork Spring Roll in a Bowl Home Chef

This Asian-style meal with the nutty aroma of delicious satay sauce was pure delight. If you love peanuts, this dish is a sure thing for you.

Satay sauce is a typical Thai flavoring that contains ground roasted peanuts or peanut butter (smooth or crunchy), coconut milk, soy sauce, tamarind, galangal, garlic, and spices such as coriander seed and cumin.

One of the things we loved about this dish is how light it is, served in a bowl, rather than fried in a spring roll. Suitable for a nice, light summer dinner. Plus, it also has the benefit of being low-calorie, with only 558 calories per serving!

Not just light in calories, it’s also very light on mess and cooking time. The recipe is categorized as “ready in 15”, so it is designed to be prepared in a snap. You just need to chop the green onion and garlic and cook it with all the rest of the ingredients in one pan. It was hard to believe, but dinner was indeed served in 15 minutes – as promised.

We took the opportunity to make it a vegetarian meal by changing the protein from ground pork to the new plant-based impossible burger. Home Chef offers a unique “Customize it” option that allows subscribers to swap proteins or double the portion of protein in the meal. This amazing option is available for over half the dinners offered each week on the menu, and it gives you great flexibility in ordering the foods you and you family love to eat.

Spicy Plantain and Black Bean Taco by Home Chef
Spicy Plantain and Black Bean Taco by Home Chef
Spaghetti squash by Freshly
Spaghetti squash by Freshly
Special 2024 OFFER: Up To 18 Free Meals - 45% OFF Your First 5 Boxes

Dietary Options Offered By Both Meal Delivery Services

Home Chef and Freshly both offer a range of dietary options to cater to different dietary needs and preferences. Here’s a breakdown of the dietary options provided by each service:

Home Chef meal kit service offers meals for Vegetarian, Pescatarian, Low-Calorie, and Carb-Conscious diets. The menu also notes allergens per recipe, so you can opt for Gluten-free, Dairy-Free, Nut-Free, and Soy-Free meals.

It’s important to note that Home Chef updates their meal kits menu regularly, so there may be changes to the dietary options they offer over time.

Prior to closing the business, Freshly offered meal plans and meal choices for Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Paleo, Low-Carb, Vegetarian, and Vegan dietary preferences.


Freshly Vs. Home Chef Quality of Ingredients

We are always impressed with the fresh ingredients that Home Chef includes in their meal kits. Home Chef is very proud of the suppliers that they partner with.

Home Chef is focused on delivering ingredients that are of the highest quality and come from operations that practice sustainable and responsible farming practices. The Home Chef healthy recipe ingredients always look great, are fresh, and taste delicious.

Freshly was very proud of its status as a fully certified gluten-free company, so all its ingredients are guaranteed to be 100% gluten-free. The service was focused on including the healthiest ingredients in their meals, and none of their healthy recipes contained any artificial ingredients, preservatives, refined sugars, or hydrogenated oils.

The Delivery Box

The meal kits of Home Chef arrive in a specially designed food delivery box, and the proteins are packed at the bottom of the box with enough ice to cool them cool during the delivery process. The Home Chef delivery contents are very well organized, with all the different ingredients, packaged and labeled according to which meal kit they belong to. No sorting is required when unpacking your Home Chef delivery. Easy home-cooked meal service, from A to Z!

As Freshly meals were delivered fully prepared, each meal was wrapped in a branded sleeve that featured the dish’s name, heating instructions, and nutritional facts about each dish. Unpacking was also easy with Freshly, and your meals simply need to be stored in the fridge until you are ready to heat them. Freshly was focused on the environment, and the wrapping and meal containers were 100% recyclable, and the delivery box was made of material using recycled denim insulation.

Home chef box
Freshly Box

Managing Your Online Account

Both Home Chef and Freshly provide easy-to-use websites or an app that makes managing your account completely stress-free.

For both meal delivery services, you begin your experience by registering and subscribing to their service, including choosing your desired plan, filling personal eating preferences, paying, and selecting your meals for the first shipment. You also have the option to let them surprise you every week.

Your online account will allow you to change your menu preferences if needed, skip weeks, check and select future meals for a few weeks ahead, update payment methods, and cancel your account.

Home Chef meal kit service also offers good customer service that you can reach via email, online live chat, or phone.

Setting Home Chef Account

Plan Terms

As noted before, Freshly no longer operate. The Home Chef meal kit delivery service is available as a subscription-based service only, so the first thing you will need to do is subscribe to their service.

However, the service is available with enough flexibility to keep anyone happy! You can skip weeks whenever necessary and cancel your account online at any time without penalty.

Final Verdict Home Chef Vs. Freshly- The Winner Is Home Chef Meal Delivery Kits!

We had an overall positive experience with both Home Chef and Freshly. These two companies provide a service that is all about convenience and enjoyable dining experiences!

But for us, even before Freshly closed business, the winner is Home Chef!

We love Home chef for so many reasons. Their scores were better than Freshly across few subjects:

  • The vast selection of exciting and diverse meals
  • The option to customize the protein of the meals to your preferred meats and seafood.
  • They offer both meal kits to cook at home quickly and ready-to-eat meals that you just need to heat and enjoy. This gives you the flexibility to mix authentic home-cooked meals into your diet.
  • The Quality of ingredients sent by Home Chef has always been outstanding.
  • The Home Chef dishes, for us, were a little more fulfilling.

The bottom line- everything we ever tasted from Home Chef was a huge success—delicious classic foods with an edge. 

Home Chef Is Our Winner
  • Only organic and sustainably sourced ingredients.
  • Updated pricing, starting at $8.99 per serving!
  • Amazing variety of over 30 weekly recipes.
  • Options for special dietary needs like vegan, paleo, low-carb gluten-free.
  • Fast 15-min meal kits and oven-ready meals available.
  • Extensive add-on menu.
Special 2024 OFFER: Up To 18 Free Meals - 45% OFF Your First 5 Boxes

Related FAQ’s

Whether Home Chef is cheaper than groceries depends on various factors, such as the ingredients used, the type of protein, the number of servings you wish to cook, and the type of meals you choose to prepare. In some cases, Home Chef meals may be a bit more expensive than buying the ingredients at a grocery store and preparing the meal yourself, while in other cases, Home Chef meals may be more cost-effective.

Remember that when you order Home Chef meals, you’re paying for the convenience of having pre-portioned ingredients delivered to your door, as well as the time saved from meal planning and grocery shopping.

In 2020, Freshly meal delivery service was on track to be one of the top meal delivery company options, especially after Nestlé acquired them. However, in January 2023 the company announced that they are stopping their fresh-ready meal delivery service. According to Nestlé CEO Mark Schneider, the failure of Freshly was because of it focued only on D2C food meal services. By focusing on this channel alone, the company could not sustain its customer base once, after the COVID pandemic, people could eat out again. READ HERE our full report.

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