The words jump out at you the first time you go to Hungryroot’s site: “The easiest way to eat healthy.” And it’s true. Hungryroot, a crossover between a meal kit service and an online grocer, makes eating clean, healthful meals so simple.
Below, an impartial review of Hungryroot’s service: how to set up and customize your membership, the flavor and quality of the ingredients, the ease and uniqueness of the recipes, and the total cost.
Bottom line: Hungryroot’s claim is correct. The delivery service is easy to manage and the recipes are easy to make. You’ll pay a small premium for the convenience of the experience, but no more (maybe even less!) than comparable services. If you’re looking for healthy, simple meals, try it out.
Setting Up Your Profile
Getting started is fun—you’re guided through a series of questions that feels more like a personality quiz than prep work for a meal delivery service. When you create an account with Hungryroot, you’re asked “Who are you feeding?” and “What are some of your Hungryroot goals?” This is your opportunity to let the company know how much food you want to receive weekly (you can answer “me,” “me +1,” or “me +more”) and if you’re interested in things like losing weight or eating more plants.
Next, you’re asked about any dietary restrictions or needs. This covers the classic bases, like plants versus meat and any allergens. What you won’t see is Hungryroot addressing any trendy eating plans, like paleo or keto. Later, it is possible to customize your delivery to fit nearly any diet, but Hungryroot won’t do the work for you.
After that, it’s time to answer questions about your typical day and eating patterns, such as whether your prefer snacks or a full breakfast in the morning, what kind of lunch you eat, what dinner looks like, and whether or not you like sweets. As you go through your day, Hungryroot asks how many days of the week they should provide for—all, some, or none.
Here comes the coolest part: You basically just look at a bunch of pictures of food—some breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks—and click the ones that look appealing to you.
Based on all the above, you’re presented with a loose order summary, detailing the number of servings you’ll get for lunch and dinner, plus ready-to-eat servings of breakfast, snacks, and sweets.
Pricing And Shipping
The smallest plan includes 6 servings between lunch and dinner (a total of 3 recipes) and ready-to-eat breakfast dishes, snacks, or sweets; it’ll cost you $59. As you add on 2-4 servings of those extras, the price of your plan will see a flat increase of approximately $10.
As you increase the numbers of servings for your lunches and dinners, you’ll see the cost per serving decrease. With the standard, small six-serving plan, each serving is $9.99. An eight-serving plan (with a total of four recipes) comes out to $8.99 per serving. A 10-serving plan (with a total of five recipes) comes out to $8.75 per serving. A 12-serving plan (with a total of six recipes), a 14-serving plan (with a total of seven recipes), and a 16-serving plan (with a total of eight recipes) all come out to $8.49 per serving.
With so many customizable options, the cost of a box ranges from $59 to $158. The latter would include 16 servings of lunch and dinner, 7-10 breakfasts, 8-12 snacks, and 7-10 sweets.
If your box costs less than $70, you’ll incur a $6.99 shipping fee for each delivery. Any orders ringing in at more than $70 will get free shipping.
Customizing Your Order
Based on your preferences and profile, Hungryroot will generate a menu for you with your requested number of meals, snacks, and sweets. Then, every week before your order is delivered, you’ll have window during which you can change up what is on your plan—as long as it breaks down to the same cost.
Here’s how Hungryroot ensures that: The cost of your box equates to a certain number of credits which you can spend on the ingredients you. Meals tend to range from eight-to-12 credits depending on what the components are—meat- and fish-based meals will be more than tofu- or vegetable-based ones. Snacks, sweets, and breakfasts are a little less—anywhere between one and four credits.
You can swap an entire meal (including all its components, which are customizable in and of themselves) and put the credits toward basic groceries, like leafy greens or granola bars. You can also do a linear swap for a part of one of your meals that doesn’t call to you. Like, if you’re given a pasta dish and want red lentil fusilli instead of chickpea spaghetti, you’re able to do a one-for-one swap.
Most everything that’s available on Hungryroot’s site is easy to mix-and-match as they all fall into one of seven categories: fresh vegetables, grains and pastas, proteins, sauces and dressings, pantry, ready-to-eat, and sweets.
When you’re finished customizing, you’ll either end up with slight variations of all the meals Hungryroot generated in the beginning or less meals and more one-off groceries. On the other hand, if you’re completely happy with the original contents of the box, you don’t have to change anything.
You can customize your order before noon on the Thursday before your delivery day.
Your Hungryroot delivery arrives in one big insulated cardboard box, and all ingredients come packaged separately. Since many of them are made to be mixed and matched, they aren’t grouped together in any way (say, by meal) like some other meal delivery kits.
The box itself is recyclable and part of the insulation is biodegradable. Most of the other materials (plastic, cardboard, and cooler packs) are recyclable in many areas, and the kitchen companion comes with instructions for disposing of them properly.
The ingredients are wrapped or contained in a decent amount of plastic but not much more than if you bought similar ingredients at the grocery store.
Recipes And Difficulty
For a little less than $120, I received 20 different items. During my customization period, I exchanged a handful of them (including one full, two-serving meal) and ended up with the ingredients for eight servings total of lunch and dinner, plus extra snacks, sweets, and groceries that were either part of the box Hungryroot originally generated or that I’d added with credits I’d exchanged from the meal and other snacks: smoked salmon, a bag of baby spinach, broccolini, rainbow veggie mix, banana bread overnight oats, a five-pack of granola bars, a roasted red pepper quinoa cup, a bag of toasted coconut clusters, a mini nutty pumpkin bread, and an almond butter brownie.
Every order also comes with what Hungryroot calls a Kitchen Companion—a small pamphlet with recycling instructions, a guide to adding extras to your meals, and the link to Hungryroot’s Spotify cooking playlist—plus a breakdown of all the products you should have received and how to use them to put together recipes. Now, those “recipes?” They’re more like loose suggestions for how to throw together your box’s ingredients. That’s not to say they’re bad (far from it), they’re just basic.
Recipes fall into eight categories—veggie noodles, flatbreads, stir-fries, pasta, grain bowls, market plates, salads, and wraps—and typically don’t call for more than four ingredients.
I chose to receive one pasta (red lentil fusilli, superfood tomato sauce, spinach garlic chicken sausage), one stir-fry (brown rice quinoa blend, seasoned grilled chicken breast, broccolini, sesame ginger sauce), one wrap (tofu veggie burger, coconut curry sauce, broccolini, sweet potato wraps), and one salad (rainbow veggie mix, spiced tofu crumbles, sesame ginger sauce).
All of my veggies came raw and all the proteins were delivered pre-seasoned and cooked. My salad simply required me to dump all the ingredients into a bowl and took about two minutes to make. The stir-fry, pasta, and wrap required very minimal cooking, like reheating and browning pre-cooked chicken or chopping broccolini into one-inch pieces then steaming in a saucepan.
If you’re looking for quick, weeknight savior meals, Hungryroot fits the bill. If you want to spend some time in the kitchen, experimenting with new cooking techniques or cooking everything from scratch, you won’t be completely fulfilled by your box.
Freshness, Flavor, And Quality
Any fresh ingredients in my box (vegetables and perishable sauces) looked perfect—ones that I would pick up myself at the grocery store. Just like standard supermarket products, they came with best-by dates, all of which gave me sufficient time to make my meals.
One thing Hungryroot does extremely well is sauces. My box came with three different ones: a sesame ginger sauce that was used for both my salad and stir-fry, a superfood tomato sauce that was packed with hulled hemp seeds and went on my pasta, and a thick coconut curry that covered my wraps. All three were made to be vegan, gluten-free, and soy-free; all were equally delicious, and if they were available at other mass retailers, I’d buy them regularly.
Any pre-seasoned proteins were equally incredible, and most of the other ingredients were good, if basic and standard. (The brown rice quinoa blend tasted like…brown rice and quinoa.) Two standouts that you should ensure are part of your order: The tofu veggie burgers, which were cut up and stuff inside the wraps, were firm and super flavorful. And the red lentil fusilli, one of Hungryroot’s own branded items, was perhaps the most excellent gluten-free pastas I’ve ever tried. It’s packaged like a fresh pasta and therefore takes only three minutes to come to the perfect al dente texture. Had I not been told it was made from lentils, I might not have known.
Many items sent in your box are Hungryroot brand, but the cool thing is you’ll also get to try other popular brands that can be purchased from other popular retailers. Those include, for example: Banza, Base Culture, Purely Elizabeth, Right Rice, Kite Hill, Beyond Meat, Living Greens, Maya Kaimal, and Unreal.
Modifying Your Membership
Hungryroot is based on a weekly delivery model, but you are able to skip any week before the prescribed deadline. You can also change your address, plan size, and delivery date in your profile settings.
You are able to pause your subscription for up to eight weeks, should you be traveling or not needed deliveries for an extended period of time. And you can cancel your membership entirely whenever you want.
Hungryroot delivers to all 48 contiguous states, in most zip codes. According to their site, “If no delivery days are available for your zip code at signup, unfortunately, that means we’re unable to provide our service for your area. We’re working on expanding and hope to deliver to all zip codes in the future!”
Currently, Hungryroot does not deliver to Alaska or Hawaii.