Gousto vs Hello Fresh UK – Which is the Best Recipe Box?

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Gousto vs Hello Fresh UK - best recipe box UK

Eryn Barber

You’d think that providing yourself or your family with fresh, home-cooked meals was as simple as it sounds, but we all know it’s not.

On top of all of the other things you have to do each day –  like spending all day at work doing your job, and/or taking the kids to and from school, helping with homework – something as simple as cooking a healthy dinner can seem like an impossible task.

And it isn’t just supposed to be healthy, but it also needs to taste good. Cooking a meal every day shouldn’t be stressful, but it really is.

On a quest to find a solution we have ordered and tested the two best meal subscription companies in the UK: Gousto and Hello Fresh.

Each provide healthy meal kits with all the ingredients you need to make certain recipes each week. Cutting out the stress of the shopping and dinner planning.

Each take on board different food preferences so whether you are plant-based, vegetarian or gluten free, one or both of these meal boxes can help.

What makes them so special? No effort is required to do meal plans and grocery lists. It all arrives ready to go.

The ingredients are also portioned out accordingly. So, if you’ve ordered a meal for 4, all of the ingredients have been measured for 4 people.

This means there’s no waste which is good for the environment – and for the wallet too.

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What is Gousto?

Gousto are a UK based food-delivery company that send pre-measured ingredients with recipe cards directly to your door, once a week.

You have over 50 new recipes to choose from each week which you can do on their website or app. Their recipes are grouped into dietary preferences including plant-based, gluten free and Lean in 15 meals. You can also mix and match recipes from different groups if you like variety.

Special offer on Gousto: 30% Off your first month Gousto30pct

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What is Hello Fresh UK?

Hello Fresh UK also delivers pre-portioned ingredients to your chosen recipes each week in an insulated box.

With Hello Fresh you start by selecting a plan from their 4 options: meat & veggies, vegetarian, family meals or quick cook recipes. There are then 20-30 recipes to choose from on any given week.

Special offer on Hello Fresh UK: 60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes HelloFresh60pct

Here we’re looking at Hello Fresh UK but they also have a service in the US as well. You can see our review and offers for Hello Fresh (US) here: HelloFresh Meal Delivery Box Review

Gousto vs Hello Fresh UK

We have summarised the key differences between Gousto and Hello Fresh UK and what they have to offer in the table below:

Gousto vs Hello Fresh UK - best recipe box UK Gousto review Hello Fresh UK review
What you get Fresh, quality ingredients
Recipe cards
Portioned meals
Meals suitable for certain dietary requirements (see below)
Fresh, quality ingredients
Recipe cards
Portioned meals
Meals suitable for certain dietary requirements (see below)
Ingredient quality

 

100% British beef
Sustainable fish & seafood
Fresh vegetables
UK beef
British herbs
Fresh vegetables
Price £2.98 – £6.25 per person per meal £3.25 – £4.50 per person per meal
How often do they arrive? Weekly Weekly
Meals offered? Lunch
Dinner
Lunch
Dinners
Snacks
Dessert
Diets catered for. Vegetarian
Plant-based
Gluten free
Dairy free
Vegetarian
How many recipe options? 50 recipe options each week 20-30 recipe options each week
Meal prep time 10-60 minutes 10-60 minutes
Allergen free facility? No, items are packaged in facilities where there are allergens present. No, items are packaged separately but in facilities where there are allergens.
Shipping areas Most of mainland UK Mainland UK
Northern Ireland
The Isle of Wight
The Isle of Man
Guernsey
Jersey
Shipping cost Free Normally £3
(free with our special offer below)
Customer Review Summary 4.5 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot from 14,474 reviews 3.9 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot from 19,727 reviews
Our Rating After Testing ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
5 out of 5 stars
. Delicious and creative recipes.
⭐⭐⭐⭐
4 out of 5 stars
. Great everyday meals.
Special Offers  30% Off your first month:
Gousto30pct
60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3:
HelloFresh60pct

Gousto review - best recipe box UK 3

Gousto Review

Gousto are a food delivery service that offer pre-portioned meals and recipe cards. They use top chefs to craft a variety of healthy meals to cater for various diets, with over 50 new meals to choose from every week.

How did Gousto start?

The founder of Gousto, Timo Boldt is German-born and moved to London in his early 20s to become a Finance professional. It was during this time that he realised how difficult it was to prepare healthy, quick meals as he never had time to go to the supermarket.

From here, Boldt invested his savings into Gousto who are a UK based company that employ over 1200 members of staff.

Benefits of Gousto Meal Kits

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Add variety to your diet

One of their main goals is to provide variety in their meal choices, which they do very well.

Each week there are 50 recipes to choose from from all of their dietary plans combined. Their meal categories range from healthy meals, 10-minute meals, plant-based and dairy free options, plus many more.

They have filters along the top of their recipe selections so that you can choose the plan you want or mix and match.

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Sustainability

On top of this, sustainability is a big drive for Gousto. The pre-portioned meals mean there is zero food waste. They also offer solutions on their website of ways you can re-use the ingredients and meals if there are leftovers.

The food is delivered in eco chill boxes, made from recycled paper. Their main sustainability goal is to make all of their packaging reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2022.

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Quality ingredients

Gousto are also keen to provide quality ingredients.

All of the meat is 100% British. Not only does this shorten the supply chain, but it means that the meat is fresher when it meets your plate.

Their fish and seafood are responsibly sourced.

All their farmers undertake a vetting process to ensure the meet they standards for quality and sustainability. So, you know that the fruits and vegetables selected are of a high standard.

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Creating healthy meals

Furthermore, to provide healthy meals, Gousto have teamed up with well-known fitness coach Joe Wicks (The Body Coach).

Together they have launched the Lean in 15 range. This is a selection of healthy meals that can be cooked in under 15 minutes. This is especially useful for those looking to incorporate a healthy diet into their lifestyle.

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Time Saving Recipes

As well as their Lean in 15 range, Gousto also offer 10-minute meals that can be cooked and served in under 10 minutes.

All of their meals have been created with time saving in mind. All of the meals can be prepared and cooked in under 1 hour, however the large majority are done in under 30 minutes.

When choosing your selection of meals, you can see how long each meal takes there on the recipe preview. This makes it easier to decide which meals to have based on how much time you have in the evenings to prepare food.

Gousto External Reviews

Gousto have received an average 4.5 out of 5 stars from over 14,474 reviews reviews on Trustpilot.

Pros

  • Large variety of meals available each week
  • Good choice of vegetarian and plant-based meals available
  • Friendly customer service team
  • Reviewers enjoyed learning to cook new dishes

The main negative that came from reviews was the plastic packaging that sauces, and condiments came in. As they are single use, they cannot be recycled.

Here are a few recent reviews:

Gousto review

Gousto review

How Does Gousto Work?

When you sign up with Gousto, they offer a 20% discount on your first box. (With our offer you can get 30% off – so an extra 10% – Gousto30pct)

Once you have chosen whether you want meals for 2 or 4 people and entered your postcode, you can choose your delivery date. Then you have the opportunity to choose your meals.

 

Gousto review

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

You can choose 2-4 meals for the week from up to 50 recipes. In-order to choose your dietary preference (plant-based, gluten free etc.) you simply choose from the top and all meals for that specification will appear. It will have the number of recipe choices next to it:

  • All Recipes (57 recipes)
  • Lean in 15 (4 recipes)
  • Vegetarian (18 recipes)
  • Plant-Based (8 recipes)
  • Gluten Free (17 recipes)
  • Dairy Free (15 recipes)
  • Everyday Favorites (10 recipes)
  • 10-Minute Meals (6 recipes)
  • Prepped in 5 (4 recipes)
  • Oven Ready (5 recipes)
  • Healthy Choices (20 recipes)

You can also filter by your preferred protein: chicken, beef & pork or fish.

Once you have chosen your meals, you are taken to the checkout when you need to provide your payment details. You can pause, skip a week or cancel your membership at any time by logging onto your account.

From here, you can expect your delivery any time between 8am and 7pm on your chosen delivery date. The food is kept in an insulated box with ice packs so it will keep if you are not at home for collection.

Is Gousto Worth It?

Gousto is definitely worth it. It offers a wide variety of recipes which cater to a number of different dietary requirements including vegetarian, vegan, gluten and dairy free diets.

They also prioritise foods which are quick and healthy (with their Lean in 15 menu) and those which have very low prep times, or which are oven ready.

Gousto do state that their meals may low levels of certain allergens such as fish, eggs and soya due to the packaging process. Therefore, they may not be suitable for those with serious allergies.

Gousto Special Offer

Get a special 30% Off here:

Gousto30pct

(that’s an extra 10% off their usual offer, for our readers)

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

Gousto Recipes

How Good Do Their Meals Actually Taste?

Number of recipes: 2 meals
Number of servings: 2 people per meal
Recipe 1: Greek bean stew with feta and baby kale
Recipe 2: Creamy taragon and mustard lentil chicken

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

My Gousto delivery came packaged in an insulated box with recyclable ice packets to keep it cool.

The ingredients for the two recipes were easily separated, with smaller items being numbered to match their corresponding recipe cards.

Both recipes were simple and tasty and the whole family enjoyed them. Here’s how they looked.

Gousto Recipe Trial 1: Greek bean stew with feta and baby kale

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

The Greek bean stew was a one pan meal that went together in about 15 minutes.

All I had to do was put the pre-portioned ingredients into the pan and heat the stew.  I popped the ciabatta into the oven, and everything was ready.

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

We sprinkled the feta cheese and herbs over the stew at the table.  My kids loved this simple meal and I was pleased that it was nutritious and easy to prepare.

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

Gousto Recipe Trial 2: Creamy taragon and mustard lentil chicken

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

The creamy chicken tarragon was another winner.

Also a one pan meal, this recipe went together in under 15 minutes. I cooked the chicken in a saute pan, and added the Dijon and cream cheese sauce, sprinkled with tarragon.

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

I served it over a pre- portioned bag of microwavable quinoa.

This is the kind of meal that makes you think, “why didn’t I think of this?”

Gousto review - Gousto recipe test - best recipe box UK

30% Off your first month: Gousto30pct

The Verdict

Gousto recipes are simpler than other subscription boxes, but that’s part of what I liked about them.

They go together quickly, are tasty and nutritious and the clean-up is a breeze. They are also one of the more affordable subscription boxes on the market and their recipes work really well for families.

Gousto Special Offer

Get a special 30% Off here:

Gousto30pct

(that’s an extra 10% off their usual offer, for our readers)

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

Hello Fresh UK Review

Hello Fresh UK, are an online food delivery company that create ready-to-cook meal kits that are delivered straight to your door.

They offer fewer dietary options than Gousto but they have personalised plans including family meals, meat and veggies, vegetarian and quick prep recipes. For each plan you get a variety of meals to choose from each week.

The plans work as a subscription. You say how many people you want the meals to be for (2 or 4 people) and how many meals you want each week (2, 3 or 4). Then you select the recipes and the ingredients and recipe cards arrive at your door.

You have the choice to cancel, pause or skip your subscription at any time.

How did they start?

The company was founded in 2011 by Dominic Ritcher and Thomas Griesel in Berlin, Germany. The idea came from meal kit delivery services that were becoming popular in Sweden at the time. With their backgrounds in business, they have created one of the biggest meal delivery companies in the world, earning close to $2 billion in 2019.

Benefits of Hello Fresh UK

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Biggest meal subscription company in the world

Hello Fresh currently employ over 7000 employees worldwide and are the biggest meal subscription company across the world.

Currently they deliver across Europe and America (they are the biggest selling meal subscription company in the US too). It is the only company of its kind with a revenue over a billion dollars.

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Value for money

Hello Fresh UK’s, main goal is to provide good value for money. Their cheapest meal comes to £3.25 per person.

They work with their suppliers to produce high quality ingredients at a low cost. Also, they regularly provide discount codes for new and existing customers.

Here you can get 60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

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Convenient food

Along with this, convenience is one of the main benefits of buying with Hello Fresh UK.

As well as providing ready-to-make meals, they also offer ‘Heat & Eat’ options. These are for people that need quick and easy meals that can be thrown straight in the oven.

Hello Fresh UK, have teamed up with Charlie Bingham and BOL for these meals so that they can provide healthy alternatives to ready-made dinners. These can be added to your weekly order for the evenings when you don’t feel like cooking.

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Added extras

They offer extras that you can add to your subscription. With the meals, you also have the option to purchase sides such as garlic bread and vegetables.

They have also partnered up with GÜ to provide ready made desserts. Or, if you fancy getting the family together for a bake off, they also provide baking kits as an added extra.

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Being a sustainable company

In terms of sustainability, Hello Fresh UK also have the planet in mind. They shorten the supply chain by purchasing directly from suppliers, cutting out the warehouses and retailers. This reduces CO2 emissions by cutting back on transport.

Hello Fresh UK, are also committed to offsetting 100% of their direct CO2 emissions, which will make them the first carbon-neutral meal kit company.

Hello Fresh UK External Reviews

Overall, Hello Fresh UK has an average rating of 3.9 out of 5 stars from 19,175 reviews on Trustpilot.

Pros

  • Recipes are simple and easy to follow
  • High quality ingredients
  • Takes the hassle out of meal prep
  • Opportunity to try new recipes

There were some cases of wrong items arriving and a number of customers struggled to communicate with their customer service.

Overall though the customers were really happy with Hello Fresh and getting fresh ingredients to cook with and easy recipes to follow.

How Does Hello Fresh Work?

When you visit the Hello Fresh UK website, you have the option to choose you preference of:

  • Meat & veggies
  • Veggie
  • Family
  • Quick cook

You then also have the option of choosing meals for 2, 3 or 4 people for 3, 4 or 5 days per week.

From here, you register your details and choose your selected delivery date.

Delivery is normally £3 but with our offer you can get it for free along with 60% off the first box and 35% off the next 3 boxes:

HelloFresh60pct

Once you have entered all of your details, you choose your meals. Hello Fresh provide some automatic meal suggestions. You then go in and remove or replace those with the ones you want.

There are 20-30 new meals to choose from each week, as well as snacks, ready-made meals and desserts as added extras.

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

Is Hello Fresh UK Worth the Money?

Yes Hello Fresh is worth the money. The subscription boxes have quality, fresh ingredients with simple recipes that save a lot of time and stress each week.

They work well for busy professionals or parents who lack time but still want good quality food. If you are especially pushed for time you also have the option to choose quick cook meals as your main meal plan.

You can also opt for additional ready-made meals to be added to your order that are oven-ready.

Hello Fresh UK Special Offer

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes:

HelloFresh60pct

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

Hello Fresh UK Recipes

How Good Do Their Meals Really Taste?

Number of recipes: 3 meals
Number of servings: 2 people per meal
Recipe 1: Creamy one pot fajita chicken pasta
Recipe 2: Caramelised onion sausage traybake
Recipe 3: Creamy harissa sausage pasta

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

My Hello Fresh meals arrived in a very large insulated box.

The meals were all separated into numbered bags and each meal came with it’s own recipe card with step by step instructions.

Hello Fresh UK Recipe Trial 1: Creamy one pot fajita chicken pasta

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

First up was the creamy one pot fajita chicken pasta.

It was about 10 minutes of chopping the vegetables and chicken. Then I browned the chicken in the pan before slowly adding the other ingredients.

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

It needed about 15 minutes of simmering before it was ready to serve. I loved how easy this one was to prep and it tasted good too.

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

Hello Fresh UK Recipe Trial 2: Caramelised onion sausage traybake

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

This one did take a little longer than I thought as the potatoes are roasted separately to the sausages and other vegetables. You also prepare a quick marinade at the end. But in the end it was a really tasty and flavorsome meal.

Hello Fresh UK Recipe Trial 2: Creamy harissa sausage pasta

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

For this dish the sausages went into the oven while I cooked the pasta. Then it all came together with the rest of the ingredients in a saucepan where it simmered for a few minutes before serving.

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

The walnuts were a nice touch at the end to add some depth of flavor. The whole family enjoyed this one at dinnertime.

Hello Fresh UK review - are Hello Fresh recipes good - best recipe box UK

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes: HelloFresh60pct

The Verdict

All the Hello Fresh meals tasted good and worked well as family meals. The recipes were easy to follow and I liked the fact that there was zero wastage.

The particular recipes that I received were basic, but well suited to weeknight family dining. One of my recipes was missing an ingredient, but I was easily able to substitute it with things I had at home.

I believe Hello Fresh would be a great choice for families or for novice cooks. There are a wide selection of meals that appeal to both children and adults (think sausage and chips, pasta)

Hello Fresh UK Special Offer

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes:

HelloFresh60pct

Gousto or Hello Fresh, Which is Better?

Both Gousto and Hello Fresh offer a wide variety of recipes to choose from each week and quality ingredients delivered to your door. Hello Fresh seems to have more ‘everyday’ recipes and is best suited for those without specific dietary requirements. Gousto offers a wider range of options such as vegan, dairy free, gluten free meals so it’s a better choice for anyone following those particular diets.

In our recipe tests we loved both meal boxes but rated Gousto slightly higher. We found that their meals were really tasty, uncomplicated, decently priced and well suited to families.

Hello Fresh also offers simple recipes with clear directions, as well as ones that are particularly quick to prep. They have the added benefit of offering snacks and desserts too, which Gousto does not have.

Whichever you choose they can save you a lot of time and effort meal planning and preparing as well as giving you a variety of different meals to enjoy each week.

Gousto Special Offer

Get a special 30% Off:

Gousto30pct

Hello Fresh UK Special Offer

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes:

HelloFresh60pct

Gousto & Hello Fresh FAQs

Is Hello Fresh UK cost effective?

Yes Hello Fresh is cost effective. If you add up how much you could save on wasted groceries each week as well as the take-out dinners you would avoid by having interesting meals to make at home, it can even save you money overall.

How much is Hello Fresh UK for 2 people a month?

Hello Fresh UK starts from £99.82 per month (£23 a week) including delivery. This is the total for 2 people and it offers 3 recipes a week. You can take out plans for more people or for more recipes as you need to.

Can I freeze Hello Fresh UK meals?

Hello Fresh do not specify which meals can be frozen. They provide fresh ingredients with a view that they will be used to cook meals that same week. So the ingredients themselves aren’t normally frozen. However the end result may be suitable for freezing after cooking. This would depend very much on what the recipe is and if it’s freezer-friendly.

Is Hello Fresh UK cheaper than grocery shopping?

Hello Fresh UK meals start from £3.25 per meal depending on how many meals you choose and the amount of people. It is definitely cheaper than a takeaway or eating out and can be more cost effective than grocery meals.

Is Gousto better than Hello Fresh UK?

Both companies have their advantages. If you are looking for a wider variety of options, then Gousto is better for you. They also have a larger selection of vegetarian and plant-based meals. On the other hand Hello Fresh UK offer snacks and desserts as extras, as well as easy, quick prep recipes that work well for family dinners.

Can you lose weight on Gousto?

Gousto meals haven’t been specifically designed to help with weight-loss. However, they have teamed up with The Body Coach (Joe Wicks) and designed a Lean in 15 range. These are healthy meals that can be made in under 15 minutes.

Is it easy to cancel Gousto?

Yes, you can cancel your subscription by accessing ‘My Details’ in your account online or in the app. Alternatively, you can contact the customer care time via the ‘Get in touch’ button at the bottom of their help page.

Gousto Special Offer

Get a special 30% Off here:

Gousto30pct

Hello Fresh UK Special Offer

60% Off your first box and 35% Off your next 3 boxes:

HelloFresh60pct

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