Reviewing Sun Basket and Home Chef
Are these meal kit delivery services worth it?
I’ve tried most of the meal delivery kits, and for the most part, I like them. They come in all shapes and sizes from smoothies to dinners and all those in between. My personal assessment of the meal kits I’ve tried is below. These are services I have purchased on my own, and I have not been compensated by any company for my reviews.
For dinner meal kits, I’m reviewing Sunbasket and Home Chef. These companies deliver pre-portioned, raw ingredients to your home in a cooler box for you to cook. I had planned to include Hello Fresh and Blue Apron, but as of this writing, I’ve not been as impressed with Hello Fresh, and Blue Apron has suffered financial loss and may not recuperate. They were my third and fourth out of four anyway because of their structure and that I had fewer pros than cons.
Overall, there are some advantages to using this service as well as some disadvantages.
What I like in general about the meal kits:
- You get the amount of food you need for the meal so this reduces waste
- You get the specific ingredients you need, which could be lower cost than having to buy full size items at a store
- In many cases, you get harder-to-find items or food you may not have available where you live
- You know what you’re going to eat for three days
- The recipes are usually easy and fast
- The recipes are tried & true – plus there are customer reviews
- There is a variety of foods to choose from
- The customer service is pretty decent and will work to fix any issues
What I don’t like in general about the meal kits:
- They are an expensive initial purchase for daily menu planning – $80 for 6 meals (2 portions, 3 menus)
- Some meal kits have produce that is available in my neighborhood store rather than something I would have to travel further to get
- Some side dishes are boring
SUN BASKET – A world tour of culinary experiences made simple at home
Choose your weekly menu – from vegan to paleo – and get delicious recipes featuring fresh, organic produce & clean ingredients delivered to your door.
What I love about Sun Basket:
Sun Basket ranks my Top Choice in meal delivery kits because of the vast selection of different cuisines from around the world. Most of the meal packets give you an option for a Chinese or Italian offering, but Sun Basket goes beyond into the areas of Thai, Vietnamese, Indian, Japanese, Korean, Mediterranean (beyond mainstream Greek cuisine), and even African food. They also offer Paleo, Gluten-free, Vegan, and Vegetarian as well as other heart-healthy and diabetes-friendly recipes.
Additionally, you can sort and select menus by what’s important to you (under 600 calories, health-conscious, soy-free, length of time to cook, pre-cooked, etc.).
Every meal I’ve had is well satisfying and enough. I’ve often had leftovers for lunch the next day, so if you would like to start eating healthy food that is properly portioned, this is a delicious option for you.
The selections are wide and varied for each week. Other meal plans have fewer options and then reduce other options as you start adding items to your bag (this is common in Blue Apron).
What I like least about Sun Basket:
As with all the other meal kits, if you eliminate menus that have one type of protein (such as pork, since I’m allergic), my options are significantly reduced as there are pork-products in loads of items.
It would be great to have the option to switch out a protein for all of the dinners and not have a premium up-charge. If I want to eliminate prosciutto or other pork-product, a turkey option would be wonderful. BTW, cooking deli honey turkey until crisp in a pan is a great substitute for bacon! Give me some non-pork options!
HOME CHEF – Upscale cuisine for home cooks to impress the family
Simple recipes, tasty flavors, and the ingredients you need – all in one box! Taste why we’re rated number 1 in customer satisfaction among other meal kit companies.
What I love most about Home Chef
The quality of their proteins is good. The best lamb chops I have ever had came from Home Chef during Easter. The chops were two-inches thick and had the best recipe along to go with it. If you like lamb chops and have the chance to get them here, do it.
I like their different sauces and side dishes, plus their recipes are contemporary and can be modified if I have some ingredients from the store I need to add.
One thing that other companies hadn’t provided when I subscribed to them earlier was different varieties of vegetables. I can buy button mushrooms at Food Lion or Piggly Wiggly. I love that Home Chef goes beyond my local grocer and gives me options for fresh shiitake as well as pearl onions, sugar snaps and other vegetables.
You have the option to Add-On items with Home Chef (Sun Basket does as well). While this can weigh down the wallet, it gives you some flexibility to expand your dinners or create new menu plans.
Just like Sun Basket, you can select your menus by sorting them based on your needs (calorie-conscious, carb-conscious, less than 30 minutes to prepare, vegetarian, etc).
Variety in menus! Home Chef is a very close contender to Sun Basket, and truth be told, I would order for either based on what they were offering for the week.
What I like least about Home Chef
Some of the sides can become redundant. Some type of baked veggie or potato fry with some parm on top – meh. They can do better – give me a more interesting sauce to go with it!
That’s my take on the home meal delivery kits in 2020. Things will likely change as companies respond to customer demands and needs, but for now, these are my top picks when I want convenience and options without heavy thinking and cooking all day.