Hungryroot Review: A Meal Delivery Service With a Vast Recipe Archive

This meal delivery service prioritizes making mealtime easy for its customers.

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Groceries from Hungryroot
Photo: Hungryroot (2)

Why You Should Try It

With its easy-to-assemble meals and access to thousands of recipes and grocery items, Hungryroot is a great option for those looking for tasty and nourishing quick meals that will please the whole family.

Food & Wine Star Rating: 4.5

Hungryroot

Hungryroot
Hungryroot

Pros

  • Simple, nutritious, and easy-to-prepare meals
  • Excellent search filters and tags
  • Sustainability mission

Cons

  • Overly simplistic recipes
  • Some meals were bland
  • Packaging includes lots of single-use plastics

Meal delivery services can be a great addition to your meal planning routine. Rather than ordering takeout after a busy day or dealing with the perpetual question of "what should I make for dinner," a meal delivery service can be a helpful tool to increase your weekly cooking repertoire. Enter Hungryroot, which is essentially a meal planning tool and an online grocery platform all in one. While most meal kits provide you with prepared meals or packages of ready-to-use ingredients, Hungryroot takes this a step further and offers groceries with meal orders as well.

With a dedicated mission to sustainability and the environment, Hungryroot focuses on nutritious, healthful meals that are quick and easy to put together. Featuring a database of over 2,000 recipes, Hungryroot curates weekly eating plans based on your customized preferences alongside recipes, meals, and groceries for the week. Ingredients are pre-measured and portioned, making meal prep a cinch. And, with a bevy of dietary options and search filters, Hungryroot makes it easy to accommodate your household's food and health needs. After trying out Hungryroot for ourselves, here's what we thought of this unique meal kit service.

Hungryroot Chicken Guac Bowl
Abbey Littlejohn

Pricing: Personalized For Your Household

Hungryroot places you in the driver's seat, allowing you to customize the groceries and meals you receive each week. With a plethora of grocery items and dietary offerings, you can build a tailored meal plan based on the size of your household and how many meals and groceries you need. Meal kits come in serving sizes of either two or four, so if you're feeding a larger household, you may need to double up on meals. The starting price per serving is $9.69, and Hungryroot offers free shipping for orders over $70. Otherwise, expect a shipping fee of $6.99 for smaller orders.

How It Works: Detailed Food Preference Quiz

To understand your household's needs and wants, new Hungryroot customers complete a unique quiz to formulate a curated meal plan. The quiz will ask you about your overall needs and goals, such as weight loss, expediting grocery shopping time, and the importance of cost savings, organic ingredients, and taste preferences. Hungryroot will also ask about your food preferences and allergies, how many meals and servings you'd like each week, and delivery information. You'll then input your payment details, and once your credit card is processed, an algorithm will reveal your curated meal plan. From there, you may edit your meals and groceries within a certain amount of time before finalizing your shipment, which includes a free gift, like almond cookie dough.

Choosing Meals: May Feel Overwhelming

Hungryroot is similar to an online grocery store, and there are endless options for meals. For breakfast, you may choose from an assortment of coffees, eggs, yogurts, cereals, smoothies, and ready-to-heat foods. For lunch and dinner, choose from options like tacos, stir-fries, grain bowls, salads, proteins with vegetables, sandwiches, wraps, flatbreads, burgers, "Roast + Ready" entrees, pastas, and veggie bowls. There are even snack options like olives, chips, beef jerky, popcorn, pickles, crackers, cheese, and fruit snacks.

Once your meals are curated for the week, you can view all the details. This includes a large, colorful photo of each dish along with the recipe title, serving size, prep time, a list of ingredients, recipe instructions, and helpful suggestions, such as adding lemon or hot sauce. However, to see a full list of nutrition and allergens, you need to hover on the ingredients list. Once you click on an ingredient, a popup will appear with detailed information about each grocery item, including a description, dietary tags (such as vegan or gluten-free), spice level, nutrition facts, and allergens.

If you wish to edit your groceries, simply scroll down and click the "edit delivery" button. A new page will pop up with recipe or grocery suggestions, as well as a sidebar with your chosen recipes that you can remove or add. You can also search by recipe type, such as tacos, bowls, salads, and more. With all of these options, the selection process can feel almost overwhelming.

As we were viewing the populated options, we noticed a point/credit system at the bottom of each recipe. However, we did not uncover an explanation about the points or credit system until we were editing our meals.

What We Made

When choosing our meals, we wanted to try a diverse sampling of foods. However, with so many recipe choices, cuisine styles, and filters, it was challenging to narrow down our selections. Here's what we ordered:

  • Spinach artichoke and mushroom tortelloni
  • Roasted salmon and sweet potato on Brussels sprouts
  • Southwest chicken and rainbow veggie tacos
  • Thai peanut beef broccoli stir fry
Hungryroot Groceries and Ingredients
Abbey Littlejohn

Packaging: Mostly Sustainable, but Lots of Single-Use Plastics

Hungryroot places a great deal of focus on eco-friendly initiatives and sustainability practices, including promoting the importance of a plant-based diet on our environment. The company highlights its best practices for packaging shipments to reduce ice packs and shipping weight. Hungryroot also focuses on recyclable packaging, and the gel inside the ice packs can even be used to feed plants in your garden. Additionally, the company donates excess food to nonprofit food pantries.

When our delivery arrived, the exterior of the box clearly promoted Hungryroot's recycling website page. Inside the box, we found recyclable Climacell liners, Enviro Ice packs, and a small packet illustrating how to recycle everything, including recipe suggestions on how to use leftover sauces and spices for future meals.

But, despite the detailed recycling instructions, we hit a few snags. Many of the individual items were wrapped in plastic, and several containers didn't contain any recycling labels or numbers, so we begrudgingly threw them in the trash. There was also a sweet potato wrapped in plastic, but we learned that the plastic was utilized for microwave purposes.

For our four entrees, we counted a total of 32 pieces of packaging. Of those 32 pieces, only 15 were eligible for curbside recycling, special facility recycling, or composting. The remaining 17 items reluctantly went into our trash can.

Customer Support: Text and Email Are Great

Unlike some other meal delivery services, Hungryroot's website does not include a live chat feature. However, we got in touch with Hungryroot's customer service via email and text, and we received prompt responses with clear resolutions to our questions. We got an email response in 11 minutes and a text response in only 10 minutes. In particular, we thoroughly appreciated the text support we received, in which we had a live back-and-forth conversation. One customer service agent even followed up on one of our nutrition questions with screenshots sent to our email. Overall, we found Hungryroot's customer service to be extremely efficient.

Hungryroot Feta Turkey Burger with Sweet Potato
Abbey Littlejohn

The Cooking Process: A Cinch

Hungryroot's meals are geared towards beginner cooks looking to save time in the kitchen by eliminating prep work like chopping, dicing, and mixing. Most meals are ready in about 10 minutes, and the recipe formula is pretty simple: Cook your protein, roast your vegetables, stir in your sauce, and serve. Since ingredients are pre-measured and pre-packaged, many recipes can be prepared in four or fewer steps. For the most part, all of our meals were ready within the suggested meal preparation time and, in some cases, even a few minutes less.

The Hungryroot packing list and the recipes are on the same sheet of paper, so on one side you will see a list of all included groceries, and on the other, the recipes written out in black and white font. While this particular printout doesn't have fancy, colorful plated food photos, you can refer to the website or app for pictures of the dishes.

One thing we liked is that many of the ingredients had cooking instructions on the individual packaging. However, we did notice some discrepancies, such as different cooking times on the tortelloni package versus the recipe cards.

Flavor, Freshness, and Quality: Fresh, but Missing Some Acid

Overall, we enjoyed our meals and found them to be filling, healthful, nutritious, and satiating. We did notice that the beef in the Thai peanut beef and broccoli dish was a bit stringy and parts of the broccoli had dark spots, but otherwise, the ingredients appeared fresh and high-quality—especially the salmon.

In terms of flavor, we found that several of the dishes could benefit from a bit of acid. For example, the roasted salmon and sweet potato on Brussels sprouts meal was delicious, but we thought the dish needed a sauce to tie it together, as well as a bit of acidity. So, we added a squeeze of lemon and a drizzle of a vinaigrette we had on hand, which added some vibrancy. We also added lime and hot sauce to the chicken tacos, and extra lime and crushed peanuts to the Thai peanut beef to add more texture and flavor.

Hungryroot Is Good For

Hungryroot is a great option for novice cooks, singles, or families looking for convenient meal planning and groceries to create easy, nutritious meals.

Final Verdict

Hungryroot is a solid option for households looking for easy-to-make dinners and meals. With a bevy of search filters and dietary offerings, Hungryroot lets you mix and match ingredients to make meals in about 10 minutes or less. With access to your groceries and a weekly meal plan, the company helps simplify the daunting task of meal planning, preparation, and even time-consuming grocery shopping. However, for the more advanced home cook, some of the lackluster flavors and overly simplistic recipes may become redundant.

Specs

Service Hungryroot
Starting Price $9.69
Delivery Area 48 states
Products Arrive Fresh
Customers Can Choose Delivery Date? Yes
Free Shipping? Yes, with orders over $70

Hungryroot

Hungryroot
Hungryroot
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