Home / Reviews / Burnt out on take out and don’t have time to cook? Check out Freshly.com.

Burnt out on take out and don’t have time to cook? Check out Freshly.com.

OK, I know.  This is not a gadget per se but still something a techie dad like myself would consider trying.  Read on and let me know if you agree.

My wife and I are very busy people and don’t have time to cook.  But we’re so burnt out on take out.  So, we decided to try a food delivery subscription service.

About a year ago we tried a service where they send you all the ingredients you need for cooking a meal. Nope. Still too much time spent. Even though it is about 30 minutes of cooking time it doesn’t including the time it takes to prepare for cooking. Then once you’re done eating, you still need to clean up.  Needless to say we canceled the service and didn’t pursue the concept further.

Fast forward to now.  We still don’t have time to make lunch or dinner and we are still burnt out on take out.  Learning from our last experience we searched for a service where the meals were prepared fresh and delivered ready to eat.  This is when we found Freshly.com!

What is Freshly.com?

In short, Freshly is an online food delivery subscription service where they make you fresh meals and ship them to you once a week in recyclable packaging ready for you to heat up and enjoy.  The food is never frozen!  The food is so fresh, they put a use-by date on each meal.  So far the use-by date has been 5 days from the date we receive them.  Besides fresh, Freshly claims their food to be gluten free, high protein, low carb, no processed sugars, and all natural.  Let’s break down their service and see what Freshly is all about.

3-step process | Freshly.com

The Subscription

When you register at Freshly.com you are signing up for a weekly subscription service.  After your first delivery, Freshly will automatically bill you and send you your meals each week.  When subscribing you will first select how many meals you want per week.  Note that the more meals you get per week the cheaper each meal will be.  Then you choose what day of the week you want your food to be delivered.  Keep in mind that they only deliver Tuesday through Saturday.  Then you choose which meals you want from their menu.  And lastly you enter your billing and shipping information.  And that’s it!  All you have to do now is wait for your food to arrive.

Sign up process | Freshly.com

The Menu – Decisions, Decisions

Their website is very user friendly.  It better be since you’ll have to visit it quite often to select your meals for the week.  As you can imagine, they have a page dedicated to their menu.  The basic view of the menu has the approximate 30 meals broken up into entrees and breakfasts.  The entrees include pastas, grilled chicken, steak, roasted turkey, meatballs, etc.  Meantime their limited breakfast options include frittatas, omelettes, and porridge. There are some vegetarian meals but not many.  To help narrow down your meal options they provide filters where you select what products you want filtered out.  The filters include options such as dairy, eggs, pork, tree nuts, chicken, beef, etc.  Besides filters, they also provide high-level descriptions of each meal, the ingredients, and nutritional facts.  Because my goal is to eat less calories, this information is very helpful to make sure I am not choosing high calorie options.  Overall the menu is easy to use.

Delivery – It’s like Christmas every week!

On the day of your delivery Freshly will drop off  a box with all your meals for the week.  The box will be heavier than expected because, unlike other food delivery services that use an unrecyclable styrofoam box, Freshly uses a cardboard box with plastic covered recycled denim for insulation and a few bags of some kind of non-toxic frozen gel as a substitute for ice to keep the meals cool while they are shipped to you.  Freshly explains that their packaging is specially made so that your meals can handle 2 days of shipping plus an additional 12 hours in case of problems during shipping.

Packaging | Freshly.com

Your meal is served

This is what it all comes down to.  How painful is it to serve yourself a meal?  Well I can tell you it is virtually painless.  Here’s what you do.  Grab a meal from the fridge.  Slide out the black container from the cardboard wrapper.  Using your fork poke a few holes on opposite corners of the clear plastic cover making sure to make as much popping noise as possible to let everyone else know you are about to make a delicious meal in a matter of minutes.  Put the container in the microwave for the time specified on the cardboard wrapper, usually between 3 and 4 minutes.  Then let is sit for another 2 minutes to allow it to let out some steam.  Peel off the clear plastic cover and serve.  At this point you can either eat it right out of the container or plate it for a more visually pleasing meal.  I’ve plated my meals from the start and never looked back.  So much more enjoyable.  Either way, it will take you somewhere between 4 to 5 minutes from start to finish to prepare your meal.  I’d say that is pretty darn fast!

I’m no photographer but here is the Southwest Chicken Bowl as shown on Freshly.com compared to a picture I took of my meal when I plated it at the office just before I scarfed it down before a meeting.  Although my lighting conditions weren’t set up for taking pictures of food, I can tell you that the colors, flavors, and textures are pretty close to their images.  The portions are also just as generous.

Southwest Chicken Bowl | Freshly.com

 

Southwest Chicken Bowl | TechForDad.com

Planning Next Week’s Meals – You mean there’s work involved?!

Once you’ve signed up and prepared your meals for the first week of your subscription you’ll want to visit the website once a week in order to change your meals for the upcoming week.  If you don’t change it Freshly will send you the same meals you received the last time.  Note that there is a cut-off of about 5-6 days before your shipment delivery date to update your meals so put it on your calendar.

Tips – and I don’t mean dolla’ bills ya’ll!

Here are some final tips based on what I’ve learned so far.

  • Make this an addition to your weekly meals circulation versus eating it every day.  Why?  Because you’ll burn out on this food just like you would with any restaurant.  We initially got the 12 meals a week with the plan of eating a Freshly dinner 6 days a week.  Yeah, not a good idea.  Instead we decided on a 6 meals a week plan where we each ate 3 Freshly meals and 4 take out meals.
  • I honestly suggest you plate your meal.  It is much more enjoyable that way!  When I have time I like to look at the picture on Freshly.com and try and plate it similarly.
  • Do not forget to review your meals for the following week.  My wife and I forgot to change it for the first 3 weeks!  Not to mention that we were on the 12 meals a week plan.  We eventually gave some away to our families because they didn’t fit in our fridge.  LOL
  • If you change the delivery date, make sure to skip a week for delivery or else you’ll get double the orders in one week.  Let me explain.  We were initially getting deliveries on Saturday.  We then changed it to Tuesday.  Because we were too late to change/cancel our Saturday delivery, we received our shipment on Saturday AND our shipment on Tuesday.
  • When you receive your box, put your meals in the fridge and recycle the box immediately. Although Freshly uses green packaging by using denim and gel for insulation and maintaining cold while in transport, the cardboard box will eventually begin to leak water and I believe some of that gel all over your floor.

To make a long story short…

For someone as busy as my wife and I this product is awesome.  No cooking, simple clean up, and delicious food makes Freshly the ideal food delivery subscription service.  Their website is easy to use making changing your meals every week straightforward.  Although they could do with changing more of their menu every week, they have plenty of options that allows you to choose from the same menu for 2 to 3 weeks before really needing a completely fresh menu.  Overall, I recommend you try Freshly.  If you’re already short on cooking time, are tired of the same take out every day, or already spend a lot of money on buying lunch and dinner every day, you can’t lose if you try this service.  Plus, it’s only a weekly subscription so you can cancel fairly quickly.

OK, now it’s your turn.  Grab your promo code!

Unfortunately, Freshly’s promo codes only last 24 hours through their refer-a-friend program which requires I enter an individual email address to generate a promo email.  So if you are interested in trying it out leave me a comment, include your email address, and I’ll send you a promo code.  If you order their 6-meal plan through my email you get two meals for free in your first order.  Not a bad deal, right?!  Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Promo update: I was able to get a promo that will give you 30% off your first order and it won’t require you leaving me a comment.  If you choose the 6 meal plan you’ll get 3% less of a discount than if you sent me your email address.  But if you choose any other plan, this promo is better.  Enjoy!

8 comments

  1. This is an excellent idea for busy people and the fact that everything can be recycled is a real win, win!

    Way to go!

    Do they have a Canadian location?

    Also, are they Vegan and Vegetarian friendly?

    Thanks

    • Hi Becky,

      Thanks for checking out my review. I went on their website and here’s what I found:

      Do they have a Canadian location?
      Unfortunate, no they do not. As of this post they only deliver food within the United States. “Our meals are designed to be safe for two full days of shipping, plus an additional 12 hours. There are some areas of the country to which our carriers cannot guarantee delivery within that timeframe based on the location of our main kitchen in Arizona. We want your food to arrive fresh, after all! Unfortunately, this means that we cannot deliver to all areas of the country but we are working on expanding our outreach.” I do hear they are opening up a second location on the east coast later this year. I haven’t heard about opening up a kitchen in Canada. Sorry.

      Are they Vegan and Vegetarian friendly?
      “You will always find vegetarian options on our menu. While we do not develop meals to be vegan, some of our vegetarian options are often vegan friendly! Just take a look at the ingredient statements online.”

  2. I’m wondering if someone has to be home to take delivery of the shipment? I know it’s best to be there, but some days, Murphy’s law takes over despite your best intentions!

    Have you missed a delivery yet? How was it handled?

    • Hi Laurie,

      Thanks for checking out my post.

      Does someone have to be home to take delivery of the shipment?
      First of all, I like your use of Murphy’s law. LOL. You don’t need someone to be at home to take delivery of the shipment. Freshly has hired a third party company that will delivery your box right to your door without requiring a signature in order to ensure that you get your food in a timely manner since they are perishable.

      Have you missed a delivery yet? How was it handled?
      I’m interpreting your question in a couple of different ways so I’ll try and answer both.
      – Because we don’t need to be there to accept the delivery, the box is just there in the morning when we open the door. Never missed in receiving a delivery.
      – If you mean, has Freshly missed delivering a package, the answer is no, they have not. Freshly specifically says on their website that “our meals are designed to be safe for two full days of shipping, plus an additional 12 hours.” With that known, our deliveries were within 1 day of shipment, so it was great. During the first day of shipping of one of our boxes Freshly contacted my wife and let her know that our package will not be delivered in the usual 1 day we have received them in the past. There was a minor delay and instead will be delivered by the 2nd day. We felt the heads up unnecessary but their proactive customer service helped re-enforce how great a company this is.

  3. I love food from all over the world food is very enjoyment for the human beings just like sex. In the world today there many different cousins from different countries with different recipes which makes your mouth watering like the dishes in your site.

    • Abdulrahman,

      Whoa! You, sir, are very comfortable with yourself. And I definitely appreciate that. Just caught me a bit off guard, that’s all. Hahaha! But, yes, I agree. I love tasting all types of food. I would say that you must keep an open mind when you try other foods so that you may discover why people like those flavors versus what you may be used to at home. Good point! Thanks!

  4. Sound like a wonderful service. Do you know if it available all over or that they ship everywhere. I will need to check their site to see what meals are available, but from the article, seems like they do. Are the meals labeled with nutrition information and calorie counts.

    • Hi James,

      Thanks for checking out my review. Freshly follows a 2 day shipping time to ensure you get good quality food. They currently cover a lot but not all of the United States mainly due to the fact that their cooking facility and kitchen is in Phoenix, Arizona. They’ve mentioned that there will be a new kitchen on the east coast by end of 2017 hopefully allowing them to cover most of the US. The first thing they ask you to do as part of the sign up is to enter your ZIP code to ensure they can deliver to your location. Give it a try!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *