HelloFresh and Sunbasket are two companies aiming to make healthy eating easy and fun with their flavorful meal kits.
While both can be good options to improve your culinary confidence, there are several key differences between the two services to consider.
This article reviews some of the pros and cons of HelloFresh and Sunbasket to help you determine which is right for you. We’ve tried each meal delivery service and included feedback based on firsthand experience.
|Basics||• provides meal kits with premeasured ingredients and simple recipes|
• offers plans with 2–6 recipes and 2 or 4 servings each
|• provides organic meal kits and oven-ready meals|
• offers plans for multiple dietary patterns
• provides 2–5 recipes per week with 2 or 4 servings each
|Menu options||• rotating menu with more than 30 meal kits per week|
• offers calorie-smart, carb-smart, pescatarian, and vegetarian options
|• rotating menu with 17 meal kits and 16 oven-ready entrees|
• offers low calorie, gluten-free, vegetarian, paleo, Mediterranean, and diabetes-friendly meals
• optional add-ons available, including breakfast, lunch, and snacks
|Cost||• 2 servings: $8.49–11.99 per serving|
• 4 servings: $7.99–$9.49 per serving
• Shipping: $9.99 per box
|• Fresh & Ready meals: $9.99–$15.49 per serving|
• Meal kits: $11.49–$17.99 per serving
• shipping calculated based on location
|Effectiveness||• Calorie-smart, carb-smart, and vegetarian options may promote weight loss.|
• Preparing more meals at home may aid weight loss.
|• Low calorie, high protein, and fiber-rich meals may support weight loss.|
• Caters to dietary patterns linked to weight loss.
• Encourages preparing more home-cooked meals.
• offers a variety of meals
• mostly recyclable packaging
|• nutritious, dietitian-approved meals|
• high quality ingredients
• eco-friendly packaging
• add-ons available
• offers meals that require little preparation
|Downsides||• limited options for restrictive diets|
• unsuitable for those with severe food allergies
• uses conventional ingredients
|• limited options for restrictive diets|
• relatively expensive
• unsuitable for those with celiac disease or severe food allergies
Here’s a brief overview of each service.
HelloFresh provides meal kits for simple and delicious dinners.
“My favorite aspect of HelloFresh is the meal selection process. In addition to being able to choose meals from any of the company’s menus, I also appreciated that the service labels meals as ‘easy cleanup’ and ‘easy prep,’” says Kelli McGrane, who is a registered dietitian and Healthline’s nutrition and fitness market editor.
Each kit includes preportioned ingredients and a recipe card with easy-to-follow instructions.
The service has a rotating menu with various recipes to choose from. You can mix and match recipes to create a custom meal plan.
Each week, you can order 2–6 recipes with 2 or 4 servings each, depending on your needs.
HelloFresh pros at a glance
- offers large rotating menu with more than 30 items to choose from each week
- features simple recipes with premeasured ingredients
HelloFresh cons at a glance
- limited menu items for those with certain dietary restrictions; not many plant-based options
- may not be suitable for people with severe food allergies
- doesn’t offer any prepared meals
- uses conventional ingredients
Sunbasket is a meal delivery service that specializes in providing high quality meal kits and oven-ready dinners.
The service offers plans to suit a variety of dietary restrictions and food preferences:
- Mediterranean: meals rich in protein, fiber, and heart-healthy fats
- Chef’s Choice: a variety of meals with fresh, seasonal ingredients
- Vegetarian: meals without any meat, fish, or poultry
- Pescatarian: plant-based meals that include wild-caught seafood
- Carb-Conscious: meals containing 25–35 grams of net carbs per serving
- Diabetes-Friendly: meals approved by the American Diabetes Association
- Fresh & Ready: meals that are ready to enjoy in 20 minutes or less
- Paleo: meals that are high in protein and made without corn, dairy, grains, or soy
- Gluten-Free: meals that are free of added gluten and use wheat alternatives
- Lean & Clean: healthy meals that are low in calories and rich in important nutrients
Each week, you can select two or more recipes with either two or four servings each.
Sunbasket also offers an assortment of breakfast, lunch, and snack items, which you can order individually.
“As someone who enjoys cooking but often finds themselves in a recipe rut, my favorite aspect about Sunbasket is the variety of ingredients and flavors used in its dishes. Unlike many other meal delivery services, most of the recipes offered by Sunbasket are ones that I wouldn’t have thought to make on my own,” says McGrane.
Sunbasket pros at a glance
- offers meal kits and oven-ready meals
- provides options suitable for several dietary preferences
- features high quality ingredients and organic produce
- uses eco-friendly packaging
Sunbasket cons at a glance
- may not be suitable for those with severe food allergies or celiac disease
- limited options for people with certain dietary restrictions
Here’s a look at meals you can expect to enjoy with each service.
HelloFresh boasts an extensive rotating menu with at least 30 options to choose from each week.
Here are a few examples of recipes on the menu:
- Garden Spinach Ricotta Ravioli
- Alpine Mushroom and Swiss Panini with Potato Wedges and Garlic Aioli
- Garlic Butter Shrimp Scampi Over Spaghetti with Roasted Broccoli
- Creamy Caramelized Onion Chicken with Apple, Walnut, and Carrot Ribbon Salad
Items that are vegetarian, calorie-smart, carb-smart, and spicy are labeled so on the menu.
McGrane gives kudos to HelloFresh for its excellent family-friendly recipes.
“The service also does a good job of providing a variety of protein types each week,” she says. “However, I’d like to see the service experiment with a wider variety of vegetables and seasonings in the future.”
Sunbasket offers around 17 meal kits and 16 Fresh & Ready entrees each week. “Out of all of the meal delivery services I’ve tried, Sunbasket is consistently the best when it comes to ingredient freshness and flavor variety,” says McGrane.
Sunbasket offers fewer meal kit options and doesn’t have a ton of vegan options.
“While the service does have a vegan menu, it’s typically limited to just three or four options each week, making it a not-so-great option if you’re vegan and a picky eater,” she says.
That being said, HelloFresh does not offer a vegan menu.
Here are some examples of meals available on the weekly menu:
- Chicken Larb Lettuce Cups with Carrots and Fresh Mint
- Seared Steaks with Roasted Red Pepper Ajvar and Cauliflower
- Tex-Mex Vegetable Fajitas with Cheesy Refried Beans and Achiote Crema
- Salmon Cakes with Tahini Goddess Dressing and Celery-Radish Salad
When selecting your meals, you can easily filter the menu to find options that are vegan, paleo, low calorie, or free of gluten, soy, or dairy.
You can also order optional add-ons for breakfast or lunch, such as oatmeal cups, grain salads, and mini pizzas.
Here is a breakdown of how much each service costs.
HelloFresh has several subscription options, which vary in price based on the number of servings and recipes you order.
Here’s how much you can expect to pay for HelloFresh:
- Two servings: $8.49–11.99 per serving
- Four servings: $7.99–$9.49 per serving
HelloFresh is currently available throughout the contiguous United States, and there’s a delivery fee of $9.99 for all subscriptions.
“The service offers a wide variety of meals to choose from each week and makes it easy to pick recipes that best fit your food and cooking preferences. With that said, I’ve used HelloFresh several times, and each time at least one item arrived damaged, rotten, or expired,” says McGrane.
Sunbasket’s price depends on the type of meals you order and the number of recipes and servings you select.
For example, Sunbasket meal kits typically cost $11.49–$17.99 per serving. Meal kits that feature premium ingredients like steak or salmon are generally more expensive.
Fresh & Ready meals are slightly cheaper at $9.99–$15.49 per serving.
The prices of add-ons like breakfasts, lunches, and snacks vary by item.
Shipping is available throughout most of the contiguous United States. You can check for availability by entering your zip code on the website.
Sunbasket also charges a flat fee for delivery, which is calculated upon checkout and based on your location.
Both HelloFresh and Sunbasket offer menu options that could be beneficial for weight loss.
HelloFresh offers several calorie-smart entrees, which provide around 650 calories per serving.
HelloFresh also labels meals that are vegetarian or carb-smart, meaning they’re tailored to those who follow a low carb diet. Both vegetarian and low carb dietary patterns have been tied to weight loss (
Furthermore, HelloFresh is designed to make cooking easier and help you prepare more healthy meals on your own.
Sunbasket offers various high protein meals, with many dishes providing 30–50 grams of protein per serving.
Increasing your protein intake could make you feel less hungry, which may be beneficial for weight loss (
Plus, many meals are low in calories. Decreasing your daily calorie intake can be an effective weight loss strategy (
Here are some of the other benefits associated with each service.
HelloFresh starts at just $7.99 per serving and can be an affordable alternative to many other meal kit services on the market.
It offers a wide variety of meals and allows you to select meals from the full menu to customize your weekly plan.
Plus, it provides recipes that include 1–4 servings each, making it easy to find an option that suits your needs.
HelloFresh uses mostly recyclable packaging to help minimize environmental impact.
All Sunbasket meals are dietitian-approved and highly nutritious. In fact, all the meals are rich in essential nutrients like protein and fiber.
Sunbasket uses fresh and seasonal ingredients, including organic fruits and veggies, responsibly raised meat, and sustainably sourced seafood.
Plus, the service uses packaging made mostly from recyclable materials, all of which can be reused, recycled, or composted.
Sunbasket stands out from other services by offering additional meals and snacks beyond dinner.
What’s more, Sunbasket provides both meal kits and oven-ready entrees for added convenience, many of which are ready to enjoy in as little as 6 minutes.
Here are a few of the downsides to consider with each service.
Although HelloFresh features a rotating menu with a wide selection of recipes, it offers limited options for those following gluten-free, vegan, ketogenic, or paleo diets.
Additionally, the meal kits are not made in an allergen-free facility and may not be suitable for people with severe food allergies because of the risk of cross contamination.
“I’ve found the quality of the ingredients to be inconsistent,” says McGrane. “While the majority of the ingredients arrive fresh and in good condition, twice I’ve received chicken that had a small puncture hole in the packaging, so the chicken was bad by the time it arrived. I’ve also received damaged or rotted vegetables and garlic.”
Additionally, while some meal kits contain organic ingredients, many also have conventional produce.
This may be an issue for individuals who prefer to eat organic because of concerns about pesticide exposure or the potential long-term health effects of conventional produce (
With prices ranging from $9.99–$17.99 per serving, Sunbasket can be relatively expensive compared with similar meal delivery services.
Although Sunbasket offers meals for various eating patterns, options for those following more restrictive diets, like vegan or ketogenic diets, may be limited.
Sunbasket meals are produced in a facility that handles many major food allergens, so they may not be safe for those with severe food allergies.
Additionally, Sunbasket’s gluten-free menu is unsuitable for people with celiac disease, as the meals may contain trace amounts of gluten.
Are HelloFresh and Sunbasket healthy?
Both HelloFresh and Sunbasket make it easy to prepare fresh and nutritious meals at home to support better health.
While either service can be a great addition to a healthy, well-rounded diet, it’s important to consider your dietary needs, health goals, and food preferences when deciding which is better for you.
Which meal kit has more of a variety?
HelloFresh offers a larger selection of meal kits, with at least 30 recipes to choose from on its rotating menu each week.
Though Sunbasket typically features only about 17 meal kits to choose from each week, it also offers 16 oven-ready meals and caters to an assortment of diet plans, with a variety of paleo, Mediterranean, vegan, and gluten-free options to choose from.
Are HelloFresh and Sunbasket meal kit ingredients USDA-certified organic?
According to Sunbasket, the company aims to use 99% USDA-certified organic fresh produce, eggs, and dairy products in its meal kits and oven-ready meals.
On the other hand, while some HelloFresh recipes feature organic ingredients, the company uses mostly conventional produce in its meals.
HelloFresh and Sunbasket are two delivery services popular for their healthy and delicious meal kits.
While HelloFresh is more affordable and provides multiple serving size options, it may not be ideal for those with certain dietary restrictions.
“I would recommend HelloFresh to families or people who prefer more classic, American-style recipes,” says McGrane. “The service does a good job of providing a variety of protein types each week.”
Meanwhile, although Sunbasket is slightly more expensive, it has selections for several dietary patterns and offers optional add-ons like breakfast and lunch items.
“Sunbasket is a great fit if you’re looking to try new ingredients or flavors. It’s also a great option if you value organic produce, sustainable seafood, and responsibly raised meats — all of which are high quality,” she says.