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I haven’t received a HelloFresh box in a while. Just before the Thanksgiving holiday, I signed up to receive a box with the intention of learning to make new recipes to help me get back on track after the holidays. By “back on track”, I mean exercising portion-control, using fresh produce and eating nutrient-rich meals without overdoing it. That’s pretty much the opposite of everything Travis stands for, so it’s important to me to snag at least a handful of HelloFresh boxes per year.
Sure you can have a healthy holiday meal, but we all have a tendency to gorge and cheat a bit, eating things we normally would not. Do YOU eat pumpkin pie every day? You can call it homemade all you want, but it’s still not something you eat every day. Getting back on track after the holidays + leftovers is easy with HelloFresh.
If you’re not familiar with HelloFresh, it is a weekly subscription box that delivers fresh food to your door with pre-measured ingredients so you have just enough not to have leftovers. What I love most about it is that it’s restaurant style quality (and I’m not talking Applebee’s), fresh produce and proteins and best of all, no leftovers.
There are literally three plastic storage containers that have been hanging out in my sink for like three days, waiting for a safe moment to be opened, disinfected and cleaned, followed by mad amounts of open windows, soy candles and air freshener. We don’t do leftovers.
In this week’s HelloFresh box, we tried Sweet Potato Pita Wraps, Chicken Schnitzel Sandwiches and Teriyaki-Glazed Meatballs. It looks like they’ve changed up the packaging a bit. Instead of everything coming in labeled bags, the ingredients for each recipe come in a box. That makes it easier to sort out.
Sweet Potato Pita Wraps
with Shaved Vegetable Salad
Nutrition per person
Calories: 770 cal | Carbs: 118 g | Fat: 29 g | Protein: 21g | Fiber: 20g | Sodium: 564 mg
I wasn’t sure about the idea of sweet potatoes as a substitute to a meat/seafood/poultry protein, but I was pleasantly surprised with this wrap. It catered to every flavor palate and texture when served with the Shaved Vegetable Salad, which is fantastic for me because I’m mostly a fan of savory. I like to compliment savory with cool and refreshing, but not too sweet. Both of these recipes make for a great Meatless Monday, whether for lunch or dinner.
The Wrap: I thought the sweet potatoes and golden raisins would make Sweet Potato Pita Wraps too sweet for me, but the addition of cumin, red onion and garlic added just enough savory to the sweet potatoes so that the golden raisins still stood out just enough. The hummus really added the moisture needed to offset the baked sweet potatoes and crunchy almonds. A pita wrap with warm ingredients is not something I’m used to, but I was pleasantly surprised. If you want, you can even ditch the pita (saving calories and carbs) and just mix everything else up as a main course for lunch or dinner. I admit, I ate some out of the pan with a spoon.
The Salad: The warmth of the pita wrap ingredients was offset by the cool, fresh shaved vegetable salad with cucumber, tomatoes, carrot, lemon zest, mint, olive oil, a squeeze of lemon, and a pinch of salt and pepper, all tossed together. I did find that the mixture was more flavorful if allowed to sit for a while. You could even let it sit overnight.
The other thing that didn’t occur to me, even though I own one, is that you can use a vegetable spiralizer instead of a vegetable peeler (aka potato peeler) to shred your cucumber (especially) and maybe carrots. I didn’t like how my cucumbers came out with the peeler, but the salad was GREAT.
I would definitely eat this for lunch at my work outside of the home job, as a way to get my veggies for dinner (because of The Anti-Veg, Travis) and I’d even serve it a barbecue party as a side dish.
Teriyaki Glazed Meatballs
with Crunchy Cabbage Slaw
and Basmati Rice
Nutrition per person
Calories: 650 cal | Carbs: 89g | Fat: 17g | Protein: 37 g | Fiber: 7 g | Sodium: 1292mg
I think we’ve had these meatballs before in a previous HelloFresh box. The crunchy cabbage slaw is new. I love being able to recreate Asian meals at home, especially since it costs a lot less to do so than eating out. I’m not a huge fan of touching raw meat (i.e. making hamburgers, meatloaf or meatballs at home), but for some reason when all the ingredients are laid out for you and pre-measured it takes the sting out of what I consider to be the hard part.
It’s not even that it’s really that hard, but it’s the adulting part I don’t like. I have to eat, I have to feed. That means I have to form shaped meat with my hands.
The Meatballs: The finished product was super moist and I loved the fact that I could hide the scallions in them. (Greens 1 – Travis 0). With a cooking time of less than 20 minutes, it can’t be beat for an easy weeknight dinner, especially if you time everything out so it’s all done at the same time. You can’t get delivery that fast (most of the time).
The Slaw: When I think of slaw, I think of coleslaw. Coleslaw has a tendency to be over-saturated with a milky liquid and while it can retain its crunch, it tends to get a bit too soggy for me. This crunchy cabbage slaw is easy to prepare. If you want to cut down on the prep time, you can sub pre-shredded carrots for freshly shaved carrots. The ginger and vinegar really lured my taste buds in, not to mention the soy. To cut down on the sodium, you could always ditch the soy sauce or go with a low-sodium soy sauce or soy sauce alternative. Since I prefer savory over sweet, this salad was perfect for me, even though it still had a sweetness.
Chicken Schnitzel sandwiches
and Tangy Red Cabbage Slaw
Nutrition per person
Calories: 796 cal | Carbs: 63g | Fat: 35 g | Protein: 56g | Fiber: 7 g | Sodium: 618 mg
If sandwiches are your go-to lunch, then you’re probably constantly craving new ideas for portable sandwiches beyond lunch meat and cheese or tuna sandwiches, egg salad sandwiches or just plain cheese sandwiches. Heck, you might even be eating PB&J sammies.
One of my biggest hurdles working full-time outside of the home is conjuring up enough meals for lunch so that I don’t grow tired of my options. I can’t count the number of times I brought something (especially leftovers) for lunch only to not be “in the mood” for what I brought, ending up grabbing fast-food or dining out.
At the lowest price point, you could spend a dollar on a sandwich and 60 to 75 cents on a bag of chips in the vending machine and drink water. That NEVER happens with me. The lowest amount I spend on fast food is $4 plus tax. No matter what, I cannot get ANYTHING with Gruyère cheese for less than $8 and when I do, goodness knows what I’m really eating.
I forgot about posting my #whatsfordinner posts until I got my latest @hellofresh box. This is the first time I’ve had a sammy in my box. Stay tuned to the blog #linkinprofile for more details. #hellofreshpics #foodporn #instayum
“I forgot about posting my #whatsfordinner posts until I got my latest @hellofresh box. This is the first time I’ve had a sammy in my box. Stay tuned to…”
I am loving the idea of cabbage slaw now versus traditional coleslaw. I’ve learned a lot from this HelloFresh box. I get my veggies during the day with mostly savory flavors, a hint of tangy sweetness and proteins. While you might not think of this as a meal you can take to work for leftovers, if you have a toaster oven it’s definitely doable and so worth it.
My biggest accomplishment to date with HelloFresh is successfully cooking a breaded chicken. I am so proud of this and now I can use this technique in so many other recipes. Plus, I honestly had never used the butterfly method on a chicken breast. For the cheese, you don’t necessarily have to score a whole block of Gruyère. There are tons of other cheeses you can use that are comparable.
At our local Kroger, they put out itty bitty blocks of cheese for around $3-$4 that can be used to create a recipe like this. It’s just enough without going over, even though I’ll be the first to tell you I don’t mind extra or leftover cheese. I’m a cheeseaholic.
This HelloFresh box was a lot different that any other I’ve tried. I had never seen sandwiches before, as well as slaws that were atypical of the average coleslaw. I definitely found a new take on red cabbage, white wine vinegar, carrots, ginger, cucumbers and sweet potatoes for sure. The star side dish was red cabbage. I never knew how versatile red cabbage could be.
I really felt like I could eat healthy lunches without having to endure the same old leftovers. Since we’re trying to save money, that’s super important to me. The cost of HelloFresh can seem daunting at first, but the benefits of learning how to prepare and cook new meals, as well as use new ingredients are totally worth it.
If you’re looking to get back on track after bingeing over the holidays, try just ONE HelloFresh box. You won’t be sorry!