There's a box for that: Meals

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A Freshly meal (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A Freshly meal (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
A Hello Fresh box (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A Hello Fresh box (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
A Hello Fresh recipe card (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A Hello Fresh recipe card (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

There's a nagging question every night at my house that burdens me to no end: "What's for dinner?"  So with a busy family, I was anxious to try a couple of food/meal boxes. 

I ordered from two very different types of companies.  

Freshly delivers ready-made, healthy meals, only requiring three minutes in the microwave to prepare.  

Meanwhile, Blue Apron sends fresh ingredients and detailed instructions for preparing healthy meals yourself.  

Both got high marks from me for different reasons: 9 out of 10!

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The growing trend of meal kits and prepared food boxes continues to explode. So I put two companies to the test looking at value, convenience and taste for a busy family.

The first one I tried is called Hello Fresh. They offer various monthly subscriptions with no strings attached. You pick the meal from about a dozen offered each week and you choose when it’s delivered.

Each meal comes with a recipe card featuring step-by-step instructions, an ingredient list and nutritional information to guide you. Hello Fesh portions and packs all the ingredients for each meal in individual kits, which was great! No planning, no shopping.

It made cooking fun and less stressful! I made the Thyme Gravy Chicken. The recipe was easy to follow but I thought it took a little longer than the estimated prep and cooking time of 45 minutes. It probably took me a little over an hour.  

My kids loved this meal; it included chicken, mashed potatoes gravy and roasted carrots. It was portioned well.

I used a first-time customer coupon so the entire dinner for my family of five cost about $27 dollars.

For the quality of the food and taste, I thought it was priced well.  

I give Hello Fresh an 8 out of 10. 

The second company I tried is Sunfare. This company is known for delivering daily fresh and healthy prepared meals. So again, no planning, no shopping, plus no cooking! It's complete convenience for a busy working family.

My three third-graders (triplets!) have an extracurricular activity every weeknight except for Mondays so many times, I bring in food or we eat on the go -- not the healthiest dinners.

Sunfare offers a family meal program; you can pick whichever day you’d like food delivered.

We chose the Crunchy Enchilada Chicken dinner. It included the chicken, Mexican rice, a Cesar salad, grilled zucchini and squash and strawberries. I ordered for a family of five and there was plenty of food; we had enough for leftovers for the next days. So they had great portions.  

All we had to do was plate the food and heat it up in the microwave -- very easy.

The kids thought the food was just OK; they didn’t love it. But they’re also somewhat picky.  

My husband and I enjoyed the dinner; it was tasty.

The cost was about $75 -- not cheap. It might be worth it for other dishes that my kids really love, but not this one.

I did love the convenience and the program and meal options.

All things considered, I give Sunfare a 7. 

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