Can you get gluten-free with HelloFresh?

HelloFresh is one of the most popular meal kit delivery services, shipping over a million meals per month to customers across the United States and other countries. The convenience and variety offered by HelloFresh appeals to many home cooks who want to cut down on meal planning and grocery shopping time.

However, for those with dietary restrictions like gluten intolerance or celiac disease, deciding whether HelloFresh is the right choice can be tricky. Gluten-free meal options are limited compared to traditional plans. So can you really get gluten-free with HelloFresh?

What is HelloFresh?

HelloFresh launched in Europe in 2011 before expanding to the U.S. market in 2017. The meal kit delivery service ships pre-portioned ingredients and easy-to-follow recipes right to your door. Customers can choose from a variety of weekly menus and recipes online. Packages arrive in insulated boxes with fresh ingredients and illustrated recipe cards for each meal.

The convenience of getting measured ingredients and recipes delivered is a major reason for HelloFresh’s popularity. The service offers a more varied, homemade alternative to boring frozen meals or takeout. HelloFresh also claims their pre-portioned ingredients lead to less food waste compared to grocery shopping.

While prices vary, HelloFresh meals average about $8-$12 per serving. The service offers a variety of core plans as well as add-ons like gourmet recipes, extra proteins, smoothie kits, and more.

Gluten-Free Options from HelloFresh

When it comes to specialized diets like gluten-free, HelloFresh offers a few alternatives:

Gluten-Free Plan

HelloFresh’s gluten-free meal plan features recipes that avoid wheat, barley, rye, and contaminated ingredients. The dishes are tagged with a gluten-free label and use ingredients that are certified gluten-free.

The gluten-free menu options rotate weekly but tend to include recipes like:

  • Chicken piccata with broccoli & gluten-free fusilli
  • Pork tenderloin with apple chutney & roasted carrots
  • Shrimp and grits with zucchini
  • Chili-glazed salmon with corn salsa & baked potato

The gluten-free meal plan costs a bit more than the classic plans, starting at $11.99 per serving with free shipping.

Gluten-Free Add-On

Instead of getting the full gluten-free plan, you can add 2-3 gluten-free entrees as an add-on to the traditional HelloFresh classic plans for $3 per serving. This gives you a chance to test out the gluten-free recipes while still enjoying HelloFresh’s wider menu variety.

Quick Swap

One final option is to order the standard HelloFresh recipes and use their “Quick Swap” feature to swap out key ingredients like buns, pasta, soy sauce, etc. with gluten-free alternatives. The substitutions are clearly marked on each recipe card.

Keep in mind the meal won’t be prepared or shipped in a fully gluten-free environment. But using the quick swap allows you to DIY more gluten-free dishes without being limited to the preset gluten-free menu.

Pros of Choosing HelloFresh for Gluten-Free

Here are some of the main benefits of choosing HelloFresh for gluten-free meal kits:

Menu Variety

While limited compared to traditional plans, the rotating weekly gluten-free menu does offer nice variety. HelloFresh develops and tests gluten-free recipes like chipotle beef bowls, creamy mushroom pasta, chicken enchiladas, and more. So it’s a tasty change from trying to meal prep your own gluten-free dishes from scratch each week.

Pre-Portioned Ingredients

Getting perfectly measured gluten-free ingredients delivered saves time and hassle compared to weighing and measuring everything yourself during grocery shopping. There’s less waste since you use what you need.

Fewer Cross-Contamination Worries

HelloFresh facilities follow strict protocols to avoid cross-contamination for gluten-free meals. All meal kits ship with gluten-free ingredients that weren’t exposed to gluten during storage or preparation.

Nutritional Info Provided

HelloFresh makes it easy to see the nutrition facts for each gluten-free meal including calories, carbs, fat, protein, etc. This helps ensure you’re getting balanced nutrition in your diet.

Time Savings

Let’s face it — prepping gluten-free dishes from scratch is time consuming! Finding recipes, shopping for ingredients, prepping and cooking each meal eats up hours. Having ingredients and recipes conveniently delivered saves a ton of meal planning and cooking time each week.

Potential Cons of Going Gluten-Free with HelloFresh

However, there are also a few drawbacks to keep in mind:

Higher Cost

The specialized gluten-free plan costs $2-3 more per serving compared to standard HelloFresh recipes. While the quick swap or add-on options help lower the costs a bit, you’ll still pay a premium for gluten-free convenience.

Limited Gluten-Free Options

Typically only 2-3 gluten-free entree choices are available per week. If you want more variety, the wider HelloFresh menu offers 10-15 recipes to pick from including pizza, sandwiches, pasta and more that aren’t gluten-free friendly.

Potential Errors

Despite their precautions, ingredients could get mixed up or exposed to gluten during the fulfillment process in rare cases. It’s smart to double check your shipments just in case.

Added Carbs/Fats

To make gluten-free recipes tasty, extra oils, butter, rice flour etc. are often added during development. This can boost calories, carbs, and fat compared to naturally gluten-free whole foods. Check nutrition info if you’re monitoring these metrics.

Gluten Present in Facility

Keep in mind that while ingredients are gluten-free, HelloFresh does store and handle gluten-containing foods in their facilities. If you’re highly sensitive, even small amounts of cross-contact gluten could be an issue.

HelloFresh Gluten-Free Meal Options

To give a better idea of what kinds of gluten-free dishes HelloFresh offers, here are a few specific examples of recipes featured on their gluten-free plan:

Recipe Description
Tex-Mex Turkey Stuffed Peppers Bell peppers stuffed with ground turkey, veggies, Mexican spices, and Parmesan cheese
Pork Tenderloin with Green Beans & Roasted Potatoes Marinated and roasted pork tenderloin with a side of green beans and seasoned roasted potatoes
Chicken Tagine with Carrots & Apricots Braised Moroccan-style chicken made with carrots, dried apricots, spices, and chickpeas
Shrimp & Creamy Polenta Bowl Seared shrimp served over soft polenta with creamy sauce, spinach, and sun-dried tomatoes

These give a glimpse into the flavors and variety included in HelloFresh’s gluten-free recipes. While week-to-week options vary, the dishes tend to include proteins like chicken, pork, turkey, shrimp and lean beef paired with veggie sides and sauce.

Does HelloFresh Have Desserts and Snacks for Gluten-Free Diets?

In addition to main entrees, HelloFresh has also expanded their menu to include gluten-free dessert and snack options:

Gluten-Free Desserts

Those with a sweet tooth can enjoy select gluten-free treats like:

  • Lemon cupcakes with vanilla frosting
  • Fudgy cocoa brownies
  • Coconut macaroons
  • Chocolate chip cookies
  • Mixed berry crumble

Having gluten-free dessert choices makes it easier to cap off your meal without feeling deprived.

Gluten-Free Snack Add-Ons

For quicker meals or snacking, you can add gluten-free options like:

  • Sriracha roasted chickpeas
  • Spicy cauliflower fritters with tzatziki
  • Edamame guacamole with cassava chips
  • Nut power bites
  • Snack trays with gluten-free crackers, nuts, cheese

These gluten-free snacks provide grab-and-go options for your busier days.

What Steps Does HelloFresh Take to Avoid Gluten Cross-Contamination?

HelloFresh implements the following procedures to prevent gluten cross-contamination for gluten-free meals:

  • Gluten-Free Ingredients: All ingredients used in gluten-free recipes are certified gluten-free, with <5ppm gluten.
  • Separate Storage: Gluten-free ingredients are stored separately from other ingredients in sealed containers during transport and at fulfillment centers.
  • Sanitized Tools: Cooking tools and surfaces are thoroughly cleaned to avoid residual gluten.
  • Separate Processing: Gluten-free meals are prepared and packed in separate zones from gluten-containing foods.
  • Education: Employees undergo training on gluten cross-contamination risks and prevention strategies.
  • Testing: HelloFresh periodically lab tests prepared gluten-free meals to verify they contain undetectable gluten levels.

Following these protocols during fulfillment, cooking, and shipping helps provide assurance for those adhering to a strict gluten-free diet.

Of course, there’s always the rare possibility of human error resulting in cross-contamination. Check your shipments when they arrive and reach out to HelloFresh customer support if you have any concerns.

What Real Customers Are Saying About HelloFresh and Gluten-Free

Curious what real-life experience is like ordering gluten-free meal kits from HelloFresh? Here’s a sampling of customer reviews:

“I’ve been really happy with HelloFresh’s gluten-free options. I tried their gluten-free plan and never got sick. It’s given me new recipe ideas for my gluten-free diet.”

“The gluten-free meals from HelloFresh have been delicious! It’s nice to have pre-planned recipes instead of trying to plan everything myself. The only downside is there are fewer options compared to the regular plans.”

“I love HelloFresh but wish they had more gluten-free options each week. Out of 9-12 weekly recipes they usually only have 1-3 that are gluten-free. But the meals I’ve gotten so far have been amazing.”

“I signed up for the gluten-free plan but ended up cancelling after a couple weeks. I kept getting shipments with the wrong ingredients, so I didn’t feel confident it was 100% gluten-free.”

“I’ve been using the ‘Quick Swap’ feature to order standard recipes and just sub the gluten ingredients myself. Works great and gives me way more options.”

As you can see, most customers have been pleased with the taste and convenience of getting gluten-free recipes from HelloFresh. However, the limited choices and potential errors are disadvantages to keep in mind. Using the quick swap or add-on features can help expand your gluten-free variety.

Comparing HelloFresh to Other Gluten-Free Meal Delivery Services

HelloFresh isn’t the only game in town when it comes to gluten-free meal delivery. Here’s a quick comparison to a few other popular services:

Company Gluten-Free Options Price Per Serving
Green Chef Dedicatted gluten-free plans $12.99-$14.99
Purple Carrot 100% plant-based with gluten-free options $9.99-$11.99
Sun Basket Gluten-free recipes available $10.99-$12.99
Freshly Limited gluten-free meals $7.49-$9.99

While prices and offerings vary, companies like Green Chef and Purple Carrot cater specifically to gluten-free diets. Sun Basket and Freshly offer some gluten-free options, but have more limited choices compared to HelloFresh.

When it comes to cost, HelloFresh falls somewhere in the middle of the pack. Green Chef is pricier while Purple Carrot can be slightly cheaper for plant-based gluten-free meals.

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, is HelloFresh a viable option for gluten-free diets? Here’s the skinny:

  • Limited but tasty choices: Don’t expect tons of gluten-free variety, but the weekly options tend to be delicious.
  • Exercise caution: HelloFresh takes key precautions but gluten exposure is still possible in rare cases.
  • Extra cost: Plan to pay $2-$3 more per serving for the specialized gluten-free meals.
  • Easy customization: Build-your-own options let you swap regular ingredients for gluten-free.
  • Compare carefully: Other delivery services like Green Chef may have better gluten-free offerings at similar price points.

At the end of the day, convenience and deliciousness come at a cost. HelloFresh’s gluten-free plan offers a handy way to simplify home cooking and enjoy some yummy meals. But before signing up, be sure to weigh your needs and budget to decide if it’s the right solution for your lifestyle.

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