When looking for a service of this nature, many people find themselves choosing between Freshly and Blue Apron. These two apps have taken the industry by storm, offering fresh and nutritious meal delivery.
The real question is: which one is better?
Now that is something I wanted to find. That is why I decided to test both these meal delivery services and provide you with a helpful comparison guide.
I’ll be looking at various significant aspects, including:
So, let’s take a closer look at Blue Apron vs. Freshly, and get to the bottom of it.
Blue Apron vs. Freshly In a Nutshell
While I know you’d like to know everything about Freshly vs. Blue Apron, I also realize that you have a busy life and want the information quickly. So, I want to start with lists of pros and cons for each service, with more details to follow.
Blue Apron Pros and Cons
Any meal delivery service has pros and cons. In the case of the Blue Apron meal delivery service, the advantages include:
Fresh, locally sourced ingredients that are GMO-free and mainly organic;
Great scaling model for pricing which leads to cheaper meals when you buy more;
Excellent taste, and some very high quality (almost gourmet) recipes to choose from.
The downsides for this company include:
Many of the meals contain high levels of sodium;
The meal scale is quite limited, and not suited for large families.
Freshly Pros and Cons
Freshly is a more versatile service, but also has its pros and cons. Advantages include:
For most families, and even individuals, pricing is one of the most significant factors when trying to choose a meal delivery service. I’ve taken a closer look at the pricing modules for both companies, to help you make sense of it all. Let’s get into it.
Freshly has a somewhat more consistent pricing model than Blue Apron does, but also cuts down on the cost per meal when you purchase more meals. Let’s take a look.
When you place an order for four meals every week, you’ll pay $49.99 per week or around $12.50 per meal.
When you enlarge your order to six meals a week, you’ll pay $59.99 per week or around $9.99 per meal.
The price per meal remains the same when you order 9 meals per week, though the weekly price increases to $89.99.
Ordering 12 meals per week is the cheapest order, working out to around $8.99 per meal or $107.99 per week.
When comparing Blue Apron vs. Freshly, Blue Apron has a fairly impressive pricing model. The price per serving decreases as the amount you order increases.
When you place a weekly order of two meals, containing two servings each, you’ll pay around $11.99 per serving. That comes up to $47.96 a week.
When you place a weekly order of two meals, containing four servings each, the cost decreases to around $9.49 per serving. That amounts to $75.92 a week.
If you were to buy four meals a week, containing two servings each, the price would be the same as for two meals containing four servings. $9.49 per serving, or $75.92 per week.
The cheapest option is to buy four meals a week, with four servings each. That works out to $7.99 per serving or $127.84 for your weekly order.
When Comparing Freshly vs. Blue Apron prices, it’s difficult to choose a definite winner. Both sites use a scaling pricing model where the price per meal, or serving, decreases as the size of the order increases.
However, to make things easier, let’s look at the price per unit. At Blue Apron, the starting point is $7.99. The lowest price Freshly has to offer, on the other hand, is $8.99 per meal.
Accordingly, I have to give this one to Blue Apron.
If you’re ordering meals for your family, you don’t just want them to be fast and tasty, but nutritionally sound as well. This next part of my meal delivery service comparison will take a look at the nutritional quality of Freshly vs. Blue Apron.
The food delivery service Blue Apron has an impressive array of meal options. From chicken to beef, seafood, or even vegetarian options, the assortment is simply dazzling.
Even so, not all of the meals have an exceptionally high nutritional value. While, for the most part, they’re quite balanced, some of the meals have exceptionally high sodium values.
You may find that, while the protein percentage is quite high, the calorie intake can be low.
As mentioned in the section about recipe diversity, Freshly offers around 50 different meal options every week. For the most part, these options tend to have a better nutritional balance and a much lower sodium level.
You can also choose to take a meal that’s higher in protein or lower in carbs. If you’re truly interested in eating healthy food, you can even use the “FreshlyFit” meal range.
Freshly takes the prize for nutritional value. They offer an entire range of meals specifically designed for people who want to stay fit and eat healthily.
While Blue Apron also offers high-protein, low-sodium, and low-carb options, their range isn’t as extensive. Also, unless you specifically order the low-sodium range, their meals contain more sodium than the daily recommended intake.
One of the major factors with mean planning services is scalability. If you’re ordering for yourself, any one of them will do. But, if you have a large family, or extended family staying with you, you need much more food than a single person or young couple.
Let’s take a look at which of these services caters best to families of all sizes.
Blue Apron is a fantastic service for young couples, single people, and small to average families. You can order as little as two meals a week, consisting of two servings each.
However, if you have a considerably larger family, then I doubt this service is the right choice for you. The most you can order is four meals a week with four servings each. If you have a family of six or eight, that means you’ll need to place more than one order every week just to feed your whole family.
Freshly is probably a better choice for larger families, offering between four and 12 meals a week. Since they focus on larger groups, however, they may not be the best choice for small families and individuals.
Since you can choose a serving plan, though, you might be able to take four to 12 meals, with only 2 servings each.
When it comes to scalability, neither of these meal delivery services has a clear lead. I’d say that:
With options ranging between two meals per week (with two servings each) and four meals per week (with four servings each), Blue Apron is an ideal candidate for young couples and small families.
With options ranging between four meals and 12 meals a week, Freshly is the perfect choice for larger families.
When it comes to versatility in meal scaling, Freshly definitely allows you better scaling. To get the same number of meals per week from Blue Apron, you’d have to place more than one order.
However, Blue Apron’s serving options are easier to understand, making it easier to designate portions for the appropriate number of people.
Recipe Clarity and Simplicity
For many people, meal kit services are preferable because they’re easy to use and require little culinary sense.
If you’re trying to teach yourself to cook better, or even just want something that tastes home-cooked but has questionable cooking skills, then you likely want something with simple recipes that are easy to make.
Below, I’ll compare these two meal delivery services in terms of how clear the recipes are, and how easy they are to complete.
Blue Apron has a reputation for being an almost gourmet meal kit service. They offer some wonderful meals, like stuffed chicken breasts, and even seafood.
However, as you might expect, meals with more complexity require more preparation. While Blue Apron’s recipes aren’t hard to follow by any stretch of the imagination, you’ll have to spend a good bit of time when preparing each recipe.
The recipes themselves are clear, concise, and easy to follow. By most accounts, including my own experiences, even a novice can easily follow through with the slightly fancier dishes offered by Blue Apron.
Since Freshly specializes in pre-made meals, there aren’t any recipes to work with. It’s arguably one of the simplest meal services to use since you’re not involved in the cooking process. Simply pop the meal in a pot, microwave, or oven, heat it, and you’re ready to eat.
While this certainly makes life easier, it also raises some concerns. If your meals get delayed or misplaced by the delivery service, it’s not unlikely that they’ll be rancid when they arrive. While (in a similar situation) you may lose some ingredients with a meal kit, it’s unlikely that you’ll lose the whole meal.
Considering that the service doesn’t use any recipes, Freshly is undoubtedly the winner in this category. However, Blue Apron has a fantastic array of recipes that are easy to follow.
In the end, it comes down to whether you prefer heat-and-eat style meals, or you’d rather have a hand in preparing your meal.
Flavor and Recipe Diversity
Of course, the food’s flavor and how many different meals you can choose from, play a significant role in any meal kit comparison. From both my experience with the products and general reviews from other users, I’ve extrapolated what each service has to offer.
It’s Freshly vs. Blue Apron. Which has better flavor, and which provides a broader array of meals to choose from? Let’s find out below.
On average, Freshly offers around 50 different meal options per week. The options run the full gambit, from vegetarian diets to low in carbohydrates, low in sodium, high in protein, and even vegan.
If you have a particular set of dietary requirements, the chances are good that Freshly will be able to accommodate them for you.
However, Freshly focuses entirely on pre-made meals. By all accounts, the flavors can be a bit bland, and some of the meals could use additional flavors.
Blue Apron typically offers between 18 and 21 different meal options every week. While that’s still a glorious array, it’s considerably less than Freshly’s remarkable offering of 50 options.
Even so, Blue Apron meets the needs of many different dietary restrictions. You can choose vegetarian, vegan, or low-carbohydrate options.
There’s more work involved in making Blue Apron meals than in heating meals from Freshly, but many customers say that it’s worth it. The flavor diversity and array of cuisines offered by Blue Apron mean that the food is a lot more flavorful.
Freshly definitely takes the prize as far as meal diversity is concerned. With over 50 different meal options some weeks, you’re sure to find something that you’ll like. It also caters to the largest number of dietary restrictions.
On the flip side, I much preferred the flavor of the Blue Apron meals. They offer a wider array of cuisines and flavors, making it easier to find meals that will suit your palate.
We’ll have to call this category a tie, with Freshly taking one half, and Blue Apron taking the other.
Ingredient Freshness and Quality
When you’re looking for quality meals for your family, you want to know what you’re putting into your system. Well-grown, well-raised food can make a huge difference to your family’s health. Below, I’ll take a closer look at ingredient quality and sourcing for Freshly vs. Blue Apron.
Blue Apron has a reputation for using fresh ingredients, and its web of suppliers and distributors spans various farms, ranches, and fish producers.
They have a focus on food that’s produced locally, and often source ingredients from family-owned businesses. Furthermore, they never use any GMOs or hormone-enriched meats.
If you’re looking for meals made with high-quality, fresh ingredients from trustworthy sources, you can’t go wrong with Blue Apron.
Most customers are intensely happy with the ingredients in the meals provided by Freshly. However, we have little more than a vague idea of where those ingredients are sourced.
While they do say that their ingredients are healthy and purchased from reliable sources, there is no real guarantee of that. They also claim to purchase mainly organic ingredients, and not use artificial or processed ingredients. But, again, since there’s no way to trace the sources, I can’t really comment.
Blue Apron takes the gold when it comes to freshness and quality. They have an acquisitions network that spans different ranches, farms, and fisheries. Many of these are locally owned, and often even family-owned.
They also put great focus on buying mainly organic, and always GMO-free, ingredients. Freshly is rather vague about where they get their ingredients, even if they claim the products are healthy.
Ease of Use
When comparing Blue Apron and Freshly, both of these companies are fairly easy to use. Thanks to their simplistic ordering system, meal planning options, and instant categories, you can place your monthly order in minutes. But, which is more intuitive and straightforward? Let’s find out.
Freshly is equally easy to sign up for, with a basic registration requiring all your basic personal information and address.
If you need to cancel your order for any reason, Freshly makes it remarkably easy to do. You just head over to your account settings, and click on “cancel my account”.
Sometimes you may have reason to cancel a week of meals or to change your meal preferences. Fortunately, that’s easy enough to do from your account settings.
In terms of the meals themselves, Freshly is arguably easier to use than Blue Apron. Mainly, that’s because Freshly sends heat-and-eat style meals, while Blue Apron sends meal kits that you’ll need to cook.
Blue Apron is an easy service to sign up for and only requires basic registration information. You’ll need to provide your full name, address, and meal preferences.
Canceling your order with Blue Apron isn’t necessarily as easy to do as it is with Freshly. You’ll need to send a cancellation email to firstname.lastname@example.org. However, at this point, an automatic process commences. You’ll receive an email with instructions about how to complete the cancellation.
As with Freshly, you can easily cancel your meals for a week, or change your meal preferences, by using your account settings.
While this part of the challenge was very close, I have to say that Freshly wins by a hair. Their easy cancellation process, and the fact that they send pre-cooked meals, just make them easier to use.
That said, Blue Apron came in at a close second, and they’re by no means hard to use. If you prefer tweaking the meals that you order, then you might even prefer Blue Apron’s meal kits.
While opinion isn’t everything, reading reviews from past and present customers can help you establish the worth of a service. I’ve taken a look at the Trustpilot and ConsumerAffairs reviews for both services, to see how the general public experiences them.
Blue Apron generally manages to maintain a good reputation and relationship with the general public. They have a Consumer Affairs rating of 3.5 out of five, with the largest amount of reviews being four-star, followed by five-star.
They have a 4.1-star average on TrustPilot, earning them a “great” rating. 53% of all their review are five stars, followed by 27% of four-star reviews.
Freshly has a far more variable reputation. Their Trustpilot rating is “excellent” with a star rating of 4.8 out of five. Most of their ratings on this platform are 5-star (a whopping 85%) with 4-star coming in second place at 9%.
On the other hand, their Consumer Affairs rating is measly, coming in at only 2.2 stars out of five. The individual reviews are mostly one-star or five-star, with five-star reviews winning by a nose.
This was truly a close call, and it’s difficult to declare a supreme winner when comparing Blue Apron vs. Freshly reviews.
Where TrustPilot is concerned, Freshly definitely takes the day. Their rating of 4.8 out of five stars is phenomenal. Blue Apron isn’t far behind though, with a rating of 4.1.
Judging by Consumer Affairs, on the other hand, brings Blue Apron out on top. Their 3.5-star rating trumps Freshly’s a 2.2-star rating by far.
In the end, we have to give it to Blue Apron. If you combine the ratings from both review sites, Blue Apron takes the lead by 0.5 stars.
If you’re looking for a meal delivery service, then Blue Apron and Freshly offer advantages on both sides.
Freshly takes the overall prize, but not by much. The main things that recommend it to the average family are:
The heat-and-eat meals are convenient
They cater to various health needs and dietary restrictions
The recipe diversity per week is much greater than Blue Apron’s
While the sources are unknown, the ingredients are consistently fresh
On the other hand, Blue Apron covers a few things that Freshly doesn’t, such as:
Greater taste and flavor profiles
More affordable pricing
Locally-sourced foods that are GMO-free and mainly organic.
In the end, Freshly is a fantastic choice, but it comes down to what’s best for your family. I hope that this comparison has helped you to find the information you need and to help you make an informed choice of meal delivery service.
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