When you think of French cooking, maybe you think of elaborate homecooked meals full of special sauces and tender cuts of meat that look like they’ve come right out of a cooking magazine. In my house, that’s not real life. Sometimes you need a little help and aren’t in the mood to find a recipe, grocery shop, prep the food, spend time cooking, and clean up afterwards. Two meal delivery services in France help me with some of those steps and I can’t get enough. The first is HelloFresh, which you have probably heard of because they’re one of the most popular kits of this kind in the USA. They’re a meal kit delivery service that delivers exactly what you need for each recipe to your door. The second is Seazon, a fresh meal delivery option. I love them both for different reasons.
Read on for my HelloFresh France and Seazon review!
Best meal kit delivery services in France: HelloFresh and Seazon
Here are 2 facts: Not everyone loves cooking all the time and we tend to get incredibly busy these days no matter where we live. Most people don’t have time to prepare fresh food for themselves every single day or they don’t want to if there’s an easier way. We opt for takeout and eating at restaurants and grabbing already prepared food.
When we do have time to cook, sometimes we lack inspiration and motivation. It gets a little boring if you tend to make the same thing over and over like I do.
Meal delivery kit: HelloFresh
Enter Hello Fresh. Meal kit delivery services are incredibly popular in the USA and there are several in France that have become household names. HelloFresh leads the pack and my first time trying the service was in France last year.
The concept is simple: Choose how many meals you’d like in your meal kit and for how many people, then select the type of meals you’d like such as vegetarian, classic, or rapido (takes 25 minutes or less to prepare) and the specific options for that week, and that’s it. You’re in complete control of what meals you order so you’re sure to get something you’ll enjoy.
On delivery day, a box of fresh, high-quality ingredients arrives on your doorstep ready for you to transform into a beautiful meal.
Basically, HelloFresh eliminates the need to plan out your recipes and shop for the ingredients. For me, it’s a fantastic way to switch up my dinner routine and take the whole planning part out of the equation.
Get 25 € off your first HelloFresh box with my link.
I don’t know about you, but I’m more motivated and confident to do things when I feel like I’ll succeed. That applies to cooking as well. I’m more motivated to cook when a recipe seems do-able (and delicious!). Having the kit delivered knocks a good hour off the process since I haven’t had to find a recipe and shop for everything myself.
Also, it’s a mental thing. When I’ve spent money on ingredients and something special via HelloFresh, I get excited about dinner. I’m motivated to make my HelloFresh meal because I know I’m not eating the same thing I’ve had 100 times before. I enjoy switching up my routine. It’s also exposed me to dinner options that weren’t obvious ones for me (a tuna burger, fish soup, Indian flatbread pizza, etc.) and foods I wasn’t used to eating regularly.
Meal delivery service: Seazon
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Next up, we have Seazon. Unlike HelloFresh, Seazon isn’t a meal kit delivery service. It’s a meal delivery service, so you’re not getting ingredients; you’re getting fresh (not frozen) single-serve meals that are ready to eat after a quick pop in the microwave. What’s great is that it’s available throughout France — not just Paris — and is the first fresh meal delivery service of its kind.
Meals are made with super fresh, high-quality ingredients by hand and the priority is on nutrition. Seazon has a special focus on the needs of active people who want to stay fit. You can choose from all different protein options and meals suited for meat eaters, vegetarians, and other dietary needs as well.
Ingredients are top notch including seasonal produce direct from the producer, fish from sustainable fisheries, as well as using only Poulehouse eggs, an ethical free-range egg company that does NOT kill their chickens once they reach an age less profitable for the brand.
Each week’s options are clearly detailed on their website so you can see exactly what you’re getting. All ingredients and nutrition info are right there for you to see and compare. As you’d expect, most meals need to be consumed within 3-5 days since there are no preservatives or other unnatural ingredients and all meals can be stored in the fridge.
Like HelloFresh, Seazon isn’t a budget service by any means. The more meals you order, though, the lower the cost is per meal. You can choose a subscription with 4 meals all the way up to 12 or more per week. On average, each single-serve meal costs 7 €.
The one little hurdle I have with Seazon is that I’m allergic to citrus and a good portion of their meals contain some type of citrus so I have to be very careful. To help with that, they have a functionality under your account where you can make a list of ingredients you don’t really like or are allergic to so they can be filtered out of your choices. Problem solved!
So how do the meals taste? Overall, they’ve been excellent and I feel good about my food choices when I opt for Seazon. They’ve been a lifesaver when I get home from the gym at 8 p.m., don’t want to cook, and am tempted to order takeout, clearly the less healthy option.
Even my discerning French husband Tom was quite impressed. He had the meatloaf the other day and enthusiastically said it was “pretty good!” instead of the typical French “pas mal.” That alone says a lot! I think my favorite meal so far was a gnocci with spinach and fish (pictured above). But nothing has been a disappointment in the least.
I’ve found the portion sizes to be just right. I’ve never felt like they were tiny portions, nor did I feel stuffed after the meal. The portions seemed to be spot on and while I try to eat plant based one day a week, I prefer the Seazon options with meat or fish over the vegetarian ones. The food has great flavor and seasoning and is never too salty.
To have the best selection of meals, be sure to select each week’s meals well in advance. When I waited until just the week before, I noticed all my top choices were sold out already. Also, while the meals taste great, they may look a little jumbled up and less appealing than they do on the website. The box gets moved around during shipment so of course the contents moves too, since it’s not frozen.
You can get 20 € off your first order via my code DIANEBLBI at checkout.
With both HelloFresh and Seazon, you’re not locked into a weekly delivery or anything like that. You can pause, change the number of meals, or cancel entirely whenever you’d like.
Why choose a meal delivery service?
Reasons why you might consider trying a meal delivery service or meal delivery kit in France:
- To add variety to your dinner options and to try new things
- Because you lack inspiration in the kitchen
- To reduce the time spent planning out fresh meals
One other thing. When I’ve mentioned meal delivery services like Seazon or Hello Fresh to people back home, they’ve said things like, “Oh but you live in France and have access to markets and fresh seasonal produce! Why would you opt for a meal kit service?”
I explain it like this. It’s the same thing for people who live in a coastal town when people ask them why they don’t go to the beach every day. Sometimes you don’t have time and you just don’t feel like getting all sandy and going for a swim every day! The novelty of the beach wears off. Not every day is a beach day.
I regularly shop at farmers’ markets and take full advantage of everything France has to offer but the bottom line is cooking isn’t my strong suit and isn’t something I enjoy all the time. Furthermore, just because you have access to markets and fresh produce doesn’t change the fact there are only so many hours in a day. If you aren’t always motivated to cook, it doesn’t matter you where you live. When you have limited time and cooking (and shopping, chopping, etc.) has a tendency to stress you out, meal delivery services can be a godsend.
Lastly, yes, both Hello Fresh and Seazon are premium services. I won’t gloss over that fact. It’s much less expensive to shop and cook for yourself, without question. But our time has a value as well.
For me, I only get mad paying a premium when I don’t think something is worth it. Both HelloFresh and Seazon are worth it in my household a couple of times a month or in super busy/stressful periods. Just like it’s nice to go out to eat or order takeout sometimes too. If simplifying your life in the kitchen lets you spend time doing other things that are important to you, then it’s a service well worth the money.
Get 25 € off your first HelloFresh box here.
Get 20 € off your first Seazon order with my code DIANEBLBI at checkout.
What about you? Do you love to cook or do you need a break sometimes?
Disclosure: This is not a sponsored review. I receive referral credit from orders placed through my link (and readers get a discount).