Gousto vs HelloFresh: which recipe box is best for you?

We're all cooking at home more these days but between Gousto vs HelloFresh, who is the delivery meal-kit king?

(Image credit: HelloFresh)

Gousto vs HelloFresh were both strong contenders in our review of the best meal kits on the market, but what sets them apart from each other?

You’ve likely seen ads for both of the best meal prep delivery services while scrolling through social media or during your latest TV binge-watch. But if you haven’t yet taken the plunge to subscribe to either of these meal kits, we’ve broken down the differences between the two services to help you make the right choice. 

From price and menu diversity to the flexibility of the subscription, this is how Gousto vs HelloFresh compare against one another.

Gousto vs HelloFresh: which is more flexible?

With HelloFresh, you can make selections up to four weeks in advance. If you don’t make selections, recipes are automatically picked, which is great if you’re time-poor or simply want a surprise. The cut-off for box edits is at 11:59 pm on Tuesday, the week before your delivery. The same deadline applies if you’d like to cancel your subscription or skip weeks due to vacation, etc. You can skip up to eight consecutive weeks.

When it comes to Gousto recipe boxes, you choose the recipes you want and have until midday three days before delivery to edit. Recipes are available to pick two weeks before the delivery date. The menu is updated every Tuesday at midday.

If you pause your Gousto subscription, it stops all future orders until you choose to resume. If you skip a week, it will automatically renew the week after. Unlike HelloFresh, with Gousto, you can order a one-off box without setting up a subscription or while it’s paused. 

HelloFresh has a minimum order of three recipes a week for two people, whereas Gousto allows you to order just two for two people. The maximum number of recipes you can order for two adults is four with Gousto, and five with HelloFresh. If you want more meals, Gousto recommends ordering another box to come mid-week.

Our verdict? Gousto is the more flexible meal kit, as you don’t need to be tied to a regular subscription.

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HelloFresh box options: what's available? 

HelloFresh offers three boxes. They do not currently offer a box for one, however, they suggest sharing the second portion with friends, family or having it for lunch the next day, as do Gousto. 

Classic box
Three, four, or five recipes for two. Or three or four recipes for three or four people. Menu of 18 recipes, five of which are veggie, no vegan options guaranteed.

Rapid box
Three or four recipes for two, three, or four people. Or five recipes for two people. Five recipe choices.

Family box
Three or four recipes for two adults with three small children or two big kids. Six recipe choices.

You can change your box subscription from week to week and add extras to your boxes, such as desserts, wine, and bread for an additional charge. However, the deadline mentioned above applies. 

Gousto box options: what's available?

Two-person box
Two, three, or four recipes for two adults.

Family box
Two, three, or four recipes for two adults and two to three children.

You can also add extra essentials from the Gousto Marketplace to your order, such as chocolate, beer, wine, and olive oil. 

What's the cost of Gousto vs HelloFresh?

As mentioned, the minimum order you can place with HelloFresh is three meals for two people. This costs £30 and doesn’t include any extras or premium meals. For the same number of meals with Gousto, it costs £29.99. 

For the biggest option available on Gousto, which is four meals for four people, it costs £47.75, or £2.98 a portion. The HelloFresh equivalent costs around £55 or £3.44 per portion. 

In the like-for-like comparisons, Gousto is cheaper and also has the option of only ordering two meals for two, which costs £24.99 (£6.25 per portion). 

At the time of writing, HelloFresh’s introductory offer was 50% off your first box and 20% off your next three orders. If you refer a friend, they will receive £20 off their first box and you’ll get £20 credit added to your account. 

For new Gousto customers, the offer was 30% off all your boxes for the first month. The referral deal was £15 credit and your friend receives 50% off their first box, plus 30% off for the remainder of the month, which is valid for 30 days. 

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Who has better produce, Gousto vs HelloFresh?

All Gousto meat is 100% British and sourced from Red Tractor-approved farms. Eggs are also British and free-range. They responsibly source fish, and seasonal British produce is used as much as possible. When needed, Gousto also sources produce from overseas or from specialists like Tenderstem to help keep the menu varied. 

All yogurt is organic and all dairy is vegetarian-friendly and made with pasteurized milk, which is especially important to know if you’re pregnant. 

HelloFresh sources its meat and poultry from farms that undergo regular animal welfare audits and visits, but they do not specify British. They stress that they only take produce from suppliers with certifications from leading auditing standards. While some HelloFresh items are organic, their priority is working with suppliers who are sustainable and ethical. 

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Who has more diverse recipes, Gousto vs HelloFresh?

Gousto has a menu of 50 recipes to choose from each week, whereas on HelloFresh’s Classic box there are only 18. 

Unlike HelloFresh, on Gousto, you can choose gluten-free meals. There are 18 options, as well as seven plant-based recipes and 16 dairy-free choices. With recipes such as crispy mushroom dal and Thai eggplant curry, even meat-eaters will be tempted to give the vegan options a try.

On HelloFresh, they guarantee at least five veggie options but don’t set the number of vegan recipes available. There are some fun options you can’t get on Gousto such as Dinner to Lunch meals, which are delivered with extra ingredients, for an additional charge, to transform your leftovers. You can also select Roasts for some mid-week comfort and Premium meals, which are perfect for date-night, treats, or celebrations. 

But, unlike Gousto, they don’t have the "Lean in 15" master Joe Wicks on board. Perhaps better known as "The Body Coach," Wicks has worked with Gousto to design meals that support a healthy lifestyle and complement HIIT training. He often demos the recipes on his Instagram feed and boasts about how good they taste. 

Although you can opt into a Rapid HelloFresh box, for 10-minute meals, there aren’t as many recipe choices compared to Gousto, which has six 10-minute options plus five oven-ready meals, thanks to a new partnership with Charlie Bingham. 

Gousto simply has more choice and offers the same flavor variations as HelloFresh. Honestly, there are almost too many recipes to choose from and not enough days in the week!

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Which is better for the environment, Gousto vs HelloFresh?

HelloFresh is phasing out individual paper meal bags and has reduced packaging in their boxes by 20% from 2017. All black plastic has been abandoned and spices, nuts, and seeds now come in recyclable materials. 

Last year, Gousto pledged to reduce its plastic by 50% and succeeded. They removed 100 tonnes of plastic from its boxes and have slashed even more in the past year thanks to its new Eco Chill Box. The cool box is made from recycled paper and is fully recyclable, saying goodbye to 74.5 tonnes of plastic. That’s nearly six double-decker buses! The box rivals HelloFresh’s recycled PET cool pouch, which is currently only recycled by select local councils.

Jessica is a senior food writer at Future and works across the Life & Style portfolio writing recipes and curating food and drink content. When she’s not cooking, Jessica loves to dine out and travel in search of new inspiration. Her saved posts on Instagram mostly consist of burgers and craft beer or brunch spots. She also likes to keep fit and chill out with yoga after a long day.