Marley Spoon vs. Hello Fresh: Which Meal Kit Should You Choose?

You’ve finally decided that you want to give this whole meal delivery service thing a go. But now that you’re sold on the idea, you’re plagued with the challenge of deciding which one to order your delicious meals from. Perhaps, you’ve narrowed it down to Marley Spoon and Hello Fresh and now you need help deciding between the two.

Luckily, you’re in the right place! To help you make the best decision possible, we’re sharing everything you need to know about Marley Spoon and Hello Fresh before placing your first order.

Variety of Food & Meal Plans

One of the biggest benefits of going with a meal delivery service is the fact that they offer different meal options—ones you might not find at your local grocery store.

Marley Spoon

If you sign-up for Marley Spoon, you can expect to see 10 new recipes to choose from each week. Although they don’t have dedicated meal plans based on your diet, this still allows customers to have a good selection to choose from. That means there’s sure to be something that suits your personal preferences and you can choose meals that cater to your needs.

If you are searching for particular meals, you’ll want to pay close attention to the labels each recipe has. They’ll inform you of which dishes contain meat and those that are vegetarian, which ones are kid-friendly, and ones that can be prepared in under 30 minutes.

There are also a variety of dishes that will be available to you. You’ll find dinners such as: Chicken & Spiced Potatoes with Onions, Kale, and Sour Cream, Creamy Sheet Pan Pasta with Broccoli and Tomatoes, Beef and White Bean Chili with Whole Wheat Couscous, and Pepperoncini Shrimp & Broccoli with Creamy Lemon Herb Dip.

Hello Fresh

When ordering with Hello Fresh, you are going to see three different menu options. They have a Classic Menu, Veggie Menu, and Family Menu. If the Classic Menu is your choice, you’ll be able to choose from eight different recipes each week. Their Veggie Menu is limited to only three recipes per week, while the Family Menu has five new recipes.

Although the Classic Menu provides you with more options to choose from, there’s still a pretty great selection with the Veggie and Family menus. And they should still provide the variety you’re looking for when it comes to your weeknight dinners.

On the Classic Menu, you’re going to find dishes like: Creamy Dill Chicken with Roasted Potatoes and Green Beans, Sweet Apple Pork Tenderloin with Cauliflower Mash and Snap Peas, Speedy Steak Fajitas with Bell Peppers and Hot Sauce Crema, and Tex-Mex Tilapia with Cilantro Lime Couscous and Green Beans.

Winner: Hello Fresh

Portion Sizes

Do you have a big family to feed or only cooking for one? Portion size and the ability to control it when you’re ordering is an important factor to consider when choosing the right meal delivery service.

Marley Spoon

You do have control over your portion sizes when ordering from Marley Spoon. When going through the checkout process, you’ll be prompted to select a plan. This asks you to decide if you’d like enough servings for two people or three-four people. This will allow you to customize the meals if you have another family member to feed or a children.

Hello Fresh

With Hello Fresh, you’ll have the ability to select your serving size when choosing which plan you’d like to order from. If you go for the Classic Plan or the Veggie Plan, you can choose between two or four servings per meal. The Family Plan will always be enough for four servings. You’ll want to keep this in mind when placing your order so you can choose the option that’s best for you.

Winner: It’s a tie!

Are Ingredients Pre-Portioned?

Yes, both Marley Spoon and Hello Fresh provide their customers with pre-portioned ingredients. That means you’re going to receive fresh ingredients delivered straight to your door. And you’ll be provided with all the essentials for preparing a delicious dinner right in your own home.

Do keep in mind that you’ll want to have some basics on hand though, such as olive oil, salt, and pepper. However, the most important elements of your dish will always be provided to you.

Winner: It’s a tie!

Recipe Cards & Cooking

There’s no need to be a professional chef to cook these meals because both Marley Spoon and Hello Fresh will send detailed recipe cards to whip up your dinners. The recipe cards contain step-by-step instructions, as well as photos so you can easily follow along. These cards make cooking so much easier, especially if you’re a beginner.

Another great thing that both companies do is that they allow you to see the recipe in its entirely before added a dish to your weekly menu. You can see the required ingredients, as well as the recipe instructions before placing your order. So, you’ll always know what each dish will entail before making your choice. That’s going to make selecting your meals each week even easier, especially if you want something more in your comfort zone.

Both Marley Spoon and Hello Fresh provide their customers with quick recipes, which are perfect for those busy nights. Hello Fresh will label their quick and easy meals as a “20-minute meal,” while Marley Spoon’s are labeled “Under 30 minutes.”

Winner: Hello Fresh

Delivery & Shipping Options

Marley Spoon and Hello Fresh are able to deliver to customers across the contiguous United States. That means they are, unfortunately, unable to deliver fresh ingredients to those in Alaska and Hawaii at this time.

An added bonus is that neither company charges for shipping, so you won’t have to worry about paying additional fees each week. Hello Fresh’s website does state that they’ll inform you if there are any shipping costs associated with their order, but in most cases, they cover the shipping cost. That’s added savings you’ll be able to take advantage of.

Winner: It’s a tie!


Both companies use a combination of insulated liners and ice packs to keep ingredients at the optimal temperature during transportation. The cardboard boxes can obviously be recycled with your curbside pick-up service, while the ice packs are great for reusing. However, if you choose not to keep the ice packs, you can drain the content into the trash and recycle the plastic lining instead of throwing it out.

With Hello Fresh, they also use a separator and a honeycomb paperboard in their packaging. Both of these can be recycled with the curbside pick-up or taken to a nearby recycling facility. They’ll also swap their liners based on the season. The liners used in the winter will need to be thrown in the garbage, while the ones in the summer are recyclable.

Winner: Hello Fresh

Money Back Guarantee

Ordering anything online poses a small risk. Are you really going to get what you ordered? What happens if it gets damaged while being shipped? Having a money back guarantee or satisfaction guarantee goes a long way in the meal delivery kit industry.

Marley Spoon

If you’re ever dissatisfied with your order, Marley Spoon does offer a money back guarantee. Their products and services are backed by a freshness and quality guarantee for four days after the receipt of your box. If you’re not satisfied, you can contact them via telephone or email, but you’ll need to do so within seven days of receiving your order.

The type of refund you receive will depend on the circumstances surrounding your issue. Marley Spoon may provide you with credits for meal ingredients, which can be applied to future deliveries, or they might provide you with a full or partial refund of the purchase price of the meal or ingredient.

Hello Fresh

If you have an issue with any part of your Hello Fresh order, they’d like you to contact them within five days of receiving the order. If you’re experiencing an issue due to ingredients or the condition of your meal kit, Hello Fresh might give you a credit for the ingredient or the full meal kit. In some cases, they may provide customers with a full or partial refund. As with Marley Spoon, the final decision relies with them and there’s really no telling how they’ll award a refund of any kind. However, in our experience, both will take care of their customers as best as possible.

Winner: It’s a tie!

Customer Service

Getting in touch with the team at Marley Spoon or Hello Fresh couldn’t be easier. You can call them on the telephone or send over an email. With Hello Fresh, you’ll also have access to their live chat service, which is only available during business hours. Either way, it’s simple to get in touch with someone should you experience an issue with your order. Both also have extensive FAQ sections on their websites, which should provide answers to a lot of questions you may have.

Winner: Hello Fresh


If you’re looking to save some cash on your future orders with Marley Spoon or Hello Fresh, you’d be wise to take advantage of the referral programs both have to offer. Marley Spoon allows you to provide a $30 coupon to friends and family who are new customers, which gets you a $25 credit in return.

While that’s a fantastic opportunity, Hello Fresh’s offer is a little more enticing. When your friends and family sign-up through your referral code, they’ll receive a $50 discount on their first order. Then, you’ll receive a $50 credit on your account, which can be used towards future purchases.

Another thing that Hello Fresh offers is the ability to join their wine club. This service gets you six bottles of wine delivered straight to your door every month. That makes for the perfect pairing with your weekly meals! And they’ve also started selling kitchenware from their website, which features spices, gadgets, and more.

Winner: Hello Fresh

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking to choose between Hello Fresh and Marley Spoon, don’t fret. Both are great options. Each have a wide variety of meals, are high quality, packaged well, and are relatively simple to make.

While Hello Fresh is certainly more popular than Marley Spoon, don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s automatically the better choice. Marley Spoon is backed by one of the biggest names in cooking—Martha Stewart.

Overall, you can’t go wrong with either meal kit. That’s why we included both in our list of the best meal delivery services currently available.

Dan Scalco

As someone who is considered an "average" cook, I have looked far and wide for meal delivery services that will help save me time and money while still ending up with a tasty meal. In my quest, I have tested and reviewed tons of different food delivery services. I am using this site to share all of my findings with you!

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