Green Chef stands out for offering healthier meal plans and variety than most other meal delivery services. Green Chef is a USDA certified organic company that works with farmers to provide sustainable, delicious high-quality ingredients right to your doorstep.
With over 500 financial service reviews published since 2006, our editorial team has decades of experience researching and giving honest reviews. When evaluating the top meal kit services, like certified organic Green Chef, we ordered and tried them all ourselves to compare and give you a first-hand experience of what you can expect.
Green Chef stands out as one of the best healthy meal delivery services using certified organic ingredients. It’s ideal for people who want nutritious dinners made with organic food and those looking for a variety of flavors and ingredients to fit their specific diet.
- Meals for paleo, a vegetarian, or gluten free
- Certified organic ingredients
- Eco-friendly sourcing and recyclable packaging
- Higher cost per a serving
What is Green Chef?
Founded in 2014, Green Chef was the first meal kit company to receive USDA organic certification. As a certified organic company, Green Chef follows organic practices and uses only approved suppliers and ingredients that are in compliance with certification requirements.
However, not all of Green Chef’s ingredients are organic. Sometimes, animal products will not be certified organic or a kit will swap out an organic ingredient for a non-organic ingredient depending on availability. Green Chef will let you know if this happens through through labeling and in-box communications.
Popular meal delivery service, HelloFresh, acquired Green Chef in early 2018 and has since followed Green Chef’s lead and introduced more dietary accommodations to its own menus. And if you recognize any similarities between HelloFresh vs Green Chef, from the packaging to the recipes, that’s why. But Green Chef continues to operate as a separate meal kit company
Green Chef pros & cons
- Meals for every diet — Whether you’re paleo, a vegetarian, or gluten free, there’s a variety of meals for you.
- Organic ingredients — Green Chef produce is certified organic and other ingredients are organic as well when possible.
- Eco-friendly — Green Chef uses recyclable packaging and uses environmentally-friendly sourcing practices to reduce carbon emissions.
- Cost — The cost per serving is likely way more than you’d spend at the grocery store at between $11.99 and $13.49 per serving.
How does Green Chef work?
To get your first Green Chef meals, you first need sign up for Green Chef and create an account. Then, you’ll customize your box with meals that meet your dietary needs and wait for it to arrive on your doorstep in just a matter of days.
Create your account
To sign up for this service, you will select your meal preferences (which we’ll talk about next), your box size, and the number of meals you get each week.
There are eight different meal plans to choose from:
- Mediterranean – nutritious recipes with good-for-you fats and ample veggies that’s backed by science.
- Calorie Smart – meals under 650 calories that are still delicious.
- Quick & Easy – meals that are ready to devour in 25 minutes or less.
- Plant Based – vegetarian and vegan meals with organic produce and plant-based proteins.
- Protein Packed – 40+ grams of protein on average per a serving.
- Keto – less than 20 grams of net carbs with no gluten, additives or added sugar.
- Delicious Discoveries – globally inspired flavors that rotate so you can try something new every week.
- Gluten Free – perfectly free of gluten (no wheat, barley, rye, or triticale) and full of flavor.
You’ll notice that there are two different meal plans with Green Chef that mention they do not contain recipes with gluten. This is unique for meal delivery kits and a good reason to choose this company over others if you suffer from Celiac disease or gluten intolerance.
Choosing your meal plan is just a way to customize your experience. It doesn’t lock you into a different set of recipes than everyone else or require a commitment. You can select recipes from any category each week but your recommendations will be from your selected meal plans.
After selecting at least one plan, you’ll choose your box size. The serving-size options are two, four, and six and you can receive between two to four meals per box depending on the serving size selected.
Choose your meals
Green Chef’s meals are all built around sustainably-sourced and eco-friendly ingredients that support local farmland, family farms, and craft economies. When you’re building your box each week, you can click on a recipe to see what ingredients it contains and see the recipe for information about how to make it.
Green Chef menu
Each week, you’ll choose from a menu of 50+ different recipes.
Here’s a sample from a real menu.
Get your box
Each week, your Green Chef will arrive between 8 am and 8 pm in your time zone on the day you’re scheduled to receive it. It will stay fresh until the end of the day so as long as everything is still cold when you open it, it’s safe to use.
Compared to other top meal kit delivery services, Green Chef is more green and careful to use earth-friendly materials. All Green Chef packaging is made from recyclable, reusable, and/or compostable materials – except where they can’t get around it for food safety reasons. Boxes are made of 40% recycled materials and include recyclable plastic packaging, paper bags, and insulation. Even the ClimaCell insulator and ice pack combination that keeps your food cold for the long route to your doorstep can be recycled.
Green Chef is powered by 100% renewable electricity and offsets 100% of its carbon emissions with sustainability initiatives and eco-friendly packaging and ingredients.
Green Chef pricing and plans
Green Chef starts at $11.99 per serving and goes up to $13.49 per serving. You’ll pay a flat rate of $9.99 for shipping no matter what state you live in, which is actually lower than some other rates we’ve seen. Here’s what the pricing looks like for each box size.
- 2 servings: 3-4 meals per a week for $12.99 – $13.49 / serving
- 4 servings: 2-4 meals per a week for $11.99 – $12.99 / serving
- 6 servings: 3-4 meals per a week for $11.99 / serving
Green Chef, we’ve found, is one of the most expensive meal delivery services out there but it’s a cost you may find worth paying considering it’s one of the best healthy meal delivery services that’s certified organic. There are also premium meals with premium proteins and ingredients for those looking for more elevated options. These can add between $6.99 – $9.99 more per serving. You may think of these as a lower-cost occasional treat versus the cost of eating out at a restaurant.
Green Chef sign-up offer and discounts
» Sign up using our Green Chef link and get a total of up to $250 OFF throughout your first 5 boxes!
Green Chef may also offer additional discounts for the following individuals:
- Medical providers
- First responders
These discounts are available through verification with the company ID.me.
Recipe options with Green Chef
Most Green Chef meals are healthy and balanced, with the ability to fit into many different lifestyles and diets. They use organic, sustainably sourced, non-GMO ingredients that are free of toxic pesticides, irradiation, sewage sludge, antibiotics, growth hormones, and steroids. Their meals are perfectly proportioned and recipes that are easy to follow. So whether you’re trying to get more organic vegetables into your diet, counting calories, or just want to eat more food groups, you should be able to find plenty of choices on the menu. There are 50+ different recipes each week.
Each recipe may have one or more of the following labels to indicate what ingredients are in it:
- Calorie Smart
- Protein Packed
- Heart Smart
There are typically around 10 different plant-based recipes every week, give or take, including both vegan and vegetarian meals. If you don’t want to have to select meal kits for yourself, Green Chef will choose the right number of meals for you according to your meal plan.
Green Chef recipe cards
Each recipe takes between 25 to 45 minutes to prepare. The recipe cards tell you everything you need to know about the dish before you get started. On each recipe card, there is a brief description of the meal and its origin, a flag for allergens, calories, cook time, and a list of ingredients and/or supplies you’ll need that are not included in your delivery. I found this helpful because it gave me time to collect all of the necessary pots and pans before I got started.
The recipe cards include descriptions of each step with pictures that I found to be pretty accurate. They explain techniques well, tell you signs to look for when cooking, and give you a couple of ways to tell when things are done.
Overall, Green Chef’s recipes are beginner-friendly and easy enough for anyone to follow. Green Chef is a good option for adventurous eaters. The menu features exotic meals from around the world mixed in with comforting favorites and staples. But regardless of how bold and exciting a meal is, it’s still easy to prepare. You’ll learn about cooking, ingredients, and culture as you go.
If you enjoy trying new spices and ingredients but cringe at the expense, this is a good way to try them out without breaking the bank.
My personal experience using Green Chef
Overall, I enjoyed my Green Chef process. For the following reasons, I’d recommend Green Chef to almost anyone.
I found Green Chef easy to use
The ordering platform was very easy to use. One of my favorite parts of the whole process was picking out my meals. Green Chef offers such a variety of food that it was fun to just sift through the options.
The meals were also easy to make. I do not consider myself a chef by any stretch of the word. My meals involve following the same recipes I’ve followed since college. I’ve branched out from plain pasta to slightly more intricate dishes, but I still consider myself a very basic chef. With that frame of mind, Green Chef proved to me that I am capable of cooking more elaborate meals.
Although the meals were a bit adventurous for my taste overall, they were still very good. If anything, I’d just tone down the spices but that is something that is easily adjusted to personal taste with a little bit more cooking experience.
I got to try new meals with Green Chef
I ended up choosing meals that were as close to my comfort zone as possible. Typically, my meals are very “plain Jane” so branching out into some new flavors was interesting.
The unique flavor combinations were a bit of a shock to my palette but it’s always fun to give something new a try.
I enjoyed the dietary options
I do not have any specific dietary concerns, so I tried a variety. Each category of food was good. I particularly liked my gluten-free meals like the “Tangy Apple-Glazed Pork Chops.”
Who is Green Chef good for?
Here are a couple of types of people most likely to dig signing up for Green Chef.
People who eat organic
If you have high standards for the quality of the ingredients you use and really prefer to eat organic, you won’t really find a better meal kit. This is Green Chef’s thing. And when supplies aren’t organic, you’ll know they’ve been carefully selected and sourced as sustainably as possible. They’ll be in-box labeling letting you know as such.
People with dietary restrictions
With dedicated vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free meal plans and more, Green Chef is one of the most accommodating meal delivery services by far. It’s rare to find a meal delivery service with so many gluten-free and vegan meals to choose from. If you are unable to eat a certain food group, Green Chef should be one of your first picks.
Beginners in the kitchen
Even though the dishes have an adventurous flair, you do not need to be a master chef in order to enjoy your Green Chef delivery. In fact, I am the furthest thing from a master chef, but I was still able to prepare the meals easily.
Who is Green Chef not good for?
If Green Chef isn’t sounding like the right fit for you right now, don’t force it. Here are some people who should stick with other services.
People on strict food budgets
Green Chef’s pricing is steep, no matter how you slice and dice it. If you have trouble stretching your grocery budget from week to week as it is, you’ll have trouble justifying the price of these meal kits.
Families and kids
Unless your kids are pretty open-minded, Green Chef probably won’t be a hit at your dinner table. These meals don’t cater as well to picky eaters as others and tend to utilize ingredients that might have many toddlers around the world sticking out their tongues. We’ve covered a list of the best meal delivery services for families if you’re looking for an option there.
Is Green Chef worth it?
Green Chef’s higher pricing is worth it if you value organic and top-quality ingredients from sustainable sources or have dietary restrictions Green Chef accommodates. Not many other meal delivery services provide the options Green Chef does.
Meal delivery can save you time and money. With Green Chef, the former is definitely true and the latter can be true, despite the higher price, depending on your current situation to meet your diet.
Where does Green Chef deliver?
Green Chef delivers almost everywhere in the continental United States. They do not deliver to Hawaii and Alaska. If you see they’re not currently delivering to your specific location, then you can still sign up and they’ll notify you when they are.
Green Chef customer service
If you ever have an issue with your account or with any of the meal kits you receive, you can contact Green Chef’s customer support team using the live chat feature on the website any time between 9 am and 7 pm EST Monday through Sunday. You can also call (888) 236-7295 during the business week between 6 am and 11 pm EST or on Saturdays between 7 am and 7 pm.
But as for myself, everything I ordered was delivered right on time without any hiccups.
How do you cancel your Green Chef subscription?
To cancel your Green Chef subscription, just log in to your account and go to the settings menu. From there, navigate to the “Account” tab and find the link that says “Deactivate your plan.” Click through the prompts and you’re done. Make sure you cancel at least 5 days prior to your last delivery if you don’t want to pay for another box. You will not be refunded for orders you don’t want if you cancel too late.
You should receive an email and be able to see from your account that your service has been discontinued for upcoming weeks if the cancelation was successful. If something seems off, contact support right away.
You also have the option to pause your delivery service up to 5 days before your delivery is scheduled. And you can skip as many as 4 weeks by selecting the “Skip Week” option on the specific week intended.
Green Chef is far from the only meal delivery service. Let’s compare this meal kit delivery service to a few of the most popular alternatives, some of which we believe are ultimately better meal delivery options.
Green Chef vs HelloFresh
If you want to eat organic but don’t want to pay quite so much for meal kits, try HelloFresh with prices starting at $9.99 per serving for a range of delicious, health-forward options that include Calorie Smart, Protein Smart, and more.
HelloFresh offers 45+ weekly recipes and 100+ seasonal and convenience items to choose from that can please a variety of different diets and preferences.
The recipes are easy to prepare with simple step-by-step instructions that anyone can follow, and the pre-portioned ingredients provided are always fresh.
- Easy meal prep with simple instructions
- Range of options to please everyone
- Eco-friendly and convenient packaging
- More expensive than some competitors
- Delivery window can be inconvenient
This meal kit company uses a mix of organic and non-organic ingredients depending on what’s available. And because this is the parent company of Green Chef, you’ll notice that the recipe cards and overall service are pretty much the same – and each offers an incentive for signing up in case you want to give both a try.
Meals can be customized to your preferences but HelloFresh doesn’t offer exclusive gluten-free, allergen-free or keto options.
» MORE: See why it’s popular in our full HelloFresh Review
Green Chef vs Blue Apron
If ingredient quality and interesting meals make you like Green Chef but something is stopping you from signing up, Blue Apron is another great option.
Blue Apron offers both meal kits you prepare yourself and heat-and-eat meals that are already fully cooked. Ingredients are sourced directly from family-run farms to ensure freshness and quality and recipes are curated by a team of professional chefs.
- Highest-quality ingredients
- Adventurous recipes foodies will love
- Plenty of menu choices
- Not allergen-friendly
- Excessive packaging
This meal delivery service offers many different types of cuisine inspired by global flavors, so you won’t get bored, and there are plenty of healthy meals to choose from, including several that are nutritionist approved and WW-friendly under their Wellness category. These dishes are low-calorie (less than 600), lower in carbs, and nutritionist-recommended.
This service is especially great for more experienced home chefs and people who want to feel like they’re eating at a restaurant at home. Ingredient quality is comparable to Green Chef and this company is also carbon-neutral, but Blue Apron is not certified organic. Prices start at $7.99 per serving on Blue Apron meal kits you prepare yourself.
» MORE: Read our full Blue Apron Review
As far as meal kit services go, Green Chef is very accommodating to different diets and restrictions. It also uses better ingredients, including organic certified ingredients, than most and gives you more options to choose from. However, quality ingredients and variety come at a higher price. You’ll pay more per serving for Green Chef than you would for another meal kit, something you may ultimately be okay with if your needs are met.
If variety, quality, and sustainability are important to you and you’re willing to pay the higher prices to use this meal kit company, Green Chef could be a perfect choice for you.