A College Student's Review of HelloFresh

A College Student's Review of HelloFresh

The time has come to upgrade your pizza and frozen dinner options.
Livia
Livia
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Between classes, two jobs, trying to sleep, and what I have left of a social life, fitting in time to eat a healthy meal is hard- let alone planning time to grocery shop and cook it all before the produce goes bad.

Call me lazy, but last week I decided to try a meal delivery kit for the first time. I decided I needed a change, as eating the food from my restaurant, the two basic chicken recipes I know how to make, and boxed mac and cheese was getting old fast. Plus the fact that my mother would not be impressed with the number of green things I was eating in a day was on my mind. I had heard of a company called HelloFresh from a Facebook ad and decided to give it a try.

Once I was on the website it was super easy to choose meals from their menu for the week, and pick the plan I wanted. I entered my card information and boom everything was ordered within five minutes (if I was driving to the grocery store I would still be at the traffic light at this point). Pro tip: although I only cook for one, I ordered the two-person kit so I could use the leftovers for my lunch the next day.

I was a little skeptical about how the meat and produce would stay fresh if it was being shipped to my door, but to my surprise, the following Monday I had a large box at my front door that was chilled and perfectly intact.

For a food lover like myself, this was like Christmas morning! I had just gotten home from a nine-hour day at my internship and wanted nothing more than to eat a good meal and go to sleep. Articulating an idea for what I was going to eat for dinner, actually going to the store, and coming back home to make it all was completely out of the question. And my other options were: order a pizza, or a go through a drive-thru, both not great alternatives for my extra fluff. So a HelloFresh meal was the move. The box included everything needed to make three dinners for two people, a bunch of insulation, two of the largest ice packs you will ever see, and most importantly, three easy to follow recipe cards. All of the ingredients for each meal come in their own bag, so there is no confusion as to what goes with what, or figuring out the measurements for each ingredient. I chose to make "Sizzling Hoisin Shirmp" (I had no idea what that was, as a shrimp dish went way beyond my two-recipe chicken knowledge and capabilities).

After following the six steps on the recipe card, within 25 minutes I had a whole meal in front of me, one in which I actually surprised myself with and tasted so good! For the first time in awhile, I made a dinner that included a protein, starch, and veggie that I didn't get from a restaurant, or required a ton of planning. I kept the recipe card, as this was a meal I would definitely make again, even without HelloFresh.

After my surprisingly good dinner, I signed back into my HelloFresh account and chose my meals for the following week, as this is a subscription-based company, and will send a new box to you every week if you want- so easy!

As I wait now for my second box, I have decided that although some will say HelloFresh is expensive ($60 a week for each box), I really do think this is a good deal for someone who is busy, wants a variety, and wishes to eat relatively healthy. Buying groceries for lunch and dinner each week will run you about the same amount of money, if not more if you were to go buy all of these ingredients on your own.

When you make food at home, it also keeps you from eating out, which saves a ton of money right there. The time saver alone I think is the best aspect of this whole meal delivery system, time is priceless. This box is dummy proof for even people who say they can't cook, if you can read, you can feel like a 5- star chef!

So HelloFresh is a yes from me, it can be a little expensive, but you save a lot of time, and are guaranteed a healthy meal that tastes great. You're welcome for the free advertising HelloFresh.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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​An Open Letter To The People Who Don’t Tip Their Servers

This one's for you.
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Dear Person Who Has No Idea How Much The 0 In The “Tip:" Line Matters,

I want to by asking you a simple question: Why?

Is it because you can't afford it? Is it because you are blind to the fact that the tip you leave is how the waiter/waitress serving you is making their living? Is it because you're just lazy and you “don't feel like it"?

Is it because you think that, while taking care of not only your table but at least three to five others, they took too long bringing you that side of ranch dressing? Or is it just because you're unaware that as a server these people make $2.85 an hour plus TIPS?

The average waiter/waitress is only supposed to be paid $2.13 an hour plus tips according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

That then leaves the waiter/waitress with a paycheck with the numbers **$0.00** and the words “Not a real paycheck." stamped on it. Therefore these men and women completely rely on the tips they make during the week to pay their bills.

So, with that being said, I have a few words for those of you who are ignorant enough to leave without leaving a few dollars in the “tip:" line.

Imagine if you go to work, the night starts off slow, then almost like a bomb went off the entire workplace is chaotic and you can't seem to find a minute to stop and breathe, let alone think about what to do next.

Imagine that you are helping a total of six different groups of people at one time, with each group containing two to 10 people.

Imagine that you are working your ass off to make sure that these customers have the best experience possible. Then you cash them out, you hand them a pen and a receipt, say “Thank you so much! It was a pleasure serving you, have a great day!"

Imagine you walk away to attempt to start one of the 17 other things you need to complete, watch as the group you just thanked leaves, and maybe even wave goodbye.

Imagine you are cleaning up the mess that they have so kindly left behind, you look down at the receipt and realize there's a sad face on the tip line of a $24.83 bill.

Imagine how devastated you feel knowing that you helped these people as much as you could just to have them throw water on the fire you need to complete the night.

Now, realize that whenever you decide not to tip your waitress, this is nine out of 10 times what they go through. I cannot stress enough how important it is for people to realize that this is someone's profession — whether they are a college student, a single mother working their second job of the day, a new dad who needs to pay off the loan he needed to take out to get a safer car for his child, your friend, your mom, your dad, your sister, your brother, you.

If you cannot afford to tip, do not come out to eat. If you cannot afford the three alcoholic drinks you gulped down, plus your food and a tip do not come out to eat.

If you cannot afford the $10 wings that become half-off on Tuesdays plus that water you asked for, do not come out to eat.

If you cannot see that the person in front of you is working their best to accommodate you, while trying to do the same for the other five tables around you, do not come out to eat. If you cannot realize that the man or woman in front of you is a real person, with their own personal lives and problems and that maybe these problems have led them to be the reason they are standing in front of you, then do not come out to eat.

As a server myself, it kills me to see the people around me being deprived of the money that they were supposed to earn. It kills me to see the three dollars you left on a $40 bill. It kills me that you cannot stand to put yourself in our shoes — as if you're better than us. I wonder if you realize that you single-handedly ruined part of our nights.

I wonder if maybe one day you will be in our shoes, and I hope to God no one treats you how you have treated us. But if they do, then maybe you'll realize how we felt when you left no tip after we gave you our time.

Cover Image Credit: Hailea Shallock

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My Strange Obsession: Bibibop Addition

I am obsessed with Bibibop.

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I am obsessed with Bibibop.

Sounds strange, right? But it's true.

For those of you who have never had the opportunity to experience Bibibop, Bibibop is an Asian Grill set up similar to Chipotle. You're able to go down the line of food, choosing a base (always go with the purple rice), hot toppings (they all slap), protein (the tofu is to die for), some cold toppings (a great way to try kale for the first time), and a sauce (if you don't get the Yum Yum sauce, you're weird.)

And, let me tell you, the final product is always delicious.

I hadn't been introduced to Bibibop until this past year, but once I tried it for the first time, I never looked back. Now I am constantly craving the taste of the Yum Yum sauce. I usually hit up Bibibop once every two weeks, but if I was rich, I would probably eat it every other day.

Though, admittedly, the prices are pretty good. And they celebrate meatless Mondays with 20% off to anyone who doesn't get meat in their bowl.

Plus, it's pretty healthy. Unlike most restaurants, like Chipotle, where your somewhat healthy meal can instantly become bad for you with the addition of something on the menu, Bibibop's entire menu provides nutritional value and offers gluten-free and vegan options.

Basically, Bibibop is the most underrated and most delicious restaurant in the world, which is why my obsession with it runs so deep. Although I would usually admit that obsessions are unhealthy, I think this one might be okay.

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