Food box delivery services have quickly taken off in New Zealand since My Food Bag led the way in 2012. According to Wikipedia My Food Bag have over 50,000 customers (as of 2016) and alternatives are quickly opening their doors and enticing Kiwis in.
The problem is now how to best choose which food box is best for you and your family!
On this website, I’ve written about my experience of using My Food Bag, HelloFresh, Food Box, WOOP, and a number of others. I’ve crunched the numbers and done the maths to compare the cost per meal for the different services so you can be sure you are getting bang for your buck.
If you’re not familiar with the concept of food box subscription services, you sign up and choose the plan you want, and then you get a weekly delivery with all the ingredients and recipes to make your meals for the week. You choose what sort of box you want (eg classic, low calorie, vegetarian, or gluten-free), how many people you want to feed, and how many days per week you would like to be included in the delivery.
Common ingredients such as oil, salt, and milk are typically not included as they’re considered staples which most households will have in their pantries.
Food Box Reviews
As of May 2019, there are over 23 different food subscription boxes available in New Zealand, with most of the market share being held by local brand Myfoodbag.
|Berlin-based HelloFresh came to New Zealand in September 2018 and has a range of plans that have proved popular with Kiwis. Read full HelloFresh Review|
|Woop currently has four food boxes available, including a gluten-free box. Woop currently delivers to Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Hamilton, Tauranga, Palmerston North, Rotorua. Read full Woop Review|
|My Food Bag is New Zealand's own home-grown food box, co-founded by celebrity chef Nadia Lim. There are currently a number of boxes available, from classic, to low calorie, to bags for couples, and bags for families. Read full My Food Bag Review|
|Bargain Box is bought to you by the team behind Myfoodbag. Bargain box lets you choose to feed two, four or six mouths, and either three or five meals per week.
Read full Bargain Box Review
Vegetarian Food Boxes
There are a number of food box companies provide special vegetarian meal delivery options. Generally the Vege boxes don’t cost a premium over the standard or family boxes, and actually, work out pretty cost-effectively. The following companies are our recommendations when looking for a food delivery box which is meat-free.
|Brand||Vegetarian Food Boxes|
|The HelloFresh Vege plan starts from $10.83 per serving and can come packed for two people or four people. You'll get three recipes per week, and need to sort yourself our for the other four days. Read full HelloFresh Review|
|The My Vege box from My Food bag starts at $10.83 per serving and also caters to either two or four people per delivery. It will be delivered three nights per week. Read full My Food Bag Review|
Why use a food box delivery service?
Price: Most food boxes cost around $169 for a family of four, for five nights per week. This works out to be about $8.50 per plate. Prices can be both higher or lower than this depending on the company you choose, and the particular box you want. For example, My Food Bags Fresh Start box works out at $10.50 per plate for four adults, five nights a week.
When budgeting be sure to keep in mind this is for dinners only, and you need to add breakfast, lunches, and snacks on top. Most families will be able to achieve cheaper prices than a food box delivery service by driving to the supermarket and buying the ingredients yourself. But with the food box you are less likely to buy unnecessary extras, you have the convenience of not needing to go to the supermarket, and you get to try a whole heap of new meals.
Convenience: The convenience of a food box is one of the best perks and what many customers love the most. All your meals are sorted at the start of the week (if you choose a five-night box) and you can drive straight home from work knowing you have all your ingredients ready for you. There will also be no time thinking about what to cook, or finding a new recipe because you’ll get these all sorted at the start of the week too.
Inspiration: If you find yourself cooking the same 5 recipes rotating each week, and getting a bit bored with these meals, then a food box may be what you need. Truth is this is why my wife loves our food boxes – she got sick of my nachos, carbonara, and bangers and mash! Food boxes are also a cheaper and healthier alternative than eating out.
Minimal waste: Food boxes delivery exactly the right amount of food you need for the number of meals you decide to get delivered each week. This means at end of the week there are no stray broccoli sitting in your fridge, potatoes going soft in your bottom drawer, or half used bags of lettuce needing to be thrown away.
Yes, there will be some additional packaging created, but most food box brands in New Zealand ensure these are recyclable these days, or pick them up and re-use them at the next delivery.
I bet half you people reading my website I just looking for My Food Bag promo codes or HelloFresh promo codes. The good news is that yes you can use promo codes to get discounts on both these food boxes, and the even better news is I’ve got a few for you.
You can find them by reading our reviews at the links above. Alternatively, if you just want to skip all the reviews and analysis, you can click here to apply a My Food Bag promo code, or click here to visit HelloFresh and apply their promo code.
Check out the discount you’ll get on your first My Food Bag delivery using the link above:
…and below is a sample of HelloFresh prices when the Hellofresh promo code is used.
If you use either of these links your promo code will automatically be applied, and I’ll also get a wee discount applied to my next food box deliver as well. Win-win! (Thank you 😍 ).
Which food box delivery service is best?
Yikes! What a tough question. My easy answer is: it depends!
Yes, that’s a terrible answer, but it really does depend on what you value in a food box. Do you like a large range of recipes, gluten-free meals, vegetarian recipes, sustainable packaging, or maybe you need delivery to a small town in the middle of no-where?
If you want a really solid choice without doing too much research, just head over to HelloFresh and we are 99% sure you’ll love it and it’ll be the right choice for you. You can read our full HelloFresh in just a few minutes, and you’ll get a good discount.
But as I say there are many different factors to deciding what is the best food box. Let’s take a look at them one by one.
Best overall food box
As mentioned above, you can’t go past HelloFresh. HelloFresh has a huge number of delivery areas, consistently great meals, the backing of a global company so customer service and online experience is great. They are relatively new to New Zealand so if you are looking for a My Food Bag alternative this is the brand you need to try next.
Best for sustainability
All food bags provide exact portions so there is zero food waste, but Woop goes a little bit further and ensures carbon neutral deliveries. They plant lots of trees (according to their website) to offset their carbon footprint. They also re-use the delivery box and cool packs if you leave them at your doorstep during your next delivery, and ensure that 99% of their packaging is recyclable or compostable.
Woop recipes also use locally sourced ingredients, are 100% natural, use free-range chicken, and grass-fed beef and lamb.
Phew, that was a mouthful typing all that feel-good stuff! Good work Woop.
Best New Zealand brand
This, of course, has to be My Food Bag. Kiwis love the brand and the face of the company, Nadia Lim. My Food Bag has so many options to choose from and tens of thousands of happy customers around New Zealand. My Food Bag was the first food box service I joined, and I stayed with them for 18 months. The only time I stopped deliveries was over summer when I wanted to cook my own barbeques, or was spending too much time at friends and family houses to make getting meals delivered at home worthwhile.
Our My Food Bag review goes in-depth into why we love this brand and explains exactly why we think it is one of the best food boxes in New Zealand.
Best food box recipes
This one is dependant on your own preferences, so we’d recommend you decide for yourself by reading all our food box reviews in the menu above.
However, if you simply want my recommendation I’d say go take a look at our Woop review and their recipes in particular. Woop stands for “World on a plate” and their recipes reflect this. Woop takes its inspiration from recipes around the world but uses fresh Kiwi ingredients. You get to taste Mexican food, Vietnamese, Italian, Chinese, and a huge range of other flavours over the course of a month.
Best family food box
My Food Bag, HelloFresh, and Woop all have boxes designed for families. You’ll probably want to browse all these brands and take a look at their recipes to decide what is best for your family (and we mainly mean what type of food your kids will eat). The My Food Bag My Family box is described as “kid-friendly meals” on the brand’s website, so this may be the safest bet if you have slightly fussy kids.
- Woop Classic Box – Feeds 2 adults and 2-3 kids – 3 or 4 nights a week
- My Food Bag My Family – Feeds 2 adults and 2-3 kids – 5 nights a week
- My Food Bag My Classic – Feeds 4 adults or 2 adults and 2 teenagers – 3 or 5 nights a week
- HelloFresh Family Plan – Feeds 4 people – 4 or 5 nights a week
I’m a sucker for companies with a super slick app, and the HelloFresh app is up there with the likes of Airbnb and Uber in terms of beautiful design and ease of use.
HelloFresh has an app for both Android and iPhone users, and are easily downloaded from the various app stores.
The app allows you to easily manage your account and sign up to any of the HelloFresh food boxes. You can manage your subscriptions, track your orders, and see your recent orders.
Even if you are not currently a customer, you can browse all the Hellofresh recipes from the app! So for this reason alone I’d suggest you download it, then you have a cookbook in your pocket every time you go to the supermarket!
I’ve never used a recipe app before, so I can’t really provide a comparison, but this HelloFresh app is amazing. I love the way the recipes work. You choose the one you want to make, then swipe through each small step of the recipe until to come to the end, at which point you should have a meal in front of you.
There is a bit too much to say about the app here, but check out our HelloFresh review to hear more about the app.
How meal subscriptions work
Sorry if you have read this far and still have no idea how a meal subscription service works. All services – HelloFresh, My Food Bag, Woop, Bargain Box, Emmas Food Bag, and others – work similarly. In a nutshell, their in-house chefs create healthy recipes and their team gathered up all the ingredients required for these recipes and delivers them to your door at the start of the week.
This means no grocery shopping, no panicking about what to cook, and you get everything you need to eat healthy home-cooked meals any night of the week.
The bigger brands deliver to a surprisingly large number of areas around New Zealand and are packaged in a manner that the food doesn’t go off if left at your door for a few hours. The packaging and cool bags will keep the meat and vegetables nice and cool until you can bring them inside and unpack the box (it’s a bit like Christmas each week discovering what you have received!).
Each food box brand offers different ‘boxes’ meaning you can choose the option that has the type of meals you want to eat. This could be classic kiwi meals, internation flavours, gluten-free meals, or vegetarian. You also choose how many people you want to feed, and how many nights you want to eat meals from the food box.
How this website works:
Smartfood.co.nz aims to help Kiwis decide which food box is best for them, and make the right choice first time. While we do our best to provide up to date information on all food boxes available in New Zealand, from time to time our details and pricing may be out of date. If you’ve noticed something that needs updating, please let us know!
Please also note:
- We can’t guarantee all information and data on this website will be 100% perfect, although we do our best to aim for this. Use the information on this website at your own risk.
- We cannot accept liability for any decisions made based on our information.
- In some cases, Smartfood.co.nz receives benefits for linking to supplier websites
We welcome your feedback, tips, and articles.