Hello Fresh meals are premade meals delivered to your door. They are best known for their work policy, where you can skip weeks and just continue with no long-term involvement. The company is praised for its home-cooked, all-natural meals prepared by professional chefs.
However, since Hello Fresh meals are delivered in batches, meaning you cannot have only one meal delivered, you risk having them spoil before you enjoy them. Therefore it is helpful to know a thing or two about prolonging their shelf-life. So, can you freeze Hello Fresh meals, and how to store them?
You can freeze Hello Fresh meals. Freezing them will keep them safe for up to two months, while keeping them in the fridge will prolong their shelf-life for about a week, and at room temperature, they will be safe and sound for no more than two hours.
Hello Fresh meals are an excellent solution if you don’t have the time to cook for yourself or are on a specific diet you want to maintain. However, they come in batches, and chances are you won’t finish them all in one sitting. So, in the following paragraphs, I will discuss how to freeze them and give you a few storage options.
How to Store Hello Fresh Meals?
The best storage container for Hello Fresh meals is in its original box. They are safely packed in special thermally safe boxes, which keep them safe for 24 hours after delivery. So, even if you don’t wipe off all the meals the same day, you can store them safely without doing anything for 24 hours.
An unopened Hello Fresh meal is good for about a week in the fridge. Its original box will keep it safe, so you don’t have to worry. If you open a Hello Fresh meal without and don’t finish it, you should place it in an airtight container and refrigerate it. This way, it will be safe for up to four days.
If you are having seafood, the shelf-life in the fridge, whether in the original box or not, will last you less than the envisaged period for both categories.
Never try to store Hello Fresh meals at room temperature, no matter the way they are packed. After you open the box, your meal will be good for about two hours, including the time you eat.
Can You Freeze Hello Fresh Meals?
Hello Fresh meals are home-cooked meals, so you can treat them as you would treat a meal you have yourself. They are made with all-natural ingredients, and they don’t contain any shelf-life prolonging substances that may in any way alter the structure of the meals.
Therefore you can freeze them as you would any other meal of the respective type. However, if your vegetarian meal consists mainly of vegetables, it won’t do well in the freezer as vegetables tend to lose consistency and diminish in structure when defrosted.
If you intend to freeze bread-containing foods, I’d recommend you don’t do it, as bread tends to lose quality when frozen. However, it is doable, so if you absolutely need to, it won’t be the end of the world if you freeze bread.
Rice-based meals are also not very good when frozen, as they become watery and gooey, but other than that, they will taste good. Feel free to freeze any other type of meal as you would have if you yourself cooked it.
Make sure you use proper containers to freeze your Hello Fresh meals. Of course, airtight containers work best, but if you don’t have any, place the food in freezer baggies and transfer them into a regular container.
If you are freezing smaller pieces, please don’t pile them over each other, but rather leave space so that they don’t squish.
How to Reheat Hello Fresh Meals?
Before reheating your Hello Fresh meal, let the food thaw. If you heat up food straight from the freezer, it will dry up and lose quality almost entirely.
If you reheat Hello Fresh meals in the microwave, check the meal after each interval in a few intervals of two minutes. The packs are microwave-safe, so you can microwave the meals in their original packaging.
In the oven, you should place them at medium heat and gradually increase the temperature over the next 15-20 minutes.
If you use another heating appliance, ensure you don’t place the food at a high temperature. Always start with a medium temperature and gradually increase it over the next 20 minutes.
How Long Do Hello Fresh Meals Last?
Hello Fresh meals are considered perishable food, mainly because they don’t contain additives to make them last longer, so they last as long as they include natural ingredients.
In the original pack, Happy Fresh meals last about 24 hours after delivery. The meals are delivered with ice packs, and the boxes’ material keeps the meals’ temperature as it should be. So warm meals remain warm and cold meals remain cold.
Happy Fresh meals last for up to two hours at room temperature, including the time you enjoy them.
In the fridge, an opened pack will last for about four days, and the original unopened pack will keep your meal safe for up to a week.
In the freezer, your meal will be okay for about a month. After a month, the meal will still be safe, but its quality will significantly diminish.
Are Hello Fresh Meals Good After the Expiration Date?
Even though some foods are okay to eat after the expiration date, they are there for a reason, and you need to observe them, especially when it comes to Hello Fresh meals.
The interior structure of the meal changes after the expiration date, and although you may not see it, the spoilage process has definitely begun. If your Hello Fresh meal is past its expiration date, you should discard it.