Home Chef has been our top-rated meal kit delivery service for three years running. Our executive editor of Home & Labs, Meghan Kavanaugh, has used it consistently with rave reviews. When I heard that Home Chef had partnered with celebrity chef and TV personality, Rachael Ray, I knew it was the perfect time to give it a try for myself.
It’s easy to see why Home Chef is our favourite. From selecting the meals to sitting down to dinner, the entire process was seamless—and the results were delicious. One of Ray’s recipes will be featured on the Home Chef menu each week for six months. That’s 26 different recipes from the 30-Minute Meals author.
The iconic chef-turned-TV-star is known for her unfussy cooking style, quick meals, and relatable personality. We were excited to see how her extensive collection of cookbook and made-for-TV recipes would translate to a meal kit service.
The Rachael Ray recipes are tagged with a special indicator so they’re easy to find. The first week I ordered, the special selection was buffalo-style turkey chili, so I added that to my menu along with a 15-minute meal kit for salmon with Tuscan herb butter and BLT salad.
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What’s in the box?
Since this was my first time ordering from Home Chef, my box included a three-ring binder to store all of my recipe cards. I immediately felt so organized and inspired, especially since the recipe cards come already 3-hole-punched and ready to go into the binder.
Each meal kit came in its own clearly labeled bag, with proteins packaged separately and also labeled. All of the packaging is recyclable, but I especially love how some of the ingredients came in reusable containers. In addition to detailed directions, the recipe cards also list out the ingredients and amounts in case I ever want to make this recipe again without the help of a meal kit.
Easy prep makes for an easy weeknight meal
I was so happy to see how quick and easy it was to prepare this meal. The timing given on the recipe card was spot-on, the directions were easy to follow, and all ingredients needed for the recipe were perfectly portioned. The fresh veggies just needed a quick chop and everything was ready to go.
Buffalo style turkey chili was a hit
In about a half hour I had a flavorful chili ready on the dinner table, and it was met with rave reviews. My husband commented that it was just the right amount of buffalo flavor without being too spicy. The blue cheese and sour cream rounded out that buffalo-style flavor profile perfectly, and the crunchy tortilla strips were a fun textural contrast.
Meal #2 was also a hit
Since there’s only one Rachael Ray-inspired recipe offered each week, my second Home Chef meal was one of the classic 15-minute meal kits, and it lived up to expectations. The salmon topped with Tuscan herb butter was accompanied by a BLT salad.
All I had to do was cook the fresh salmon, chop a few cucumbers and tomatoes, and toss the salad in a bowl with the rest of the provided ingredients. While it was essentially a garden salad topped with crumbled bacon, that was enough to keep it heartier and more interesting than standard lettuce with dressing.
Even the flavorful herb butter was ready to slather on the seared salmon on its way to the table, and when it got there it was another big hit with my husband. We agreed we’d happily order it again if it’s on the menu.
Week 2: A classic Rachael Ray autumn pork dish
Since Home Chef offers so many different styles of meals, from standard meal kits to Fast & Fresh to Oven-Ready, Ray’s recipe may fall into a different category each week. This week was a 40-50 minute meal kit, and it felt a bit more like a cookbook recipe even though much of the prep was still done by Home Chef.
This was a perfectly autumn-y pork chop recipe with sweet onions and apple and cheesy crushed loaded potatoes. The steps were longer than the previous week and required multiple cooking pots. It could have benefitted from some consolidation, although the finished dish was delicious and appealing. Even my 5-year-old loved it and found it worth the wait.
My second recipe of the week was an amazing 25-minute shrimp campanelle primavera, which was devoured before I could even get a photograph of it. Loaded with shrimp, fresh zucchini and tomatoes, and a creamy sauce—this was a family favorite that my son also enjoyed.
The only adjustment I made was to lighten up on the amount of cream cheese, sour cream, and butter called for at the end of the recipe. That kind of personalization is easy to do because everything is individually packaged, so I simply added half of what I was given.
We’re excited for more
The upcoming weeks of Rachael Ray-inspired recipes feature dishes like tilapia piccata with lemon spaghetti and steak pizzaiola—clearly tapping into Ray’s Italian roots. The only downside to these selections is the lack of vegetarian options, which is my only complaint about Home Chef overall.
If you’re looking for easy, hearty meals with weekly inspiration from one of America’s favorite celebrity chefs, give Home Chef a try this winter. Ray’s recipes will be featured on Home Chef through March 2023.
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