And January is…….done!

We are already one whole month into this beautiful year and it has certainly been a busy one in our household!

Amongst all the family fun, catch-ups with friends and finding time for me (that year-long goal this year!), my husband and I have also been challenging ourselves to be vegetarians this month!

We have done ‘Veganuary’ (or ‘veggieanuary’) for the last few years now as a way to challenge ourselves to eat a bit healthier, and also to make us try some new foods! However with the 2 kids and a busy work schedule, this year we have found it harder than in previous years!

A lot of the meals we were eating at the start of the month were just the same old meals that we would normally have but with Quorn replacements – veggie sausages, quorn mince, stir fry, quorn chicken thai curry etc. It was great but we still weren’t really thinking much outside the box.

So the last couple of weeks we’ve really tried to eat some different things! One of the ways we’ve done this is by ordering a HelloFresh box. I have to admit I was a huge sceptic of this; I consider myself to be an ok cook and have a range of ingredients constantly in the house so the thought of someone delivering me exactly what I need, for quite a big cost, was not particularly attractive. However, my sister is a complete convert to HelloFresh (the Rapid Box fits in with her busy lifestyle perfectly) and she had a completely free box to give to a friend. Enter me.

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The system was so easy to use. I typed in my voucher code, picked 3 family meals and hey presto, awaited my delivery the following Saturday. We opted for Veggie Shepherd’s Pie (sans Quorn mince!), orzo risotto, and curried roasted parsnips and bulgar pilaf. Saturday morning came, along with our beautifully packaged (and recycling friendly) HelloFresh box.

The recipes have all been super easy to follow, and the ingredients are all weighed out to the exact amounts you need so it really is a case of ‘cook by numbers’. The only extras we’ve had to provide was a dollop of butter and splash of milk (for the mash), and some water (to make up the stock).

So yes, so far it was all super easy….but was it worth it?

At £48 for three meals for 3 (this was the Family Box option), its a little on the pricey side to say the least. However there are very generous portions. Each of the meals we have made served 2 for dinner, plus at least 2 other lunch portions. So you could argue we’ve actually managed to get 6 meals out of it which makes it seem a little better. On the other hand, that is still £8 a meal which given that we already had a lot of the ingredients in the house, is actually quite a price to be spending every week. Would I ordinarily spend £4 a person for each meal when I go to the supermarket…no, probably not.

All in all, I have to say that the meals were absolutely delicious. They also forced me to cook with foods I don’t normally use (red lentils, bulgar wheat and orzo are just 3 examples). However, despite the amazing taste, as a family of 4 (and with me on maternity) it is certainly something that we couldn’t stretch to every week. Especially as we would still have to go to the supermarket for the other meals, and staples that we need in the house. Having said that, should they send me a load of coupons begging me to come back – yes I would definitely buy another box as an occasional treat!

After all, it took all the fuss out of cooking and yet provided us with really lovely (and fairly healthy) meals.

As it is finallllllllly the 31st, we are going to start eating meat again (I have missed it quite a lot this time round!) but we are most definitely going to make sure that we eat a few veggie meals each week. After all, we both love it and its a great habit to get the kids in to as well!

February’s challenge is try and stop those naughty snacking habits and to try and get back into a bit of shape! Hopefully a few veggie meals a week will help with that but in the meantime, I have to say I am relishing the idea of eating a massive steak! Maybe that can be my weekend treat seeing as the husband is away!

Until next time! X

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Monkey & Pal

A languages teacher who became a mum for the first time in April 2015, and for the second time in September 2017. Danni lives with her wonderful husband, two beautiful girls and a rather cool cat. She loves reading, watching films and spending time with my family and friends. After blogging as Totally Mum, Totally Me for a year, Danni is really excited to launch Monkey & Pal

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