[The following post is not sponsored by Daily Harvest.]
Meal subscription services like Daily Harvest are taking this busy world by storm. When we are racing from one activity to the next, it’s hard for some to enjoy tedious tasks like shopping, preparing fresh ingredients, and washing dishes to no end. I get it! I loathe washing dishes. I do enjoy shopping for groceries–just not when everyone else is trying to get their grocery shopping done too. When the evening or weekend comes, it gets crazy and the last thing I want to do is wade through anxious–sometimes ‘hangry’–shoppers to check off the items on my list.
Thanks to meal subscription services and grocery pickup, we have a way around this problem. It often comes at a cost, though, because you’re paying more for the convenience. So, is it worth it? Should we pay for the convenience? I haven’t tried all the meal subscription services out yet, but here’s my honest review of Daily Harvest.
What is Daily Harvest?
If you are reading this review, I’m guessing you already have a pretty good idea that Daily Harvest is a type of meal delivery subscription service. The ingredients are 100% plant-based and vegan, comprised of mainly fruits and vegetables and various grains. The Daily Harvest menu includes smoothies, harvest bowls, soups, lattes, grain bowls, chia bowls, and bites. They may come up with more items, but this is what they have at the moment I’m writing this post.
How Much Does Daily Harvest Cost?
Daily Harvest has several plans to choose from. The weekly options are 6 cups at $7.99/cup, 9 cups at $7.75/cup, and the ‘best value’ of 24 cups at $6.99/cup. The only monthly option is $6.99/cup for 24 cups. I chose Daily Harvest’s 9 cup plan to start out. With the $25 off promo, the first week was $44.75 total.
Is Daily Harvest Good?
I didn’t test all of Daily Harvest’s selection, because I didn’t want to break the bank. I selected most of their “best sellers” but picked a few that I thought sounded fun too.
Here is what I chose to test:
- Strawberry + Peach Smoothie
- Mango + Greens Smoothie
- Acai + Cherry Smoothie
- Mulberry + Dragon Fruit Oat Bowl
- Apple + Cinnamon Oat Bowl
- Sweet Potato + Wild Rice Hash Harvest Bowl
- Red Lentil + Cumin Harvest Bowl
- Quinoa + Chipotle Harvest Bowl
- Chocolate + Almond Chia Bowl
I’m a big smoothie fan! Which means I was super pumped at the idea of having smoothies at the drop of a hat–just dump it in the blender and you’re ready in less than five minutes! That being said, I was underwhelmed by Daily Harvest’s smoothies. The Strawberry + Peach and Acai + Cherry were bland and boring. Both smoothies lacked in overall fruit flavors. The Mango + Greens smoothie was a little better, but still not worth it for me.
Daily Harvest smoothies are definitely convenient. All the prep work (aside from the addition of milk) has been done for you. It was so simple to add almond milk, throw it in the blender, and blend to desired consistency. The container doubles as your to-go cup, which is a nice feature if you don’t want to worry about washing a cup later.
Overall, Daily Harvest’s smoothies are decent but not outstanding. I appreciate the reasonable portion size as opposed to what most smoothie shops offer. The convenience of a smoothie in a few minutes is nice, but it’s also not hard to make a smoothie in minutes with your own ingredients. What you may miss out on if you make your own smoothie is the exotic ingredients, but that one is up to you.
Full disclosure: the following chia bowl review is likely skewed in a negative direction because I’m not a chia bowl person. Why did I get a chia bowl when I’m not usually a fan? I like giving something a try every now and then to see if my taste buds have changed.
Daily Harvest’s Chocolate + Almond chia bowl didn’t change anything for me. I’m still not a fan of chia bowls. The Chocolate + Almond chia bowl was super bland with no hint of chocolate. Also, the hunks of mushy banana were a little strange to come across.
I don’t want to be too hard on the Chia bowl though, as it wins the “most convenient” award out of all the Daily Harvest cups I tried. The hardest part is remembering to fill the cup with almond milk and place in the fridge at least 6 hrs before eating.
Eggs are my breakfast of choice on the regular, but every once in a while (and much more in the wintertime), I appreciate a hearty bowl of oatmeal. The Apple + Cinnamon Oat Bowl was heartwarming and delicious. It helps that I enjoy large hunks of apple and a kick of cinnamon in my oats. The Mulberry + Dragon Fruit Oat Bowl was not as exciting as I had hoped. The Mulberries gave it an earthiness that didn’t suit my taste buds.
The Oat Bowls were somewhat convenient to put together. If you are in the camp of instant oats, it’s not the way to go; but, if you like fresh fruit in your oatmeal without doing the prep work, it’s a great option!
The Harvest Bowls turned out to be my favorite of Daily Harvest’s menu offerings. They came in clutch in this season of my life! I’m working and trying to house train my new little pup, so I was relieved to have something easy to prepare in under 10 minutes and it kept me from ordering Chipotle too many times. I was pleasantly surprised at how much flavor was packed into each of the options. I definitely recommend all three of the bowls I tried: Sweet Potato + Wild Rice Hash, Red Lentil + Cumin, and Quinoa + Chipotle.
I tested the stovetop and microwave methods and both worked well. Of course, microwaving was much quicker and one less dish to wash, but the stovetop method was worth it when I had a few more minutes to spare.
Who Would Benefit from Daily Harvest?
If you still enjoy shopping for ingredients or saving money in your budget, Daily Harvest is probably not the right option for you. But, if you’re someone who wants to restrict your portion sizes, eat healthy without prepping food for hours, try exotic ingredients, or have something ready to eat within 5-8 minutes, then you might want to give Daily Harvest a try.
The advantage of Daily Harvest over other meal subscription plans is that you are truly getting the ease and simplicity of someone else planning and prepping your meals. The best part is you don’t have to wash as many dishes! The larger meal subscription services that deliver fresh ingredients to your doorstep still require the steps to wash, chop, cook, and clean up everything when you’re finished. It’s almost more exhausting than doing it yourself because you just paid twice as much for the same cleanup.
Daily Harvest also has an upper hand on the majority of frozen meals available because of the extensive care they take to harvest, prepare and freeze the ingredients. Daily Harvest’s freezing process captures all the good nutrients and flavor without any added sugar or preservatives.
The Bottom Line: Is Daily Harvest Worth It?
Daily Harvest offers fun, unique ingredients in every cup that I probably wouldn’t buy all the time and don’t have to wonder how to prep. But it’s not for everyone.
The Smoothies and Oat Bowls were good, but still not worth the price for me. If you’re the type of person who likes unique ingredients like Dragon Fruit and Mulberry in your oatmeal or Goji Berries in your smoothie, and you’re willing to pay someone else to prepare everything for you, then Daily Harvest is right for you.
The Harvest Bowls were delicious; however, one thing I would improve about them is adding a tad more protein. As an active person, I couldn’t eat one and make it to the next meal without getting extremely ‘hangry’ or snacking in the meantime. Otherwise, I think the Harvest Bowls are a great option for someone who wants a quick, healthy solution while controlling portion size. It’s definitely tempting to buy a few and have them on hand when I need a quick bite to eat.
The convenience of Daily Harvest is nice and some of their menu items are delicious–others not so much… If I end up in an even crazier life season, I might give Daily Harvest another try. But, for now, I’m going to stick to meal planning, prepping, and cooking on my own.
If you like Daily Harvest, let me know which menu items are your favorite and what you like about them. I’d love to hear if you think I should give them another go!
Until next time…