Hungryroot Plant Based Meal Delivery – Review and Discount Codea

Disclosure:  I received free products from hungry root and have received compensation for services. As always, all opinions stated are my own.

*Update 3/19/19: hungryroot has changed their format since this post was written. Click for $25 off of your first 2 orders.

After returning from California, I immediately traveled to CT for a friend’s wedding and didn’t arrive back home in PA until late Sunday night. We had a few odds and ends to eat on Monday and I was thrilled when a client rescheduled on Tuesday so that I could make it to the grocery store. While I could have made a meal, I was overjoyed when this package was on my doorstep when I got home from shopping!

 

What is Hungryroot?

Hungry root is a new whole foods meal delivery company. The catch is that the meals still need to be prepared… but it only take 7 minutes (if that)! Root vegetables (hence the name) are the base of the meal and you add in the plant based sauces, seasonings and toppings that come with the dish. In just 5 minutes in a pan or microwave, dinner is ready. The meals are chef designed and are all under 500 calories counting the chicken if you order it too. If not, you can add in your own shrimp, egg, or tofu, which is what I plan to do when I order more in the future! The meals are all non-GMO and gluten free as well.

I will be honest that when I opened the packages I thought the small containers of sauces and toppings seemed small. By the end I learned you can’t let the packaging fool you! Hungryroot had offered to send me two meals to try so that I could see if it was something I wanted to suggest or recommend to those I deliver nutrition information to {like you on this blog 😉 }. I don’t remember who chose what but between Tim and I we went with turnip noodles and pesto as well as carrot noodles and a sriracha peanut sauce. While all meals come without chicken to begin, you can add free range chicken when ordering. I did not eat the chicken but ordered it so that Tim could try for my poultry eating clientele and followers.

For our trial, I opened the packages, heated up a dash of avocado oil in a pan, and added the root veggies. I stirred and two minutes later added the other ingredients.

did screw up with the carrot dish though and forgot to add the homemade chimichurri while cooking, so I had to stir it in at the end. Can’t say it would have tasted any different if I added it sooner but it did contribute to how pretty the dish looked as you can see below!

First, pictured below is the turnip noodles with toasted walnut pesto, shredded carrots and chopped walnuts. So pretty!

The pesto was the perfect blend of sweet with a little bite of basil/garlic spice. The turnips were savory and had a hearty texture which I liked. Admittedly this is my first time having turnip noodles – total win! Even though the noodles didn’t look heavily coated with the sauce the flavor was powerful but not overpowering.

Here we have the carrot noodle dish with homemade sriracha peanut sauce and a peanut, cilantro, mint & lime chimichurri and pickled daikon radish. It sounds like it belongs on a high quality restaurant menu and tastes like it too!


T
he carrot noodles had a more fine texture than the turnips but I liked them just the same. I LOVE sriracha and can put it on anything so I knew I would like the sauce. However, this sauce gave a little bit of heat but had so many other great flavors balancing it out too. I couldn’t taste the mint much in the chimichurri but there was a slight sweetness that complimented the sriracha sauce well.

Tim’s was impressed with the chicken. He said it was crispy on the outside but tender inside, with a texture and taste as if it was just grilled. As mentioned above, you can easily cook and egg or some shrimp in the time the noodles are cooking and top with them for protein. I think tofu would also be good but since I like it well done, would take more time.

SO overall, we were impressed by Hungryroot. I was definitely full and I didn’t eat any of the chicken and also didn’t add another protein since I had a late afternoon snack. The flavor was amazing and the food was REAL! I recommend having these meals on hand when you know there is a busy week ahead, or even to take to work once in a while since they are microwavable too. If you are using a meal delivery system like Nutri-systems, go to their website and read your ingredient lists. Compare them to those on the Hungryroot site. You’ll be getting much better quality food and nutrition with this type of meal and you will be taking a small amount of time to prep the food. I think this is where most meal delivery programs go wrong. You cannot promote weight loss and healthy living in a sustainable way unless the person is making the effort to prepare a little and actually change their environment, habits and lifestyle.

Want to try Hungryroot yourself? Head over to their website and enter the code Kelly20 for 20% off your purchase. It is not a first time only code so you can keep using it for future purchases too.  I plan to get 20% off of the beet and sweet potato noodle dishes next – I’ll let you know how they are over on insta! Let me know how you like the meals too!!

Spaghetti Squash with Peas and Avocado Walnut Pesto

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Spaghetti squash was actually not on my grocery list this past week. I only purchase it in season and always classify it as a fall/winter food. But there in Whole Foods was a display of local Lancaster, PA organic squash. I couldn’t resist and am happy I didn’t! I have made a variety of different pesto in the past with avocado, cashews, walnuts and of course pine nuts, but had never combined the creamy avocado fruit with the crunchy texture of the nuts. Definitely a winning combination!

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Spaghetti Squash with Peas and Avocado Walnut Pesto (GF, V, DF)

Ingredients (see below for beneficial properties of these ingredients):

1 Medium Spaghetti Squash

1 Medium-Large avocado

1/3 Cup Walnuts (chopped or in pieces)

5-6 cloves garlic (we love garlic, you might want to halve this!)

1/2 Cup packed basil (about 1 ounce on the food scale)

1.5 cups green peas, cooked from frozen (I used Whole Foods Organic-not pictured)

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

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Directions:

-Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F
-Take your spaghetti squash and carefully cut in half lengthwise. The first cut may seem difficult but once the knife is in its a lot easier to cut the rest of the squash.
-Dig out the seeds & pulp (pictured w/out seeds on left below)
-Save the seeds for the roasted seed recipe that I posted in November with my Italian Style Spaghetti Squash.


-Set the squash cut side down in a large glass baking dish & add 1/2-3/4 C water
-Place in the oven and cook about 40 minutes (may vary depending on size of squash & oven)

-While the squash is cooking, you can make your pesto and cook your peas
-Get out your food processor, bullet blender, or other blending tool
-Add all ingredients except for the peas and pulse until most of the mixture is smooth but you can still see tiny pieces of walnuts for texture
-Cook the frozen peas in a pot according to package instructions (I just cook over low-medium for about 5-7 minutes)
-When the squash is done you should easily be able to stick a fork in through the skin
-Remove it from the oven & carefully flip so the flesh side is up
-With a fork, you’ll basically want to “rake” from one side to the other to remove the “spaghetti”

-We used all of the pesto mixture and peas with about 2/3 of our squash to yield 4 servings. This will vary since your squash probably won’t be the exact same size. The leftovers can be used on a salad, in an omelet, or you can top it with any sauce.
-You can either stir your pesto mixture & peas right in with the squash, or keep separate for each dish that you plate and add the mixture on top.
-We also chopped up an heirloom tomato to add a little color and sweetness to balance out the delicious but strong garlic and basil.

Real Ingredients with Real Benefits:

Spaghetti Squash isn’t going to provide you with tons of one specific nutrient but it will contribute a balanced amount of most vitamins and minerals to your diet especially Vitamins C & B6. What shines for spaghetti squash is the fiber & healthy carbohydrate content as well as the carotenoid antioxidants.

Avocados contain mostly the healthy mono-unsaturated fat that your body needs for heart health, brain function, joint protection and immune function. Avocados are also a good source of fiber, potassium, vitamins E, C, and K, as well as the B-vitamins folate and B6. Another compound this fruit gives us is beta-sitosterol. Just like we get cholesterol from animals, we can get plant sterols from certain plants. Sterols like beta-sitosterol help block cholesterol absorption in the small intestine, enhancing heart health. The phytochemicals that avocados are highest in are the carotenoids lutein + zeaxanthin which are associated with eye health, immune and antioxidant function.

Walnuts have been pinned as the most heart healthy nut by many researchers due to their high omega-3 content (discussed here at walnuts.org) and their vitamin E and antioxidant phytochemical content. Omega-3′s support heart health by helping to regulate inflammation, Vitamin E is heart protective by protecting cells and fatty substances in the body, and the phenols present are thought to support a healthy metabolism and healthy blood vessels.

Did you know that peas are a good source of plant protein? Per 2/3 Cup serving you get 5 grams! As a reference, an egg contains 7 grams. Peas are also an excellent source of Vitamins K, C, A, B1, and folate. They contain the phytochemical coumestrol which has been found in research to reduce stomach cancer risk as well as other phytochemicals with anti-inflammatory properties.

Basil also packs a lot of vitamin K as well as some iron, calcium, and Vitamin A. The phytochemicals in basil have been found to be anti-inflammatory, heart healthy, and anti-bacterial.

Garlic provides the phytochemicals allicin and sulfides which are linked to improved immunity and respiratory health.

Tomatoes pack in lots of Vitamins A, C, and the important fluid balance mineral Potassium. They are well known in terms of phytochemical content for their lycopene which is known for reducing risk of prostate cancer. This was one of the first phytochemicals that really made a name for itself. It is often forgotten that tomatoes also provide other carotenoids and flavonoids such as quercitin.

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I am not at all ready for summer to be over but have to admit I’m getting excited for fall foods!