How to Start Cooking From Scratch with HelloFresh's Head Chef, Andre Dupin

HelloFresh is a meal-kit delivery service that delivers cook-from-scratch meals with easy-to-follow recipes made with fresh, pre-portioned ingredients, straight to your door. HelloFresh aims to provide everyone with the opportunity to enjoy delicious, home-cooked meals regardless of the time or cooking skills they possess since it removes the hassle of shopping and meal planning. 

At HelloFresh, they want to keep things exciting in the kitchen. There are 19 chef-curated recipes to choose from each week, from family favourites, balanced recipes under 600 calories to rapid recipes for when the last thing you want to do is cook. Each recipe is developed by in-house Head Chef, Andre Dupin, and his culinary team. 

Each week, Andre and his team receive feedback in the form of recipe ratings from customers. This is how every meal on their menu starts. It’s tried and tested and only the recipes that customers really love, stay. 

We caught up with Andre to learn about the benefits of cooking from scratch. As summer fades and autumn approaches, we were all ears to hear why staying in and cooking at home may be good for us as well as our pockets. 

Using a service like HelloFresh, Andre explains, you’re eating fresh ingredients which is great for you and the environment. “Many of our suppliers are local and what this means is it reduces the time from picking or sourcing the ingredient to the moment you open your box”. 

“Did you know that only four in ten Brits know more than nine recipes? Most people could make fewer than six meals from scratch. When we feel like a treat or something different, we often reach for the phone and dial for a takeaway, which I think is a shame.

“People often have the perception that cooking from scratch is laborious, especially when there is terminology like ‘julienne-cut carrots’ or ‘courgette ribbons’, but HelloFresh makes cooking simple. So next time you feel like one of your unhealthy favourites from the comfort of your sofa, you’ll be confident enough to do it yourself, and it’ll be better for you.” 

But, what about the time element? We’ve all been there. It’s easy to have good intentions but, as the day progresses, all you can think about is putting your feet up as soon as you get home.

“We have a solution for that, too,” says Andre. “Our rapid recipes can be made in 20 minutes or less, but you still learn a new skill – it’s not all beans on toast or bangers and mash”.   

Head Chef Andre Dupiin

Top tips for scratch cooking: 

  1. It’s all in the prep

A bit of prep work takes only a few minutes the day or night before and will save lots of time when you go to cook. Check if any meat needs to be pulled out of the freezer to thaw, or if any beans or grains need to soak overnight.

  1. How does your day look?

Cooking from scratch doesn’t have to take all night. Make sure you pick a recipe that fits your lifestyle. The modern working life means you might want to choose something that’s simple and quick but still allows you to cook from scratch and make use of fresh food. If you keep things simple your mind will thank you and you’ll be able to focus on enjoying what you’ve prepared.

  1. Revolutionise leftovers

One of the best things about cooking from scratch is making use of leftovers, it doesn’t always have to be a set of pristine ingredients. Plus it’s is a great opportunity to minimise food waste. Some spare veggies can easily become a starting point for a soup or pasta dish, or, if you have iceberg or gem lettuce that’s starting to look a little limp, simply add them to a stir-fry. Add sesame oil, garlic and soy sauce for Asian-style stir-fry lettuce. 

  1. Order a meal-kit 

Cooking is a skill that, like any, requires patience and practice to master. If you want to introduce home-cooked foods into your diet but don’t particularly back your cooking expertise, a meal-kit could be the solution. Meal deliveries like HelloFresh come with step-by-step, easy-to-follow recipe cards and meticulously measured ingredients that will guide even the most inexperienced chef. 

  1. Cook your favourite recipes!

There is a misconception that healthy, homemade food has to less satisfying. If you really fancy a pizza, then have one! But give it a go making it yourself and learn how to make it with healthy ingredients. The flavours will be even better, plus cooking from scratch is easy and fun (did we mention delicious?). 

To give HelloFresh a try, simply enter the code HELLOFRESHLUXlife at the checkout for £10 off your first four boxes. 

To find out more go to: www.hellofresh.co.uk/