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Back To School Is Here! How HelloFresh Helps Me Stay Balanced

My summer of burgers and ice cream cones means now that the seasons are changing, me and my pants are craving balanced meals with fresh ingredients. No more takeaways or ready-meals! The only thing is that I'm not exactly a pro in the kitchen, so if I'm going to seriously stick to a health goal, I need some help.

My sister's been raving about HelloFresh, a weekly meal kit service that delivers all the fresh, pre-portioned ingredients you need to make delicious dinners from scratch, but I wasn't convinced it would be tasty or convenient.

After posting heart eyes on her billionth HelloFresh post, she messaged me that I was being a fool (not her exact words) because they have nutritionist-approved, "balanced" recipes for people like me who want to eat fresh, wholesome dinners. She said it really helped her get her stuff together.

Online, I saw that HelloFresh's balanced recipes are all lower in calories, salt, sugar and fat, but still looked delicious! This seemed like the best way to kick-start better-eating habits, and I could start skipping those dreaded post-work supermarket slogs.

When my first box arrived, my girlfriend couldn't believe I was actually proposing to make dinner. I've only cooked dinner twice the entire time we've been dating and I think they were both boxed mac'n'cheese meals.

I sent her out of the kitchen while I worked my dinner magic, but I was glad we had breakfast-for-dinner emergency eggs in case I messed up.

I decided to cook the first of our Balanced recipes - a Dairy-Free Risotto with butternut squash, sage, and caramelized onions. I've never come close to caramelizing anything before, but the detailed step-by-step recipe cards had photos so I was able to see exactly what I needed to do. As the ingredients were all pre-portioned, there was no waste or mess left once I'd finished cooking. In about 35 minutes, I had dinner on the table, and my girlfriend was mad it was ready before she'd finished her episode of EastEnders.

The risotto was delicious and so filling - there was so much flavor, I forgot I was on a Balanced plan. I didn't find out until later that this is a particularly tricky meal to cook. Go me!

All the recipes we've tried from the Balanced collection have been amazing and I'm enjoying the variety, too. My favorite meal so far is the Protein-Packed Turkey Stir Fry - more satisfying than any takeaway I've ordered!

I've been getting HelloFresh's Balanced recipes for a couple of weeks now, and I notice that I'm sleeping better and have more energy than I've had in months. By limiting my calories to a nutritious portion and cutting out takeaways, I've lost a couple of pounds without really trying.

My girlfriend and I are so pleased that we've found an easy solution that shakes up our dinner routine. Also, just because she's the better cook doesn't mean she can't have a night of telly on the couch - I should be treating her to more meals from scratch, and HelloFresh makes it easy. As the seasons change, my weight won't be as affected by holidays and celebrations - and I still get to eat delicious fantastic food.

Update: The folks at HelloFresh are extending a special offer to our readers! Follow this link to get up to 50% off your first two boxes!