I heard about Green Kitchen from a friend (a senior physiotherapist at UFIT Singapore), who posted about them on Instagram. She is also heavily into her fitness and nutrition, so when I saw her glowing remarks about their meals I knew I had to try them myself.
After last week's underwhelming experience with FitThree's new vegetarian low-carb menu, and the ensuing debacle of them blocking me on Instagram for sharing my review, I was more than ready for a week of (hopefully) better meals. As one of the "new kids on the block" – Green Kitchen was created in early 2021 by head chef Maxamilian Mepham – the company has a lot to prove in a relatively competitive market.
So, it's fortunate that their ethos of preparing "delicious and healthy meal plans that focus on nutrition without compromising flavour" absolutely carries through to the meals they prepare – Green Kitchen did not (for the most part) disappoint.
Meal plans are currently the only real option available to order from Green Kitchen, however, you can "try before you buy" and order a sample-meal-plan box (1 lunch and 1 dinner) and order desserts (banana or chocolate muffins). There are several types of meal plans available, including balanced (omnitarian), pescatarian and vegetarian/vegan, each with options to customise portion size (standard, large or low-carb) and notify them of any allergies or intolerances.
After selecting the vegetarian/vegan meal plan, I was presented with a staggering array of customisation options: plan duration (3-day or weekly), plan type (lunch, dinner, or lunch and dinner) and portion size (500–600kcal, 700–800kcal or 350–450kcal). I could select up to three allergies (none, nuts, dairy, shellfish or gluten), up to three intolerances (none, pork, beef, fish, lamb and mutton, poultry or duck), and whether I wanted vegetarian or vegan meals. How they cater to such granular dietary requirements is beyond me.
Finally, I was asked to select from one of two purchase options: a meal-plan subscription (a recurring commitment to receive lunches and dinners for 5, 10 or 20 days) or a one-time purchase (just 5 days). There is one part of this page that confused me, a standalone + and - number field which didn't seem to interact with anything else, but we can touch on that in the nitty-gritty below.
I aim for 2,500–2,600 calories each day, so the standard, 5-day vegetarian meal plan (with no allergies or intolerances apart from asking for no coriander) best suited my needs.
Just in case you don't get the same plan as me, here is what you can expect to spend on the vegetarian/vegan meal plan (or the pescetarian meal plan, they are the same price). Note that the price of the balanced meal plan is cheaper (from S$65).
3-days at S$138 per week
5-days at S$230 per week (a one-time meal plan purchase is the same price)
10 days at S$224.25 per week (2 weeks for S$448.50)
20 days at S$218.50 per week (4 weeks for S$874)
Meal plans can be collected from Green Kitch (105 Jalan Kembangan) in east Singapore, however, you are given the option to pay an additional S$24 per week for delivery (paying S$8 for each of the three weekly meals deliveries).
After this, I picked a delivery slot (I'm lazy and got delivery), paid for my order and received an email confirmation thanking me for my purchase – easy peasy.
As usual, I want to share some of my observations and opinions on some specifics that contribute to the overall experience: user experience and customer service, packaging and delivery, and cost and rewards.
User experience and customer service
Green Kitchen's website is minimal and I found it easy to browse and use. Most of the information I wanted was available on the home page, including information about the company and the different meal plans they offer. Once I got into the ordering process, I was a little overwhelmed by the number of options, but I think that's less about bad design and more to do with how unexpected it is to have this level of customisation.
As I mentioned earlier, just under "meal plan type" there is a - and + number field that doesn't seem to relate to anything and doesn't have any description associated with it. This was confusing and, honestly, I don't remember what I did when I made my order (this is something to address, Green Kitchen!)
Some new users may be perturbed by the absence of a meal-plan menu, but this is necessary due to how deeply you can customise a meal plan. I was sent my personalised menu for the coming week via WhatsApp a couple of hours before I received my first meals on Monday. This includes cooking instructions for lunches and dinners.
The customer service provided by Green Kitchen is what I want to gush about. After learning about them, I reached out on WhatsApp to ask some questions about their meals. Little did I know that the person replying to my messages was Max, the head chef and entrepreneur behind Green Kitchen! I got the impression that Max was genuinely curious about my needs and he was more than willing to answer all my questions. This quality, personalised communication has continued since our first messages and, while I had no issues with my order, I've no doubt that the team would have been very responsive to any issues I may have had.
Packaging and delivery
My meals arrived each morning (10am–12pm) across three deliveries, one on Monday (4 meals), another on Wednesday (4 meals) and the last one on Friday (2 meals). Each delivery generally consisted of two different types of containers, a round one with a plastic lid (lunch) and a large cardboard BioPak (dinner). I believe most of the packaging is recyclable but I wasn't sure about the plastic lids and ended up throwing those away.
While I appreciate the "no-frills, more quality" approach to Green Kitchen's packaging, I do think they could up their label game, which only displays the meal's name, the main ingredients and the calories and macros. It is easy to miss the cooking instructions attached to the personalised menu you receive and even with that I wasn't sure when I should add sauces and vinaigrettes etc. Being a copywriter by trade, it would be remiss of me to not also mention that there were a few spelling errors on the labels too, but that's just me being my naturally pedantic self.
Meal delivery was the standard experience you would expect: I received an SMS/WhatsApp before my delivery and a smile once it arrived at my door. Note that Green Kitchen's cut off time for orders the following week is midday every Saturday.
Cost and rewards
I opted for the 5-day package, which cost S$231 including delivery and benefitting from a S$23 referral discount. That means that each delivery cost S$77 and each meal costs S$23.
If you want to get a referral discount yourself, use https://prz.io/oq1q5GyCA to get S$23 off your first order.
Green Kitchen's reward scheme is GKRewards, which I'm fairly sure is the same rewards software as YoloFood's YOLO Rewards; this isn't a criticism as I think it's good and easy to use. GKRewards includes promotional codes – refer a friend etc. – as well as a tally of your points, a currency earned as you order meals or complete actions (like following them on social media). Points can later be redeemed to purchase vouchers that make future orders cheaper. You earn 5 points for every $1 you spend and the cheapest redemption is a $5-off voucher for 500 points. As a new customer, my first order earned me enough points to get around S$10 off my next order, which I think is decent (effectively this means I get free delivery every second or third order).
Full-day calories and macros: 1,151kcal, P67, C142, F36
Seriously, what is with meal plans starting so poorly? I hadn't heard of Masak Merah before but I've since learned that it is a well-loved, traditional Singaporean/Malaysian dish usually served with chicken. However, I was not in love with lunch (Tofu Masak Merah) on Monday.
I've said before that I'm no food critic or connoisseur, however, this meal didn't satisfy my hunger (how this was 535 calories I'll never know) and it was fairly tasteless. I do appreciate the amount of good-quality tofu and vegetables, but it was overshadowed by a need for more sauce to bring more heat and flavour to the meal.
Dinner (Mexican Corn Tortilla with Impossible) was thankfully an improvement on lunch. The meal came in two parts, the filling and the soft tortillas, which I warmed up in my microwave. I appreciated the use of Impossible in the meal, it's an established brand name that I've eaten before, tastes great and you can find a lot of information online about how it is made, unlike YoloFoods' Earthmeat. The salsa was super flavourful and came in a separate pot to preserve its texture and aroma. My only criticism is how high the carbohydrates were (82g), but that's entirely subjective.
Full-day calories and macros: 1,153kcal, P55, C119, F56
Tuesday's lunch (Black Bean Patty with Roasted Miso Cauliflower and New Potatoes) was very tasty and set the tone for the (majority) of good meals I would receive all week. The meal tasted fresh, included a lovely, light vinaigrette and packed lots of flavour into each of the ingredients (especially the bean patties). While the protein in this meal was quite low (19g) it did fill me up and satisfy my hunger until dinner.
Speaking of dinner (Garlic Tempeh with Buckwheat and Blistered Cherry Tomatoes), I was not overly impressed with it. There were certainly a couple of nice things here: amazing dijon mustard (or at least something that tasted like it) and a sensation of eating "comfort food", a rarity in the meals I've ordered over the past few weeks. Overall though, the meal was just a little underwhelming and looked better than it tasted. On the plus side, the macros were good (P36 C63 F25), which is always a plus.
Full-day calories and macros: 1,167cal, P68, C110, F49
All aboard the hype train – here's where Green Kitchen starts to get good!
The day kicked off with a fantastic, fresh-tasting lunch (Skin-on Butternut Squash with Chickpea and Feta Salad). There was so much texture and flavour in the meal from the starchy squash (an ingredient I love), the creamy feta, the generous serving of dressing and the roasted nuts. The salad did leave me hungry for the rest of the day and I started to wonder whether I should have gone for Green Kitchen's large meal plan (700–800kcal per meal).
Dinner (Marinated Tofu Mixed Grains and Soy and Ginger Sauce) was fine and it was great to see a big slab of tofu in the container. Ingredients in the meals I've received from other companies often seem over-processed and I like that Green Kitchen presents ingredients in a more "natural" way. The vegetables were well cooked and the sauce was tasty; the meal was satisfying and certainly a good filler meal for the menu.
Full-day calories and macros: 1,109kcal, P63, C109, F49
Thursday was easily the best day for meals delivered by Green Kitchen. It started with a super, super good lunch (Marinated Tofu and Egg with Glass Noodles and Nuoc Cham Dressing), which massively over-delivered. The mint added flavour, the vegetables were tasty with a great texture, the tofu was of great quality and the "crunchy bits" were packaged separately to stay crunchy (yes, I'm calling this out because it's not always the case). I'm probably biased towards this meal as it reminded me of one of my favourite restaurants in Singapore, The Kind Bowl, which serves excellent plant-based Vietnamese cuisine. If you haven't tried it then get yourself down there (I recommend the Crazy Baguette, Spring Rolls and No-Moo Iced Latte).
Thursday's dinner (Roasted Tempeh Dinner with Tarragon Jus) was awesome and probably the best meal I received all week. It was a fusion of ingredients I associate with Asia and flavours and textures I associate with a British roast dinner (I'm from England by the way). Everything was cooked perfectly and was so moreish, especially the roast parsnips and potatoes, which made me feel nostalgic for past family dinners. If you get the chance to try this meal, I'd highly recommend it, even if you're a sceptical meat-eater.
Full-day calories and macros: 1,028kcal, P53, C122, F40
Last but certainly not least is a lunch and dinner combo that takes us from South America and then back to Southeast Asia. I was excited for lunch (Mexican Bean Bowl) as Mexican is one of my favourite cuisines. The meal was colourful and visually appealing and had lots of little elements that made the whole thing enjoyable to eat, namely the well-cooked eggs, charred-corn salsa and roasted nuts. I did miss a plant-based protein to add a little more bite (the beans didn't cut it) but overall the meal was filling and tasted great – decent macros too.
When creating Friday's dinner (Vietnamese Tofu Pho with Rice Noodles and Sweet Basil) I imagine the conversation in the Green Kitchen went something like, "Hey, shall we pull punches on the spiciness of this Pho? Nah!" And that's why the Tofu Pho ("ToPho" anyone?) packs one hell of a punch. I'm a fan of spicy food but this one caught me off guard, probably because I'm so used to chefs toning down things like spice to appease most peoples' palettes. This meal may also require some experience with IKEA furniture because some assembly is required: the Pho ingredients, the Pho broth, and the side salad. The latter of those was tasty and, while I'm not a big fan of Pho myself, I think it was good, especially considering that it isn't a meal that translates easily to home delivery.
Full-week calories and macros: 5,608kcal, P306, C602, F230
Average daily calories and macros: 1,122kcal, P61, C120, F46
I'm neither affiliated with nor sponsored by Green Kitchen at all (not that I'd turn it down), which I think is a necessary caveat before I say that Green Kitchen is the best meal plan I've tried in Singapore so far.
While the helpful and responsive customer service, deep meal customisation and the personalised menu that changes each week (unlike others I've tried) are all great, it's the meal quality that stood out to me. You really can taste the difference between each meal, they look more appealing and you can taste the individual flavours used to craft every lunch and dinner. I genuinely feel that Green Kitchen would work hard to help me achieve my personal goals and customise menus to an even greater degree if I reached out and asked them to do so. This level of interactivity is rare and something I hope they maintain as they scale their operations. Finally, I will say that Green Kitchen's prices are on the higher end, however, I feel that I got what I paid for and this will be reflected in my rating of the "Price" below.
I will be ordering from Green Kitchen again and look forward to trying more of their meals in the future. Nevertheless, there are always some things I'd like to see addressed or feel could be improved:
Refine elements of your website's ordering process by removing some redundant fields or adding better descriptions to help customers understand what they're interacting with.
Get a copywriter to review your labelling and add some more detail to your website's FAQ (such as the recyclability of your packaging). It's a minor thing but has an impact on the overall brand's professionalism (I'm available, Green Kitchen!)
More protein in each meal is something I'd like to see from Green Kitchen. This is common to other meal plans I've tried and I do appreciate that this is something that needs to be carefully controlled to maintain healthy profit margins on meals.
Include sample menus or meals on the website to allow customers to get a feel for what they will receive. I know that the absence of these is due to the customizability of menus but I'm sure there's a compromise here.
Meal variety ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Plan options ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Packaging & delivery ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️☆
Ease of use ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️☆
Next week, I'll try something a little different and dive into the world of supplements by looking at protein bars available in Singapore. Don't worry, I'll get back to reviewing meal plans very soon. Meanwhile, if you'd like to keep up to date on the workouts I do and the meals I receive, you can follow me on Instagram.