FAQ

General

What is Chefx?

Chefx is an Ottawa-based service that provides chef-designed recipes and all the fresh, portioned ingredients you need to make your selected meals – all conveniently delivered to your door each week on Fridays! Besides making mealtimes easy and delicious, we also help you better connect with the local food economy, by helping you discover some of the most talented chefs and producers our region has to offer. You'll also discover new ingredients and cooking techniques that will help you unleash your inner chef!

Why is Chefx awesome?

Let us count the ways!

  - SAVE TIME AND EFFORT: Cook an amazing meal in around 45-50 minutes - no meal planning, no shopping, no wasted ingredients!

  - COOK BETTER: Discover interesting, seasonally-inspired recipes from Ottawa's best chefs, and ramp up your cooking skills!

  - EAT BETTER: Enjoy the taste difference of farm-fresh local produce, local artisanal products and other premium ingredients (including sustainable seafood)!

  - MAKE IT AN ACTIVITY: Use it as a fun weekly activity with your partner or family!

How long does it take to make the recipes?

We aim for our recipes to take an average of 45-50 minutes, from start to finish. Occasionally some of our more elaborate recipes will take upwards of an hour to complete, while others can be made in 30 or 35 minutes. We post the estimated cooking time (for a 2 person portion) on our menu page each week. Note that cooking times for 4 or 6 person portions can vary considerably depending on the recipe.

Do I need to be an experienced cook?

Not at all! Our clear, step-by-step instructions are designed to be easy to follow, and accessible to a novice-intermediate cook. We even provide pictures of each step to make it easier to follow along!

Do I need any special equipment?

We do our best to design recipes that can be made by a home cook using standard kitchen equipment. You may find, however, that more specialized tools can sometimes help make the job easier, such as a grill pan, potato masher, whisk, citrus juicer, zester, mortar and pestle, and mandoline.

What ingredients do you assume I have?

All you need to have at home are basic kitchen staples: butter, vegetable oil, olive oil, salt and pepper. We provide everything else!

 

À La Carte Ordering & Weekly Subscriptions

What types of weekly menu options do you offer?

At present, we offer three different menu options each week:

- Chefx recipe-kits: one recipe is available each week. It can be ordered for 2, 4 or 6 persons.

- Les Fougères 'ready-made meals': one meal is available each week. It can be ordered for 2-6 persons. You can choose to receive just the main dish, or you can also receive the accompanying appetizer and dessert.

- Local farmers' market bags: a new selection is offered each week, based on what's in season. We will also try to alternate some items to ensure variety from week to week!

Can I order just one time, or do I need to subscribe?

Yes! You're welcome to order 'à la carte' whenever you choose. One-time orders are delivered in a disposable insulated/refrigerated box that does not need to be returned.

How do your subscriptions work?

You can subscribe to receive a regular weekly (Friday) delivery of any of our 3 menu options: 1) Chefx recipe-kits; 2) Les Fougères 'ready-made meals' or 3) local farmers' market bags. Subscription orders are delivered in a reusable insulated/refrigerated bag, which we ask you to leave out for pick up the following Friday.

You can 'skip' any week you choose via our online customer portal - you can even set your delivery calendar up to 6 months in advance! You can also cancel your subscription at any time, without penalty. Note that the 'skip-cancel' cutoff each week is Tuesday at 9:00 AM. 

Your credit card is billed every Tuesday morning (after 9:00 AM) every week you have not 'skipped'. Your bag is delivered on Fridays before 5:00 PM.

Can I alternate between your different menu options (recipe-kits, 'ready-made meals', farmers' market bags) on my subscription?

Yes and no. Each subscription is separate - so you either subscribe to the Chefx recipe-kits, the Les Fougères 'ready-made meals', or the local farmers' market bags. You can, however, subscribe to more than one of these options, and then set your delivery schedule for each via our online customer portal (where you can plan your deliveries up to 6 months in advance).

 

Recipes

Where do you get your recipes?

We have partnered with some of Ottawa’s most respected chefs to bring you delicious and exciting recipe options. We complement our featured chefs' recipes with equally amazing recipes from the fantastic team at the Urban Element cooking studio, which offers some of Ottawa’s finest culinary events and cooking classes.

 

Ingredients

Where do you get your ingredients?

We prioritize local and seasonal ingredients whenever possible, because we think they are generally fresher, tastier and better for the environment, and because we believe in supporting the local food economy. We also do our best to promote sustainable and progressive farming and production practices - wherever possible we source our products from smaller-scale producers, and we always use sustainably harvested seafood.

Are the ingredients pre-washed?

In order to better preserve freshness, we do not pre-wash the ingredients (unless otherwise specified).

How long will the ingredients remain fresh?

Generally speaking, you can expect your ingredients to remain fresh for about 4-5 days. However, some ingredients are naturally more perishable than others – in particular, we advise you to cook seafood or poultry dishes within 3-4 days to ensure maximum freshness.

What do you do when you have excess ingredients?

We hate food waste and we care about our community. Any unused ingredients at the end of each week are donated to the Ottawa Food Bank, the Salvation Army Booth Centre Men's Hostel, and/or the Parkdale Food Centre, to help our neighbours in need.

  

Delivery (& Pick-up)

Where does Chefx deliver?

Chefx currently delivers to most households in the city of Ottawa, including Kanata, Nepean, Manotick, Barrhaven, Gloucester and Orleans. We regret that at present, we are unable to deliver across the border into Quebec.

We deliver postal codes in Ottawa and suburbs beginning with the following 3 digits:  K1A, K1B, K1C, K1E, K1G, K1H, K1J, K1K, K1L, K1M, K1N, K1P, K1R, K1S, K1T, K1V, K1W, K1Y, K1Z, K2A, K2B, K2C, K2E, K2G, K2H, K2J, K2K, K2L, K2M, K2P, K2R, K2S, K2T, K2V, K4A, K4M. 

Customers outside of our delivery zones may elect to take advantage of our 'pick-up points' (see details below).

When does Chefx deliver?

Chefx delivers on Fridays, with a target delivery window of between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

Do I need to be home to accept delivery?

No, you do not need to be home to accept delivery. During the order process, you will be required to provide specific instructions as to where your Chefx bag can be safely left should you not be at home.

How does Chefx ensure my food remains fresh during delivery?

Chefx employs a refrigerated, insulated cooler bag to ensure the freshness of your order during the delivery process.

Is there a charge for delivery?

A $4.50 delivery charge is applied for all Ottawa deliveries. You may, however, elect to pick up your box from one of our 'pick-up points' to save this charge.

Where are your 'pick-up points'?

You can pre-arrange to pick up your Chefx bag between 10:30-5:30 on Fridays at our pick-up location:

Glebe:  The Unrefined Olive (151 Second Ave)

 

Subscriptions

Is there a minimum subscription length?

No, there is no minimum commitment required! You are free to skip weeks or cancel your subscription at any time via our online customer portal. Please note that the weekly cut-off date for pausing/cancelling your subscription is Tuesday at 9:00 AM.

Can I pause my subscription or skip a delivery?

Yes, not a problem! You can pause your subscription or skip a delivery at any time by logging on to our online customer portal, via our website. Click on 'Manage Subscriptions' and then click on 'Delivery Schedule'. Then click 'Skip' beside the week you wish to pause (just note that the date indicated is the order cutoff date; the delivery date is the Friday following that date). The weekly cut-off date for pausing/cancelling your subscription is Tuesday at 9:00 AM.

How do I cancel my subscription?

You can cancel your subscription at any time by logging on to our online customer portal, via our website. Click on 'Manage Subscriptions' and then click on 'Edit' beside the subscription you wish to cancel, and Click 'Cancel Subscription'. Please note that the weekly cut-off date for pausing/cancelling your subscription is Tuesday at 9:00 AM.

How and when do I get charged?

Payment for your weekly boxes is handled for us by a third party payment processor, which allows you to pay by Visa or Mastercard. You will be billed for your first weekly box upon registration. Each subsequent delivery, your card will be automatically charged on the Tuesday prior to delivery.

Are there any other potential charges I need to know about?

Our reusable coolers and cold-packs remain the property of Chefx after delivery, and must be returned in the condition they were received. Empty coolers and cold-packs should be left out for pick-up each Sunday, in the same location where the cooler was delivered the previous week. Failure to return your cooler (and cold-packs) within 30 days of receipt will result in a $25 fee being charged. 

Our weekly cut-off date is Tuesday at 9:00 AM. Should you need to cancel your order after this time due to unforeseen circumstances, we will still accommodate your request, minus a 50% late cancellation penalty. This is to offset the food costs incurred (as our ingredients are ordered on Tuesday mornings).

Can I give someone else a subscription to Chefx?

Absolutely! The full details are provided on our Gift Certificates page. You can also purchase directly online but indicate the recipient's address as the Delivery Address.

 

Return of packaging

What sort of packaging do you use?

In order to help minimize our impact on the environment while ensuring the freshest possible product, we have made a decision to employ re-usable cooler bags, cold-packs, and a plastic 'meat tray' for our subscription customers. These should be returned by leaving out your bag the following week (Friday).

Inside the box, we employ paper and plastic bags/containers, which we encourage you to recycle wherever possible.

One time (à la carte) orders are delivered in disposable insulated/refrigerated packaging. This does not need to be returned.

How do I return my packaging each week?

Simply leave your empty cooler (with all cold-packs inside) in the same location you have specified for delivery of your new box, and we’ll pick it up when we arrive on Friday with your next order. 

Is there a charge if I fail to return my packaging?

Our reusable coolers and cold-packs remain the property of Chefx after delivery, and must be returned in the condition they were received. Empty coolers and cold-packs should be left out for pick-up each Friday, in the same location where the cooler was delivered the previous week. Failure to return your cooler (and cold-packs) within 30 days of receipt will result in a $25 fee being charged.