So, a few weeks ago I saw an ad on Facebook for Plated– have you heard of it? It’s a food delivery service (that originally got its start on Sharktank, which I think is awesome) that delivers exactly enough food to create two servings of a meal; each week there are six or eight meal options. Evan and I aren’t independently wealthy, so I normally would not be interested in shelling out $15/serving for a meal that I still have to cook- that seems a little steep, since getting a decent restaurant meal will also run me about that much (in Ohio) with the added bonus of no dishes. The promo, though, was $20 in shipping for four meals, and I can handle $5/plate. So, after perusing the menu and engaging with paypal, I was scheduled to receive two meals. Here’s my review:
As promised, I arrived home from work to a Plated box sitting on my front porch. Although it was delivered a few hours previously, it was packaged with insulation and some ice packs, and everything inside was still cold.
When I opened the package to take inventory, I was delighted to see all the tiny packages and bottles. Two things, though- this feels like a ton of waste! I’m not usually overly environmentally conscious, but between the box packaging and the ingradients packaging, I thought I was throwing a lot of things away. Also, I was missing a chicken breast and had to go pick one up to make the meal. Customer service was great- they apologized and added credits for two free meals to my account, which was lovely. But…I still had to make that extra trip that food delivery should, ideally, eliminate, and then I had to buy two more meals, because the minimum to ship is four meals. So…I don’t know if my take away here is positive or negative. Likely, it’s pretty neutral.
Anyway, the first meal I made was Pork Cutlets with Peas and Salsa Agresto. I kind of felt like an Iron Chef with the salsa- there were a few herbs, and two kinds of nuts. The salsa went perfectly with the pork, which was a bit plain, but there was a ton left over. Also, as it turns out…I don’t actually love peas. I’m glad that I tried them, though- they were really nice and fresh, and I like trying new things. You’ll also notice some salad on my plate. Maybe Evan and I are over eaters, but a piece of pork and some peas was a bit skimpy for dinner for us, and we like to supplement anything we can with salad. So, overall- the food was good, the ratio of protein to sauce was a bit off, and the calorie count (700/serving) seemed pretty high for the actual amount of food we were eating.
The second meal we made was Pulled Spicy BBQ Chicken with Pico de Gallo. This meal was a bit more work- make the rice, roast the chicken, chop all of the pico ingredients, make the BBQ sauce. Again, though, the instructions were clear and I felt like a super chef, which is nice. I liked the idea of making the BBQ sauce and was surprised at how well it turned out- I would probably make it again in the future if I wanted to impress someone. The pico was also delish, but we were unclear on what to do with it since we usually eat pico on chips. The rice and beans were good, but a bit dry and bland, so we solved both of those problems by mixing in the pico for some ‘fiesta rice’. Also, we put the chicken on buns, but we know that’s just a personal preference. Overall for this one- everything was good, we were a bit confused about what to do with the pico de gallo and had a ton of rice and beans leftover (at least half).
Overall, I love the idea of Plated- I don’t always have time for meal planning, and it really does take discipline to plan your shopping trips and get the right amount of everything. I’m not prepared to make a final decision, since we still have a few more orders coming to us, but I’m excited to see what our next experience brings. Have any of you tried Plated, or another meal delivery service? How do you like it?
**If you’re interested, you can get two free plates of your own with this link!