This post is part of my series about the ever popular Meal Delivery Services. Before I start talking about all of these services, I just want to make it clear that I am not being compensated in any way for this (or other related) posts, and these companies have no idea who I am. Since these services seem to be super popular right now, I just wanted to share my experiences with you all, and maybe someone who is deciding whether or not to try one of these services will find them helpful. I will, however, use my affiliate links and/or coupon codes for the various services when I can. Not only do I get a few dollars back if you use those links to make a purchase, but YOU also get some kind of discount as well!
One of the first meal delivery services that I had heard of was Plated. A few different people that I knew had tried it, but at the time it wasn’t super appealing to me. None of the meals that they made seemed like something I would eat, and having a whole meal shipped to me just seemed kind of weird. Fast forward a couple of years, when I am now busier and also more willing to try things slightly out of my comfort zone, I thought I’d give it a try.
+ Almost everything is packaged in one bag (minus herbs, meats, and larger items) and everything is labeled with the recipe it belongs to. This makes it easier to find everything you need for a certain recipe. If you are like me and separate out all of the meals right when you get the box, it makes this process a whole lot easier. I do also feel like it is less likely that you will be missing pieces to the recipe if they are all bundled into one bag ahead of time.
+ Unlike others that offer three different meals at a time, with Plated you can get as little as two meals at a time! I like this for a couple of reasons. The first being that sometimes weeks are busy and as sad as it sounds, we just may not have time to make 3 (or more) time consuming meals. It also means that if there are only two meal options that you like, you don’t have to pick one other random one just so you can get the box. (You would be surprised how often this happens!)
+ One thing that sets them apart from others, is that they are the only service (that I’ve seen) that offers a dessert option! It is at an additional cost of course, but I like that the option is there.
+ Overall this seems to be the one that we most often find things that we want to eat. I don’t know if that is just because of this particular season of food, or that they are generally less adventurous recipes than some of the others. It does definitely have to do with the fact that you only have to order two meals instead of three.
– You have to pay for shipping. ($6) Free shipping is only at $50 and 4 plates (2 meals) comes to $48. Now, if you add desserts, or purchase one of their premium meals, that gets you to the total amount for free shipping.
– The prep times are not always accurate. In fact, I don’t know that we have ever made a meal in the amount of time that is written on the recipe. And sometimes there are even two of us prepping! Are we just slower than the normal person? I don’t feel like we are much less experienced or able than the typical person, but for some reason things always take longer than expected. (This is not specific to Plated, by the way, all of the various companies are always off on their prep times!)
-For some reason, the Plated boxes seem to more often have a container leak. It hasn’t ever been anything too devastating, but it has happened with tomato paste, and sour cream, usually things with a thicker consistency that are just in a plastic container. They have started to put those type of items in their own individual ziploc bag so that if they do leak out, it doesn’t ruin everything else in the box.
Will we continue with it?
Yeah, I think we will for now. Not every week though, just when there are meals that we know we will actualy eat. I have a feeling that some seasons will just be better for our tastes than others as far as finding recipes goes. I do think this is the one that we most often find meals that we like, so if there is one that we keep up with for a while, it will probably be Plated.
Other things worth noting:
- Up until very recently, in order to pick your meals ahead of time, you had to pay for them ahead of time. So if I wanted to get ahead on my planning and choose a bunch of meals at once, I also had to pay for them. However, they recently (like, within the past week or so) re-designed their website, and changed so that you can now choose what you want and you won’t be charged until it ships. (This is how all of the other services are) I was very happy to see this change!
- Plated assumes that you have salt, pepper, vegetable oil, olive oil, and eggs at home, and you are not sent those if they are needed in your recipe. Most of those are pretty standard in all of the meal delivery companies that I’ve tried, except for the eggs. It does kind of make sense that they would have you get the eggs since they are fragile and may not travel well, but they aren’t necessarily something I always have on hand like salt and pepper.
- Yes, I did actually eat that Squash Mac and Cheese with Kale. It was one my favorite meals that we have made!