Plated Review - My Experience Using Plated Meal Kit

(Money Under 30 Rating)

Ranking

7.9/10

Plated is a great meal delivery service for the busy home chef. With easy-to-prepare recipes at a reasonable cost, Plated can save you time and money.

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Price

7/10

Meal variety

9/10

Healthy

8/10

Convenience

8/10

Ease of use

7/10

Customizable

7.5/10



Best for:

 

  • Time-strapped people
  • Home cooked meals
  • Families
  • Couples
  • Single households

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When I decided to try Plated, I was excited. It meant I didn’t have to grocery shop for a few weeks and I didn’t have to spend time thinking of recipes. That’s why many people subscribe to food delivery services.

Plated works like many other food deliver services—you can choose the kind of food you like, how many people you’ll need to serve, and how often you want meals delivered. I really did enjoy Plated and encourage anyone who has been thinking of using a food delivery service to try it out.

Here’s our complete review.

What is Plated

Plated is a home delivery service. What that means is you pay a set amount each week (it varies depending on the amount of meals you want) for a certain number of recipes and all the ingredients you need to make them are sent right to your door.

How does Plated work?

Setting up your Plated account is a simple process.

Step 1: Pick what you like to eat

When you first sign-up, you’ll be asked the kind of food you like—you can choose from a variety of meat and fish options, or you can choose a vegetarian option.

Step 2: Pick how many meals you’d like

Next, you’ll be asked how many meals you would like a week and how many people you need to serve. You can get up to four servings up to four times a week.

When you select your options, the price will change accordingly. You can go through and see which price fits your budget.

Step 3: Pay and pick your delivery time

Finally, you’ll be asked to choose which day you would like your package delivered. Then you’ll be led to checkout and asked to pay. This payment will be an automatic payment.

Plated features

Price

Here’s a table that summarizes Plated’s plans.

When you first sign-up, you’ll receive 25 percent off your first four weeks.

 2 Servings 3 Servings 4 Servings
2 Nights Per Week$47.80 (a week)$59.70 (a week)$79.60 (a week)
3 Nights Per Week$71.70 (a week)$89.55 (a week)$119.40 (a week)
4 Nights Per Week95.60 (a week)$119.40 (a week)$159.20 (a week)

Meal options

As I said above, when I signed up with Plated they asked me what kind of food I liked and how many meals a week I wanted.

I selected most of the options, besides vegetarian meals. These selections aren’t set in stone. I was able to still choose vegetarian meals from Plated’s menu.

Plated’s menu (recipe cards)

These choices help Plated generate some recipes they think you’ll love. However, you can swap out those recipes for whichever you prefer.

Plated offers a decent selection of meals—20 recipes every week. These recipes change each week.

I never had a problem finding recipes that sounded both healthy and delicious.

Plated Menu

I’m not going to lie, I have a lot of cookbooks, and I love recipe cards. So I was excited to see that Plated offers helpful recipe cards that you can save and use again. Each card has step-by-step instructions with pictures to help guide you through the cooking process.

Who is Plated best for?

Busy people

Plated is great for those who are too busy to meal prep and shop for groceries. And, if you wish you had more time to cook, Plated offers recipes that typically take under an hour to cook (all mine were between 20-40 minutes).

Adventurous foodies

Plated is also great for people looking to try a wide variety of food. I tried Greek, Thai, Latin, Italian, and typical American recipes all in three weeks.

Who shouldn’t use Plated?

Single people

If you’re single and you don’t love leftovers, the amount of food you receive, even with the lowest plan, may be a little too much, and that could lead to a lot of wasted food.

Additionally, for two people, Plated may not be too expensive, but for just one person, the cheapest plan you can get is still more than you should spend on food each month.

Dessert lovers

Plated offers just two desserts (each is considered a meal): Apple Crumble and Sour Cream Doughnuts. So, for those who want more dessert options, you should consider going with a different food delivery service.

Meal Delivery Services Compared

  • Rating
  • Price per meal
  • Shipping cost
  • Minimum order
  • Meal options
  • Plated_120x55
  • 7/10

  • Starts at $9.95 a portion
  • Free shipping over $60
  • 2 meal, 2 portion minimum
  • 20 recipes a week
  • Visit Site
  • hello fresh
  • 10/10

  • Starts at $7.49 per serving
  • $6.99, first box free shipping
  • 2 meal, 2 portion minimum
  • Up to 17 new recipes every week
  • Visit Site
  • home chef
  • 10/10

  • Starts at $7.99 per serving
  • Free for orders over $45; $10 for orders less than $45
  • 2 portions per meal
  • 16 meal options weekly
  • Visit Site

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Quality, locally sourced ingredients — Plated tries to partner with local suppliers that have been vetted. Their seafood is sustainably sourced and they only use and hormone-free and antibiotic-free meats
  • Flexibility — You can mix and match different combinations
  • Easy recipes — Novice-friendly instructions
  • New interesting dishes — Choose from many different cuisines from around the world. It’s a good opportunity to mix it up

Cons

  • Need 6-days notice to cancel — if you want to skip a week of modify your box, you need to give Plated notice at least 6 days prior
  • Website not super user-friendly — Users have reported that the website is difficult to navigate and that it can even be restrictive in customizing your options

My experience using Plated

My experience using Plated was definitely a positive one, but I don’t think food subscription services are right for me. I love grocery shopping with my fiancé, so I actually missed that. Plus, I found that I go about cooking and preparing things differently than Plated’s instructions.

Food quality

I ordered fish, steak, and a ton of vegetables so I could try everything. I’m pleased to say that nearly everything arrived incredibly fresh. Some arugula was wilted, but it wasn’t a main part of the dish, so I didn’t mind too much.

Taste

To give you a sense of some of the meals that Plated offers, here’s what I ordered:

  • Seared Steak
  • Duck Fried Rice
  • Red Pepper and Cheese Empanadas
  • Cuban Beef Picadillo
  • Turkey Larb Bowls
  • Sweet Corn and Potato Chowder
  • Salmon Burgers
  • Roasted Cod

My favorite meal was Seared Steak. The steak was a great cut and very fresh. My least favorite meal was the Salmon Burgers. I simply wasn’t a fan of the salmon itself, but I’m fairly certain that’s because I have fresh Atlantic salmon that’s caught locally, so I’m a bit of a snob about it.

Portions

I opted for the two servings three days a week plan. Plated suggests this for couples, or those who like a lot of leftovers.

The portion sizes offered by Plated are generous. My fiancé and I each had a plate, then one of us would have a serving of leftovers the next day.

My one qualm is that Plated gives you all the ingredients, but the one they don’t give you is olive oil.

Directions

As mentioned above, Plated gives you recipe cards. I liked these a lot. On the cards there’s the instructions, which are helpful and easy to follow. Their recipes are simply enough for a beginner to make, but still taste high quality.

Delivery and packaging

I chose Wednesdays for delivery, and my box was delivered on time each time. Everything is heavily packaged. There were ice packs and a ton of plastic (almost too much) and that kept everything fresh and secure.

The meals themselves are separated into plastic bags so you have everything you need all together. Everything is labeled as well.

Price

For me, the price of Plated was a little steep. $47.80 four weeks a month is 191.20, which isn’t terrible in the grand scheme of things, but that’s only meals for three days a week.

That price on top of other groceries I’d have to buy would require me to spend more than I typically do on groceries.

Plated compared to other home delivery services

Here’s how Plated compares to the most popular food deliver services:

 EveryPlateHelloFreshBlue ApronHome ChefFreshlySunbasket
Cost$4.99 per serving (plus more for premium meals)$7.49 - $9.99 per serving$7.49 - $9.99 per serving$9.95 per serving$49.99 - $107.99Starting at $9.99 per serving
Meal OptionsNo special dietary options, but 11 rotating recipes each weekMeat, vegetarian, low calorie, and family friendly options Meat, fish, and vegetarian options Meat, fish, and vegetarian options All meals are gluten free and peanut free (they're already prepared meals)18 different dietary options
Best ForCouples and small families who are looking for low-cost mealsPeople who want to learn how to cookFoodies and wine lovers (Blue Apron has a wine subscription)People looking for the cheapest food servicePeople who want meals already preparedOrganic food lovers

If you want to make sure you’re finding the meal delivery service that’s perfectly suited to you, check out this meal delivery comparison article. In it, we analyze the top options available so that you can easily compare the products and find the best one for you.

Try Freshly - Get $60 off your first 4 boxes! or Try FreshlyFIT - Save $40 off your first order!

Summary

Plated is a great alternative for the busy Home Chef. With easy-to-prepare meals at a reasonable cost, Plated can save you time and money.

Give Plated a try, get 25 percent off your first four boxes!

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About the author

Total Articles: 105
Christopher Murray is a professional personal finance and sustainability writer who enjoys writing about everything from budgeting to unique investing options like SRI and cryptocurrency. He also focuses on how sustainability is the best savings tool around. You can find his work on sites like MoneyGeek, Money Under 30, Investor Junkie, MoneyCrashers, and Time. You can find out more about Christopher on his website or via LinkedIn.