A series of unsponsored meal kit reviews and comparisons
A few months ago, my daughter made a case for us to try meal kits. I wasn’t so sure at first. Whenever I had checked into them previously, they seemed expensive and didn’t have a lot of recipes we would actually like. I have two particular eaters in my household, and we’re pretty plain eating folks. But, I decided to check into it again and found there were many more options, so I decided we’d give meal kits a try. I started with one company, but I was anxious to do a meal kit comparison and see what we’d like most.
So after about five meal kit boxes from one provider, I paused my account and changed to another. I just wanted to see the difference. At the same time, there was a third one I was curious about as well. I figured all this trying would end up being a great meal kit comparison to share!
Before ordering, I tried looking at meal kit comparisons, but most of them seemed to include affiliate links or sponsorships with the companies. I am not affiliated with or sponsored by any of these meal kit companies. When I started writing this meal kit comparison, in fact, I had no idea which service I’d end up liking the most — if any of them. I didn’t even intend to make it a blog post!
Then, once I decided to make it a blog post, I thought it’d be just one post. Pretty quickly, I realized that I needed more than one post to include all the information to make a helpful comparison. Over a few weeks, I’m posting our experiences with Dinnerly, Hello Fresh, Home Chef, Every Plate and EMeals.
The next meal kit delivery service we used was Every Plate. It was like Home Chef and Dinnerly in offering three meals a week as the lowest option. While Every Plate focuses on its lower prices, those prices are in part because there are many premium offerings cost extra per serving. Other meal kits did this, too, but Every Plate seemed to do so even more.
The menu choices for Every Plate were a bit so-so to me. They don’t seem to have quite as much selection as some of the others — at least of food that my family will eat. I have a couple of picky eaters, but getting three meals a week minimum in four portions made it more noticeable to me this time around. With the other meal kit services, I was able to find two meals per week my entire family would like and then maybe have one other meal my daughter and I would eat alone. That was a challenge for us with Every Plate.
I selected the minimum amount of meals per week, which was three. I went with four portions. Unlike Home Chef, you couldn’t modify portion sizes. The cost for three basic meals for four servings was $59.88 plus $9.99 delivery. Each serving is $4.99. In order to get the premium selections, add $3.99 more per each serving for a total of $8.98 per serving. So if you get all premium recipes for four people for one week with three meals, which would bring the cost to $107.76 plus $9.99 delivery. Premium recipes included things like hamburgers, steak and salmon.
My Every Plate boxes arrived via UPS in a large cardboard box lined with foam and with two big ice packs included. I like that the boxes arrived UPS because they get to me in the middle of the day. I didn’t especially like the ingredients were all thrown into the box and had to be sorted out by me. However, the large box also include a smaller open box with handles that my non-perishable ingredients fit nicely into once I pulled everything out. That box was easy to store on a shelf in my pantry.
The ingredients were fresh and not frozen. They were individually packaged. A couple were branded as Home Chef, which was interesting. It really does seem that most of these meal kits get their food from the same vendors because they are very alike.
Just like with Dinnerly, Every Plate needed a few extra ingredients from my kitchen to go with meals like ketchup, flour and butter that weren’t included in the box. The produce was mediocre on freshness, but I also live in the Midwest and it was March when I received Every Plate meals, so I’m not sure how much I can dock them for that.
One of the things we noticed is that the recipe cards for Every Plate did not include the nutrition information. All the other meal cards we tried previously did so.
Cooking the meals
The recipes were similar in writing style to Dinnerly and Hello Fresh. While they didn’t take lots of extra time like some of the others, this meal kit delivery service did take slightly longer for some recipes than the time estimated. But, overall, the estimated time was how long it took. It really depends on how much produce you’re using in the recipe and how long it takes you to prep it!
The portion sizes were good on this one. They were good-sized portions without seeming way too much or too little. I guess like Goldilocks says, they were just right. We only tended to have leftovers when I made four portions but one or more of my family members either didn’t eat a portion or ate only a small portion.
I’d give Every Plate a 3.5 out of 5 stars. I don’t feel like their selection was as great. It just wasn’t a good fit selection-wise for my family. I also didn’t like that the smallest number of meals you could do a week was three. Two really does work best for my family. But, that’s certainly not the case for everyone! I also didn’t like that the nutrition information wasn’t included. While I didn’t pick a low-calorie meal option, I still like to have the nutrition information to keep track and make sure I plan accordingly for the calories needed for the meal.
Other posts from this series: