If you’ve recently watched a few episodes of Chopped and now want to dip your toes into cooking your own meals, or you’re looking for a simple way to cut back on Uber Eats and Doordash (raises hand), a meal kit delivery service like EveryPlate can get the job done.
I’ve tested my fair share of meal kit delivery services throughout the years (Green Chef, Blue Apron, Purple Carrot, Factor—to name a few). So when I heard about EveryPlate, I was excited to give it a try. A new meal kit subscription that can help me cut back on ordering out? Sign me up, literally.
Now, allow me to break down my experience using EveryPlate (and, spoiler, it was a lot easier, faster, and cheaper than getting delivery).
How I Tested
To do this review, I consulted SELF’s meal kit buying guide, which was developed with the help of registered dietitians. For the first week, I ordered enough meat and veggie meals to cover seven days of lunches and dinners for two people. I made sure that the meals were exciting but not complicated to whip up. The following two weeks, I cut my delivery plan down to just dinners, after realizing it was overly ambitious to think I could cook full midday meals.
Here’s a sampling of my EveryPlate menu: lemony chickpea and feta bowls with chicken, spicy black bean and beef enchiladas, Banh-Mi style chicken bowls, creamy lemon herb chicken, and tomato and kale sandwiches with chicken.
EveryPlate allows you to customize your order, which is excellent if you have dietary restrictions or you’re particular about food. For instance, I like to eat dishes that are high in protein and veggies, and I’m not a huge fan of pork or shellfish. I chose some veggie-rich dishes and added chicken breast and beef boxes for a few dollars extra.
If you’re interested in adding any premium recipes to your cart (they were the first to catch my eye), there is an extra charge, sometimes up to $6 or more per serving. EveryPlate also offers add-ons, like Caesar salad kits, cinnamon apple crumble, and garlic bread, which I found to be a nice touch.
One downside? EveryPlate doesn’t carry any premade or frozen meal options. As someone who’s a huge fan of meal kits with this offering (shout out to Factor), I was a bit bummed. Also, you have to do all the chopping yourself—nothing comes precut. Some ingredients, like rice and shredded cheese, come proportioned, whereas others, like garlic, do not.
Through a little trial and error, I quickly realized that I couldn’t take time out in the afternoon to prep an EveryPlate recipe for lunch. Most recipes took around 30 to 40 minutes to put together, but it was too hard to switch gears and take that much time in the middle of the workday. Making an EveryPlate meal for lunch felt like I was racing against the clock, and the times I did it, I found myself wishing I had just picked up Sweetgreen to save myself the time and energy. Because of this, after my first week, I kept my meals to dinner or prepared lunch the night before.
The cost of each meal ranges widely based on how many you order, how many servings you get, and whether or not it’s a premium recipe. In general, the cost for each serving starts at about $5. The total for my first box of one week’s food was $47, since EveryPlate typically gives first-time customers a deep discount. I decided to go big and get the largest meal and serving option to make sure my partner and I were covered for the whole time (meal planning for a household may feel tricky since you can only pick either two or four servings and three to six meals per week). If I ordered without the discount, it would have come to $131, which is still pretty budget-friendly for a meal delivery service. Discounts applied to the following two deliveries too, but the savings weren’t as steep as that first order.