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Plated Subscription Box Review + Coupon – April 2018

Plated February 2018 - box

Plated is a weekly meal kit delivery subscription that delivers you pre-portioned ingredients and recipes to help you make chef-designed recipes at home. They offer different weekly menus and randomly pick recipes for you based on preferences you submit when you sign up. If you’d rather pick your own recipes from the weekly menu, it’s easy to hop in and change your order on their website or their handy-dandy app.

Plated is committed to using sustainably sourced seafood, seasonal produce, and meat that’s free from antibiotics and added hormones. Like most meal kits, Plated won’t include standard pantry items (think salt, pepper, olive oil). They will, however, email you to let you know what pantry items you should have on hand for that week’s box. Prep time and dietary details are listed in each recipe. And if you love a recipe, you can rate it and download a digital recipe card via your online account. (Highly rated recipes sometimes come back as “Encore” recipes for you to order again, so don’t forget to leave your star rating each week!)

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

Each box comes insulated and filled with ice packs.

Plated February 2018 - bottom of box

This review is for the 2 recipes (4 plates) plan, which cost $48.00 per week (+ $6.00 shipping). I chose the vegetarian option.

About Plated

The Subscription Box: Plated

The Cost: Recipes begin at $12.00 per plate:

  • 2 recipes (4 plates)= $47.80 per week (+ $6.00 shipping)
  • 3 recipes (6 plates)= $59.70 per week (+ $6.00 shipping)
  • 4 recipes (8 total plates)= $79.60 per week (with free shipping)
  • Dessert costs $4.00 per serving (available after your first order)

LIMITED TIME DEAL: Save 25% off your first 4 weeks of Plated with any subscription plan (up to a $159.20 value)

The Products: All of the pre-portioned fresh and seasonal ingredients you need to make chef-designed recipes at home in your own kitchen.

Ships to: 95% of the U.S. (Currently, Plated does not ship to Hawaii and Alaska, and there are also a few cities in Texas, including San Antonio, Corpus Christi, Laredo, and Midland, where they don’t yet ship.)

Good to know: Plated was recently purchased by Albertsons.

Plated April 2018 Review

Plated sends each meal’s ingredients mostly packaged together in a singular plastic bag, but larger items (like the cauliflower and tortillas) get their own plastic wrapping. Each individually wrapped item is marked with the meal it belongs to so you can organize them in your refrigerator upon unpacking. Super appreciated in keep an often chaotic fridge tidy!

Cauliflower Tinga Tacos with Queso Fresco and Pickled Onion

Calories per Serving: 650

Total Prep and Cook Time (listed): 50 minutes

Actual Time to Cook: 50 minutes

Plated recipe cards come with a short description on the front and include the estimated prep and cook time as well as calories per serving. On the opposite side, you’ll find an ingredients list, what you’ll need from your kitchen (additional staple ingredients, like olive oil or butter, and tools), and recipe tips. Directions are well written and each step comes with an accompanying photo. After a quick glance-over, this recipe appeared to be pretty time-consuming but straightforward in technique.

Lots of fresh ingredients and a variety of components. Compared to other meal subscription boxes, I’ve found that Plated’s recipes tend to be a bit more involved. It’s always worth it, though. The extra steps often make for more complex and satisfying meals!

I started off dish #1 by cutting the cauliflower into small 1/2″ florets.

I also thinly sliced the red onion and roughly chopped the cilantro, keeping leaves and stems separate.

Half of the onion went into a bowl with the sherry wine vinegar to create a quick pickle. It was set aside while the rest of the onion went into a large pot.

It sautéed in olive oil with the cilantro stems until fragrant and softened. Meanwhile…

I drained the can of fire-roasted tomatoes.

The taco seasoning and chipotle paste joined the aromatics in the pot along with the cauliflower florets.

I then added the vegetable stock, fire-roasted tomatoes, and seasoning. This mixture simmered on the stove for about 15 minutes to create the smokey Mexican tinga taco filling.

To quickly warm up my tortillas, I loosely wrapped them in foil and threw them in the oven for a few minutes.

After washing the Boston lettuce and patting dry, I trimmed away stems and removed 6 large leaves for the tacos.

The rest of the lettuce was chopped up for a side salad.

Its simple dressing was comprised of 1 tablespoon of the onion pickling liquid, olive oil, and salt and pepper to season.

This mixture was tossed with the lettuce shreds to create a very acidic complimentary side.

The cauliflower took on an amazing hue from the Mexican spices and roasted tomato mixture. This smelled heavenly too!

The final dish was beautifully balanced. Each taco felt like it had sort of a double outer layer in that a large leaf of Boston lettuce was perfectly nestled over each tortilla like a little inner shell. Next up went the tinga cauliflower mixture, avocado, pickled onion, and queso fresco. The cilantro leaves were the last touch.

This dish was delicious and unique. I had made tacos a hundred times before following this recipe, but none were in this style. That’s one of the things that I love so much about Plated — it consistently pushes me out of my comfort zone in the kitchen. My only critique of this dish is that I wish that these tacos tasted a bit more decadent or just… evenly balanced? The avocado was a necessary addition of fat to cut through all of the tanginess of the rest of the flavors, but I felt like this dish was possibly lacking some sort of creamy sauce component. I also found the side salad to be a bit too heavily dressed for my taste, so I’d probably keep the dressing separate next time around.

Fresh Spaghetti with Tomato Sauce and Burrata 

Calories per Serving: 550

Total Prep and Cook Time (listed): 25 minutes

Actual Time to Cook: 25 minutes

Spaghetti! A classic! But for as many times as I’ve enjoyed it, I’ve never made sauce from scratch. Was super excited about this one!

I prepared my basil, onion, and garlic to start.

The yellow onion is cooked down in olive oil. I was surprised by how much onion this looked to be for a red sauce (spoiler: it’s the perfect amount). I do love onion!

Crushed red pepper and garlic were added to continue to form the base of the sauce.

I then incorporated the wine (crucial), diced tomatoes and their juices, tomato puree, sugar, and whole basil sprig while increasing heat to high and bringing it all to a boil.

Once boiling, I then reduced the pan to a simmer and added salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, I cooked the spaghetti for about 3 minutes in some heavily salted way (another key trick). These noodles are fresh, so it didn’t take long to get them to al dente.

Half of the pasta cooking water was reserved for the sauce.

The noodles were added to the pan and tossed around for about 2 minutes to fully warm through. I then began to add a bit of the cooking water to really bind everything.

Parmesan, salt, and pepper finished the dish. How incredible does this look?

The creamy burrata mozzarella is added during plating. I basically broke it apart into small pieces that were placed sporadically throughout the plate. The chopped basil was added as a garnish. I also chose to add a final crank or two of black pepper.

This. Was. Delicious. It was most definitely the best thing I’ve made in recent memory, and it really got me wondering as to why I’d never attempted my own pasta sauce before. Makes ALL the difference. The heavy creaminess of the burrata added a really special touch that was balanced with the light freshness of the sauce and the basil. This is one of those recipes that I’ll be holding onto for years to come. Thank you, Plated, for introducing me to the joys of really amazing spaghetti at home.

Verdict: I could not be loving Plated any more right now, to be honest. Their dishes have bold flavors and simple ingredients, but the recipes allow me to learn new skills and try my hand at special dishes that I wouldn’t imagine I’d wind up loving. Both of these meals were solid, but the spaghetti was a life-changer, and you can’t beat that.

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? No. The Plated menus change weekly and you need to lock in orders before shipments go out.

Coupon – Save 25% off your first 4 weeks of Plated with any subscription plan (up to a $159.20 value)

Value Breakdown: This box cost $48.00 + $6.00 shipping, which is $13.50 per meal.

Check out all of our Plated Reviews and discover more meal boxes in the Meal Subscription Box Directory!

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

Would you eat the meals I cooked from Plated this week? 


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Written by Jess Cole Payne

Jess Cole Payne

Jess’s love for subscription boxes began with a makeup and skincare fixation. She’s looking forward to broadening her horizons in discovering new products within the lifestyle and food world of subscription boxes.

Posted in Food & Drink Subscription Boxes, Meal Kit Subscriptions, Plated Reviews, Subscription Box Reviews| Tags: plated | 2 comments

Comments (2)

  1. We have been getting Plated for over a year.

    My husband has always enjoyed helping in the kitchen but was always intimidated by complex recipes. Helping with Plated has helped him learn new techniques and gain confidence in the use of ingredients he would never have tried otherwise.

    I grew up with a chef for a father and have been cooking since I was 6 years old. So I am familiar with most of the techniques and have a variety of specialized kitchen gadgets that my husband has now learned to use and care for. I.e. citus sqeezer, a mandolin, a ginger grater, a zester.

    We have never been disappointed with a box or a recipe. Not every recipe is “the best ever” but many are so good that the only noise at the dinner table is the sound of food being scooped into our mouths.

    Many of the recipes are easily duplicated and the ingredient list makes it easy to shop for the same ingredients to duplicate that meal. I have even saved our favorites in a 3 ring binder. I slide the card into a plastic sleeve so it won’t get dirty while I cook and they already have the holes to put in the binder. I could not love a subscription more. I would recommend Plated to anyone that asks.

  2. I’m really loving my Plated sub. I chose that spaghetti last week too and it was amazing!! Something that’s pretty simple with great ingredients can be so delicious. I think the thing that really stands out for me with plated is the ingredients. They are fresh and high quality. I’m only on week 3 with them but so far it’s been great. The only negative might be that some recipes are a little involved and require multitasking.

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