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I couldn’t be happier to walk in the door when I get home from work. I drop my bag in the foyer, beeline for my comfy sweatpants, give my partner a quick kiss hello, and ask our 8-year-old and 10-year-old about what they learned in school that day. It feels so great to shed the weight of the day… until I remember that I have to get dinner on the table!
My partner and I are constantly balancing raising kids, paying bills, getting errands done, and keeping up with the chores, cooking included. We treasure our family dinnertime, but with so many other responsibilities demanding our time and attention, we tend to rush our grocery runs and only stick to the quick, tried-and-true recipes we know.
Lately, everyone is feeling tired of the same mac ‘n’ cheese, grilled chicken and vegetables, and spaghetti and meatballs. But it’s not like it’s a good idea to order in or get take out to save time — that’s just way too expensive these days, and raising two kids is already costly (and time-consuming) enough. Plus, I’m not sure how healthy it is to eat out all the time!
Enter meal kits. You’re shipped all the ingredients from veggies to meats to spices, you mix them all together, and boom, dinner. Skipping all the prep work sounded amazing, but I just assumed it was too expensive to make a normal part of our weekday routines. Plus, could food that arrives in a box really be that fresh and delicious?
My coworker told me about Chefs Plate, a meal service with super-flexible plans so we can start or stop any time. Worth a shot, I thought. I took advantage of Chefs Plate’s offer of 6 meals for only $9.99 each — and gave it a try for a month. The first insulated, eco-friendly box arrived, and my family simply couldn’t wait to try our Linguine with Chicken Sausage and Meatballs, Sesame Pork Rice Bowls, and Barbecue Veggie Flatbreads.
Let’s just say that my family is never going back! Here’s why:
It saves so much time
For the three days a week that my family receives Chefs Plate meals, that’s an hour and a half saved over the stove. Whipping together a Chefs Plate meal takes around half an hour, so I no longer spend valuable time figuring out what to eat and what’s needed to make it. That frees up a ton of time to unwind from a tough day or help my daughter with a tricky math problem. Plus, the whole family gets to the dinner table that much faster because the recipes are super clear to follow.
We cook as a family
Chefs Plate makes it easy for the kids to participate in dinner prep. They happily unpack the box that arrives fresh, on ice, at the door. The kids walk their parents through the six-step recipes, sort out the pre-measured ingredients, and even sometimes help clean up once everyone’s eaten their delicious dinners. The kids love this time in the kitchen, and as parents, we love that we can spend even more time as a family while teaching our kids the importance of preparing and eating nutritious meals.
The meal options are picky-eater-proof
One of our kids will eat anything. The other, though? If it’s not pasta, good luck getting him to try it. Chefs Plate friendly, accessible options don’t cause a dinnertime meltdown, to our relief! My son quickly gravitated to the Chefs Plates Linguine with Chicken Sausage Meatballs, a fresh new take on our family’s beloved spaghetti and meatballs. He even ate the zucchini ribbons in the dish!
We get the bang for our buck
Before Chefs Plate, I assumed that eating healthy all the time was expensive. I mean, have you seen how much fresh meat and produce costs? On the “Dinner For 4” plan, however, our meals cost just under $9 per person. That’s because Chefs Plate only includes exactly what we need, so no ingredients (or money!) go to waste. It’s cheaper (and quicker) than buying a bunch of groceries that may spoil before we ever touch them.
It’s super flexible
My favorite part of Chefs Plate is that I’m not chained to a plan when I sign up. I have the freedom to pause meals and switch recipes whenever I want. That means if I get around to making that recipe I saw on Facebook last week, all I do is sign in to my account and pause delivery. My family can resume Chefs Plate meals at any time. And the same goes for the meals selected in our plan — if our family ever wants to upgrade a meal to a premium Spanish-style steak or swap out a meal for a different option, all we need to do is let Chefs Plate know.
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