The following post is sponsored by Plated.
We’ve all been there. It’s 7:30 on a Wednesday night, you’re just getting home, and all you’ve got in your refrigerated arsenal is frozen shrimp and—if you’re lucky—some cocktail sauce. Great for an appetizer, but not exactly the stuff of culinary dreams.
So when the pickings get slim and the going gets rough and whatever other cliché happens because you’re too tired and hungry to think, it’s nice to know there might be a better option. Imagine being able to cook a fresh, homemade dinner without having to think about menu planning or grocery shopping. The ingredients would already be at your door when you get home in a biodegradable box, pre-portioned, and ready for you to whip up in 30 minutes.Although it sounds too good to be true, there is a company called Plated now offering this unusual, albeit ingenious service. Here’s how it works: you browse a rotating menu of chef-designed recipes on Plated’s website and select your favorites each week. Then, you add the number of plates you’d like to your cart and set a delivery date. And that’s it. No meal planning or grocery shopping needed. You’ll receive a box with perfectly portioned ingredients and detailed cooking instructions.
At the time of writing this article, the options included drool-inducing recipes like “Cheese Ravioli with Kale Pesto and Roasted Carrots” and “Crispy Chickpea Flatbreads.” They also cater to a variety of dietary choices and restrictions, with three vegetarian meal choices offered weekly.
Though the savory possibilities likely speak for themselves, the meals are more than just a pretty plate, so to speak. By providing ingredients in the exact portions that are required for each recipe, Plated strives to cut down on the rampant food waste plaguing our planet. Current estimates suggest that 30 to 50 percent of all food is discarded along the way to human mouths. Much of that is the fault of grocery stores, which discard large quantities of produce. Shoppers, too, often fill their refrigerators with fresh food and forget about or can’t use what’s there. Plated solves that problem by supplying exactly what you need.
Beyond reducing waste, Plated has also committed to sourcing sustainably grown, local food. They have partnered with an organization called Sea to Table to ensure that all fish and seafood used in its meals have been responsibly caught, in an effort to cut down on the negative effects of over-fishing.
At $12 a plate with an inexpensive monthly or annual membership, it’s more economical than going out to eat or trekking to an expensive natural foods store for dinner supplies. You also get to have a say in what’s going into your body, so that you can cut down on added sugar, gluten, soy, or dairy as needed. And, you just might sharpen your culinary prowess, with innovative cooking techniques that are straightforward and fun to show off at your next dinner party.
Based in New York City, Plated delivers its subscription boxes to 47 states across the continental United States, with plans to expand further in the next year. Enter your zip code on the website to find out if Plated is available where you live (they’re currently covering 80% of the continental US). You also can skip as many deliveries as you need to, no questions asked, and can cancel the membership at any time.
Plated is offering an irresistible deal to TreeHugger readers as part of this sponsored post. Click here to find out more.