I was always one to shun the meal kits that get delivered to your door. I think because I had thought that the cost of these meal kits are prohibitive, or that getting take out would be cheaper. Then, my friend gave me a card to try two meals of Chefs Plate for free, so I thought why not! I love trying new things, especially when there is no added cost. Here’s my Chefs Plate Canada review. You can decide for yourself: Is Chefs Plate worth it?
Why did I try a meal kit delivery service?
One way I told myself to fight back against the motherhood penalty was to cook larger meals so that we could eat leftovers every second day, or use takeout/ delivery more often.
Chefs Plate is another option to help reduce the mental burden of grocery shopping and meal planning.
What is Chefs Plate?
Chefs Plate is a Canadian flexible food box subscription service for ingredients and step-by-step recipes. It is a division of the parent company Hello Fresh. Hello Fresh is a German company that is a publicly traded company. Hello Fresh is the largest meal kit provided in the United States. They acquired Chefs Plate in 2018.
Chefs Plate delivers to the provinces of Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, PEI, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Manitoba.
They have Meal Kits for One (personally I would choose the two person meal and just have leftovers if I lived alone), Family Meals, and Vegetarian Meals. There are plenty of options for your unique and personalized meal kit needs.
How Chefs Plate Works
The mystique about how meal kit deliveries worked intrigued me until I tried it out for myself. My friend gave me a free week to try out (I can’t say no to free meals!). I can attest that it is very straight forward.
Basically you sign up for a Chefs Plate account, then you:
Choose one of these options:
- Family Friendly
- Meat and Vegetables
Next you select the number of portions (it’s either 2 or 4) and the number of times per week.
Then, you select the week you want Chefs Plate to start delivering.
In that particular week (you will be able to see up to three weeks in advance) you’ll see the meals offered. There are at least 15 to over 20 different meals offered each week, there’s a lot of variety.
After this you’ll see the weekly charge, and then you can select the delivery day.
On your delivery day, your box will show up on your doorstep (I think one time it was delivered by Fedex, but I can’t remember clearly).
It’s free for delivery, but if you have a 2 person twice a week plan, $6 will be added for delivery. However, you’ll be able to see this charge before you confirm your order for that week.
Once your box shows up, there are some items in the cooler bag that you should put in the refrigerator as soon as you can. Then, you basically follow the step-by-step colourful recipe card instructions to make your meal.
The ingredients to create your selected meal are all included (even down to cream, mayonnaise, or ketchup) except salt and pepper and butter typically.
Chefs Plate Prices
What are the Chefs Plate prices?
Well, each meal is around $36 for a family of four.
What is the bottom line Chefs Plate cost?
That means it is about $9 per serving per meal.
Chefs Plate pricing is not cheap but it is cheaper than eating at a restaurant.
This Chefs Plate Canada review will go over some of the pros and cons to Chefs Plate so you can decide whether it’s worth it to sign up.
CHefs Plate Pros
Reliable. You can choose your weekly delivery day . The time that the box arrives has a wide range (8:00AM to 8:00PM), but it does arrive on the scheduled delivery day and it’s kind of a nice feeling to see your meal ready for you in a box without having to think about what to make for dinner. The box will stay fresh until evening if you receive it in the morning and you don’t work from home. The only thing worrisome is if someone steals your food when you leave it out the whole day.
Easy to use and no fail. The step-by-step coloured instructions make it kind of fun to work on your recipe with your children. My 2 year old had a great time ‘cooking’ with me and looking at the next steps for the recipe. Everything is portioned out, my 2 year old just had to dump the package into the bowl and stir, she had a great time helping.
There’s reasonable time to change your order or cancel. You have until 11:59pm PST four (4) days before your next delivery to cancel for the week or cancel your delivery.
The meal prep times are accurate. You can try and prep the day before to save on cook time. Sometimes I have used my Instant Pot to prepare some parts of the recipe (e.g. boiling potatoes). Most of these meals are around 30-35 minutes to prepare. I find that even with 30-35 minutes, it’s too long when you have hangry toddlers.
There is variety in meals you can select. There are vegetarian options, and different protein options. There is usually a burger option each week. There aren’t specific dietary preferences though (e.g. gluten free).
There are dishes inspired from around the world. If you want to try something new or try a different cuisine (for example Moroccan inspired tagine type meal) without buying all new spices or ingredients that you might not normally purchase, this is a great way to ‘test it out’ before you commit to buying these ingredients for your pantry.
You’ll learn new recipes or ways to make your meals taste better. It is fun to follow the recipes, and I was curious how Chefs Plate recommended making mashed potatoes (hint: There’s a lot of cream) as it is different how I normally prepare mashed potatoes. I have never made burgers taste so good like I have from Chefs Plate. The taste combinations are very unique and not something I would come up with on my own.
Chefs Plate Cons
It’s somewhat expensive to still cook yourself. It’s $8.99 per serving (starting at, you can ‘upgrade’ your meal by adding meats etc.), and about $72 per week if you are ordering two meals with four servings.
The packaging. It comes in a box and then the sauces and seasonings come in separate bags (and if you order a meal kit for four, it’s basically double the packaging because of double the portions. It feels quite wasteful throwing all the little packages into the garbage. The ice packs are recyclable and the cooler bag is compostable (made out of paper and cardboard fibre as insulation), which is nice. There’s also coloured step-by-step instructions that feel like a bit of a waste to put in the recycling bin.
It’s still meal preparation and clean up. You basically skip the mental load of ‘what to make for dinner’ and the time burden of grocery shopping for this specific meal. However, on work days, I really don’t have 30 minutes of time to spare to cook a meal, when my kids are screaming for attention and hangry. I found it better to have dinner ready in the Instant Pot or just to eat left overs for dinner. You still have to clean up the dishes and pots and pans. I find that since you the the meal is prepared within 30 minutes there are a number of pots and pans to use (many parts of the recipe are cooking at the same time).
The portions are smallish. The portions are pretty small (they are about the right size for me, but my husband eats a lot). They are perfect for a smaller family of four (we have a 4 and 2 year old) with some leftovers for the next day. Chefs Plate indicates they are a healthy meal kit delivery option because the portions are controlled.
It is expensive. For a family of four I would estimate that it is about 30% to 50% more costly in terms of whether you make these recipes for yourself. Each meal is around $36 for a family of four. So you’re not really saving money on food if you eat this daily. However, Chefs Plate meals taste very restaurant-like, so technically it’s cheaper than going to a restaurant or ordering take out (though the downside is you have to cook the meal!).
Is Chefs Plate Worth It?
Chefs Plate is not cheaper than making the meals yourself and buying the groceries yourself. However, if you are interested in trying restaurant quality meals without the restaurant price, Chefs Plate is an excellent choice.
It’s almost like entertainment + a meal kit wrapped up in a box.
The entertainment aspect of Chefs Plate is trying something new, trying a new recipe, without the hassle of going to the grocery store, hunting for ingredients, and buying a huge bag of dried dill, because the recipe calls for 1 tbsp of dill, when you don’t usually eat dill.
It’s something novel, like going to a new restaurant without actually having to go to a restaurant and stress out about your kids acting up or not sitting still in their seats.
Therefore, my Chefs Plate Canada review is positive. I would definitely sign up for this again if I wanted to try something new or didn’t want to order take out that week, however I wouldn’t use it as a weekly ongoing thing primarily because of the packaging. Chefs Plate is cheaper than going to a restaurant, cheaper than takeout or delivery, and tasty so you can save money fast.
You may also be interested in:
Have you used Chefs Plate Canada? What is your Chefs Plate Canada review?
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8 thoughts on “Chefs Plate Canada Review: Is it Worth It?”
One thing my wife and I enjoy about meal kit meals is its a very nice date night. We’ll have a glass of wine while we prepare the meal together. We alternate who shops, cooks and cleans up after, one week at a time normally, but when we do meal kits we do them together. We are light eaters so we get at least four servings from a two serving kit, sometimes as many as six servings. And not having odd bits left over is nice, nothing gets thrown out. We have adopted a few of their recipes, I now make a killer Chipotle meatloaf! They do cost more than meals made from groceries but if you factor in the convenience and entertainment value I think they are a bargain. We don’t use them often, maybe one week every couple of months because we are both good cooks already, but its a nice treat. We are doing three of the meals this week. We had some tasty stir fried shrimp and today its salmon. You gave a really well balanced review.
@steveark- Thanks so much for sharing your experience! What a great date night! Yes, it’s great for inspiration, like I learned to make really creamy mashed potatoes and also great for the intrinsic entertainment value (or even wanting to escape from the regular meal rotation that one has in the home- that is a bit priceless I would say). Hope you had a good salmon dinner!
They have the lowest quality meat you can get, would not feed this to my pets
@Rob- Lol. I was actually pretty impressed with their ground beef, was pretty good, but the chicken was quite small portion.
I am a software engineer and these products are loved by my kids but I can honestly say that after 20+ years of cooking for myself I am often disappointed by most restaurants and find meal kits may be on a menu somewhere but are mediocre at best. Take a few short cooking courses, plan your meals around sale items and invest the time in understanding seasonings and techniques ….you’ll be amazed. If a guy that could barely boil water in university can impress, anyone can.
@Derek-Good point! Or even just read cooking blogs, I am so thankful for the Internet and videos on how to cook. There’s definitely a lot of seasoning to these meals, I don’t even use the full amount.
I wish it was more affordable for a pensioner
@Penney- True. If you are a senior who cannot get out and who needs delivery of meals there’s options like Meals on Wheels (not sure if it’s across Canada) for meal delivery. That’s a bit cheaper than Chefs Plate I believe.