After trying out a free box from Marley’s Spoon, I was hooked so I opted for my own subscription. I used the awesome coupon code COOKSMART for $30 off and chose to have 2 recipes (with 2 servings each) per week. This made my intro box only $18.
I chose my recipes for the week and my delivery day (options are Tuesday or Friday) then prayed I wouldn’t be an embarrassment as a food blogger.
A large, well insulated box arrived with all the necessary ingredients.
Oven Skillet Herbed Chicken with Couscous and Escarole
I chose this dish because chicken is always a hit in my household.
The meat came well sealed and looking super fresh and a paper bag held all the other items.
Now my big beef with Marley Spoon is that you have to do stuff like rinse and dry lettuce. I feel like that should be something included with the cost of the box. It’s time consuming and annoying which is why I like to buy my lettuce already washed and bagged. Time is money, people and I don’t want to spend mine cleaning leaves.
Aside from the leaf washing, there was only one other annoying part to this recipe – pulling thyme leaves off stems. Maybe I’m just not Zen enough but trying to get those tiny leaves off the branches makes me want to hulk smash something.
The escarole goes in a separate tray in the oven along with a skillet of raw chicken and onions.
When it comes out, we add couscous and voila! We’re done.
Taste: Bland and sour
Despite the picture where the chicken looks a bit pink, it was cooked all the way through. Unfortunately the chicken never got brown and crispy. I followed all the directions including the salt and pepper seasoning but the chicken was super bland. The couscous had a really vinegary flavor and I wasn’t a fan of that combination with onions. I think the recipe would have been much better served with rice and with braising the chicken. I’m not a huge fan of escarole but it was inoffensive. Not great, but not terrible either.
Portion Size: More than enough couscous, but here were four chicken thighs, but two were on the small side. If you’re doing two chicken thighs per person, they should each be a decent size.
Good for Entertaining?: Not unless you want to punish your guests.
Espresso-Rubbed Steak with Roasted Potatoes and Brussels Sprouts
This recipe sounded amazing that I had to pick it.
The steak looked like it was high quality and everything was nicely packaged.
This recipe was pretty straightforward and the rub on the steak smelled amazing.
You roast the potatoes and brussels sprouts then mix them with lemon juice and parsley.
The steak looked great in the pan and I think I did a decent job of slicing it.
The finished product:
This recipe was absolutely delicious. The steak and veggies were all excellent quality and the rub was nice and spicy without being too hot. The only small issue I have was that I found the lemon juice too be too much for the potato and brussels. It also took away some of the crispiness on the potatoes. I’d probably just use the lemon zest and skip adding the lemon juice.
Portion Size: Quite Ample. Two very generous portions.
Good for Entertaining?: Absolutely. Easy, delicious and looks impressive.
In fact, I can definitely see myself using the side dish with other recipes and the steak rub is tasty and only uses a few ingredients. If I was hosting I’d serve a Pinot Noir to drink and have a a green salad with blue cheese, walnuts, apples and a vinaigrette as a starter. I’d end with a chocolate dessert, most likely this amazing Chocolate Beet Cake from Martha Stewart. (I typically skip the candied beet garnish and opt for fresh raspberries instead.)
Even though I hated the herbed chicken, it was fun to try out recipes I might otherwise skip. And I really enjoy experimenting in the kitchen with quality fresh ingredients (that I didn’t have to buy myself). I loved the steak dish and I feel like with each of these boxes I pick up a cool cooking technique or hint so for me it’s like food + a mini cooking lesson.
Have you ever tried a fresh meal subscription service? If so, what did you think?
Marley’s Spoon creates delicious, easy to follow recipes.
They deliver fresh, pre-portioned ingredients and you select your recipes from their changing weekly menu.
They are dedicated to sourcing organic and sustainable whenever possible. Building relationships with environmentally aware farms and producers ensures that the highest quality ingredients arrive at your door each week.
Using trusted delivery partners, your Marley Spoon boxes come insulated and chilled, staying cool for 30 hours! After delivery, all the ingredients are guaranteed to stay fresh for up to 4 days – allowing you to decide when to cook.
Marley’s Spoon donates any leftover ingredients to City Harvest. City Harvest exists to end hunger in communities throughout New York City through food rescue and distribution, education, and other practical, innovative solutions.
Each week you’ll automatically receive great dishes, but as a flexible subscription, you can skip a week or pause your subscription anytime. You can also change delivery frequency, recipes, and the number of portions you’d like to receive.
Marley’ Spoon delivers to the mid Atlantic and New England regions: most of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia, and Washington D.C.