Let Chef’s Plate Pamper your Palate

When it comes to eating, life has gotten complicated. Let’s be honest and say that finding healthy food with correct portions that’s delicious and easy to prepare can be tricky business. What if you could just choose gourmet meals online, order all the ingredients to show up on your doorstep, measured out, fresh and ready to cook at home—all for a reasonable price? Well, starting this week you can, thanks to Chef’s Plate.

Chef's Plate Co-Founder Jamie Shea
Jamie Shea, Chef’s Plate’s co-owner.

Jamie Shea, Chef’s Plate’s co-owner, got his feet wet in Toronto, starting the online company there. It has been a big success and has grown from a staff of four to over 40 in just seven months.

Here is how Chef’s Plate works. You visit the website, choose the dishes you want (the menu changes all the time with six new recipes weekly with meat, seafood and vegetarian options), and voilà, you receive a box with all the ingredients, all measured out, and a recipe card with pictures to help you put it all together. Meal preparation, from beginning to end, takes less than 30 minutes and in terms of cost, you are looking at about $11 a head, far less than eating out and with less food waste. (There is the packaging, but that is all reusable and can be recycled.)

At first, you may wonder who would really use this service. After all, it seems decadent when you can just hit the grocery store yourself. But take a second to think about it. By avoiding that grocery stop all the hassle of searching for ingredients and carrying them home is removed, and who doesn’t like that? Shea says that he and his business partner have found that busy families, working professionals and Baby Boomers looking for an easy way to add variety to their diet are some of their key repeat customers. Also, if you have a hot date and want to impress with a gourmet, made-at-home meal instead of hitting a restaurant, Chef’s Plate would do the trick.

All of the recipes are created by Executive Chef Jason Rosso, who has run some of the top restaurants in CanadaChef's Plate Product Close Up #2. He was Head Chef of Sassafraz in Toronto, Chef and Culinary Director of Operations for the Distillery Historic District and he is currently the national executive chef at Milestones Canada. He has also been co-host of the Food Network’s ‘Restaurant Makeover,’ mentor chef on Food Network’s ‘Recipe to Riches’ and a featured judge on ‘Top Chef Canada.’ The point is, he knows his food, and his recipes are full of flavour. All of the Chef’s Plate ingredients are locally sourced and will stay fresh in your fridge up to 5 days.

There are a variety of options in terms of how many meals to purchase. Shea says that what he has seen so far is that customers are buying two or three meals a week. Order online before midnight on a Thursday, and you will get a box with everything in it on your doorstep on Monday or Tuesday (depending on where you live) before 6 p.m. If you aren’t around, no problem. The packaging includes reusable ice packs to keep everything cold.

As an alternative to eating out or to help on your journey to eat better, Chef’s Plate is a welcomed new choice in Ottawa. You can find out more, or order your first box, on their website at chefsplate.com.