Sun Basket Review & $30 Coupon – July 2016

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Sun Basket is a meal kit delivery subscription box.   Their chef-developed and nutritionist-approved recipes focus on helping people create delicious, healthy meals using quality ingredients and globally-inspired flavors.  Recipes are created by Chef Justine Kelly, formerly of the James Beard award–winning restaurant The Slanted Door.  Meals are between 500–800 calories.  Meal ingredients use certified organic produce and responsibly sourced meats and seafood (free from antibiotics and added hormones).  Pick and choose 3 recipes between the following meal plan menus for your weekly selections:  Chef’s choice, Paleo, Gluten-free, and Vegetarian.  You can also opt for the Rise & Shine menu which consists of two dinner recipes and two 5-minute breakfast recipes.

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Sun Basket included this label on the outside of the box.  This information is useful if you have concerns about where your food is sourced.

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Food is well insulated, and recipes are separated into individual bags (with color coded labels).  Meals are packaged to stay fresh in the box for up to 8 hours after delivery.  Immediately refrigerate ingredients after removing from the box.  Note from Sun Basket, recipes with delicate greens and fresh mushrooms are best used within 4 days of delivery.  Sun Basket provides most of the ingredients needed for your recipes, but there are a few pantry staples that you’ll be asked to add such as olive oil, grapeseed or sunflower oil, plus salt and freshly–ground pepper. Occasionally, you’ll be asked for wine or butter as an optional recipe item. All Sun Basket packing materials are either recyclable or compostable.

Week 1:

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This week’s recipes can be prepared on a grill, and Sun Basket has provided tips on getting the best grilling results.

week 1

Week 1’s Recipe Cards

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Here are the meats for this week’s recipes – ground beef and pork loin chop.  Sun Basket suggests that you freeze meats and seafood if they are not going to be used within 3 days of delivery.

  • Pan-roasted Pork Loin with Peach-Tomato Salad:  

Pork

Ingredients (minus the pork loin) – Those heirloom tomatoes are gorgeous.pork loin tomato peach salad

Making the meal:  Season the pork loin, toast and chop the hazelnuts, marinate the tomatoes, cook the pork loin, and cook the peaches.

Pork Final

My finished dish!  This was very tasty.  The pork loin maintained its moisture, and the sweetness of the peaches balanced the tanginess of the tomatoes and vinegar in the salad.  I don’t think the hazelnuts were really necessary, but they added a nice crunch to the salad.  I was surprised by how much I liked this considering I am not usually a fan of cooked fruit.

  • Mediterranean Beef Kebabs with Mint-Pistachio Relish:  

Kebabs

Ingredients (minus the ground beef)

Mediterranean kebabs

Making the meal:  Rehydrate the sundried tomatoes, season the meat, make the relish, prepare the cauliflower mash, and finish the kebabs.

Kebabs Final

I like Mediterranean food, especially Kafta (Lebanese beef kebabs), so I was really excited to try this dish.  The flavors in the kebabs were authentic to what I’m used to.  However, this recipe calls for the onion to be chopped.  I feel that they should have been grated for better texture.  Also, fresh dill can be overwhelming.  It was in the cauliflower mash.  I think I’ll try this again, but change the prep of the onion and use a lot less dill.

  • Ginger Fried Jade Rice:  

Jade

Ingredients – I love how the eggs are packaged in their little carton.

jade fried rice

Making the meal:  Cook and cool the rice, prep the vegetables, combine to make fried rice, and fry the eggs.

Jade 1

So, I can’t comment on how this meal tasted.  Dad prepared this for dinner while I was away on vacation; hence the picture quality and lack of prep pics.  I think he did a great job on presentation – the final dish bears a close resemblance to the dish on the recipe card!  Dad’s comments on the meal were that it was easy to prepare, and it tasted good.  The Jade rice was different – it gets its color and vanilla flavor from an infusion of bamboo extract.  And he didn’t mind the sriracha.

Week 2:

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Since I had a recipe with steak, Sun Basket included tips on how to cook the perfect steak.

week 2

Week 2’s Recipe Cards

  • Cuban Shrimp Mojo with Lime-Roasted Vegetables:  

Mojo

Ingredients – The recipe calls for toasted pumpkin seeds, but the chef preferred the taste/texture of raw seeds.  Sun Basket included a note that told me of the chef’s preference and reminded me that I could toast the seeds if I liked them better.

MOJO Shrimp

Making the meal:  Prep and roast the veggies, juice the citrus, make the mojo sauce, marinate the shrimp, heat the mojo, and cook the shrimp.

Mojo Final

This was so delish.  The veggie serving on the plate is only 1/4 of what I made.  The shrimp were very flavorful and required minimal cooking time because of the marinade, which was similar to a ceviche preparation.  I just wish that there had been more!  For this meal, I think the pumpkin seeds should have been toasted to offer a different texture since the veggies and shrimp were both soft.

  • Fregola Salad with Black Beans, Corn, and Red Pepper:  

Fregola

Ingredients – The black bean container has some condensation inside; the beans are fine.

Fregola Salad

Making the meal:  Cook the fregola, prep the veggies (bundt pan works wonders when removing kernels from the cob), cook the veggies, and combine ingredients.

Fregola Final

This is such a bright and vibrant salad.  Fregola is essentially couscous.  This definitely had the flavors of Mexico – the cilantro and lime really stood out.  This recipe made a huge batch.  It says it is 2 servings, but I was able to get 4!  I would have preferred to have this topped with the queso freso instead of mixing it in.  Since the salad was warm, it melted in and got lost.

  •  Steaks with Artichoke Butter and Summer Vegetables:  

Steak

Ingredients

steak prep

Making the meal:  Toast the coriander, prep the veggies, make the artichoke butter, cook the veggies and steaks.

Steak Final

Yes, this tasted as good as it looks.  I kept a portion in the fridge to eat the next night.  Actually, the picture above is of the assembled leftovers.  Crazy, right?  Since this recipe used toasted coriander seeds with the veggies, I seasoned the steaks with a smoked salt to compliment the flavors.  Compound butters are one of my favorite things to make, but usually I use herbs or fruit.  This the first time that I’ve had one with artichokes.  They were a perfect butter ingredient – the soft hearts added a creamy texture.  And, I followed Sun Basket’s tips on steaks; I had a great sear on the outside, moist center, and the perfect medium texture.

The meals that I received were hearty and flavor-packed.  Since I am watching my weight, I appreciate that meals are portioned and recipes contain the calorie counts.  Sun Basket does a good job providing a variety of dishes to choose from each week.

You can choose between the 2-person or 4-person plans (weekly $74.93 and $143.87, respectively).  Sun Basket meals breakdown to $11.49 per person, which is similar to eating out at a casual restaurant.  There is also a $5.99 weekly delivery fee.  You can skip or cancel at any time.  Sun Basket has an expanded delivery area.  However, they do not deliver to the following states:  AK, HI, IA, KS, LA, MN, MO, MT, NE, NM, ND, OK, SD, TX, and WI.  They only deliver to parts of AR.

Have you tried Sun Basket yet or any other meal service? Save $30 on your first box – about half off! Use this link to get the deal.

Visit Sun Basket to subscribe or find out more!

The Subscription: Sun Basket
The Description: Sun Basket is a new healthy meal kit service that delivers organic ingredients and delicious, easy-to-make recipes for cooking at home. Sun Basket makes it easy to cook healthy, with Paleo, Gluten-free and Vegetarian options, plus healthy breakfasts. Get 3 recipes per week for 2, 4 or 6 people, delivered to your door in recyclable packaging that can be shipped back – free- for reuse.
The Price: $68.94 every week

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