Sakara is a pre-cooked meal delivery service that is 100% plant-based, organic, gluten-free, and dairy-free. Celebs like Chrissy Teigen, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Lily Aldridge are among the brand’s fans so needless to say, I was intrigued. I tried the company’s most popular option, the 3-day Sakara Signature program. After three days of living the Sakara Life, my biggest takeaway was that (contrary to my previous belief) I don’t need to snack all day in order to stay full. And eating this cleanly made me way less bloated – my stomach was noticeable flatter.
So, is Sakara worth it? If you have the money (it comes out to about $23-27/meal) then I’d say 100 percent yes – especially if you’re new to healthier eating or super busy and want quick, convenient and clean meal options. Keep reading for my detailed review – from the unboxing to what it was really like giving up caffeine, sugar, and alcohol.
The 3-day Sakara Signature program contained breakfast, lunch, and dinner for three days, as well as detox tea, “Beauty Concentrate” and “Detox Concentrate,” and an energy bar. See below for a full rundown of the specific meals I received, and keep scrolling for my in-depth review.
Breakfast: Avo-Cacao Probiotic Pudding with Lavender Tea Biscuits
Lunch: Moo Shu Veggie Wraps with Tamarind Sauce
Dinner: Sakara Cobb Salad with Avocado and Coconut “Bacon”
Snacks/Drinks: Beauty Water, Detox Tea, Detox Water
Breakfast: Maize Muffin with Probiotic Berry Coulis
Lunch: Red Beet Burger with Seed Bread and Daily Greens
Dinner: Wild Rice Salad with Citrus Miso Dressing
Snacks/Drinks: Beauty Water, Chocolate Sea Salt Energy Bar
Breakfast: Sakara Glow Granola with Pink Silk Mylk
Lunch: Sichuan Noodles with Sesame-Roasted Rainbow Carrots
Dinner: Pink Peppercorn Tomato Bisque with Superfood Swirls
Snacks/Drinks: Beauty Water
Sakara encourages you to only eat the designated meals throughout your program and to stay away from snacking if possible. However, if you catch yourself feeling hangry, they do allow anything from their “clean boutique” (think energy bars), organic low–glycemic fruits, water (LOL) or tea, organic low-glycemic raw vegetables, or a small handful of raw walnuts.
Beyond the above listed rules and no-nos, there are some other major foods they suggest you stay away from. You already know meat, dairy, and processed foods are a no-go, but in addition to that Sakara also says you should try to give up caffeine and alcohol during the program. According to Sakara, all of these things can be taxing on your body’s systems (i.e. dull skin, sluggish digestion, mood swings, excess weight, and low energy). If you’ve ever had a hangover, then you can’t totally disagree with the above statement. And we all know how rough caffeine (especially coffee) can be on our digestive system.
Prior to my Sakara detox, I would say I ate 80 percent of the “Sakara Life” way 90 percent of the time, with the exception of daily coffee, nightly chocolate, and weekly wine consumption. Since I already ate pretty cleanly, the Sakara way of doing things was not a huge shock to me. However, if you typically consume a lot of meat or processed foods, Sakara would be a big change.
I received my shipment on a Sunday night, which was perfect timing as I was very motivated to eat extra clean since I was leaving for Miami at the end of the week. Typical to other meal delivery services I’ve tried, everything arrived in a big insulated box with ice packs at the bottom. Although I wasn’t home when the delivery arrived, all of the food remained cold and I was immediately impressed with how fresh everything looked. I organized everything into each day’s meals and was pleasantly surprised at the amount of food—no hangry pre-panicking yet. I did notice that there was a beet burger for lunch on day two and I’m not a huge beet fan (they taste like dirt…don’t @ me) but other than that, things looked like they were off to a good start.
I woke up and made a cup of the Beauty Water, which contains silica (maximizes cellular hydration), rose (calms the adrenals and reduces inflammation), and 72 trace minerals. The concentrate comes in a small bottle with a dropper, so all you have to do is add a couple drops to a glass of water and you’re set. Drinking this water made me feel like I was at the spa, which was a nice feeling to have on a busy Monday morning.
I practice intermittent fasting and don’t usually eat breakfast until between 10:30-11:00 a.m., so I packed my breakfast to take with me, as well as the lunch and dinner since I’d be eating all three meals on the go that day. Sakara provided an insulated tote bag that makes it convenient to tote your meals across town—or in this case from your apartment, to Pilates, to the office, to an event, and back home.
Once I was at my desk I immediately wanted coffee and was feeling very groggy. I know this was mostly due in part to my routine—I crave coffee most on weekdays at work versus weekends—but even after a great Pilates workout my mind still felt blurry and I really wanted coffee.
I finally cracked into the Avo-Cacao Probiotic Pudding with Lavender Tea Biscuits at 10:30 a.m.. I felt like they must purposefully start you off with the best tasting meal to trick you into thinking this whole thing was going to be easy, but either way this breakfast was amazing. The pudding was smooth and creamy, and it honestly felt like I was eating dessert. I prefer sweet to savory breakfast, so I was in heaven. I also thought the breakfast was very filling, and I struggled to finish the whole thing.
After breakfast I made my first cup of Detox Tea which contained red rooibos, lemongrass, and rose. It was slightly fruity and bright. I enjoyed it.
At 2:00 p.m. I ate lunch, which was Moo Shu Veggie Wraps with Tamarind Sauce. It was a huge portion of vegetables with some leafy greens, which made sense as Sakara says its meals pack four to six cups of greens per day in order to promote a healthy gut and microbiome. Sakara touts tamarind as a superfood, as it contains fiber to beat bloat and aid in digestion, and it also contains the antioxidant tartaric acid which boosts your body’s absorption of nutrients. The sauce was super flavorful but I wished there was more, as it wasn’t quite enough to cover everything. I was only able to finish 80 percent of the meal and put the rest away to eat as a snack later in the afternoon.
By 4:45 p.m. I was pretty sure I was DYING due to lack of coffee. I made some Detox Tea instead, and also decided to heat up the leftovers from lunch (although I was more tired than hungry).
I don’t typically eat dinner at 9 p.m., but due to my schedule that’s when I had the Sakara Cobb Salad with Avocado and Coconut “Bacon” for dinner. It was fine, just a pretty run-of-the-mill salad. I would have personally preferred to have a hot dinner and a salad for lunch (switching the two meals) but it got the job done.
I got home at 10 p.m. and made a glass of Detox Water, which contains magnesium (gently aids digestion), chlorophyll (detoxifies/oxygenates the body), and 72 trace minerals. It was tasteless, but I felt like a superhero drinking this mysterious healthy beverage.
I woke up feeling very tired—not sure if it was due to the lack of caffeine from the day before or from my crazy Monday schedule. Either way I made a cup of Beauty Water to start the day and then got ready for Pilates.
I ate breakfast at 10:45 a.m. and Sakara knocked it out of the park again. Today’s breakfast was a Maize Muffin with Probiotic Berry Coulis and I was (again) obsessed with it. I warmed the muffin up so it was nice and fluffy, and the berry coulis was extremely flavorful—tart and not too sweet. This meal’s “superfood spotlight” was on cornmeal, as Sakara says the fiber helps to control blood glucose levels and the antioxidants are “beautifying.” Once I ate the last bite I was immediately sad it was gone. I was still a little hungry after this meal.
At 11:45 a.m. I was still hungry so I decided to try Sakara’s Energy Bar. My bar of choice is typically an RX Bar (specifically the Chocolate Sea Salt) and I didn’t think the Sakara bar was as tasty, although it only contained seven grams of sugar compared to RX Bar’s 13 grams (both bar’s sugars are from all-natural dates). The Sakara bar had organic raw dark cacao (contains theobromine which enhances alertness), organic raw hemp protein (a clean soy-free plant protein), and vitamins B12 and L-Theanine (provides sustained energy). I’d say the bar was sufficient, but wasn’t something I’d look forward to eating with immense anticipation.
At 2:15 p.m. I ate the dreaded beet burger—the Red Beet Burger with Seed Bread and Daily Greens. And of course this ended up being my favorite lunch of the week. The beet taste was pretty mild, and the seed bread was very filling. Instead of coming with a side of fries (obviously) it came with a big pile of leafy greens, which Sakara says will help you digest everything better. I couldn’t believe how fresh the greens still were and the dressing was tangy and delicious. I’d give this meal a nine out of 10.
I had another super busy day so unfortunately didn’t get to eat dinner until 10:00 p.m.. This dinner was a Wild Rice Salad with Citrus Miso Dressing. I liked this salad better than the dinner salad from the day before, and was glad there was the addition of rice in this one.
On my final day of the Sakara program I made the Beauty Water before I headed out the door to hot yoga. I still really missed coffee, and would say it was the hardest part of this detox.
At 10:45 a.m. I made breakfast and it was the most Instagrammable meal of the nine—Sakara Glow Granola with Pink Silk Mylk, aka a bowl of granola with dried berries and pink “milk” that gets its hue from Albizia, traditionally used in Chinese medicine as an adaptogenic herb to help support supple skin. This breakfast was extremely sweet (almost too sweet) and was so cute I couldn’t help but feel happy eating it. I felt very full afterwards.
At 2:00 p.m. I heated up lunch which was Sichuan Noodles with Sesame-Roasted Rainbow Carrots. We all know eating the rainbow is a sign of a healthy plate due to the diversity of nutrients, and just looking at this beautiful plate full of food was an easy sign this was an extremely #superfood lunch. The key ingredient spotlight was on wakame (found in the sauce) which contains iodine, and iodine is needed for a healthy thyroid. This was another lunch I’d rate 9/10.
At 8:00 p.m. I ate my final meal, a Pink Peppercorn Tomato Bisque with Superfood Swirls. At first I was a bit weirded out by the soup’s gritty texture, but the taste was good so I got over it. The “swirls” were like mini savory rolls and were AMAZING. I could have eaten 10 more of these little glorious herby bites. The herbiness was due to rosemary, which Sakara says detoxifies, beautifies, and supports memory.
My biggest overall takeaway from doing the Sakara detox was that I don’t actually need to snack all day in order to stay full. I am a serial snacker, and while my typical snack of a handful of almonds or an apple isn’t unhealthy, I realized if I filled up on bigger portions of vegetables during lunch that I wouldn’t be hungry for a snack later in the afternoon. This will be something I try to maintain.
Drinking a hot cup of tea in-between meals is a soothing act of self-care, as it reminds us to take a breather (even for just five minutes) in our hectic days. While the tea was great and I will continue drinking tea in-between meals, giving up coffee was…not great. I have no plans of giving up coffee for the long run, regardless of the health benefits of doing so.
Now that I’ve put extra nutrients into my water via the Beauty/Detox Water Concentrate I feel like it’s a missed opportunity to go back to drinking plain old water. Adding extra minerals to your water is an easy, convenient, and relatively cheap way of maximizing your daily nutrition.
I didn’t actually lose any weight while on this meal plan, but it’s pretty hard to lose any weight in only three days (especially when eating this way wasn’t a drastic shock to my system). However, I did notice a lot less bloat, particularly in my stomach. I struggle with stomach issues and eating this cleanly definitely made my stomach flatter. I felt confident and healthy at the beach at the end of the week (even if I did have a spicy margarita in hand).
So, is Sakara worth it? If you have the money, then I’d say 100 percent yes. It is pricey—Sakara’s 3-day Signature Program is $239 (which works out to $26.56/meal) and the 5-day Signature Program is $349 (about $23.27/meal). However, I feel the quality of the food and the expensive superfood ingredients merit higher prices.
While it might not be realistic to eat this way all of the time, I think the Sakara superfood detox would be great for someone new to healthier eating, for a busy new mom (or anyone) looking for quick and convenient meal options, or for a bride looking to reset before the big day.
If you want to try Sakara for yourself, use our code “CHOWHOUND50” to receive $50 off your first organic meal program. From June 10 to July 12 you can try special menu items created by Mike Bagale, former Executive Chef at Alinea – his take on cacio e pepe and mole tacos are not to be missed.
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