Organic, cold pressed orange juice from the Imperfect Foods brand, in a perfectly good-looking bottle, in front of the rest of my weekly home grocery delivery from Misfits Market. ©KettiWilhelm2024

Misfits Market Review: Testing the “Rescued” Grocery Delivery Service

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This is my honest review of the mostly organic grocery delivery service Misfits Market, after using it for a dozen orders.

Misfits Market is an online grocery delivery service designed to prevent food waste by selling perfectly good foods that are rejected from normal grocery stores. These “rescued” fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses and pantry items are perfectly edible, but have some cosmetic imperfection that keeps them out of our normal food supply.

And that’s part of the reason that more than one third of the food grown in the US goes to waste. And it doesn’t help us pay less for groceries, either. Those are the two problems Misfits Market is out to solve.

Is this another negative Misfits Market review?

Before I dive into this, I want to address one thing: I’ve seen a lot of outdated Misfits Market reviews online. That’s because a lot has changed at Misfits Market – and at their former competitor, Imperfect Foods – in the past few years.

In 2024, they no longer have those set-price boxes with quirky names you’ll read about on many sites. Now, you just order exactly what you want, when you want. (Weekly, biweekly, or on-demand.)

But after reading a lot of what’s online, I almost skipped trying and reviewing Misfits Market – because what’s the point of adding another diatribe to the internet?

Who’s writing this review? Hi, I’m Ketti. I have a master’s degree in sustainability, and have been testing products for years. I’m very thorough and frank in my reviews. (Check them out; you’ll notice I don’t gloss over the details!)

I’ve been very pleasantly surprised to find fresh, high-quality produce in every box I’ve ordered, and excellent customer service. (Not that I’ve actually had to talk to a person, since it’s so easy to change my orders online or with the app.)

Discount: If you want to try Misfits Market you can save $30 ($10 off your first three orders of $35 or more) with the discount code: TILTED10X3 . (Available through June 30, 2024.) As I learned, it’s super flexible, and you can easily cancel anytime.

My organic produce delivery in my latest order from Misfits Market: Swiss chard, butternut squash, eggplants, pears, apples, Asian pear, kiwis, and cherry tomatoes. ©KettiWilhelm2024

Quick Highlights:

So yes, I was skeptical about Misfits Market before getting started – both whether it would be useful and high quality, and whether it was legitimately better for the environment than going to the store.

But now that I’ve received about a dozen Misfits orders so far, I actually don’t think I’ll give it up. Here’s why:

  1. We go to the store half as often. Getting a box of fresh produce delivered every week has turned our weekly grocery shopping trip into an every other week trip. My schedule loves it.
  2. And that means it’s actually preventing a car trip from happening. Misfits Market just adds you to a route that they’re already delivering to. (That’s why you can’t choose a day of the week for delivery, but it means there’s no special trip just for your groceries. They drop off on the day they’ll be driving through your neighborhood anyway.)
  3. The produce is a lot higher quality than I expected. The one time that something arrived not fresh, I simply reported it in the Misfits Market app and they gave me an instant refund. No questions asked, and it took about 30 seconds to do.
  4. And the app is actually really good. I was expecting another clunky one, but this makes it surprisingly easy, and even kind of fun, to do my weekly order.
  5. It’s also really, really easy to pause or skip deliveries when I’ll be out of town. You can skip order 10 weeks in advance, too.

Keep reading for everything else I’ve learned about this grocery service since I started using it.

[Related: Have you ever thought of composting in your apartment? Then you should check out my review of the Lomi countertop composter! Misfits Market has cut my grocery shopping days in half, and Lomi has cut my taking-out-the-trash days in half.]

Pouring an ounce of two of water into the bucket of the Lomi, over a LomiPod and food scraps, including a banana peel. ©KettiWilhelm2023
The machine that lets me compost in an apartment. (Which I reviewed here.)

How’s the produce quality?

Honestly, better than I expected, and better than a whole lot of grocery stores.

Good fruit is of course notoriously hard to find in the dead of winter on the East Coast, and the fruit from Misfits Markets is at least as good as from Whole Foods. (There are occasional exceptions to that, but I’m more often impressed than disappointed.)

As for everything else, in short, I have very few complaints.

A few examples from my orders:

Items like broccolini and Swiss chard sometimes arrive slightly wilted, but only slightly. (I just trim off the ends and put them in the freezer to eventually make vegetable broth with, and stand the rest in a glass or vase of water to revive. Not much different from grocery store produce in most of the country.)

I also had one block of tofu (out of probably a dozen I’ve ordered) arrive a bit yellow looking and odd smelling. That’s the one item I “reported an issue with” in the app. I took photos in case I’d have to prove my case, but didn’t even end up needing them. (Misfits sent me an automatic refund – no questions asked.)

My Eggplant Ah-ha Moment

Eggplants have been the only item we’ve ordered that consistently look like pieces of veg I wouldn’t have bought in the grocery store. But we’ve always eaten them the day after they arrived, and have been surprised by how little we’ve had to sacrifice to the compost machine.

In the review writer’s hand: A perfectly good, organic eggplant from Misfits Market grocery delivery service covered in bruises, with lots of other, fresher looking produce items on the counter behind it. ©KettiWilhelm2024
Ugly outside…

Perhaps this is actually proof of the concept: These eggplants have looked undeniably not good every week, but they’ve always turned out to be usable and delicious.

An organic eggplant, delivered by Misfits Market, sliced on a cutting board. It was covered in bruises on the outside – the reason it was rejected from grocery stores – but looks perfectly good on the inside. ©KettiWilhelm2024
… perfectly good inside.

Is Misfits Market actually cheaper than the grocery store?

Well, surprisingly, for a lot of items, I’d say yes – at least slightly.

Most produce I’ve compared is either about the same price from Misfits Market, or just slightly less than buying organic at the store.

(You do have to consider that most of their produce is organic, so don’t compare it with grocery store prices for conventionally farmed fruit and vegetables.)

The pantry items are the easiest to compare, and I did often find that the same brand and size of tofu, oat milk, and other staples are often a dollar less per item from Misfits Market, when comparing with Whole Foods. (Which is often the only place to comparison shop organic plant-based foods.)

Wait, is this a vegan thing?

Nope! I know a lot of my examples involve tofu, oat milk, and vegetables, so just to clarify, Misfits Market also carries meat, cheese, and everything else you’d find in a normal grocery store.

They also have a rotating selection of plant-based meats and cheeses, non-diary milks, snacks, pantry items, etc.

(Also, to clarify, I’m not vegan either! I’m a more-plants-than-animals flexitarian, for both climate and health reasons. And because I follow an Italian-style diet that’s heavy in fruits and vegetables, thanks to my years in Italy.)

If you are looking for a fully plant-based grocery delivery service, Hungry Harvest is one I’ve found, but their delivery area is a limited area of the East Coast.

Shipping Fees?

There’s a minimum $6 shipping fee (depending on your zip code) if your cart total is under $60, but shipping is free for orders above $60. (The minimum cart total is only $15, but I can’t see how that would be worth it.)

So I adjusted my “Plan Settings” to be close to $60. That way, Misfits Market will automatically fill my cart with enough of whatever’s available that week to get over the free shipping threshold.

After they fill my cart, I can add anything I want, and remove whatever I don’t. But the prefilled cart (which learns from my past orders to improve every time I use it) makes it quicker and easier to see whether it’ll be worth my time and money to place an order that week, based on what’s available.


How’s their packaging?  

For their outer packaging, I’d give Misfits Market 4 out of 5 stars. The orders come in cardboard boxes, not plastic bags like Amazon orders.

But sadly, their cardboard boxes are closed with plastic tape, not paper tape. I asked them whether they have any plans to upgrade that, and I’ll let you know what they say.

UPDATE: While they didn’t give me a real answer about the paper tape, they did have some interesting things to say about Misfits’ packaging:

“In 2022, we cut the packaging used for Misfits Market customers in select areas by more than 50% and expanded our packaging
return program
to make recycling and reusing existing packaging easier.

For orders that are delivered by third-party carriers, we’ve developed our own algorithm that can tell us exactly how much packaging is needed to keep items fresh based on the weather a box will encounter in transit and at its destination.”

Misfits Market, via email

It’s cool to hear about smart tech being used to waste less, at least!

They also sent this blog post, which has more info about their process of improving packing. (And I’ll keep watching any paper tape updates.)

What about inside the box?

As for Misfits Markets’ packaging inside the box, unfortunately, you’ll basically get a random assortment of the grocery store’s best and worst packaging practices.

It’s surprisingly hard to predict which items will come with excessive plastic and which won’t.

Here’s an example from a recent box:

My two orders of kiwis, which were sold by the three-count, arrived as 6 loose kiwis in the box, no packaging whatsoever.

Four pounds of organic Honeycrisp apples, however, sold in two-pound quantities, came in two plastic bags.

But when I later ordered a Misfit fruit labeled “large honey crisp apples” (they were each the size of my face) they came with no packaging. (And they were really sweet and delicious.)

A pint of cherry tomatoes, as I expected, came in a plastic clamshell.

But all the other produce in that order, including “mystery colored Swiss chard,” butternut squash, and eggplant – all organic – came without any packaging at all!

My organic produce delivery in my latest order from Misfits Market: Swiss chard, butternut squash, eggplants, pears, apples, Asian pear, kiwis, and cherry tomatoes. ©KettiWilhelm2024
Not perfect, but a pretty decent lack of packaging!

The Misfits Market packaging for eggs can also vary a lot. They come in a normal egg crate (either plastic or cardboard, depending on the brand) with some extra protection around it. I’ve received a dozen eggs wrapped in plastic bubble wrap one week, while the next week they just had an extra piece of cardboard folded around the carton. (Either way, I’ve never had one arrive broken.)

One rule I’m living by to reduce plastic is to not order anything that would be in the refrigerator section in a normal grocery store – unless I’m going to order a lot of it.

That’s because when I’ve ordered mostly just produce and a block of tofu, the tofu came in its own giant refrigerator bag (plastic), with a plastic-wrapped block of ice inside it. That’s a lot of packaging for just one item.

It’s a good rule, but it’s not failsafe. (When I ordered two boxes of salad in the same order, one came in the freezer bag, the other didn’t. So it’s more of a guideline.)

And surprisingly, the oat milk I order never comes in a refrigerator bag, even though it’s refrigerated at the store. (Although it wouldn’t have to be. We must just like the idea of “milk” being kept cold.)

Looking into my freshly delivered groceries from Misfit Market – a single block of tofu is inside a large plastic refrigerator bag with a block of ice. Other fresh vegetables and fruits are loose in the cardboard delivery box, with a bit of paper padding to protect them. ©KettiWilhelm2024
A big refrigerator bag for just one little tofu.

Packaging Return option!

This is something new and exciting! Misfits Market recently launched a packaging return program. It’s only available for certain packaging and in certain areas, but it’s a great start and I’m happy they’re doing it.

Just leave the packaging where your driver normally leaves your grocery delivery, and they’ll pick it up to be either recycled or reused. (Frozen gel packs are sanitized and reused, the rest is mostly recycled.)

(I’ll snap a photo once I’ve saved up enough packaging to make it “worth it” to put it out for collection.)

Misfits says they’re the only nationwide online grocery service that offers more sustainable packaging solutions for free. And I’ve looked at others and haven’t found anyone else doing it. (It’s definitely better than Amazon Fresh, whose policy on recycling or reusing packaging is basically, “good luck with that.”)

How flexible is it?

The bottom-line reason I continue to be a “member” of Misfits Market is that it’s extremely flexible and easy to use. (I’m also a travel writer and editor; I’m gone a lot, so I don’t need fresh food showing up at my door every week.)

You can choose your default delivery frequency as weekly or every two weeks. And beyond that, you can pause your plan for up to three months whenever you want, or skip any order by the specific date. (As soon as I have a trip booked, I open the Misfits app and skip those dates.)

As for what kind of groceries you get, it’s 100% customizable.

I chose fruits and vegetables as my cart preferences. (You can set these to whatever you want, so it’ll automatically add whatever you choose to your cart – snacks, deli foods, meat, fish, or other categories.)

What if you forget to check your grocery cart?

First of all, the app will remind you when your cart is open, and you’ll get a reminder email, too. (Your “shopping window” opens 6 days before your next delivery date, so you have 4 days to shop.)

But you can also skip all that.

When I say I’m a “member,” I mean that Misfits automatically fills my cart for me every week – but that’s not required! (It kind of seems like it is when you first sign up, which is one thing that kept me from trying the service for a while. But once you join, you can “downgrade” your account and just use it whenever you want. No prefilled cart items, no remembering to edit your cart every week.)

If you do stick with the membership, you can set exact items as recurring, to be included in every order (and then you can still remove them from a week’s delivery).

And you get a “never list.” So they don’t bother trying to add cucumbers to my cart, for example, because we’ll never order them, so I don’t have to hassle with removing them from my cart.

A screenshot from the Misfits Market website showing my “Never List” on my personalized Food Preferences page inside my grocery delivery account. English cucumbers are the only item listed. ©KettiWilhelm2024
We’re safe from the English cucumbers.

Does Misfits Market really deliver groceries that would be thrown away?

Not all groceries they sell are rescued, but the ones that are are clearly labeled on the website. And often, once you’re looking at the groceries up close, it’s harder to tell what’s a rescue than you might expect.

So I’ve got more examples here.

Some of Misfits Market’s produce is there because it’s too small, too large, or not the “standard” color or shape people expect – so unfortunately, grocery stores don’t want to bother with it. Not all of their produce is this way, but some of it.

Same goes for packaged foods. Sometimes when a brand changes their packaging design, grocery stores don’t want to sell the “old” design – even if the food is far from expiration.

Online or on the app, it’s easy to tell which items are actually rescued from picky grocery stores, because they’re clearly labeled with why they were rejected. (Discoloration, excess inventory, too small, etc.)

Rescued produce on the Misfits Market online grocery delivery website showing the cosmetic reason each item was rejected by grocery stores – specifically the selection of rescued apples available on the website this week. ©KettiWilhelm2024
Who knew so many things could be wrong with perfectly good apples?

That makes it look very straightforward. But sometimes, when I open the box, it’s harder to tell.

Example #1: Avocados

I ordered two kinds of avocados recently, just out of curiosity — two organic ones that were labeled “too small” for grocery stores, and two non-organic ones that were labeled “too big.”

A screenshot of the Misfits Market app showing two different kinds of avocados selected in my cart for my next grocery delivery: One is called organic and “too small/ smaller,” the other non-organic and “too big/ larger.” ©KettiWilhelm2024

I was expecting Zava’s avocados:

Zava's avocado from Ted Lasso - what I was expecting from my rescued "too big" avocados from Misfits Market.
Ted Lasso fans, you’re here, right?

But when they arrived, I could barely even tell the difference:

The contents of one of my organic grocery deliveries from Misfits Market for this review – lots of fresh produce on a white countertop, including four avocados that were “the wrong size” for grocery stores, but look perfectly normal to me. ©KettiWilhelm2024
Hmm…

Even stranger — they were all organic! Okay, can’t beat that.

Four organic avocados delivered with other vegetables by Misfits Market, including two sold as conventional (non-organic), but all are labeled organic. ©KettiWilhelm2024
Organic bonus!

Example #2: Orange Juice

Another item I ordered as a test was the Imperfect Foods brand orange juice, which said online that it had a “cosmetic imperfection.”

Organic orange juice available to order on the Misfits Market app with a discount because of a “cosmetic imperfection.” ©KettiWilhelm2024
“Cosmetic imperfection” online…
Organic, cold pressed orange juice from the Imperfect Foods brand, in a perfectly good-looking bottle, in front of the rest of my weekly home grocery delivery from Misfits Market. ©KettiWilhelm2024
“Cosmetic imperfection” in reality.

What is it though? That the label is slightly crooked? I have no idea what was imperfect about this OJ.

The point of all of this:

I’m not saying any of this is a problem, or that these aren’t legitimately “rescued” vegetables. (I have no idea how to test or prove that, frankly. And I think my eggplant test above is more telling than this.)

On the contrary, as a matter of fact. My point is that what exactly makes these rescued groceries “misfit” is often less obvious than I expected. Which just emphasizes the absurdity of a system where perfectly good food gets thrown away unless we actively try to make that not happen – and makes me recommend Misfits Market even more strongly.


Misfits Market vs. Imperfect Foods

The coastal grocery showdown has ended! New Jersey-based Misfits Market bought California-based Imperfect Foods in 2022.

They’re still technically separate brands, but they’ve changed a lot of details to offer a more similar selection of products and the same delivery minimums, for example. ($15 is the minimum order for both.)

And regardless of which one you order from, your groceries will ship from the warehouse closest to you. They have 5 warehouses – which are shared by Imperfect Foods and Misfits Market – in Los Angeles, San Antonio, Chicago, Clackamas, Oregon, and Hanover, Maryland.

(Both Misfits and Imperfect only ship to the lower 48 US states. Unfortunately, other grocery delivery services I’ve found, like Thrive Market and Hungry Harvest, also do not ship to Alaska, Hawaii, or Canada. But if I find any that do, I’ll update this here!)

One of my delivery boxes from Misfits Market announcing that there’s no longer a difference between their company and Imperfect Foods, since Misfits Market acquired Imperfect Foods in 2022. ©KettiWilhelm2024
My box from Misfits Market bragging about its merger with Imperfect Foods.

Bottom line: Is it worth trying? 

Obviously, it depends on your lifestyle whether a grocery delivery service is necessary or even helpful. So I’ll speak for myself. Personally, because I travel so much, I don’t find it necessary to get a Misfits Market box delivered every single week. (And luckily, it’s easy to delay or skip orders – much easier than many subscription services, actually.)

But I do find it handy to have it in my back pocket as an option.

For example, I try to drive as little as possible, but I don’t live near a grocery store that sells organic produce. That means I often drive to a store that does once a week.

But I can easily skip that trip by signing up for a delivery from Misfits – and I’m able to get most of what I would have bought at Whole Foods delivered to my door. (Yep, that’s the only store anywhere near me with actually good produce and much of an organic selection.)

Another time I really appreciate Misfits Market is when I’ll be out of town.

The delivery day in my area is Tuesday. If I’m traveling for the weekend and getting back Sunday, I can easily get by for a day with a few things from the freezer or local store, and I don’t have to worry about coming home to an empty fridge and not having time for a big grocery shopping trip ASAP.

So I don’t really see a reason not to try it!

It doesn’t cost more than the grocery store. There’s no fee to start or be a member (you just pay for what you order). The quality of the produce is excellent. The app is easy to use. And it’s very easy to cancel or skip orders.

If you want to try Misfits Market, you can get $30 worth of free groceries ($10 off your first three orders of $35 or more) with the discount code: TILTED10X3 (full details below – available through June 30, 2024.)

Bonuses: Wine Delivery & Free Samples!

I saved the best for last: Misfits Market also delivers wine.

Some is organic, and the padding inside the box with the wine bottles is entirely plastic-free! You can add wine to the same order as your groceries, but it always ships separately. For that reason, I don’t make it my go-to (especially for just one bottle), but it’s a nice backup, and there are discounts for bulk wine orders.

Misfits Market wine delivery options in the app (the bottles of wine arrived to my door with plastic-free packaging). ©KettiWilhelm2024

Sometimes there are free samples, too – and not just random things you don’t necessarily want added to your order. You choose your samples. (I ordered this one, and it was a full-sized bar, not just a bite.)

Free samples of granola bars listed in the Misfits Market app. ©KettiWilhelm2024

Misfits Market Discount – Official Details

Offer valid for first-time purchasers only. Offer must be claimed using code TILTED10X3 by June 30, 2024 at 11:45 PM ET and must be used in full by August 15, 2024 at 11:45 PM ET. Maximum discount of $10 applied at checkout towards your first order, $10 towards your second order, and $10 towards your third order. Order minimum applies, and $35 order minimum required to redeem offer. Offer not valid for past purchases and may not be combined with other offers. Exclusions may apply.

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9 Comments

  1. OK, first, though I am already an Imperfect Foods / Misfit user, I enjoyed reading this!

    I just wanted to add one thing re their wine delivery (the wine selection is lovely, btw): I suspect it always requires a signature (?). At least the two separate times, when I ordered a few bottles (each time), both times I was not home, but my neighbor was, and both times she signed on my behalf…not sure – would they have left it on the porch if she wouldn’t be home?

    P.S. Also though I was not home, I believe the wine comes as a separate delivery from food
    P.S.2. This is Boston-specific experience, maybe in other cities and states delivery rules are different

    1. Thank you, Anna, I’m so glad you enjoyed it! 🙂

      I’ve only ordered wine from them once so far, but we weren’t home and they still left it on the porch – so who knows!

    1. Hi Heidi,

      Thanks for letting me know about this! I’m getting in touch with Misfits to check on it, so I should have an updated code (or have the current one active again) very quickly. I’ll let you know here when it’s working again!

      – Ketti

    2. Hi again Heidi, the code should be working again now! They’ve extended it through June 30, and I’ll try to get it extended again after that, too, but if you make your first order before then you should be fine.

      Thanks!
      – Ketti

  2. I appreciate your helpful information. I live in a rural part of California, specifically, over an hour drive to the nearest grocery store. Can misfitsmarket deliver to very rural areas? I couldn’t find this information on the website.
    Also, I’d like to give them a try if they truly can deliver. Is there a promo code available? Looks like the last one expired in April. Thank you.

    1. Hi Ji,

      I’m glad you found the review helpful! I think if you start the process to sign up, it’ll ask for your zip code, and that should tell you whether they actually deliver to where you live or not. (And – side note – I also grew up more than an hour from a grocery store! Up in the mountains in Montana.)

      Thanks for asking about the discount code. I’ve reached out to them to hopefully get it extended. I’ll add another comment here I get an answer from them, so you should get another reminder email when that happens. In the meantime, if you’re interested, please do keep in touch!

      – Ketti

    2. Hi again Ji, the code should be working again now!

      They’ve extended it through June 30, and I’ll try to get it extended again after that, too, but if you make your first order before then you should be fine.

      Hope that helps!
      – Ketti

  3. Hi Ketti,
    Just wanted to say thank you for such a wonderfully helpful article! This was exactly what I needed to know, plus answers to questions I didn’t know to ask. Your research and time was a huge help to me, so thanks!