In this comprehensive Misfits Market review, here’s what we’ll cover:
- The basics about the online grocer Misfits Market, including how the service works, what it offers and how much it costs.
- Details and images of the so-called “ugly produce” and other items that are available.
- Comparisons to alternatives like Imperfect Foods.
- Whether the service is right for you.
Misfits Market has lower prices on organic produce and pantry items than a typical local grocery store. While the products may have slight imperfections in color or size, the quality of the produce is above average. The biggest drawback is the long transit times faced by consumers who are not located in an area served by their delivery trucks.
- The prices are low.
- They carry primarily organic grocery items.
- Available in many food deserts within the United States.
- Delivery is free over orders over $70.
- It’s not always clear why an item is available or where it’s sourced from.
- Has a limited selection of perishable grocery items.
- Potential for long transit times can impact product quality, especially with organic fruit and vegetable items.
What Is Misfits Market?
Misfits Market is an online grocery delivery service that works with a variety of suppliers to bring you fresh, organic produce and pantry staples.
It’s one of the many “imperfect food” businesses that has launched in recent years, and is best-known for offering items that have cosmetic imperfections. Usually, this means things like irregular size or coloring.
These imperfections are often small and insignificant when you’re not comparing them side-by-side to the perfectly-shaped fruit and vegetables you might find in a local grocery store.
As an example, here’s a photo of the carrots and cucumber I received in my first Misfits box.
Often, under normal circumstances, these items would end up as food waste — either not shipped to grocery stores at all, or passed over by shoppers until they need to be thrown away.
Misfits Market’s goal is to purchase this imperfect produce from suppliers at a cost savings, and then pass that savings on to you in the form of lower prices.
Note: For many people, Misfits Market is another option in the fast-growing grocery delivery market. For many others, it’s one of the only ways to affordably access fresh produce: the U.S.D.A. estimates that over 20 million people in the United States live in a food desert, and one of Misfits Market’s goals is to serve these communities in an effort to eradicate food deserts by 2025.
How Does Misfits Market Work?
Once you sign up for Misfits Market, you’re assigned a delivery day based on where you live. You’ll then have a three-day shopping window to select the items you want included in your Misfits box.
It’s only once your shopping window is open that you’re able to see the items available for that week.
While there are a lot of mainstays, the available items change constantly. Often, that reflects changes in seasonal produce, but sometimes it’s because supply of the “imperfect” version of an item has run out.
It’s important to note that your delivery day is not guaranteed. Along with delivering via their own network of trucks to some locations, Misfits Market ships via an array of third-party carriers and does not offer guaranteed delivery services. So while most packages arrive as expected (including mine), be aware that early or late deliveries are possible.
Misfits Market Selection
When I was testing the service for this review, there were 357 items available for inclusion in a Misfits Market box.
This breaks down as follows:
- Bakery: 9 options. Some options included relatively shelf-stable products like take-and-break bread, pizza crust and naan. (In other words, you won’t find fresh-baked bread.)
- Beverages: 34 options. Primarily coffee beans and tea.
- Dairy and dairy alternatives: 7 options. These included almond milk, flax milk and plant-based butter.
- Grocery: 170 items. A catch-all category for common pantry items like dried goods, snacks, nut butters and canned items.
- Meat and seafood: 36 options. Including grass-fed beef, free-range chicken and plant-based protein.
- Organic fruit: 22 options. Apples, grapes, watermelon and a variety of berries were available.
- Organic vegetables: 76 options. With this amount of options, there really weren’t any notable vegetables not available. I searched for a variety of leafy greens (kale, red leaf lettuce and spinach), sweet potatoes and bell peppers, and found options for all three. I also found some interesting lesser-known options like organic portobello mushrooms, organic golden beets and organic microgreens, which are not always available at my local store.
- Pet: 3 options. Treats and snacks.
After browsing the available options, here’s a partial screenshot of my first order with Misfits Market, along with the prices.
Misfits Market Box Sizes
Misfits Market previously offered two different box sizes: the Mischief Box and the Madness Box. You no longer get to choose your box size and are instead required to spend a minimum of $35 to use the delivery service.
There are no pre-configured boxes, such as vegan, keto or paleo. For each delivery, you start from scratch building your order from what’s currently available.
While Misfits aims to get you to order regularly, your order won’t be fulfilled until you’ve added a minimum of $35 to your cart. As such, it’s not what we would categorize as a subscription box, but more along the lines of an Instacart alternative. There are no recurring or automated delivery options.
Additionally, there are no options for choosing only food from local farmers, so Misfits can’t really be seen as a CSA replacement.
Delivery costs $6.99 per order, or is free for orders above $70, regardless of your location.
Misfits Market Sourcing
Misfits Market sources from a variety of suppliers, including many well-known national brands like Impossible (manufacturer of plant-based meat substitutes), Simply Organic spices, Niman Ranch, Bulletproof coffee and King Arthur flours.
Unfortunately, when it comes to much of the produce, you can’t always identify the region or farm of origin, or why the item is available. For example, Misfits doesn’t tell you that the cucumber below is sourced from a farmer in your state and is offered because it’s crooked — it just provides a basic description of a cucumber.
While Misfits will tell you if an item is organic or not (most items are), you cannot see the details of the farms themselves. For example, there’s no way to know if the food you’re buying comes from sustainable producers or big-agriculture operations that might leverage farming practices you disagree with.
While the company says it aims to prioritize food from local and regional farms, my order included products from around the United States and Mexico. Unfortunately, nothing I found came from Illinois (where I live), nor were local options highlighted on the website.
Misfits Market Pricing
What stood out the most to me about Misfits Market was the cost. They have some of the lowest prices I’ve seen when it comes to organic produce and pantry staples — well below the typical grocery store price in many cases.
If you’re selective, you can find items at 50% or more off what you’d pay at Whole Foods. Taking a random sampling from some popular items, here are the prices as of April 2023.
|Organic strawberries (16 oz.)||$6.39|
|100% grass-fed ground beef (1 lb.)||$7.99|
|Organic blueberries (6 oz.)||$5.49|
|Organic red butter lettuce (head)||$1.59|
|Take-and-bake sourdough bread (16 oz.)||$3.99|
|California Farms vanilla almond milk (48 oz.)||$4.99|
|Organic zucchini (2-count package).||$4.29|
|Organic extra virgin olive oil (16 oz.)||$11.99|
Misfits shows you a “percentage off” figure when an item is offered below retail. However, it is worth noting that the “retail price” is determined by Misfits — which means you should consider these discount percentages to be approximations.
With that said, there are some quality deals to be found by being selective. For example, a 32-ounce bag of King Arthur organic whole wheat flour was listed at $2.99. As someone who has always liked King Arthur products, I can’t remember a time where I found this size bag for less than $5.
Before placing the order, I wondered if heavily discounted items (like this flour) were priced low due to close expiration dates. That wasn’t true with the flour, which had an expiration date two years out, or with the dried spices I purchased, which had expiration dates of two and three years in the future.
One big question I had was how Misfits’ prices compare to Imperfect Foods, which used to be its main competitor but has now been acquired by Misfits Market (see more below).
There is a lot of overlap between the two companies in terms of products available. So, taking a look at some of these items, here’s what I found:
|Product||Misfits Market||Imperfect Foods|
|100% grass-fed ground beef (1 lb.)||$7.99||$7.99|
|Take-and-bake sourdough bread (16 oz.)||$4.79||$3.39|
|Organic sweet potatoes (3-pound package)||$5.09||$7.99|
|Organic mango (2-count)||$2.69||$3.49|
|Organic broccoli crowns (2-count)||$5.49||$3.99|
Misfits Market vs. Imperfect Foods
Misfits Market and Imperfect Foods have long been the two most popular irregularly shaped produce options. In late 2022, Misfits Market acquired Imperfect Foods.
While the range of products offered by the services is fairly similar, there are differences in terms of shipping, products offered and availability.
One important difference between Misfits Market and Imperfect Foods is their delivery methods.
Imperfect Foods primarily delivers its boxes through its own truck fleet, whereas Misfits Market relies on third-party couriers like USPS and UPS for its shipments. This means that Misfits Markets’ produce often sits in an enclosed box for up to 48 to 72 hours.
May 2023 update: While it’s still true that Misfits Market uses USPS and UPS for its shipping, if you’re located within an Imperfect Foods delivery area, your Misfit Markets order will be delivered via Imperfect’s network of delivery vans.
By the time I opened my Misfits box, the lettuce was slightly wilted, the raspberries smashed (with juice all over the box contents), and the grapes had turned slightly brown.
Everything besides the raspberries (which customer support was kind enough to issue a refund for) was still edible and tasted good — it just wasn’t as fresh as I’d hoped for.
Beyond delivery, there are some notable differences between Imperfect Foods and Misfits Market when it comes to availability and pricing.
I have found that Imperfect Foods tends to have better availability, offering a wider selection of products and more consistent stock levels.
On the other hand, I have noticed that Misfits Market offers better pricing. In my experience, the prices for fruits, vegetables, and other pantry staples are generally lower at Misfits Market compared to Imperfect Foods.
While we have an in-depth review of Imperfect Foods, here are more key differences between the two companies.
Advantages of Imperfect Foods over Misfits Market
- There is no minimum to purchase meat and seafood.
- The shipments come with less packaging than Misfits Markets (an important consideration if you’re shopping for imperfect food because of environmental and/or ethical reasons).
- You can see where the produce is from and why it’s available for sale on the platform.
Advantages of Misfits Market over Imperfect Foods
- We found the pricing lower on Misfits Market.
- Free delivery on orders over $70.
- Has a larger produce delivery area than Imperfect Foods.
See also: Anycart is an on-demand grocery delivery service with built-in recipes and meal planning tools. Learn more in our Anycart review.
Misfits Market Delivery Area
Currently, Misfits Market delivers to most zip codes within 48 states and the District of Colombia — i.e., everywhere except for Hawaii and Alaska. You can see an up-to-to date list of the company’s delivery area here.
If your delivery area is served by Imperfect Foods, your Misfits Market order will be delivered via Imperfect’s fleet of vans.
Misfits Market Discount Code
Get $10 off your first order with Misfits Market by using the following code: COOKWME-CL1DOVJUUMY.
Or, use this link and the code will be applied automatically.
You can also check out our Misfits Market promo codes page for more details and the latest discounts.
Do Irregular Produce Suppliers Hurt Food Banks?
Food waste — which is food that’s edible for consumption but which is discarded — is a big problem in the United States. The Department of Agriculture estimates that 40% of food produced in the U.S. isn’t consumed. Yet, at the same time, tens of millions of Americans can’t afford to put healthy food on their table.
This inefficiency is why, according to the non-profit group Feeding America, one out of seven people in the U.S. utilize a food bank.
That begs an important question: do irregular produce suppliers like Misfits Market take food away from food banks, selling items that might have otherwise been donated?
After conducting significant research — which I cover in more detail in our Imperfect Foods review — for now, it seems the answer is “no.”
That’s because, unfortunately, there’s so much food waste in the U.S. — again over 40% doesn’t even make it to food banks — that the small percentage siphoned off by irregular food companies has a minuscule if not zero impact on what gets delivered to food banks.
Misfits Market Review Summary: Is Misfits Worth It?
Where Misfits Market really shines is in providing high-quality, low-cost organic seasonal produce. You can also expect to find a handful of packaged name brand items each week, offered for far below grocery store prices.
Due to its more limited selection than competitors like Imperfect Foods, you probably won’t be able to obtain 100% of your list from Misfits Market. It also doesn’t offer much in the way of meal planning, which competitor Hungryroot specializes in.
But it’s a good low-cost source of quality produce and some discount staples for those seeking organic, healthy food choices.