I’ve talked frequently about how I don’t cook much. Its not that I can’t, I’ve just never really enjoyed it. But when I heard about Blue Apron I thought it might be just a thing to get me cooking! Blue Apron allows you to create delicious, chef-designed recipes at home. They deliver all the fresh ingredients you need, right to your doorstep, in exactly the right proportions. No trips to the grocery store and no waste from unused ingredients. They send you three meals per week for two, four or six people. Meals are $9.99 per person with free shipping. Blue Apron recipes are delivered in a refrigerated box so ingredients will stay fresh even if you’re not at home when your package arrives. Each menu is between 500 and 700 calories per person and can be prepared in 40 minutes or less. Sounds great right?
They send you the detailed recipes (complete with pictures) and all the ingredients you need for all three – you can make all three meals and you will only need to have oil on hand. Everything is portioned out for each of the recipes, so other than cutting up vegetables and such you don’t have to measure anything at all. This sounded perfect for me!
When I placed my order I told them to leave off red meat and it wasn’t an issue at all. I got two meals with meat (chicken & fish) and one vegetarian meal.
It took at least an hour to prepare and cook each of the meals. Granted I was cooking on my own and prepping the vegetables did take a good chunk of that time, but it definitely wasn’t the 40 minutes they advertised. Or maybe the “40 minutes or less” didn’t include the prep? Either way, it took around an hour and I was fine with that. Since the meals were designed for two people it meant that I got at least 2 meals each time I cooked so it was definitely worth the hour investment.
The first meal I made was the Thai Chicken Meatballs with red coconut curry, bok choy, and rice noodles. This recipe included a LOT of chopping and vegetable prep. It probably didn’t help that I was feeling like Martha Stewart and placing everything in individual glass bowls, but it just felt like the right thing to do. For me the hardest thing was making the meatballs. They were easy to make, but I HATE HATE HATE handling raw meat. I have no issue eating meat, I’m just not really interested in having contact with it before it lands on my plate. So it was a big deal for me to be making these chicken meatballs.
The recipe was easy to follow and I was really pleased with how the meal turned out. I think the sauce was supposed to me a little thicker, but it was still tasty. I had enough to actually make three meals out of this so it was definitely worth the effort. It wasn’t my favorite of the three meals, but I will definitely be making the chicken meatballs again.
The next meal I made was the Crispy Salmon & Barley-Fennel “Risotto” with fresh herb & walnut salad. The prep for this one didn’t take as long and I was feeling a little bit more confident this time around. I am not a huge salmon fan but I was really impressed with how tasty this dish turned out. It was my first time cooking salmon and I think it went really well. I wasn’t a fan of the fresh herb and walnut salad that was on top, so I left it off of the second helping.
The recipe was for two pieces of salmon and the risotto, so it made two nice dinner sized meals for me. I ate it for dinner that night and then again 2 nights later. The meal reheated very well and was just as tasty as it was the first night.
The third and final meal I made was the Butternut Squash & Goat Cheese pizza with creamy bechamel sauce & caramelized fennel. This was by far my favorite of the meals! I learned while making the Salmon that I wasn’t a huge fan of fennel, so I decided to leave it off the pizza. I was feeling a little more confident and decided to caramelize the onions since I was leaving off the fennel. What a great idea!
Prep was pretty easy for this recipe and it turned out wonderfully. After the pizza is done you drizzle it with honey and red pepper flakes which was just amazing. I ate a few piece for dinner that night and then reheated the leftovers in the toaster oven two nights later. I will definitely be making this recipe again. You could always add some chicken if you wanted to make this a little heartier.
I really like the whole Blue Apron concept and could see it being helpful to a lot of folks, but not so great for others. My thoughts on the whole thing?
- Recipe with pictures included
- All the ingredients you need are included
- All ingredients are fresh
- Ability to choose meals for two, four, or six people.
- Ingredients for all three meals come in one delivery
- You can skip weeks if you want
- Ability to leave out recipes that include things you don’t eat
- Access to recipes on their website so you always have them
- Cost – it is $9.99 per person. This really isn’t bad if you consider that you don’t have to shop, there are no leftover ingredients, you don’t have to find recipes, and its better for you than a meal out that would cost about the same.
- Ingredients for all three meals come in one delivery, so you can’t wait TOO long in between meals to cook the next one.
- Cost – it is $9.99 per person. This really isn’t bad if you consider that you don’t have to shop, there are no leftover ingredients, and its better for you than a meal out that would cost about the same. But $9.99 per person does add up – that is $60 per week for 3 meals for 2 people.
- 3 meals per week means that you would still have to shop for/eat out the other meals during the week. If you add that to the $60 you’ve already spent it gets kinda pricey.
I really enjoyed trying out Blue Apron and could see myself doing it again in the future. I can reactivate my deliveries at any time, so I can do it again when I have the time and desire to try my hand at cooking again. My week of cooking definitely made me feel a little more confident about my cooking skills. I still don’t think I could just open the fridge and make something up, but I can definitely follow a recipe and not burn down the house.
If you would like to try out Blue Apron I have a special link that will get you 2 free meals with your Blue Apron order that is available to my first 50 readers who click on it. I don’t get anything from this, you just get a discount 🙂 If you end up trying it out definitely let me know what you think.
*Disclosure: Blue Apron provided me with a complimentary week trial in exchange for a review. As always, all thoughts and comments are 100% my own.