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Monday, April 11, 2016

Our Experience with Blue Apron

We knew it couldn't last forever and that all good things must come to an end.  That doesn't mean it wasn't hard to say goodbye.  We received the very.last.meal from the meal train that our wonderful friends set up for us last week.  #waaaaahhhhh!!!! Such a sad day!  Suddenly we are faced with having to plan, shop, and prepare our own meals again.  We got so spoiled by having these meals delivered, piping hot and freshly prepared, right to our front door.  But now it's time to fend for ourselves again.  Life is hard, right?!  Well, it kinda is with a newborn! 

A few weeks ago, I was offered an opportunity to try Blue Apron and I figured it was perfect timing! This is my honest review of the service and our experience with it.  





our Blue Apron experience

If you're not familiar with it, Blue Apron is a service that delivers fresh ingredients for meals that you make at home.  They include just enough of what you need to make the three recipes they give you. The food is delivered in a refrigerated box so that the ingredients stay fresh, even if you’re not at home when your package arrives.  

I've been so busy with our newborn lately, that I forgot to tell my husband that I signed up to try Blue Apron.  He always gets the mail, so when he brought in our package, I could hear him in the kitchen opening it and getting all giddy about all the food that was included.  We're talking fresh, good quality steak (his fave), chicken and fish (my fave)!  I think he felt like Christmas had come because of all the variety and since he knew he wouldn't have to go to the grocery store for a few nights! 

They have a two-person or family plan and I opted for the two-person since our son is so picky.  


The three meals that came in our plan all looked good, but I'm probably not as crazy about Chicken Fried Chicken, even though each menu is between 500-800 calories.  I was eager to try both the Steak & Eggs and Dukkah-Spiced Cod, even though I didn't know what Dukkah spice was. 
I wanted to photograph the food and cooking process for you for this review, so I didn't prepare the Dukkah-Spiced Cod, which is wild-caught and sustainable, until the next day at lunch.  You can read more about their sustainability efforts here. I'm jumping ahead of myself, but I wanted to let you know it was delicious!  And something I probably wouldn't have made on my own if it didn't come directly to my door.  


One thing about Blue Apron you should know is that you are doing real cooking with the ingredients. It's not like you have a made-ahead meal that you just heat up.  You have to take the time to chop, slice, boil, saute, etc.  But, each recipe takes under 40 minutes to prepare.  





The recipes come on a sheet of paper with written instructions as well as pictures, and I had to keep it handy to refer to as I prepared the meal.  The recipe directions are written in paragraphs, and for me, I would have preferred bullet points.  It may be a minor thing and possibly just my personal preference, but it's worth mentioning.  


The package for each meal contains everything you need to make that meal, but just enough, so you don't have waste. 





This particular recipe was a seasoned fish with an arugula, beet, and carrot side salad.  


You were supposed to lightly flour the fish and use a quarter stick of butter (both included in the package), but I used half the butter in the pan and skipped the flouring part because I like fish just fine without it.  


I wasn't sure how I'd like the Dukka spice blend, but it was really tasty.  I did have some extra of that spice and I'm storing it to use again. 


I don't think I've ever cooked arugula, or had it with beets and carrots, but again, the mixture was delicious.  It's got little bits of toasted almond in there too.


I really enjoyed this lunch and even ate the leftover portion again that night.  I felt bad my hubby didn't get to try it, but he made up for it on the other two meals.



All in all, I think Blue Apron would be a nice addition for us.  One reason is specifically because we often meal prep big batches of food and tend to eat the same thing over and over.  A service like this allows you to try something new so you don't get so bored with those typical meals.  Also, we get restaurant quality food, but have the convenience of staying in to eat.

I've heard some people complain about the waste involved in the packaging, but we recycle in our neighborhood.  You can also return your packaging for free to Blue Apron via USPS.

I looooove to browse cookbooks and get inspiration for dinner, but it seems that I end up reading more than I do the actual cooking!  Partly because I have a hard time narrowing down what I want to try and end up indecisive and second because it's hard to plan all the ingredients for the grocery store, and then actually go to the store.  With Blue Apron, it sort of forces you (in a good way!) to actually prepare something new from scratch.  All the ingredients are right there in front of you to use.  But, since they are fresh, you need to cook them pretty quickly or they'll go bad.

After cooking all three meals, as I suspected, the Steak & Eggs and the fish were my favorites.  The Kimchi fried rice that came with the steak was so flavorful!  My husband actually cooked that meal and he really enjoyed it too.  He voted to sign up for Blue Apron for good.

discount offer

As far as pricing, I feel like it's decent at $60 a week for 3 meals or about $10 per serving.  We'd spend that much or more on takeout and at the grocery store, but are saving time/energy on the meal planning, grocery shopping and preparation.  I like that you can skip or cancel the service anytime too.  The portion sizes were just perfect for a meal, but I wouldn't expect enough for leftovers unless you eat particularly small portions.

If you want to give Blue Apron a try, they are offering the first 50 readers 2 FREE meals on their first Blue Apron order.  Go here to get started!

Have you already tried Blue Apron?  What did you think?

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keep in touch! 





Thanks to Blue Apron for sponsoring today's post.

27 comments:

  1. Big fans of Blue Apron. I think I love that it inspires me to break out of our 5 meal rut you know!!! And how do you look so beautiful cooking. Dang, girl. xo

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    1. Come over and let's drink wine and cook together! :)

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  2. We are in a cooking rut and thanks to your suggestion, just signed up for Blue Apron! So excited!!!

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    1. Please let me know what you think of it! My husband wants to continue it!

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  3. We've tried it several times and have always loved the food. It has inspired us to try new things, and our kids have even experimented more than we thought they would!

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    1. Yep, wouldn't have tried any of those dishes had they not been delivered right to my door.

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  4. I tried Blue Apron and sadly didn't like it. I thought it took way too much time. It never took 40 minutes, always over an hour and I think that I'm pretty efficient in the kitchen. Other that that it was good! I liked the meals.

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    1. I think mine took around 40 minutes to prepare, but I also stopped for photos;)

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  5. Thank you for getting us a promo! I signed up to give it a try.

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  6. I had just tried it and got the same menu. I wish I had followed your lead with the cod and not floured it, the chicken fried chicken wouldn't be something I'd repeat but it was tasty. Have you tried Green Chef? It was comparable in price but my all time favorite is Peach Dish, although their menus are very limited and repetitive.

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    Replies
    1. I've only tried Blue Apron, but would be open to seeing how it compares to others

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  7. Sounds like a good way to mix up a normal routine. We prefer to meal plan, shop and cook our own meals mainly because of dietary restrictions. For the most part, I only make one trip to the store per week, so not a lot of time wasted. I also like that I can be sure to vary our proteins, and create one meatless dish a week as well. Do they allow you to choose or are meals just randomly selected for you? This might be something my parents would enjoy.

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    1. I think they choose for you and no recipes are repeated in one year.

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  8. I love the idea of Blue Apron, but to me 40 minutes of prep time is about double what I'm willing to do! I'm all about finding my own quick-prep recipes and doing my meal-planning on the weekend so I can toss things together each weeknight.

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    1. I'm usually 1 minute prep time with just reheating prepped-ahead meals! Would have to get used to this! But definitely nice for a change!

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  9. I have always wondered about those. The arugula with beets and carrots looks terrific. I just shop once a week but I shop at two different stores . I make everything pretty much from scratch but will use a shortcut every now and then. I use all organic protein sources but do a different protein source pretty much every day of the week. I do beef once a week and chicken once a week and then vary the other protein sources the remainder of the time. I enjoy healthy eating and like knowing what's in my food. My son has a feeding tube so I make everything from scratch and put it all up in a blender so there really isn't any eating out under these circumstances. But I can't say I miss it either because everything is so good.

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  10. I love Blue Apron! I have a 6 month old and a full-time job (I work from home), and having healthy, flavorful, varied meals that I don't have to shop for has been huge for me. I enjoy cooking the meals, like the variety and ingredients I haven't tried before, and find their website and app easy to use to make menu and delivery date changes. In the 7 months or so that I've joined Blue Apron, there have really only been a few dishes that I didn't enjoy. The portion control is also good, for us anyway! I sound like my comment has been sponsored, but I've just been thrilled with this company.

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  11. Signed up! Thanks for the discount! :) By the way, what cookbooks do you like reading? I've been needing a few new ones, wondering if you have any recommendations

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  12. Hi Megan,
    Unfortunately I'm in Australia & we don't have Blue Apron, might have to look into similar companies! :)
    Please keep doing what you're doing, because you are amazing & I do love a good read!! <3
    Also I love seeing your beautiful family.

    Take care till I post next time.
    Samantha x

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  13. Wow, it looks so delicious! Superb recipe :) Well done! I will try to prepare this recipe, I think the result will be perfect. Thanks for sharing :)
    Best wishes, Erica
    Rug Cleaning London

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  14. I really liked Blue Apron, but I also tried Hello Fresh... we ended up going with Hello Fresh. I like everything a little more with them, food quality, freshness, and menu choices.

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  15. Enjoyed your review because I've always wondered about these food delivery services. You were certainly lucky to have friends prep meals for you and your family for such a long time considering you are a stay at home Mom. Please consider doing a post including easy, low cost and healthy meals for Mom's who work both inside and outside their homes.

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  16. I am on my second weekly try of Blue Apron and love it! The food is good and usually not something I would cook, but was delicious. The cooking is therapeutic and all around have enjoyed it

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  17. We use it occasionally and mostly love it. It also gets us out of eating the same foods and we buy the ingredients after and re-create the meals we loved. We do recycle in our neighborhood as well but it is way too much packaging. I understand why there are doing it but it is a little much. While you can pick from 6 meals not all combos are available, which is our biggest complaint.

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  18. This is such a great way to be able to eat healthy meals everyday without the stress of doing food shopping so often. The meals looks lovely! And you also look gorgeous x

    Abi | abistreetx

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  19. I tried Blue Apron around a year ago and wasn't sure what I thought. After your post, I am trying again, thank you for the promo code!! Love the blog, been following for awhile and love to see the Houston pictures.

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