Blue Apron is a subscription box for making great meals at home. If you’re like me, you periodically find yourself in a serious cooking rut. You make the same things every week, but the thought of researching a recipe and acquiring all of the ingredients is just too much work. Blue Apron is the solution! Each week, Blue Apron sends you a refrigerated box with all the fresh ingredients you need to make the included recipes. You can select the 2-person plan–3 meals a week of 2 portions each–or the family plan–2 to 4 meals a week of 4 portions each. The menus are set, but you can ask Blue Apron to avoid ingredients you don’t eat–shellfish and lamb, in my case.
Pricing: 2-Person Plan – $59.94 for 3 recipes. Family Plan (serves 2) – $69.92 for 2 recipes, $139.84 for 4 recipes.
We got the Family Plan for 2 meals. I set the delivery date and it arrived right on time, securely packaged in a heavy-duty box. All of the ingredients are wrapped in an adorable insulated blanket and cooled with ice packs. Mine took a day to arrive and sat on my porch for 3 hours, and everything was perfectly cool inside.
The meat is at the bottom, surrounded by still-frozen gel ice packs. This month, however, the vacuum seal on the salmon broke at some point in transit, and the bottom of the box was awash in salmon juice. Just as gross and smelly as it sounds.
Because the meat was separated from the rest of the items by ice packs and cardboard, I didn’t worry about cross-contamination. However, if juice can get out of a package, that means things can get in. It’s unacceptable to receive compromised meat. For purposes of this review, I purchased replacement salmon at my grocery store so I could show the rest of the recipe.
Because this box was sent for review, we didn’t have the opportunity to ask for a replacement – but would have expected compensation if we paid for this box.
The first recipe in our box was the Chicken and Cherry Tomato Bolognese. My cherry tomato and pepper plants are exploding right now, so I was happy to see some seasonal produce in the box. This box’s veggies, I’m happy to say, were all in fine condition. As you can see, everything was included, even a genius little packet of tomato paste (seriously–you use one spoonful from those little cans and the rest goes to waste. Single-serve squeeze packs are a great solution.)
Blue Apron does a great job of sending you just the amount you need for the recipe, so you don’t waste anything; nor do you have to think about how much to add to the recipe. Easy peasy.
Each recipe comes with these easy-to-follow instructions. Even if you are new to knife skills, you will be able to do everything on this list. This recipe did a good job of estimating the prep time, though I misread the recipe AGAIN this month and didn’t start my water boiling at the beginning. Someday I will learn to read ALL THE WORDS before I start cooking. My mistake added time, but it was Friday and I had a glass of wine on hand, so no big deal. Nothing complicated here–this recipe is very much something you could do from memory at a later time, which is a nice thing to put in your cooking arsenal.
This all came together pretty well. I’ve never made bolognese, and I was somewhat alarmed at the 8 ounces of dairy fat (butter and marscapone cheese) that went into it, but it sure was tasty. And fat is good for us again, isn’t it? The sauce needed more salt than the recipe called for, in my opinion. It was better the next day after I salted the leftovers.
This was easy, tasty, and everyone liked it, including the kids. There was plenty leftover for “What do you mean, you’re not cooking dinner” Saturday. Two thumbs up. On to the next recipe!
Our next recipe was Teriyaki Glazed Salmon.
Blue Apron partners with farmers who practice sustainable agriculture and treat their animals humanely. The salmon that was supposed to be in this recipe is wild caught Alaskan salmon. I replaced it with the same from my grocery store. The recipe card had straightforward instructions that were easy to follow.
Like the chicken bolognese, this recipe was very straightforward and easy to do. I actually paid attention to when I was supposed to start the rice, so things all came out at the same time.
This turned out pretty well. It’s hard to mess up salmon as long as you don’t
spoil overcook it. The teriyaki sauce was definitely not low-sodium, so this came up a bit saltier than I had expected. But the flavors went together well. The sesame oil gave the cucumbers a nice toasty flavor, and they were a pleasant contrast to the properly chewy rice. My doesn’t-love-fish husband thought it was good, too. A nice, easy meal for Sunday.
The recipes in this box were great, and with one big exception, the ingredients were in good shape. The prep was fun and not too difficult. Overall, these boxes are really enjoyable, and get us out of our boring dinner routine. Honestly, you can forget how fun cooking can be. Interesting ingredients, easy recipes, and delicious food. We can’t wait to see what we get next time!
The Description: Get healthy delicious ingredients ready to be made into a meal! Each meal is 500-700 calories per serving and takes about half an hour to prepare. Each box has 3 meals per week for 2. Blue Apron only assumes you have olive oil, salt, and pepper, and basic pots & pans.
The Price: $59.00 every week