Tuesday, September 22, 2015

My Blue Apron Review

I recently signed up for a free trial of Blue Apron thanks to my wonderful sister-in-law, Felicia. If you don't know what it is, it's a service that ships ingredients and recipes to your home weekly. The meals are from fresh, quality ingredients that are healthy — and measurements are precise to avoid waste. 

The two person plan that I chose for 3 meals normally costs $60 — or basically $10 per person per meal. You can also opt for the family plan (enough for 4) and get 2 meals for the week for $70 or 4 meals for $139.

For my first shipment, I received the ingredients for Salmon Burger w/ Aioli & Arugula Salad, Chicken Pad Kee Mao, and Late Summer Pork Bolognese. Here's what the ingredients looked like shipped:

The meals were delicious and I felt like a gourmet chef. The Chicken Pad Kee Mao was by far our favorite because it was "exploding with flavor," as my husband put it. I kept the recipe card and I will be repeating that one! The salmon burger meal took incredibly too much prep time (not to mention J's aversion to salmon) — and I like cooking and have a fair amount of experience.

I love that it made me adventurous in the kitchen, cooking things I wouldn't normally. The recipes were simple to follow and even included pictures.

I was only willing to pay $60 for the 2-person plan. Unfortunately that meant there were virtually no leftovers. When I meal plan, I try to make enough for lunch the next day.

You can't customize your likes and dislikes, only skip meals — so long as you remember to look ahead at your menu selections and take time to veto recipes that aren't appealing. It's also easy to skip your weekly delivery.

Truth be told, the very next day after my free shipment (and before I totally understood how the service works), my card was charged for the next week's shipment. I wish I'd have gotten a warning email, but, whatever, I understand it's a business and it's my responsibility to follow up. However, my shipment didn't arrive on the day it was supposed to. I received it 3 days later (ironically while typing this review) and was told by a Blue Apron rep via email to discard the box of food immediately. Wasting is torture to me — I've nearly eaten bad meat before to prove a point — but the thought of potential poisons injected into my Blue Apron bounty was enough to make me do the right thing (mostly...). That experience left a bad taste in my mouth — even though customer support in the meantime was courteous and prompt and a full refund was issued.

Here are a few snapshots of my first three Blue Apron meals!

Salmon Burger w/ Aioli and Arugula Salad

Chicken Pad Kee Mao

Late Summer Pork Bolognese

All-in-all, Blue Apron is a pretty awesome service. I would definitely sign up again to use them, though it won't be what I depend on regularly for meal planning. Maybe just something I do from time to time to spice things up in the kitchen!

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