Blue Apron has been give rave reviews by so many and I finally decided to take the plunge and try it for myself. The truth is that I have given Blue Apron as a gift several times and everyone has loved it, but I never tried it for myself.
If you have not heard of Blue Apron it is a meal subscription that makes cooking fun and easy. Depending on the plan you choose, Blue Apron delivers a box to your doorstep. In the box are a select number of meals and all the ingredients including the exact measurements of those pesky spices you have never heard of and do not want to spend $7.99 on the whole jar.
J and I love to cook together and often times we have a “date night in” on the weekends where we cook a nice meal, open a bottle of wine and enjoy a nice, quiet meal together once the kids go to bed. When we do this, we usually do the traditional filet mignon from the local butcher a vegetable and some type of potato- it is our go-to meal. We thought Blue Apron would be perfect for changing it up and expanding our cooking.
Our first Blue Apron box came and the meals were: Seared Steaks with Romesco Sauce & Roasted Potatoes; Crispy Catfish & Freekeh with Corn-Cherry Tomatoe Saute & Marjoram; and Thai Chicken Burgers with Hoisin Mayo & Roasted Potato Wedges.
The steak was good, but the filet mignon from the local butcher is much better. The romesco sauce on the other hand was incredible! I added a side of fresh green beans with silvered almonds to our dinner. I feel that if you have a good, quality steak, you should need no additional sauce or topping and I will not ever use this recipe for a filet. However, we do have several different cuts of steak from our grass fed cow in the freezer and I will be using this sauce again when cooking the steak. I also will use it with a pasta dish or spaghetti squash. I have also cooked the potato wedges from this meal several times and they have instantly become a hit at our house.
The fish was very good and I will be repeating the corn-cherry salsa that was used for the top of the fish. I think that could be used for a variety of types of fish and since tilapia is usually a regular fish in our house, I will try it with that next. The Thai Chicken burgers were good and I will try to duplicate them with turkey burger instead of ground turkey next time.
Romesco Sauce by Blue Apron
If you want to recreate this tasty Romesco sauce in your own home, it is quite easy:
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 Plum Tomato
3 Cloves of Garlic
2 tablespoons of pistachios
1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar
Olive oil, salt, pepper
Peel the garlic cloves, halve the tomato and cut the red pepper into fourths lengthwise. Place all of it on a sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil and season with salt. Roast at 475 degrees for 22 to 24 minutes or until brown.
Once they are cooled, finely chop and transfer to a bowl and add pistachios, sherry vinegar, a drizzle of olive oil, and slat and pepper to taste.
Blue Apron- The Pros
I loved having new things that I would not usually make to try. I also loved that the recipes were easy to follow and could easily be duplicated if you loved them. None of the recipes took too long or were too difficult. I learned some new cooking techniques which is always fun. This was perfect for us for a “date night in”.
I also like that when you “sign up” for Blue Apron, you can always log in to the system to see the recipes. This means that you do not have to keep your recipe cards AND you can also log in and see other recipes without having an actual meal delivered.
Blue Apron- The Cons
Although it was a great “date night in” idea, getting three meals a week is the minimum and not worth it for just a “date night in”. We chose the two person plan because we were not sure the recipes would be very “kid friendly”. You can change your plan to a four person plan, and although some of the recipes were “kid friendly” I am not sure that is cost effective for our family.
Since this is a subscription service, make sure if after the first delivery you do not want another you go in and change your settings- I made this mistake. After the first week of deliveries, I forgot to change my settings and we received another box the next week.
Who would benefit?
This is not an ideal weekly occurrence for my family, but I could see how many families would benefit. If I worked full time and it was just the two of us, we would be all about this. This takes a lot of the work and time out of meal planning and grocery shopping. This is an awesome service for couples without children and empty nesters. I have given this as a wedding gift twice now and both couples have loved this service! I have also given it to out of town friends when they have a baby and for a house-warming gift.
Will I do this again?
Absolutely! Although this is not an every week thing for us, it is fun to do every once in awhile to change things up and enjoy some new flavors and cooking techniques and discover some recipes that you can recreate again in your own home. I think this service would also be ideal when we vacation and have an accessible kitchen and do not what to eat every meal out.
I love that Blue Apron gives the opportunity to try new foods, spices and cooking methods. It is a fun way to learn to cook differently and expand your taste buds.
Your turn- tell me!
Have you ever tried a meal subscription?
What would you like or dislike about this?