I was pretty skeptical about Blue Apron. Some friends who subscribed to the service spoke highly of it, praising the tasty recipes and easy prep. But me, I’m a foodie. I like cooking, although I’m not really a fan of going to the grocery store or making anything elaborate at the end of a long work day. Not only that, I’m good at cooking. Could Blue Apron possibly provide anything that I couldn’t do myself?
When a friend offered me a free trial for a week, I figured I should give it a shot for science as much as anything else. One week means three meals for two people, usually one fish dish and two meat items (unless you request the vegetarian menu). When that first box arrived, my partner and I gathered around, excited for the unboxing and to learn what we’d be having for dinner that night.
The box itself is extremely well packed. Produce and grains appear at the top of the box in easy-tear bags with the perfect serving size, while meat and fish are at the bottom with the cold gel packs. All of the produce looked fresh, and everything was accounted for.
As someone with some technical writing experience, I can say with confidence that Blue Apron’s recipe cards are put together well. Each one starts with the mis en place, and they encourage you to save on dishes where possible and use your time effectively. I did find that each recipe would take 15 – 20 minutes longer than listed, although I’m sure that’s in part because I’m a slow chopper.
The final results were pretty true to the recipe card as well. Here is Blue Apron’s professional photo of salmon with sorrel:
And here is my actual final result from my first-ever recipe:
The first box made us cautiously optimistic, so we decided to subscribe for a few more weeks. What my partner and I discovered over time is that even though we’re foodies with professional chefs in the family, we actually learned some new techniques and picked up some new ingredient ideas from the Blue Apron recipes. At least twice now one of us has said, “let’s make X for dinner, like that Blue Apron meal from a few weeks ago”.
Now, we have definitely added our own twist on some of their pre-packaged spice blends, and I include about twice as much vinegar or mustard as their recipes say because we like intense flavor. But even for a couple of know-it-alls in the kitchen, Blue Apron has turned out to be an excellent service. We save time during the week and never have to play the “what are we eating for dinner” game. The food is legitimately tasty and often interesting to prepare, and $10 per meal is a good price for what the service offers.
If you’ve been wavering, I highly recommend finding a free week coupon and checking it out yourself! You, like us, might be pleasantly surprised.