As you guys know, Matt and I are huge Blue Apron fans. I’ve been partnering with them this year to share quarterly reviews (and I receive one free week as part of each blog review), but as of early this summer, Matt and I have been getting Blue Apron every single week outside of the partnership and paying for it ourselves. It’s safe to say we’re officially converts.
Above recipe: Seared Chicken and Caramelized Fennel (loved this – we added the carrots)
That said, I thought for this quarter’s post it would be fun to share some reasons why we love it so much. Matt and I came up with this list together the other night while enjoying a Blue Apron dinner. 🙂
1) Less stress.
If you’ve missed my previous posts, Blue Apron is basically a way to make delicious meals at home – without the stress of meal planning and grocery shopping. This is SO huge for us because meal planning really stresses me out – and Matt doesn’t do any meal planning at all, so it’s usually all on me. As a result, Blue Apron means a ton less stress for both of us. Now I can just hit the grocery store quickly for staples/stuff we like to have on hand for breakfast/lunch/really fast dinners we already know how to make – rather than having to worry about finding new recipes and getting all sorts of random ingredients for them.
Each week we’re sent a menu of recipe options to choose from (there are six recipes per week, and they auto-assign you to receive 3 based on your selected dietary preferences but you can change it up if you want), and then all the fresh ingredients for the 3 meals arrive at your doorstep the next week in exactly the proportions you need. All you have to do is follow the instructions and cook! We love that it’s only 3 meals, too, since we travel a fair amount on weekends and on weeknights occasionally like winging it/making something quicker or going out and about.
2) Makes cooking with a significant other more fun.
Matt and I enjoy cooking together – the part we didn’t enjoy was the planning/grocery shopping/standing in front of the fridge at 8 p.m. like “what should we make?” With Blue Apron, it’s easier because neither of us is the “keeper” of the dinner plans either – whoever gets home first knows they can easily grab Blue Apron ingredients from the fridge and start following the directions, and then whoever gets home last just joins in when they get there.
3) Impress guests!
I love having my mom or a friend over for dinner on nights when Matt is out/busy and making a Blue Apron together. Cozy and fun to cook together, especially since it’s easy to follow the instructions. Just add cheese and crackers to snack on, music, and a little wine to the mix! 😉 Speaking of wine, I haven’t tried it yet, but Blue Apron just started offering wine pairings as an add-on option to your delivery! Totally want to check that out soon.
A couple weeks ago, my mom came over and we made this (pictured below) Crispy Cajun Catfish with Dirty Rice + Spicy Remoulade. We both loved it!
4) No random ingredients/bits left over.
When I make a recipe I find online/in a book, we always end up having random odds and ends left over – a bunch of this, a bit of that, half of another thing. Then I always feel bad worrying about wasting that stuff/not sure what to do with it. Not the case with Blue Apron! They send you exactly the ingredient quantities you need – no random remaining bits. We do generally have some leftovers of the whole meal, though, which is awesome – I make them into my lunch the next day a lot. (They claim to be 2 servings but often we find it’s more like 2.5 or 3.)
Pictured above: Southern-Style Chicken Cacciatore
5) Creative, unique meals.
When Matt and I wing it or cook on our own, we tend to make a lot of similar stuff just out of habit, so one thing we really love about Blue Apron is how different and creative the meals are compared to what we’d usually make. We made this delicious Za’atar Chicken and Farro Salad with Beets, Goat Cheese, and Pistachios last week – yummmm!
This Spiced Turkey and Chickpea Chili was another one of my biggest faves recently, as was the chicken with caramelized fennel pictured first in this post!
We also like that there’s some room for experimentation with the meals, though – Matt and I will sometimes add a little something to the recipes, especially if we have stuff on hand in the fridge that needs to get used up. The thing we add most often is more/extra veggies. 🙂
So there you have it! The main reasons Blue Apron keeps us coming back every week on our own dime. We also love that there’s no commitment – you can cancel anytime – and you can pause/skip weeks anytime you need to, too. This is really helpful for us for travel!
One more thing: Blue Apron just launched a great recycling program! Thumbs up to that. We always recycle the packaging ourselves, but now you can actually send back your items (free of charge, and at no extra carbon footprint since USPS uses existing delivery routes) to them for recycling and reuse instead! You can read more about it here.