Blue Apron offers two fresh perfectly portioned meal plans with no fees or commitment and you can skip any week’s delivery in advance or cancel at any time. They offer a 2-Person Plan ($59.94 for six servings) which consists of one delivery a week, with three inventive recipes (you get to choose from 6 options) perfectly portioned for two. They also offer a Family Plan ($69.92 for eight servings) and you can choose to receive two or four recipes per week. Regardless of which plan you choose, it works out to less than $10 a meal and the best part is that you don’t need to go shopping or stress about constantly coming up with new inspired meal ideas.
Here’s what sets Blue Apron apart from their competitors:
- Seasonal recipes created by renowned guest chefs
- Their meals incorporate unique specialty ingredients that are fresher than the supermarket
- Their ingredients are perfectly pre-measured so there’s no waste
- Free delivery nationwide and customized to fit your schedule
- Ingredients arrive in a refrigerated box so food stays fresh even if you’re not home when the package is delivered
Sounds pretty fab, right? Let me tell you about two of the meals I recently tried from Blue Apron. I chose the 2 Person Plan and since we have been trying to eat a bit healthier this season, I opted for two vegetarian inspired meals.
The first Blue Apron meal that I cooked was a Spinach Pesto Gnocchi with Sautéed Asparagus & Brown Butter. My hubbs and I absolutely LOVED this Italian inspired dish because it had yummy layered bold flavors and it was very satiating. We’ve made pesto many times before but the addition of spinach, almonds and capers was a nice twist on the pesto flavor and texture! The picture below shows you exactly how Blue Apron portions, preps and delivers your ingredients making it super easy to execute. It only took me about 30 minutes.
And I loved the simplicity of this recipe: Gnocchi (a potato based pasta), capers, butter, almonds, Parmesan cheese, garlic and spinach and that’s all! All these ingredients are easy to find at you local market, so you can easily replicate it. And prepping your ingredients in small bowls before you start cooking really simplifies the process.
To make the pesto, I cooked and finely chopped the spinach and combined it with the sliced almonds, capers, garlic and half the cheese. Then I slowly stirred in enough olive oil to create a rough paste. Doesn’t it look deelish? It smelled absolutely heavenly!
After I cooked the gnocchi in boiling water for about three minutes and then drained it (you save the water BTW to use in the sauce later), I added the pasta to a pan of hot butter with the asparagus and cooked it for a few minutes until the gnocchi were lightly browned and the asparagus was slightly soft.
Then I combined the aromatic pesto, the gnocchi and asparagus in a bowl and added about half of the gnocchi cooking water to make a nice thick sauce. If the sauce seems dry, you need to gradually add more of the gnocchi cooking water to achieve your desired consistency. This technique of adding in pasta water to both thin and thicken the sauce was really cool and something that I would’ve never thought of! It gave the sauce a lovely density and texture and it made me feel very chef-like. Loved it!
Here’s what the finished dish looked like and it was incredibly delicious. I would absolutely make it again!
The second Blue Apron meal that I made was a full-flavored Za’atar-Spiced Fennel & Farro Salad with English Peas, Pea Tips & Pomegranate Molasses. This spring Middle Eastern-inspired dish highlighted Za’atar (a herbilicious combo of thyme, oregano and marjoram, sesame seeds, sumac and other spices) and showcased two parts of the pea plant including the hearty leaves and the bright peas themselves along with fennel and pomegranate molasses. The latter two ingredients are two that I have never cooked with before, so I was excited about this recipe.
Again you can see how beautifully packaged the Blue Apron farm fresh ingredients come packaged and how simple they are to prepare. This recipe included fennel, pea tips, pomegranate molasses, za’atar, sunflower seeds, farro, peas, feta cheese, lemon and red onion.
After chopping the veggies and zesting the lemon, I cooked the fennel, onion and za’atar until they were soft and fragrant. Since I had never cooked with fennel before, I enjoyed the unique sweet licorice aroma that came from the fennel combined with the Mid-East spices.
Next, I added the pea tips and sunflower seeds to the pot of aromatics and cooked them together until the pea tips are wilted and bright green.
Then I combined the aromatic veggies with the cooked farro, blanched peas, pomegranate molasses, lemon zest, lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil
Lastly, I garnished the dish with freshly chopped mint and feta cheese. This dish was also full of complex diverse flavors with both the fennel and pomegranate molasses adding a lot of unexpected sweetness. While I liked the brightness of this dish and the unique flavor combinations (especially the cooked fennel), the next time that I make it, I would definitely use much less of the pomegranate molasses which was just a bit too sweet for this flavor combo in my opinion.
Overall, I was very impressed with Blue Apron. The ingredients were super fresh and unique and the recipes were inspired, easy to execute and very tasty. I especially loved how it introduced me to new cooking techniques and ingredients and without a doubt I will definitely be ordering meals from Blue Apron in the near future.
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