Today’s post is sponsored by Blue Apron.
In the fall, when the days first begin to turn cold and crisp, I am elated. I cannot wait to pull out my biggest soup pots and braising pans to start making hearty, weather-appropriate food.
However, by the end of the winter season, I am weary of my regular dinners and am hungry for fresh inspiration. Often I turn to cookbooks to help break up the routine. When that doesn’t work, I call on Blue Apron and their chef-designed meal kits.
My first encounter with Blue Apron came last year, when Scott got a 2-person box as part of his podcast’s sponsorship. Thanks to the photo-filled recipe cards, he was able to make a trio of tasty dinners without a lick of help from me.
I wrote about my second go-round with Blue Apron back in September. That time, I had the family-sized box sent to my sister’s house while I would be there visiting. I cooked dinner for them and scored some major houseguest points.
This time, I planned the box for the week before I was leaving town for a four-day conference. Busy and lacking inspiration is almost always the perfect formula for a week of takeout, but not this time. Blue Apron to the rescue!
Another reason why getting Blue Apron just before leaving town was such a good idea is that is prevented food waste. Scott isn’t one to do a lot of cooking for himself, so if I’d left a fridge full of ingredients for him to use, they would have withered and wilted while I was away. The perfectly portioned Blue Apron meals meant that there was nothing to throw out.
We had Chicken Yakinuki (I particularly loved the simple shredded carrot salad), Tangelo & Honey Glazed Salmon (remind me to use cooked apples in savory applications more often), and Smokey Pork Burgers (why aren’t pork burgers more of a thing? They were so delicious!).
One of the things I like most about Blue Apron is the fact that the I always take away some new culinary tidbit when I cook my way through a box. Going forward, I’ll be cooking my farro like pasta and will always roast broccoli at 475F (my typical temperature had been a lazy 400F, but no more!). I also appreciate that you can access all their recipes online.
One of the worries that people often have about Blue Apron is the amount of packaging involved. I was pleased to see that there was less packaging this time than in past orders, and that all users can now return the packing materials through the mail for reuse and recycling.
The fried rosemary garnish in this salmon dish was another tidbit I will take with me. I always thought that frying herbs was a fussy step, best reserved for restaurant meals, but I am converted. Quickly pan-fried in a shallow puddle of olive oil, the rosemary became fragrant and crisp.
The aforementioned farro! When you cook it in ample water, you don’t have to worry about the pot boiling dry. When the farro is tender, you just drain and dress.
If you’re intrigued by my experience with Blue Apron, they’ve got an offer for you, too! The first fifty readers to use this link to sign up for the service will get three meals for free on their first Blue Apron order.
Oh, and if you want to take a peek at more of the possible meals you’ll get from Blue Apron, check out their recipe page.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Blue Apron. They sent me a 2-Person box, containing three meals for two people. They’ve also compensated me for my time and attention. However, all thoughts and opinions expressed are entirely mine.
I felt the same way about all the packaging…it felt like such a waste. Happy to hear that it’s being addressed, I may have to try Blue Apron again.
I went and looked but could not find enough information about meal plans and how to avoid certain foods to feel comfortable ordering.
I have friends who have been using Blue Apron to buy three meals a week for almost a year. They love it because they previously had frozen dinners or take-out on weeknights.
I’ve found that soaking farro for between 30 minutes to an hour cuts down the cooking time dramatically. I soak up some grains, drain them, and keep them in the fridge or freezer until I need them.
Thank you for posting the link to the recipes on Blue Apron. I didn’t realize they did that. I’m looking forward to my first box from Blue Apron on March 24th. Your post makes me even more excited to try the new recipes and share them with my family.
I’m so glad to have helped get you excited about Blue Apron. It really is a fun way to reinvigorate your home cooking.