Friday, August 28, 2015

Meal Delivery Services

A few weeks ago I jumped on the latest trend and signed up for a meal box delivery service!  Yep, I ordered dinner prep kits with veggies and meats that came in a box on my door step.  Sounds a little strange, but it was super helpful for this family of 4.  I was tired of meal planning and let's face it, it was just not happening anymore. When I went to the grocery store on Mondays, I was grabbing whatever looked good off the shelves without any planning.  Turkey spaghetti again mom??

So I researched a few of the delivery options and decided to go with Blue Apron (and FYI, this post was NOT sponsored or paid for by the company, so these opinions are ALL mine ;)

First off, one of the reasons I chose Blue Apron was the price.  You get 3 meals a week for 60$ (including shipping) for 2 people.  Other companies out there are Hello Fresh (70$ for 3 meals a week for 2), and Plated (72$/week for 3 meals).  But they all seemed to offer the same thing: using the freshest ingredients, with 30 minutes or less preparations and easy to follow recipes.

Secondly, I loved how Blue Apron let me CHOOSE which meats I wanted. Because uhm, you could say I am what they call a 'picky eater'.  I don't eat red meat, game, or pork. Yes that means no bacon, hot dogs or hamburgers.  The horror.  Not to get into it, but I have my reasons. Soo, I was super happy to find out I could pick what I wanted.  I ordered the 'Poultry' and 'Seafood' recipe options.

The only drawback to all of these services, was that the service was delivered to my area on Thursdays. Hmm. Because honestly, I don't cook much on the weekends. Most of my cooking is Sunday-Thursdays.  So I worried my fresh produce would start to whither and decay, but they guaranteed it fresh for 6 days.

After signing up online (with a good cancellation policy of 6 days notice), I was so excited when my first box arrived.  It was packaged amazingly well with frozen ice packs and everything was fresh, including the little bags of fresh herbs.  The packaging was really cute with everything labeled.  I threw the chicken and salmon in my freezer since I knew it would be a few days before I made it. And my box came with 3 huge recipe cards with pictures and step by step directions. 

Fast forward to Monday, my first meal.  It was Seared Salmon and Panzanella.  I assembled all of my ingredients and got right to work.

The directions were very easy to follow.  Things like, "cut the stems off your onion and peel it.  Then coarsely chop."  "While the salmon is cooking, chop the zucchini", etc.  Even my husband could follow these directions.  Of course the only complaint I had, is that I wish the veggies came pre-chopped, but I think they wouldn't be as fresh.

After the step by step directions, my meal was ready to serve and I honestly did the whole thing in less than 30 minutes!  The food was really good and tasty and actually we had left overs for the next day.  It fed both of the adults and my 3 and 5 year old ate some as well.  But if you have super eaters, I may go with the family of 4 meal options.

My photos don't compare to the ones online, so click here to see an example of Thai Chicken Burgers and the recipe cards close up and the wonderfully photographed finished product.


Here is my not sponsored or endorsed review of 2 weeks of the meal service...

+Food was tasty and easy to prepare
+The box arrived when expected and packaged well in frozen ice
+Price was great
+Great recipe card, step by step instructions and pictures
+I LOVED by-passing the meat counter at the grocery store and most of the produce section
+LOVED not having to meal plan Sunday night

+Delivery is on a Thursday (wish it was a Monday or Saturday if possible)
+Too much packaging.  It really bugged my husband that there was a lot of waste.  Besides the fresh produce, everything came in baggies, containers and paper goods that you can not recycle.
+None of the food was organic and this was a BIG ONE for me.  Since I've become a mother, I am very into eating as well as we can to live longer and healthier lives.  So for our family that means no antibiotic animal products and hormone free meats/poultry AND we eat the dirty 13 produce.  It was hard for me to eat the tomatoes, zucchini and eggplants that were I'm guessing, full of pesticides.  The organic produce I buy at the store is not that much more in cost either.  I know restaurants don't use organic products but when I cook at home, I want to make sure our meals are healthy.

So unfortunately I cancelled my subscription.  I had a hard time with the Thursday delivery and things not being as fresh 4 days later, and I also could not get past the non-organic products.

I did find an organic meal delivery service that I may try at a later time called Green Chef.  I saw online that they are running a special of 6 meals for only 9$ in shipping if you sign up.  Stay tuned... :)


  1. Thanks for posting. I was interested in Hello Fresh, so now I'm not sure and may use Blue Apron.

  2. Let me know if you do the organic one, I'd really be interested in hearing about that one since I mostly buy organic produce and it seems that I don't spend as much compared to non organic Blue Apron.