Blue Apron: Why it’s Worth it to Me

When I first started looking for a meal kit delivery service, I wasn’t sure I’d like them. I don’t enjoy cooking to begin with, but I knew that I needed to eat more than cereal for dinner. Enter meal kits, a way to change my eating habits and save money (aka eat out less). I decided I would go with one of the original meal subscription box creators, Blue Apron. 

What is Old is Made New Again

I’d heard complaints about Blue Apron in the past, but I’d also heard they’d recently upped their game and were in somewhat of a 2.0 stage. This couldn’t be truer. When I got my box and compared my experience to a friend, she was blown away at the changes. While they were meal kit delivery pioneers, they also listened to customer feedback and improved where needed.

Special Highlights

One of the things I found pretty awesome about Blue Apron is that while they offered a regular and a vegetarian menu, they also partner with Weight Watchers to bring a menu of options that meet the WW Freestyle requirements. 

I also liked their Beyond Meat products. This is their unique collaboration to bring plant-based proteins to the menu. I always thought tofu or soy was the only way to achieve this, but now, I am a bit addicted to plant burgers and don’t even know the difference.

Picking a Plan

Blue Apron offers four different options for their menus. But the best part is that you can change which menu plan you choose from each week. You can also personalize them based on your preferences. 

  1. Signature Plan: a mix of meat, fish, Beyond Meat, and vegetarian options, where each week gives plenty of options, including at least one carb-conscious meal.
  2. WW Freestyle Plan: making it easier than ever to cook healthy, choose from six meals each week that come in at under 15 points.
  3. Vegetarian Plan: these recipes are made with a variety of grains, nuts, seeds, legumes, fruits, and vegetables, and can be customized to exclude dairy products, honey, and/or eggs if preferred. 
  4. Signature Plan for 4: this is just the signature plan, but with portions for four people.

Stand-Out Sourcing

I’ve never given much thought to where my food comes from, but when I started venturing into this meal subscription box thing, I learned a ton. Things like non-GMO, sustainably sourced, and what it means for our food. That’s why it was a pleasant surprise to see that Blue Apron takes this seriously. They work with family-run farms that use sustainable practices to get quality and fresh ingredients for each box. They also ensure that the animals are treated well and fed a diet that isn’t full of antibiotics, hormones, or animal by-products. They use non-GMO ingredients, too. 

Special Accommodations

I had a friend over for dinner, and she asked beforehand about allergens. I called Blue Apron’s customer service (superior help, by the way!) because I wasn’t sure. I learned that while they can accommodate specific diets, they couldn’t guarantee that someone with severe food allergies would be in the clear. They explained that they package all their boxes in the same facility, so there could be some risk. Although, they did mention that if there was a particular ingredient that didn’t work for someone, the recipes were designed so they could be adjusted with at-home substitutions. 

A Deeper Look

One of the cool things about the company is how they got their name. The name Blue Apron was chosen because chefs around the world wear blue aprons while they are learning to cook. It’s a symbol now of lifelong learning in the culinary world, and it’s Blue Apron’s way of inspiring home chefs. 

Cost Considerations

One of the selling points for this meal service was that they offered free shipping on the boxes. That meant I was only paying for the food. However, I did learn that with only two in my cart, I’d be charged $7.99 for shipping. 

The meals themselves are $9.99 per person per meal, so it comes to just under $60 to get three meals for the week. They deliver daily to the entire US, and you can skip a week or cancel anytime. Trust me, I used that skip week often, and I was glad it was an option. And when I compared it to what I was spending eating out, it saved me money, which was one of my original reasons for wanting to try a meal kit delivery service in the first place. 

A Few Bonuses

Blue Apron is one of the only meal kits I’ve tried that has some of the extra perks they offer. Of course, gift cards and an app are standard, but they also offer a cookbook, a wine subscription, and a marketplace where you can buy things you tried, like a set of spices for example. They also have a blog and some videos to help guide you and give tips for the recipes, which came in handy a few times.

A Potential Downfall

One of the only things I felt could be a potential issue for some, and that surprised me the first time, is that their ingredients aren’t divided into separate bags by meal. Instead of getting a bag with the ingredients for each meal, as I’ve seen with other meal kits, there was just one big insulated bag with all the components inside. The meat was packaged separately, however. I found this frustrating at first but then appreciated that it cut down on environmental waste.

The Food Factor

You’re probably itching to hear what I think of the food. After all, the food is what it’s all about, right? Well, I loved the simplicity of the meals, the fact that I learned some new tricks, and that they were healthy. As far as flavor, well, they hit that on the nose, too. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Chicken-Chili Enchiladas: I never thought of making my own enchiladas; they just seemed too complicated and messy. Not so! The ingredients were fresh, the spice was a great added kick, and it all came together with ease. The final result was restaurant quality. 
  • Jalapeno & Goat Cheese Beyond Burgers: I’ll admit, I left off the jalapeno because I don’t like it on its own, but this burger did NOT taste like it wasn’t made of meat. I couldn’t believe it, and I’m so glad I tried it.
  • Steaks & Sauteed Vegetables: This is the type of meal I’d order at a restaurant, and it didn’t disappoint. The steak was tender, and I loved that it was perfectly portioned. I also appreciated that it came with two sides, so it was filling and delicious. 

Ready to Try Blue Apron?

If you’ve wanted to try a meal subscription box, give them a try. They often have coupons come in the mail or pop up on their website, so be on the lookout for one. And then come back and tell me what you think of them!

Visit the Blue Apron Coupon page for the latest deals and discounts.