Intro: Blue Apron Reviews | What You Need to Know About Blue Apron
What is Blue Apron? For some, it is how they are slowly learning how to cook. For others, it is a convenient meal delivery service that is dramatically changing their relationship with food.
The Blue Apron food delivery service was founded in 2012. Its founders sought to shake up the traditional chain through which food travelled from the farm to your table. Typically, people acquire their food in one of two ways: by cooking it themselves after visiting the grocery store or by purchasing pre-prepared meals at a restaurant or fast food joint. (Of course, there are also those lucky, hard-working ones who raise or grow their own food).
Image Source: Blue Apron
The issue this poses is that while people are increasingly eating out instead of cooking at home, many harbor a desire to prepare their own meals.
This is for many reasons, most particularly to eat healthier, save money, and foster a better understanding of the food they eat.
The Blue Apron food delivery service provides an alternative, combining the convenience of restaurants with the interactivity of cooking by delivering meal kits with a recipe and all the necessary ingredients.
So, just what is Blue Apron, and how does it work? Essentially, you subscribe to weekly meal deliveries for a set number of recipes and servings sent to your doorstep. Each package contains recipes developed by the Blue Apron meal delivery team.
With the recipe are all of the ingredients needed to prepare it in the exact proportions that the recipe calls for. Oftentimes, people do not cook at home because they do not have the time to shop for all the ingredients the recipe requires.
This Blue Apron review provides an overview of several outside reviews of Blue Apron. These Blue Apron reviews touch on a number of important elements of the Blue Apron food delivery service, including convenience, taste, and variety.
Blue Apron Review: Using the Blue Apron Food Delivery Service for Long-Term Meal Needs
Blue Apron provides two different subscription options: for two and for family (serves four). A subscriber could easily continue Blue Apron meals for the long term and supplement their previous meal prep or restaurant habit with fresh meals from the service. One writer, Lauren Goode, tried the service for an entire year and wrote a Blue Apron review of her experience on Recode.
In her Blue Apron review, Goode remarks that the service has helped her go from someone who knew only a handful of simple recipes to somebody who can cook several impressive meals on rotation. This is a benefit of subscribing to Blue Apron that Blue Apron reviews regularly point out.
Unlike other services that deliver food from local restaurants, the Blue Apron food delivery service provides subscribers with fresh food in boxes that keep the food fresh for a couple of hours, providing additional convenience for people who will not be home to put the food in the refrigerator immediately upon delivery. One drawback that Goode points out in her Blue Apron review is the lack of a singles option among the subscription packages, but she fairly assumes that this is due to a business decision on the part of Blue Apron.
Image Source: Blue Apron
One of the largest pros of the Blue Apron meal delivery subscription is that you only receive the amount of food and ingredients you need for each recipe. A drawback of trying brand new recipes is that home cooks are often left with a lot of leftovers of ingredients they do not normally cook with, which adds to the guilt and pressure of cooking, especially when those ingredients are left to go bad. As Goode notes in her Blue Apron review, with the exception of common items like salt, pepper, and olive oil (which even the most inexperienced cook likely has in their home), Blue Apron provides every ingredient the recipe calls for in the exact proportions that are necessary.
Furthermore, Goode writes about how pleased she was at how the diverse recipes made an adventurous eater out of even the most basic cook. She writes in her Blue Apron review:
Some of the recipes — like Bouillabaisse fish stew — seem a little out-there or unappealing, especially if you’re an unadventurous eater. But they turn out to be delicious. They taste even better with a side of swollen ego, as you pat yourself on the back for cooking it, and Insta-brag the hell out of your meal with your smartphone.
In her Blue Apron review, Goode references a few instances of less-than-perfect service from Blue Apron, like some basil that showed up slimy and the congealed mess she received in place of noodles, but overall, Goode says for a year of using the service, less than handful of mess ups was forgivable.
Blue Apron Review: It Can Sometimes Be a Little Too Convenient
Goode makes an interesting note in her Blue Apron review that other individuals curious about the service may want to be aware of. Sometimes, with all the convenience and quality of the Blue Apron meal delivery, there is added pressure to be using all these food items that pile up in the fridge, even if they are pre-proportioned and packaged. Goode remarks that the amount of preparation involved means it takes about 45 minutes to make the meals. She explains:
At least twice this year I’ve considered canceling my Blue Apron subscription, despite the overall positive experience. This is mostly because having the fresh batch of ingredients at home in the fridge each week creates a kind of pressure to cook, despite how insanely busy you might be. And while Blue Apron sends each ingredient in separate little packages for you, there’s still a lot of chopping, dicing, mincing and zesting involved.
If you wish to opt out of the Blue Apron meal delivery for a given week, you have to give advance notice of roughly a week. Goode points out that at the times where she missed the cancellation date by just a bit, Blue Apron customer service was accommodating. However, they are less than accommodating for last minute changes.
For instance, Goode writes in her Blue Apron review that in the case of a last minute situation where she only gave two days’ notice because of a funeral she had to attend out of town, Blue Apron refused to cancel the delivery, leaving her with no choice but to ask a neighbor to pick up the food so that it would not be wasted. She concludes that the biggest drawback of the Blue Apron service is its inflexible cancellation window.
Blue Apron Review: It Is Not a Comprehensive Solution for Being Too Busy to Grocery Shop
While Blue Apron meal delivery touts itself as a service that saves people time during meal preparation and with grocery shopping, Goode demonstrates that it is not a comprehensive solution. Subscribers still need to get basic food items that they definitely will not receive from Blue Apron in a box. In fairness, Blue Apron is not a grocery delivery service, but it may pose a false solution for people who think they will be completely saved from grocery shopping. As Goode puts it in her Blue Apron review:
While Blue Apron has been my main food squeeze for the past year, I’ve tried other services, too. That’s because Blue Apron isn’t going to fulfill all of your weekly food needs — you’ll still need to buy milk, or eggs, fruit, coffee or anything else you might consume on a regular basis.
Image Source: Blue Apron
Ultimately, Goode concludes in her Blue Apron review that so long as you do not have a lot of dietary restrictions and are okay with the fact that you will need to know your schedule in advance to make cancellations, Blue Apron meal delivery is a super convenient option. But Goode brings up an important point that is touched on in many other Blue Apron reviews: the lack of variety.
Although Blue Apron provides either four to six options (depending on which subscription package you choose) each week, these options exist in silos. Even though there are vegetarian options, there are most likely only one or two, which means you will be forced to order three of the same meals if you do not eat meat, since the other choices simply will not be an option for you.
As of now, Blue Apron doesn’t allow any meal choices beyond meat and fish or vegetarian, so it’s important to check each week’s menu for any food allergies or preferences before ordering. For example, my fiancé doesn’t eat pork, and it’s not possible to limit the deliveries to exclude it. I would have signed up for more deliveries if several of the menus didn’t include a pork dish.
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Reviews of Blue Apron: Cons of the Blue Apron Food Delivery Service
In addition to the lack of variety, Blue Apron reviews point out a few other cons and criticism of the Blue Apron food delivery service. One critic in his Blue Apron review laments the loss of the experience of sourcing your own food to cook. He writes:
I appreciate the idea that a party in a box comes to your door, but for me half the party—all of it, really, in my version of cooking for one—comes from meeting the people who sell the food I’m looking for, the serendipity of discovering, say, a new kind of lobed winter squash, getting it home, and figuring out what to do with it.
Additionally, in his Blue Apron review, he notes his disappointment at the fact that the meal cards do not encourage any kind of improvisation on the part of the cook. In fairness, the idea behind the Blue Apron meal delivery is that customers are presented with a straightforward, unambiguous approach to cooking. In fact, this is one of the biggest areas of praise for the company in reviews of Blue Apron: the fact that the instructions are clear, systematic, and easy to follow.
For those who are looking for a time-saving way to start preparing more meals for themselves, Blue Apron meal delivery is an option that will follow up on its promise of convenient cooking.
However, as this Blue Apron review points out multiple times, it should not be seen as a complete replacement for meal prep and grocery shopping since there are only a limited number of options and meals that are delivered per package. In addition, customers will still be required to shop for other day-to-day grocery items on their own.
If you are intrigued and looking to cook at home more (but would appreciate some hand-holding), Blue Apron could be a great option. If it doesn’t work out, you can always cancel. But if it does work out? There could be some delicious dinners in your future, success all but guaranteed.
AdvisoryHQ (AHQ) Disclaimer: Reasonable efforts have been made by AdvisoryHQ to present accurate information, however all info is presented without warranty. Review AdvisoryHQ’s Terms for details. Also review each firm’s site for the most updated data, rates and info. Note: Firms and products, including the one(s) reviewed above, may be AdvisoryHQ's affiliates. Click to view AdvisoryHQ's advertiser disclosures.
AdvisoryHQ (AHQ) Disclaimer:
Reasonable efforts have been made by AdvisoryHQ to present accurate information, however all info is presented without warranty. Review AdvisoryHQ’s Terms for details. Also review each firm’s site for the most updated data, rates and info.
Note: Firms and products, including the one(s) reviewed above, may be AdvisoryHQ's affiliates. Click to view AdvisoryHQ's advertiser disclosures.