Become a master chef with Blue Apron delivery

This post is sponsored by Blue Apron, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

When it comes to dinner-time, I’m someone who keeps things pretty simple. I like to create quick and healthy meals and have been known to repeat the same things over and over again. Well ladies and gentlemen, leave it to Blue Apron to introduce me to a whole new world of cooking techniques, flavor profiles and dinners. Today, I’m going to tell you a bit about my experience using this service, and then you’ll find a discount code at the end to get two free meals from the service to try it for yourself. 

Ashley serving Blue ApronCan you tell how proud I am to show off the fruits of my (our) labor?

Blue Apron is not a meal-delivery service, it’s a service which gives you all the tools you need to create your own innovative meals in the comfort of your own kitchen. Fresh ingredients and step-by-step directions are delivered right to your door, so you can do the cooking and admire your work. And you don’t have to know how to cook to be able to create these dishes. You just have to be able to read!

I signed up for the service about two weeks before I wanted to receive my Saturday delivery, for two. A couple days before the delivery arrived, I received an email telling me what was on the menu for the meals that would be included, and my excitement grew (as did Dave’s, because he kept asking what we could expect to be eating days leading up to receiving the email!). The food box came in the middle of the day, I pulled everything out and popped it in the fridge, and just like that, Dave and I had dinners for much of the week in one place, without even going to the grocery store.

What it really looks like to cook a Blue Apron meal at home

The first meal we created was the Matzoh-Crusted Chicken with Orange, Fennel & Golden Beet Salad. I had never even eaten matzoh before, and certainly never used matzoh meal as breading on chicken. It was totally fun to use new-to-me ingredients and get my hands dirty in the kitchen, outside of my normal and simple go-to dinners.

Here’s a look at everything included in this meal …

Blue Apron meal ingredientsFresh, locally sourced and all included in the refrigerated package from Blue Apron.

  • 2 chicken cutlets
  • 1/2 cup matzoh meal
  • 1 fennel bulb 
  • 1 golden beet
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 navel orange
  • 1 bunch parsley
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 cup dijon mustard

This serves two, with approximately 665 calories per serving.

Dave and I worked together to create this wonderful meal. I did much of the chopping, handling the salad and pickling, while Dave managed the chicken. A team effort indeed, which took about an hour from beginning to end. Although, we did stop from time-to-time to wipe things down and take a couple of pictures, which just may have slowed us down.

We followed the step-by-step photo instruction sheet and even accessed the directions on a tablet, which is a helpful visual aid offered by Blue Apron, in case you’re not into the hard-copy recipe how-to.

The cooking process

1. Wash and dry the produce. Then peel, slice and cut the onion, beet, fennel, parsley and oranges. Create the mustard using the mix and water.

 Chop, chop, chop …

Slicing and dicing for Blue Apron

2. Pickle the onions, by combining sugar, vinegar, onion and water in a sauce-pan.

This part smelled so good …

Pickling the onions for Blue Apron

3. Coat the chicken in the matzoh meal, adding the mustard-water mixture.

Breading is incredibly easy …

4. Cook the chicken cutlets in a pan until golden brown.

Things got real at this point, because that pan was sizzling when the meat hit it …

Matzoh-crusted chicken

5. Make the salad, using a portion of the pickling liquid on top of all the fruits and veggies. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

I mean, how beautiful are these fruits and veggies all mixed together?

Tasty salad from Blue Apron

6. Plate the dish. Garnish with parsley. 

Yes, this was officially the first time I’ve garnished a dish with parsley. But let’s hope it’s not my last.

7. Serve and enjoy.

Blue Apron Dinner is served

That was it! Both Dave and I liked smelling and touching all the veggies and felt quite fancy cooking something with “fennel” at home.

Here’s a close-up of the finished product …

Finished matzoh-crusted chicken dinner from Blue ApronBlue Apron’s Matzoh-Crusted Chicken with Orange, Fennel & Golden Beet Salad prepared by Chefs Ashley and Dave. Yummy!

Overall, this was a fun process, and at the end, we got to eat a super tasty meal, which we thoroughly enjoyed on a warm spring night in the Bay Area. We opened a bottle of wine and the windows and dug into our home-made masterpiece at the dinner table. So proud!

We also cooked the Beef Dukbokki with Quick Kimchi & Fresh Peas (totally tasty traditional Korean dish) and the Lentil-Crusted Salmon (who doesn’t love salmon?) that same week. We had never made any of these types of meals at home before, and we both loved that variety. And at first, we thought the food portions looked small, but the strong flavors and flavor profiles make them all surprisingly filling.

My thoughts on the Blue Apron service 

I love the fact that everything is fresh, sectioned off and just enough of what you need. There’s nothing I hate more than wasting food, and the folks at Blue Apron take the guess-work out of that for you by sending you only what you need.

I also love the fact that Blue Apron introduced me to some new methods of cooking. I’d never pickled any onions before, nor breaded chicken, so that was pretty cool.

The downside? Although Blue Apron says the meals can all be completed in 40 minutes or less, Dave and I both found that these meals took a good hour to make. While maybe our chopping skills are not up-to-par, I’d imagine others would agree with this, so make sure you have the time to do the prep. Also, the calorie counts are pretty high for small plates of food, but of course, I still found I was full after all of them, as did Dave. Nonetheless, if you know you have a huge eater in your house, you could always throw in some extra brown rice or veggies to fluff out the plate.

Overall, Blue Apron is perfect for someone who wants to learn to cook, or who just wants to create delicious and diverse meals at home, without the hassle of looking up recipes and purchasing a ton of ingredients.

And by the way, if you’re single and always cooking for one, you could totally do the two-person plan and take the second meal with you for lunch the next day. I’d say, Blue Apron is for everyone!

The details on Blue Apron delivery service

  • You can order a two-person plan, which has three meals-for-two, for $9.99 per person, per meal. This is delivered once a week.
  • You can order a family plan, which has two meals that can feed up to four people, family-style, for $8.74 per person, per meal. This can be delivered once or twice a week.
  • Shipping is always free on every order.
  • All the fresh ingredients you need to make each meal are delivered in a refrigerated box — labeled, measured and packaged separately. You don’t have to be home to receive the package, because it stays cold for a few hours.
  • You can cancel your service at any time.
  • New meals are created by top chefs and added to the line-up every single week.
  • Each meal is between 500-700 calories and can be prepared in less than 40 minutes.
  • You can select meat or vegetarian preferences when placing your order, but will always be surprised by the menu emailed to you just before your delivery arrives.
  • Blue Apron ships nearly everywhere in the U.S., and you can find out if it’s available in your town by checking here.

Get two free meals from Blue Apron

Because Dave and I had such a good time using Blue Apron, I’m really excited to offer you all a discount to try the service. The first 50 readers who sign up using this link will get TWO free meals. Check out Blue Apron today and become a master chef, like I did. 

I’m definitely interested in cooking some more Blue Apron meals, and have my eye on Pir-Piri Chicken with Coconut-Smashed Plantains & Stewed Collard Greens and Shrimp and Pineapple Soft Tacos with Creamy Cabbage Slaw & Crunchy Romaine Salad. There are just too many to choose from!

Alright, friends! I hope you have a lovely Tuesday and Cinco de Mayo. Today is a busy one for me. I’m teaching a couple of classes at Orangetheory Fitness in the early morning, working at the studio, writing, blogging and then heading to 24 Hour Fitness to teach a BODYPUMP class tonight. I’ll see you back here tomorrow for some more talk about food. Peace out!

**Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Blue Apron, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Questions of the day

Which recipe from Blue Apron would you most like to prepare?

What types of food have you always wanted to cook at home?

Do you have any plans for Cinco de Mayo?

Ashley signature

 

 

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34 Comments

  1. I had fun with Blue Apron, but it wasn’t sustainable for me (due to the quantity/ratio of foods and also the lack of sub-ability). But I love having access to the recipes!

    1. Hi Carissa! Me too! And I hate finding a bunch of ingredients, to I loved the fact that all that work was done for me here. You should try it out! Have a lovely day, my friend!:)

  2. I love Blue Apron! I actually had a box delivered while we were on vacation so I wouldn’t have to worry about shopping when we got back. We got some delicious meals! Happy Cinco de Mayo 🙂

    1. Hi Gretchen! That’s great! I LOVE it that provides everything you need in one box without a trip to the store. Glad you’re a fan of BA. Hope you have a lovely Cinco de Mayo, friend!! 🙂

  3. First of all, can we talk about your cute apron?! If I had an apron half that cute then I would probably cook more! haha

    I’ve been thinking about trying Blue Apron sometime soon. My dad just moved back up to Georgia, so I finally have someone to try it out with instead of just cooking for myself.

    1. Hi Stacie! Oh thanks hehe, my Momma got me that apron for Christmas. And yes, you could totally eat the meals by yourself, saving some for lunch the next day. It’s so much easier than writing down a recipe and going to the store to look for all the ingredients. Happy Tuesday, lady! 🙂

  4. I’ve heard of this service but haven’t tried it yet. I do like the concept of it as it’ll probably force me to try something new! No cinco de mayo plans here….oh how times have changed! Ha!

    1. Hi Marielle! Yes, Blue Apron will definitely introduce you to new ways of cooking and ingredients. No plans for Cinco de Mayo for me either, outside of working and teaching classes! Have a great day! 🙂

  5. I have the same feelings about Blue Apron!! I love trying new cooking techniques and trying new foods, but the prep time is definitely more than the 40 minutes suggested. It is not something I would want to do every week, but it is fun to get one every few months. Kinda like Stitch Fix ha!

    This would also be a perfect Tried it Tuesday post 🙂

    1. I’m linked up, Sara! Yay! And agree with you on the time required. Not something I can manage when I get home at 8:15 p.m. some nights!

  6. Ashley, you rocked the Blue Apron in that adorable polka dot one!! 🙂 I like that this offers a prep experience which is fun for a date night, versus just going out or getting Munchery! Of course we are lazy as it gets and have yet to try it, but it’s on the list. You make it look fun!

    1. Hi Jill! I’m not a fan of take-out at all, so this was the closet I will come to that hehe. I loved trying the new cooking techniques, but of course, it takes a while, so more of a weekend fun date-night of course. Happy Tuesday and Cinco de Mayo to you!! 🙂

  7. I think we just became best friends. I LOVE Blue Apron! I love all of the interesting combos (like adding kumquats to farro? who would have thought?) plus I’ve learned some new cooking techniques (like making “brick chicken” by placing a large pot filled with water on top of the chicken and letting it cook in the pan under the weight…) But I agree, some of the things do take longer than expected. Still, it’s fun to have fun meals once in a while! xo Lisa
    http://www.strumsimmersip.com

    1. Hi Lisa! Brick chicken? Cool! I would love to try that, but prefer to have the written instructions in front of me hehe. And I enjoyed the long process on the weekend, but it would be harder to fit it in during the week. Happy Tuesday, friend! 🙂

  8. I really want to learn how to make sushi. I tried it once and it didn’t quite pan out. The result was yummy, but it was more of a rice bowl than sushi 🙂 We tried Plated once and it was awesome. I just didn’t think it was worth the cost.

    1. hahah, I’ve always wanted to make sushi too. But then when I think about it, I love going to sushi bars, so that would never change. Raw fish can best be handled by the pros hehe. Happy Tuesday, Doc! 🙂 I’ve never done Plated, by the way.

    1. Oh Megan, never underestimate the power of the selfie stick in the kitchen aahha. Or perhaps you wear it and invite people over? hahah Happy Tuesday! Yay for cooking! 🙂

  9. EVERY TIME I see your plates I am like, WHAT are you doing steal my plates – wait, are you in my kitchen? Um, if you are, why are we not making a cooking video! ha ha ha.

  10. Blue Apron sure is getting popular! We got our first box ever the day after Cinco de Mayo and made pulled chicken mole quesadillas. Very very delicious. And the best part is my hubby cooked the meal while I got to hang with the kiddos and relax!

    1. Hi Marnie! I love the Blue Apron concept and am so glad it’s catching on with people. How nice of your hubby to take the reigns in the kitchen so you could chill with the kids! I hope that happens often! 🙂 Have a great night!

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