Cooking makes it feel like home (with Blue Apron)

Cooking makes it feel like home (with Blue Apron)

This post is sponsored by Blue Apron.

My family just moved into a new-to-us old house. We are very much still settling in. Still-taped boxes are everywhere. I just moved the silverware to a new place for the third time. Will and I went to a fancy event last weekend and it took us half an hour to find our clothes—my heels were at the bottom of a giant grocery tote, Will’s sportcoat was in Jack’s closet, my necklace was in a box buried beneath a bunch of our out-of-season bedding.

We’re settling in, though, and as we do, I’m finding that nothing makes it feel like home like actually living here. Not just residing, but living—playing Monopoly on the living room rug. Curling up in a comfy chair with a good book and cup of tea. Making family dinner.

Will and I both love to cook, but I don’t always relish every step of the process—the planning, the shopping—especially when life is crazy. Recently we cooked with Blue Apron, a service that allows you to create delicious, chef-designed recipes at home, and it was so nice to just unpack the ingredients, follow their checklist, and enjoy making dinner.

Blue Apron delivers all the farm-fresh ingredients you need, right to your doorstep, in exactly the right proportions. No shopping required, no waste from unused ingredients.

The other night we made their Blackened Chicken & Rice with Blood Orange and Kale for dinner. All Blue Apron meals can be prepared in 40 minutes or less (unless your kids are cooking! My kids love to cook Blue Apron on their own, but I’ve learned from experience to double the time estimate for my young chefs). Will and I cooked together this time, so it went even faster.

I always enjoy unpacking the ingredients when a Blue Apron delivery arrives, but this time it was especially fun—not only did our recipe call for three kinds of oranges, but I was strangely delighted to discover my boneless skinless chicken breasts were already prepped and ready to season and pop in the skillet. (Apparently, I have a lot on my plate these days. Also, we eat a lot of chicken around here, but I still haven’t learned to love prepping chicken breasts.)

If you’re not around when your shipment arrives, no worries—ingredients arrive in a refrigerated box so they’ll stay fresh even if you’re not home. I like to save the packaging so I can reuse it to keep my food fresh after a Costco run, but you can also recycle it. Use Blue Apron’s recycling locator to find recycling options in your community or return your packaging for free to Blue Apron via USPS.

Blue Apron makes it easy to try new recipes and cuisines so you can get out of your dinner rut. (Browse Blue Apron’s large selection of recipes here; you don’t have to be a customer to test drive them!) I always pick up a new technique or try a new ingredient when we try a new Blue Apron recipe. With this menu, I learned about different kinds of citrus. I never would have thought to combine orange and kale, but we enjoyed it. Also: Will learned how to cook kale, and it made me happy.

That’s not an accident: stretching your cooking skills is part of Blue Apron’s mission. Chefs in training around the world wear blue aprons – it’s a symbol of lifelong learning in cooking.

Blue Apron offers two types of plans, the 2-person plan and the family plan. Our family of six—that’s two adults + four kids—still eats just fine with the family plan.

Try Blue Apron for yourself, at a discount: the first 50 readers will get three free meals on their first Blue Apron order! Just click here to get started.

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5 comments

  1. Brandyn says:

    I tried it for a couple weeks, but 3 meals is a big time commitment. Admittedly the recipes generally take me 60-90 min (totally impressed by 40 min).

  2. Jennifer N. says:

    I’ve always wanted to try a service like this, but it’s simply just too expensive for my family right now. (If it were just my husband and me, I might reconsider!) I did sign up for my free two weeks of Prepdish, so we’ll see how that goes. These days the big struggle is coming up with meals to cook that aren’t boring and finding the time during the week. My hope is that the prep day and pre-fashioned grocery list will cut down on time and we’ll be eating healthier again soon! We moved about a year ago, coupled with job changes by my husband, we’ve had difficulty getting back into the swing of regular grocery shopping and cooking every night.

  3. We ordered our first shipment right after we moved into our new house and it was such a relief not having to plan meals / grocery shop that first week. Plus no fancy cooking equipment was required so I didn’t have to dig through boxes like a maniac. We loved it too! The best part was using new to me ingredients!

  4. Thank you so much for the three meals free offer (though I did have to pay — assuming it is for one paid week after the first three free meals week. Expect I can cancel without a charge if I don’t like it). I am looking forward to making some healthier dinners than have been the norm lately. Seriously hoping I can keep it in the 40 minute range, too!

  5. barbara says:

    Yes, but dishes? Who does the dishes? That is a part of it for me. Sometimes, I just don’t want to wash a dish by hand. And yes, sometimes the planning does get tiresome.

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