CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Blue Apron claims "food is better when you start from scratch." The subscription meal service promises to deliver everything you need to make three meals right to your doorstep, but does it work, and does the company deliver on fresh flavorful food?
We signed up for Blue Apron for $30 using a half-off introductory deal. The subscription, if continued, would automatically send three meals for two for $59.99 every week. Subscribers can easily skip a week or even several weeks at a time through the Blue Apron website or mobile application.
Our box arrived on a Friday and we refrigerated the box and waited until Monday to cook all three recipes in one day.
When we opened the box on Monday, the meat and produce was still very fresh. The insulated bag inside the box was full of beef, chicken, shrimp, cabbage, scallions, small red peppers, a sweet potato, a Russet potato, a lime, radishes, a can of beans, peanuts, spices, sauces, agave nectar, and vinegar.
Our box contained everything needed to make three recipes: Mole-Spiced Beef Chili with Russet Potato & Lime Crème Fraîche, Cumin-Sichuan Shrimp Fried Rice with Bird's Eye Chile & Marinated Radish, and Spicy Chicken Sandwiches with Alabama White Sauce & Roasted Sweet Potato.
All spices and sauces were measured out to the precise amount needed for each recipe.
"It's nice that everything is pre-measured," said tester Lou Conte. "You don't have to measure anything you just throw it in."
It took us about 35 minutes to whip up the batch of Mole-spiced beef chili with Russet potatoes and Lime Crème Fraîche.
This recipe was Conte's least favorite of the three, but he still said he liked the flavors.
"It's good," Conte said. "You can't really taste the mole, though. There are some spices, there's a little heat, I like the crunchy carrots and the beans."
We opted to make the Cumin-Sichuan Shrimp Fried Rice next. The Asian-influenced shrimp dish was a sharp contrast to the Mole-spiced chili and offered a nice change of pace.
Blue Apron provided a generous amount of wild gulf shrimp that provided more than ample portions for two.
Conte really liked the spices and flavors.
"The shrimp is good," said Conte. "The rice vinegar and the radishes, it's a very good flavor. It's spicy."
The third recipe was the easiest and turned out to be Conte's favorite: spicy chicken sandwiches with Alabama white sauce and roasted sweet potato.
"This is good," Conte said. "I can taste the horseradish. The marinated green onions with the sweet potatoes was a treat for me. I liked all the food. It tasted amazingly fresh."
Overall, Conte liked the convenience of Blue Apron's delivery system and the fact that he didn't have to measure anything.
"You just put them together – with their pre-measured amounts," said Conte. "You don't have much room for mistakes. That's my kind of cooking."
Conte gave Blue Apron 4.5 stars on this Does It Work Test.
You can sign up for Blue Apron on its website and find the Blue Apron mobile app in your app store.