The Next Step in Meal Prep

May 1, 2017  —  Written by Chris 

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This post is sponsored by Blue Apron.

Every blogger it seems takes their turn writing a post that is essentially their own version of a “How to have your act together, like me!” post. We’ve all read them, and they’re equal parts inspiring and depressing, sometimes with little relevance to our own personal set of daily demands. We’ve even written a few of those posts ourselves, because I think we all have one or two things in our lives that we’re really great at. But the truth is, no child is always bathed, no sink is always empty, no parent is always showered, and no email inbox is always caught up. With the heap of external and internal demands we all have, anything that lifts even small burdens can be a big help.

Most of our long-time readers know that we’ve been using Blue Apron for awhile now. Even though I love inventing my own recipes – and I still do most nights – we lean on Blue Apron for those times where I couldn’t make it to the store and the thought of greasy, fast food makes my stomach turn. But lately we’ve found another great way to use the service that makes our busy days more manageable, and our dining budget less exorbitant – meal prep.

Blue Apron

Meal services are gaining popularity fast, and Blue Apron is by far our favorite. For anyone who is unsure of what Blue Apron is, they’re a subscription meal service that delivers farm-fresh ingredients and chef-designed recipes right to your door, ready to cook. Everything arrives in a refrigerated box so ingredients stay fresh, and they’re perfectly portioned so there’s no waste.

Blue Apron

Jules and I are usually knee-deep in work all day, and it’s not infrequent that 2:00 or 3:00 in the afternoon will roll around and we realize neither of us has eaten lunch. We would often end up eating a handful of potato chips from the pantry or snacking on candy left over from whichever holiday happened last. But having home-cooked meals in the fridge, portioned out and ready to heat and serve, has helped us at least get that part of our act together.

Blue Apron

All of Blue Apron’s recipes are designed to be cooked, start to finish, in 40 minutes or less. And because the portioning has been handled and the instructions are so simple, some nights I’ll cook two meals simultaneously – one for dinner, and another for lunches for a few days.

Blue Apron

Blue Apron

Blue Apron

We encourage all of our friends to give Blue Apron a try, and that includes all of you as well. It’s been so great to not have to worry about dinner, and to know that we have fresh ingredients and a delicious, quick recipe waiting for us when we need it. And even though there’s no commitment and you can cancel at any time, you might find what we did – that you just don’t want to cancel it.

Blue Apron

The first 50 of our readers to sign up will get three free meals right now, just click here to get started or visit their site to see upcoming recipes. And with Mother’s Day coming up, Blue Apron is a great gift to give. Julia and I have gifted Blue Apron to both of our mothers and they loved how unique a gift it was, and that they were able to try something new.

What do you think?

  1. Corine says:

    We’ve loved everything we’ve ever tried from Blue Apron. Totally expanded my palate. We’ve made and loved things I would never even think to order at a restaurant. I feel like a chef (or like Chris Marcum) every time I make a Blue Apron meal. Using them for meal prep is genius!

  2. Jessica says:

    I have to agree with other commenter, the amount of packaging made me feel so guilty (the ice packs!). With all the creativity those goes into the meal planning and distribution, I wish they would harness that for reducing the amount of waste/recycling that comes with each shipment. I feel a design charrette opportunity coming on!

  3. Katy says:

    I love meal services and liked the menu presented on Blue Apron, but after signing up, I felt none of the weeks reflected what they showed initially for menus. Also a bit frustrating that half the menu grays out depending on what you’re trying to choose for meals. I have too picky of eaters to try to decide between “squid ink pasta” and “spicy mushroom squash tacos”.

    None of that is on you, of course, and cheers to having a better palate than my husband :) I think the idea of using the meals for lunch prep is a great idea.

    • Brynn says:

      Katy- just wanted to let you know that blue apron is currently in Beta testing to allow customers complete control of menu options. Hopefully it’ll be available to everyone soon! I agree that the current limitations are frustrating.

  4. Kimberly says:

    I would love it if there was more in the way of diet restrictions (I know you don’t actually have control of this). If there was a way to specify gluten free I would jump all over the chance to try a service like this for a couple lunch/dinners a week.

    • Jasmine says:

      Sunbasket! They offer the same deal as Blue Apron with 3 of 6 meals free in your first box. Gluten free, paleo, and vegetarian options.

  5. Brenda Kliethermes says:

    I tried Blue Apron and the food was excellent, but there was so much waste in the packaging. I just couldn’t resolve myself to having all that extra packaging to try to re-use or re-cycle on a weekly basis. Any ideas for using a service like this without the waste?

    • Alex E. says:

      I completely agree. We loved the food, but we were turned off by the waste. I saw another service recently called Terra’s Kitchen that has far less waste and sends everything in a shipping refrigerator that you ship back to Terra’s Kitchen for reuse (no cost to do so).

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