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Blue Apron Subscription Box Review + Coupon – April 2016

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BlueApron-April-2016-Box

Blue Apron is a subscription meal delivery service. Every week, they send seasonal recipes created by their culinary team and all of the pre-measured ingredients you need to make them at home. Each meal contains 500-700 calories and takes about 35 minutes to cook.

Check out all of our reviews of Meal Delivery Services to see every meal kit subscription box option!

BlueApron-April-2016-Inside

In addition to their 2-Person Subscription Plan, which features seasonally-inspired meals for two, Blue Apron also offers a Family Plan that features kid-friendly recipes and family-style meals for four. (Note that this is a review of the 2-Person Subscription Plan.)

Blue Apron also offers a monthly add-on wine subscription. You can find a review of that subscription here.

It’s easy to skip deliveries and cancel your subscription through the Blue Apron website.

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes.)

BlueApron-April-2016-Contents

The Subscription Box: Blue Apron

The Cost: $59.94 for 3 recipes on the 2-Person Plan, $69.92 for 2 recipes on the Family Plan, $139.84 for 4 recipes on the Family Plan.

COUPON: Get two free meals on your first order! No code needed, just use this link

The Products: Fresh ingredients and recipes to make healthy meals at home.

Ships to: US

Check out all of our Blue Apron Reviews and find other meal boxes in the Meal Subscription Box Directory!

Keep Track of your subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

BlueApron-April-2016-AllRecipes

When I placed my order with Blue Apron, I was automatically assigned 3 recipes; however, it was easy to go back into my account to pick new ones. Certain combinations of dishes are not allowed, though, so depending on which recipes I selected first, certain other recipes became unavailable.

BlueApron-April-2016-MyRecipes

When my box shipped, I received an email reminding me which dishes I’d picked.

BlueApron-April-2016-Newsletter

Inside each box, Blue Apron includes their newsletter, “From the Farm.”

BlueApron-April-2016-NewsletterBack

This issue spotlights the pink lemon! I’ve never cooked with (or heard of) pink lemon before, so I’m thrilled to receive one in this box!

Unlike many meal boxes, Blue Apron doesn’t group their ingredients by recipe. I like that this limits packaging, but it does slow down the meal preparation process slightly. (I also try to quarantine the Blue Apron ingredients in my fridge, so I don’t use a recipe ingredient for something else by mistake.) The “knick knacks” for each recipe are bagged together, though, which helps.

Recipe #1- Za’atar Chicken & Pearl Couscous with Asparagus and Pink Lemon Compote

Calories: 700 per serving

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20-30 minutes

BlueApron-April-2016-ChickenRecipe

I started my week of Blue Apron meals with Za’atar Chicken & Pearl Couscous. I love za’atar, and I couldn’t wait to try the pink lemon!

BlueApron-April-2016-ChickenRecipeBack

On the back of each recipe card, Blue Apron provides step-by-step instructions.

BlueApron-April-2016-ChickenPrep

I began by washing and prepping my produce and boiling the couscous.

BlueApron-April-2016-ChickenLemon

Next, I made the lemon compote by combining segments of pink lemon with agave nectar, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. I set it aside to marinate, and I moved on to the chicken.

BlueApron-April-2016-ChickenChicken

I seasoned the chicken breasts and coated them with za’atar. I then cooked them in a medium-hot pan with some olive oil. When the chicken was done, I wiped out the pot and cooked the asparagus. When it turned bright green, I stirred in the cooked couscous, some lemon zest, a little water, salt, and pepper.

BlueApron-April-2016-ChickenPlated

I divided the couscous between two plates, topped each one with a chicken breast, and topped the plated with lemon compote and chives.

This dish was delicious! Maybe it’s just my imagination, but the pink lemon tasted milder than typical yellow lemons. Regardless, the compote was the perfect finish to this dish. Both my husband and I thought it was great.

Korean Bao Sliders with Gochujang Mayo & Sweet Potato Tempura

Calories: 700 per serving

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20-30 minutes

BlueApron-April-2016-BaoRecipe

Next up, I made Korean Bao Sliders.

BlueApron-April-2016-BaoPrep

First, I cleaned and prepped my produce and made the gochujang mayo (by mixing mayo with gochujang).

BlueApron-April-2016-BaoMix

To make the meatballs, I combined black bean sauce, scallion whites, ginger, and gochujang into ground beef. I divided the mix into six balls and flattened each one into a patty.

BlueApron-April-2016-BaoFry

I set the patties aside and made the sweet potato tempura. The batter was a simple mix of flour, water, salt, and pepper, and I dunked each slice of sweet potato into it before plopping down in a pot of hot oil. I fried the first round of slices according to Blue Apron’s instructions, but I found their suggested cooking time to be far too long. They recommended cooking the slices for 4-6 minutes per side, but after that long the first batch had blackened. For the second batch, I reduced the heat slightly and found a cooking time of about 1 minute per side to suffice.

BlueApron-April-2016-BaoSlices

While the sweet potato tempura waited on a paper towel-lined plate, I finished the remaining components of the dish: frying the sliders and warming the bao buns.

When everything was cooked and ready, I plated the dish!

BlueApron-April-2016-BaoPlated

The sweet potato tempura turned out really well, and I liked the bao sliders. I think I would have preferred them with pickled vegetables, though. I felt they needed something with a little acid to cut through the richness of the beef and mayo.

Also, it’s important to note that the final step of this recipe called for serving only 2/3 of both the sliders and sweet potato. This seemed so odd! I can only assume that it’s because Blue Apron tries to limit the calorie content of each dish to 700 calories, and when they tallied up this dish it was over. I went ahead and served everything.

Creamy Lemon Pasta with English Peas, Mint, and Garlic Breadcrumbs

Calories: 700 per serving

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15-25 minutes

BlueApron-April-2016-PastaRecipe

The last dish in this Blue Apron box was Creamy Lemon Pasta.

BlueApron-April-2016-PastaPrep

I began by shelling the peas, zesting the lemon, slicing a shallot, picking mint leaves, and cooking the pasta and peas.

BlueApron-April-2016-PastaBreadcrumbs

Next, I toasted the breadcrumbs with a whole clove of garlic in a little olive oil.

I then cooked the spinach.

BlueApron-April-2016-PastaAromatics

Lastly, I sautéed garlic and shallot in olive oil and then added in the pasta, peas, spinach, lemon zest, creme fraiche, butter, lemon juice, and a little pasta cooking water.

BlueApron-April-2016-PastaTogether

I stirred it all together and divided it between two dishes. To finish the pasta, I topped each plate with breadcrumbs, cheese, mint, and lemon.

BlueApron-April-2016-PastaPlated

This dish was okay. I love the combination of peas, mint, and lemon, so I really enjoyed this flavors, but, despite the name, I didn’t find the dish to be all that creamy. It was a little dry.

Verdict: This was a pretty good box from Blue Apron. I enjoyed all of the meals, and I especially liked the chicken dish. I also liked that this month’s box introduced me to a new ingredient that I’ve never tried before. I’ll certainly keep an eye out for pink lemons from here on out! All of the ingredients in this box arrived in great condition, and I like that the recipe cards are well designed and easy to follow. Value wise, Blue Apron is competitively priced, and I do feel that the ingredients they send are high quality. The biggest issue for me is with their meal variety. While they technically have 6 meals to choose from each week, not all meal combinations are available. Moving forward, I would love to see them offer a more diverse selection.

Do you subscribe to Blue Apron?

Written by Lindsey Morse

Lindsey Morse

Lindsey is a professional baker by day and a subscription box junkie by night. She first subscribed to Birchbox in 2013 and her addiction grew when she signed up for Graze, PopSugar, and Knoshy. Her favorite part about being a subscription box addict is discovering new products- especially gourmet goodies, beauty products, and kitchen tools!
All views in this review are the opinion of the author. My Subscription Addiction will never accept payment in exchange for a review, but will accept a box at no cost to provide honest opinions on the box. This post may contain affiliate/referral links. Read the complete My Subscription Addiction disclosure.

5 Comments

  1. I’ve gotten 3 boxes now (family size) and they do group the ingredients by recipe in my boxes. For example, last week, both my recipes used scallions, and I got one bag with one scallion in it, and another bag with two scallions.

  2. I got a free box to try and couldn’t come up with items that I wanted and that they would allow combined.

  3. I realize that these are meant to be in a lower calorie range but does your husband think there is enough food in a meal? My husband is not calorie conscious & usually eats a big dinner and I am just not sure if these would have “enough”.

    • I’ve been cooking with BA for a year now, and my husband and I have never had a problem with the portion sizes. There’s definitely enough food, without feeling hungry or, conversely, like you pigged out. Some of the “sandwich meals” seem smaller, but there’s still enough.

  4. The fact that you can’t really choose between six menus (which really isn’t a huge amount of choice) really turns me off to this subscription.

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