We include products that we think our readers will find useful. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Learn about our process.
Blue Apron is one of the first meal kit delivery services to the scene, and they vow to make cooking fun and easy.
The Blue Apron name came about as a tribute to chefs-in-training who wore blue aprons.
Today, Blue Apron hopes its name inspires others to discover new elements of preparing and cooking food through its fresh ingredient and recipe delivery service.
This article provides a detailed Blue Apron review, explaining how it works, its pros and cons, and whether it’s worth the money.
How it works
Blue Apron is a subscription-based meal kit delivery service that takes care of menu planning and grocery shopping.
Here’s how the program works:
1. Choose your menu
Begin by creating an account through their website or app.
Blue Apron offers a variety of menus to choose from including:
- Signature: Choose from menus that are Weight Watchers-approved, diabetes-friendly, plant-based, and low calorie.
- Vegetarian: Meat-free dishes with plenty of fresh produce.
- Wellness: Balanced, nutritionist-approved recipes for a variety of goals and dietary preferences.
With the Signature menus, you will have the choice of one premium recipe, which introduces you to specialty protein combinations, advanced culinary techniques, and unique flavor twists.
Depending on the menu you choose, you can select up to four different recipes that serve two or four people per week.
Similar to other subscription-based meal kit delivery services like Home Chef, Blue Apron will use information from your chosen menu and dietary preferences to select your meals each week, but you can select different meals if don’t like the ones selected for you.
In addition to your selected meals, you have the option to order add-ons like proteins, appetizers, sides, and desserts.
Blue Apron allows you to choose which day of the week you’d like your box delivered, and you can make changes to your order about one week in advance of your scheduled delivery date.
Your Blue Apron subscription will automatically renew and you will be charged the amount shown in your order confirmation email each week until you modify or cancel your plan.
2. Delivery and unboxing
Blue Apron delivers to all locations in the continental United States.
Once your order has shipped, you’ll receive an email notification that includes your order details and a tracking number.
Blue Apron recommends placing all perishable items in the refrigerator immediately upon delivery since they are temperature sensitive, but you don’t have to be home to receive the box.
To keep ingredients cool during their transit, Blue Apron packs the boxes with insulated thermal liners and refrigerants.
The ingredients are clearly labeled so you can organize them by recipe and pull out only the ingredients you need.
3. Cook and enjoy
Blue Apron meals typically take 20–45 minutes to make.
The included ingredients are all pre-measured so all you have to do is cook and enjoy.
Although Blue Apron includes the main ingredients, you do need to have salt, pepper, and olive oil on hand.
You also need basic cooking ware, like a cutting board, knives, pots, pans, bowls, and spatulas.
You can prepare the meal using the included step-by-step recipe cards or cook along using the app.
There are several pros to cooking with Blue Apron.
It promotes a healthy lifestyle
Like HelloFresh and other meal kit delivery services, Blue Apron encourages people to cook at home.
Blue Apron can also introduce you to new ingredients and cooking techniques that you may not be familiar with.
Blue Apron allows you to customize your meals by swapping, adding, or upgrading the ingredients in your box for the Signature menu plan.
For example, you could exchange one ingredient for another, like cod for salmon or starch for extra veggies.
These changes may result in additional costs.
Meal prep options
If you’re looking to free up more of your time, Blue Apron offers meal prep options.
Blue Apron meal prep allows you to cook one time and get eight servings of food in under two hours.
The meal prep plan provides four different recipes so you don’t have to eat the same thing day after day.
Just remember to keep your kitchen cupboards stocked with plenty of reheatable food containers.
However, unlike Blue Apron’s regular boxes, you can only schedule the meal prep boxes for Fridays.
Sustainable food ingredients and packaging
Blue Apron claims a 25% lower carbon footprint than that of store-bought groceries (3).
Blue Apron attributes its lower carbon footprint to its streamlined supply chain, reduced food waste through the use of pre-measured ingredients, and lower transportation emissions.
What’s more, over 85% of Blue Apron packaging by weight is recyclable, and by 2025, Blue Apron states 100% of their packaging will be recyclable.
Blue Apron also demonstrates a strong commitment to quality and freshness by working directly with suppliers that support sustainable practices and have high standards for animal welfare.
Wine lovers rejoice.
With Blue Apron’s wine program, you can select 6 bottles of red and white wine that complement Blue Apron meals, or that can be enjoyed on their own.
Blue Apron delivers the wine once a month and ships separately from your weekly meal deliveries.
An adult 21 years of age or older must be present with a valid form of identification to sign for the Blue Apron wine delivery.
Here are a few potential cons to Blue Apron:
The cancellation process is inconvenient
Although a Blue Apron subscription comes with no commitment and you can cancel anytime, the cancelation process could be easier.
Blue Apron requires you to contact them through email so they can send you instructions on how to complete the cancellation process, and they don’t make this information easy to find.
To make the cancellation process easier, Blue Apron should clearly give users the choice to cancel in their account settings without having to email them for instructions.
It can be costly
There’s always a cost associated with convenience and Blue Apron — eliminating the menu planning and grocery shopping — is no different.
Regular Blue Apron meals start at $7.49 per serving and can cost up to 19.99 per serving for a premium meal.
The Blue Apron meal prep option costs $8.99 per serving.
Not suited for people with a food allergy
Although Blue Apron provides allergen information on the nutrition labels for each recipe and on food packaging, all of the ingredients are packaged in a facility that also processes common food allergens like wheat, milk, soy, and tree nuts.
As such, Blue Apron does not recommend ordering from them if you have a severe food allergy like celiac disease.
A final look
Blue Apron delivers pre-measured ingredients with step-by-step recipe cards right to your door — no matter where you are in the United States.
The meal kit delivery service promotes a healthy lifestyle by encouraging you to cook at home, and cooking with Blue Apron can introduce you to new cooking techniques and ingredients that may be unique to you.
Blue Apron’s meal prep and wine delivery service along with its prioritization of environmentally friendly packaging and sustainable ingredient sourcing are also appealing.
However, Blue Apron may not fit everyone’s budget and can be inconvenient to cancel if you determine it’s not for you.
The bottom line
Blue Apron is a weekly subscription meal kit delivery service that offers meal variety and flexibility.
Benefits of Blue Apron include its flexibility, emphasis on sustainable packaging and food ingredient sourcing, meal prep and wine program offerings, and ability to support a healthy lifestyle.
However, factors related to cost, the inconvenient cancellation process, and unsuitability for people with severe food allergies can be downsides of Blue Apron.
Consider these pros and cons before trying Blue Apron.