How We’ve Expanded our Taste Buds and Simplified our Pantry

posted by Andrea | 02/23/2017
Print pageEmail page

While I don’t think I’m completely “stuck in a rut” when it comes to trying new recipes, I will admit to usually making recipes with “normal” ingredients I already have in the house — because I hate buying specific spices, oils, vinegars, or sauces just for one recipe (especially if I’m not even sure we’ll like the recipe).

If I’m going to try a new recipe that has an unusual ingredient in it, I usually look up possible substitutes online and try to make due with something I already have in the house — or I just skip the ingredient all together 🙂

I realize how ridiculous this might sound to many of you more adventurous chefs, but I just hate cluttering up my pantry and refrigerator with nearly-full containers of something I purchased because I needed 1 Tablespoon, 1/2 teaspoon, or 1/4 cup for a new recipe. But I do like the idea of expanding our family’s taste buds.

Can anyone relate or am I totally alone in this weirdness?

.

Fortunately, thanks to our MANY Blue Apron deliveries over the past 2 years, we have enjoyed several amazing recipes I would have never tried on my own; as well as a bunch of new spices, seasonings, sauces, and flavor combinations — all without cluttering up our pantry or refrigerator with jars and bottles we’ll never use again.

The Blue Apron meals and recipes come with pre-measured spices, seasonings, sauces, oils, and vinegars that are the perfect amount for each individual recipe — but nothing more. Which means we’ve been able to try more “exotic” flavor combos like Chicken Yakiniku with Sesame Carrots and Garlic Rice, Spicy Shrimp Coconut Curry, or Tangelo and Honey-Glazed Salmon without buying 20 different sauces and seasonings.

.

We recently enjoyed Creamy Shrimp Spaghetti — and even James gobbled it up!

I don’t know why I never think my kids will like a lemon sauce on pasta — but they do. And this recipe used “Quark cheese” something I’d never heard of before (it was amazing!)

Over a year ago, we devoured our favorite Catfish recipe (my first experience with pasta and lemon sauce) and it’s still one of our favorite ways to eat fish at home. I’m positive I would have never come up with that flavor combo if it weren’t for our Blue Apron meals.

Who here has tried Cracked Freekeh?

We hadn’t until a few months ago — it doesn’t have much flavor on it’s own, but was delicious served with Cod, a bunch of veggies, and a really yummy lemon herb sauce!

Another recent favorite was the Sesame Chicken with Bok Choy and Jasmine Rice.

I never seem to have the right seasonings in the house for Asian foods — but since Dave and I (and the kids) love Asian food, it is such a treat to get all the seasonings and sauces we need in pre-measured containers, ready for me to make the meal!

Another super crazy (and amazingly tasty) Asian-inspired meal was Beef Dukbokki with Quick Kimchi and Fresh Peas.

Wow, was that delicious. We had to fight over the last few bites because everyone wanted just a little bit more — and all the seasonings and sauces were ready to go for me!

Even something more “normal” like the Cheesy Chicken and Black Bean Enchiladas we had a couple weeks ago were so full of flavor because I made my own Salsa Verde (starting by roasting tomatillos — something I’ve never done before!).

And back in December, one of our meals was a simple cheeseburger, BUT the recipe suggested sauteing the onions in balsamic vinegar before adding them to our burgers and WOW was that amazing!

SO simple, and SO flavorful — I’ve been sauteing our onions for burgers in balsamic vinegar ever since!

Did you know you can make these delicious recipes at home… for free?

The Blue Apron recipes are available for free on their website — all easily searchable by Cuisine, Season, or Main Ingredient.

However, if you’d like to make your job just a bit easier, you can get all the ingredients delivered to your doorstep for free too!

Blue Apron is offering THREE (3!) FREE meals to the first 100 people who place their first order via this link!!

If you enjoy cooking but feel like you make the same bland foods over and over again, or like you waste a bunch of money on spices and seasonings you never end up using again, I would highly encourage you to give Blue Apron a try.

There is NO commitment and you’re NOT tied down to any sort of contract or schedule. You can skip shipments any time, or cancel your account completely if you feel the service isn’t right for you.

I know I have thoroughly enjoyed spreading my culinary wings just a little bit, trying so many new flavor combos, tinkering with different ingredients, and finding several new recipes our family will enjoy for years to come!

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Blue Apron. All opinions are my own. 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Filed under: FoodMeal PlanningPantry Stockpile

 
 

Leave a comment

13 comments

  1. Mara Yager

    02/25/2017

    I’ve been wanting to try this! Ordered the 2 person 3 meals package for only $30 with your code! That’s only $5/serving for one adultra dinner so that’s a great price! We’re very excited ty for your helpful post!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    great deal!!!

    [Reply]

  2. lyss

    02/24/2017

    I bet I would LOVE something like blue apron. But it’s not exactly super affordable. I would blow nearly my entire weekly food budget on 2 meals! Good thing you followed this post with one on contentment! lol. Maybe one day… : )

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    haha — well at least I go you with the contentment post! I guess the BlueApron thing is sort of a fun splurge for us right now (considering we never EVER go on dates and almost spend $0 going out to eat since we usually just go to Culver’s with gift cards!) With 3 little kids it’s easier just to stay home, so this is a fun way for us to be able to stay home and enjoy a fun meal (and definitely cheaper than going out and getting a babysitter!)

    [Reply]

  3. Jennifer

    02/23/2017

    Mmmm! I hope they know how divinely you show their meals!! you have made me very tempted to try Blue Apron!

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    haha thanks 🙂

    [Reply]

  4. Chrissy

    02/23/2017

    Do you feel like the family size box fills your family pretty well? We also have 3 kids, very close in age to yours, and my hesitation has always been that it wouldn’t be enough food for us.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, the family size is enough for our family (although i always serve fruit and bread/rolls with every meal too sometimes a salad depending on what the meal is). Also, Dave and I often get the 2-person meal and use it as a fun way to have a little “date night at home” with a fancier recipe. We let the kids have chicken nuggets or something simple and then we make our Blue Apron meal just for us 🙂

    [Reply]

  5. Chris

    02/23/2017

    Sounds fun! Do you get to choose ahead of time what you want?

    [Reply]

    Chris Reply:

    Never mind! I figured it out. Thank you.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yes, you can choose from a short list of recipes and if you don’t like the recipes for that week, just skip them and move to a week where the recipes sound more your style.

    [Reply]

    Chris Reply:

    I just wanted to check back and tell you I am currently eating my first Blue Apron meal. I probably would have never ordered it, even with the great discount, if my January grocery budget had not been extremely low. I am not sure if we will continue it or not, but this meal is absolutely delicious! Thanks again.

    [Reply]

    Andrea Reply:

    yay!! Glad you like it!
    I just found out that my parents signed up and are getting their first shipment tomorrow 🙂

    [Reply]