Dinner Made Simple with Blue Apron


As a university student, I don’t have a ton of time on weeknights to dedicate to cooking and being too creative.  We usually have a pretty regimented dinner schedule with burgers on Mondays and pizza on Fridays and Saturdays, filling in the days in between with grilled cheese sandwiches, chicken, or pasta.  After hearing about Blue Apron on all of my favorite podcasts week after week, we decided to give Blue Apron a shot this week and that was an awesome decision.  It’s a mail order food service that sends fresh, pre-portioned food right to your doorstep with meal cards detailing exactly how to make incredible meals weekly.  I made an account and was given a selection of 6 meals to choose 3 from for the coming week.  It was a hard decision but we decided on the Spinach and Fresh Mozzarella Pizza, Seared Salmon and Lemon Labneh, and Chicken “Under a Brick”.  I chose for the food to be delivered the following Wednesday and was pleasantly surprised when it came right on time, especially mail up here seems to always take an extra day or two.  All of the food that came was in perfect condition and very fresh (plus the packaging is adorable!)

I thought the little newspaper that came with it, “Season’s Best” was such a cute touch! You can also pair on a wine that complements you meal (each card had suggested wines) for a little bit more, which we passed on doing.

This was everything that came in the box!

For the first meal, we made the Seared Salmon and Lemon Labneh which ended up the favorite out of the three meals! It’s rare that I eat salmon so it was a nice change to have it! I thought the lemon labneh on top was such a lovely touch and it was on a bed of Freekah, which I had never tried before but ended up enjoying quite a lot.

This was the kale, date, and garlic sauteing for the freekah.

Ta da! The finished product!

The following night was pizza night! This was the Spinach and Fresh Mozzarella Pizza which also had shallots, green bell pepper, and olives on it.  It was definitely the easiest of the meals to make and it was done very quick;y.  I thought it was quite a gorgeous pizza when it was finished and topped with ricotta, red pepper flakes, and parmesan! Definitely a bit more fun than a normal pepperoni and cheese pizza!

Last, but not least was the Chicken “Under a Brick”.  I had never heard of chicken being prepared this way so it was a whole new experience.  I was a big fan of the carrots and potatoes that were served with it, I thought they were flavored so well with a wonderful italian dressing! I actually made the mistake when I was making this of going to flip the chicken and realizing the burner was off… earlier I had to switch burners and had turned the one in front on instead… whoops.  But nonetheless, it worked out, it just took longer than expected because of my mistake!

Isn’t that a beauty?

I really enjoyed Blue Apron and it was an awesome way to have home-cooked meals without a lot of the hassle of going to the store, something that’s not always realistic on busy days.  It allowed us to be adventurous and try foods that otherwise would not have been on our radars or even available up here! If you want to try it, grab this coupon for $30 off your first purchase at Blue Apron–> https://ooh.li/bd2c789

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Sheet Pan Lemon Rosemary Chicken and Veggies

Sheet Pan Lemon Rosemary Chicken and Veggies – An easy sheet pan meal made with chicken, potatoes, asparagus, lemons, and a delicious blend of seasonings! Perfect for busy weeknights!

So I finally got on board with sheet pan meals.  I have been seeing them everywhere for a while now but was finally sold when I was looking at the recipe for a ranch chicken meal and was thinking about how good that sounded with a few changes, including not using ranch! So I made one that fit my preferences a lot more with lots and lots of little potatoes and lemons! I thought it ended up quite delicious and will definitely be making this again in the next week of two.  I even made some garlic cibatta bread with it which paired perfectly! It was actually pretty amazing how quickly this all got devoured, we ate it all in one sitting.  I am always on the lookup for new easy weeknight meals to try out and add into the rotation, this week homemade tortellini alfredo is up which is one of my favorite meals but I have yet to actually make my own alfredo sauce all of this time!

Sheet Pan Lemon Rosemary Chicken and Veggies

Ingredients

  • 6 chicken breasts
  • 1/2 lb asparagus
  • 3 cups red skin potatoes (quartered)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 lemon (sliced)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and spray sheet pan with non-stick spray.
  2. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, rosemary, thyme, black pepper, and salt.
  3. Spread chicken, potatoes, and asparagus on sheet pan, spreading seasonings evenly on top.
  4. Top with lemon slices.
  5. Cook for 35-40 minutes or until chicken is fully cooked through.

 

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Dorot Basil Garlic Butter Pierogies

Dorot Basil Garlic Butter Pierogies – Frozen pierogies topped in a delicious and super simple basil garlic butter sauce using Dorot herbs.  It doesn’t get any easier than this!

So I have to let you in on a secret.  I have a new best friend.  It’s Dorot herbs.  These herbs are seriously going to knock your socks off and might just be the coolest things since sliced bread.  Yup, they are that cool.  So they come in frozen, pre-portioned cubes so you literally just pop one or two out for your recipe and you’re done! No more chopping herbs! Isn’t that the coolest?! I always hate chopping garlic especially because then my hands just reek of garlic no matter how much I scrub them but that is one issue I don’t have to worry about anymore.  No more herb-prepping! I can’t even begin to explain how excited that makes me!

I bought my two different types of Dorot herbs at my local Trader Joe’s in Ann Arbor and they were so easy to find there.  I literally walked straight into the frozen section and they were right there on the right side corner.  I grabbed both types of Dorot (and maybe a thing of cookies or two) and headed over to the checkout, eager to get home and start cooking.

I decided to make these basil and garlic butter pierogies and wow, they were so good and oh so simple! The pierogies were frozen since I was going so a simple dinner that I could make in 30 minutes or less and they sauce was SO easy to whip up since I didn’t have to chop up any the basil and garlic since I was using Dorot! Being a college student, I just don’t have a ton of time to dedicate to cooking so any shortcuts I can take are so helpful!

Oh, and did I mention this recipe is vegetarian?!

Check out this video to see how great Dorot is in action!

Dorot Basil Garlic Butter Pierogies

Ingredients

  • 16 oz box frozen pierogies
  • 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 Dorot garlic cubes
  • 2 Dorot basil cubes
  • 2 tbsp butter

Directions

  1. Cook pierogies according to package directions.
  2. In a skillet, melt butter and then add in all the Dorot garlic and basil cubes.
  3. Add in liquid and cornstarch, bringing the sauce to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat to simmer until thickened.
  5. Let cool before serving!

You are going to love trying Dorot herbs! Save $1 on them using this coupon!

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Pepperoni Pizza Pretzels

Pepperoni Pizza Pretzels – Everything you love about pizza and pretzels combined into one tasty snack! The pretzels are stuffed with pepperoni and cheese then baked to golden perfection!

I’m on a pretzel kick right now! Between the Cinnamon Roll Pretzels and now these Pepperoni Pizza Pretzels, I have been basically living on pseudo-pretzels.  This time though, these were savory and delicious! I stuffed them with italian blend cheese and pepperoni before twisting them into their iconic shape and smothering them with a mix of melted butter, italian seasoning, and minced garlic.  Oh, and did I mention that dipping them in pizza sauce makes the whole experience even better!

I made these before my American Literature class one day and really just ended up sitting there the whole time thinking about them, excited to dig in when I got home.  Unfortunately, I managed not to get an sides to go with them so I had to make do with boxed couscous but hey, it was still a great meal.

Pepperoni Pizza Pretzels

Ingredients

  • 1 can of pizza dough
  • 1/2 cup italian shredded cheese
  • 1/2 cup pepperonis (mini pepperonis would work best but I was unable to find them so I sliced normal sized pepperonis into 8 pieces)
  • 2 tbsp butter (melted)
  • 1/2 tsp italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Open and unroll pizza dough before slicing into 6 pieces along the shorter side of the rectangular pizza dough.
  3. Sprinkle italian cheese and pepperonis evenly across the slices of pizza dough.
  4. Fold each pizza dough slice over horizontally so that the edges meet and pinch the dough in along where they meet so that the cheese and pepperoni are inside.
  5. Twist into the shape of a pretzel.  Cross the dough and twist the dough around where it crosses.  Place the ends near the middle of the dough with a bit of space inbetween.
  6. In a small bowl, combine the melted butter, italian seasoning, and minced garlic.  Drizzle on top of the pretzels.
  7. Sprinkle parmesan on top of pretzels.
  8. Place pretzels onto a cookie sheet with parchment paper as lining.
  9. Bake for 20 minutes or until lightly browned.
  10. Pull out the pretzels and let cool before eating!

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