This review is not sponsored or anything at all. #2 has just been nagging me to do it since everybody else is doing blue apron [which #2 still doesn’t really understand] and we’ve been doing this one instead. We get no money from this post.
Purple Carrot is like Blue Apron except it’s vegan [#2 understands this a little better because she imagines if you’ve grown up in a meat-eaters culture, it’s harder to come up with tasty new vegetarian recipes all the time]. Each week we get a box with 3 meals (for 2 people) in it. The servings are frequently on the small side, though. Currently our plan is that my partner cooks on Wednesdays and Sundays, and I cook on Fridays. (The rest of the time we fend for ourselves.) Neither one of us is actually a vegan, but we couldn’t find good vegetarian options for my partner (he’s ovo-lacto veggie) because most other services had one dumb vegetarian option each week (pasta and a salad, we already know that, duh!). A nice side effect of it being vegan is that I never worry whether the food is staying cold enough in the cold box while waiting outside our door for me to open it when I get home from work: no meat, no dairy, mostly stuff that won’t give you food poisoning at a picnic if it gets a little warm. It does stay cold in that box, though. Even though I eat meat, I’m not sure I want raw meat in a box that sits.
We have been using Purple Carrot since June 2016. The fact that we’re still using it almost a year later is a review in itself, I guess. Like any meal service, you can pause your subscription or skip weeks if you’re going to be out of town or just don’t like the upcoming menu. Unlike other services, you don’t get to pick the food– you can either get all the food that week or none. That’s it. We’re doing it this way in order to eat more vegetables and try to have at least some healthy food. Also to avoid decisions — all we have is go/no-go and not “what do we pick?”
Some recipes we both end up not liking (rare). Sometimes one of us likes it more than the other. Sometimes we agree that the food is just a bit… odd, though not bad. And sometimes we have a BIG hit that’s delicious, nutritious, and that we didn’t have to think up ourselves (or shop for, or decide among millions of recipes, resulting in paralysis).
For us, it’s worth the cost 3x/wk, at least for now. We might stop at some point in order to save money, or if it stops being worth it for us. Below I’ll put a few of our favorite recipes that we loved.
https://www.purplecarrot.com/plant-based-recipes/mustard-glazed-tempeh-with-red-kraut-and-smashed-beets (it helps if you like German food, which I do and my partner doesn’t)
https://www.purplecarrot.com/plant-based-recipes/drunken-noodles (easily modifiable with other veg you have lying around)
https://www.purplecarrot.com/plant-based-recipes/miso-glazed-peaches-and-eggplant-with-rice-noodles-and-minted-spinach (one of the highlights of all time)
https://www.purplecarrot.com/plant-based-recipes/pumpkin-fettuccine-alfredo-with-crispy-sage-and-broccoli-rabe (surprisingly delicious, though it would be better with cream)
https://www.purplecarrot.com/plant-based-recipes/meyer-lemon-forbidden-rice-risotto-with-sweet-peas (not actually a risotto but very tasty)
https://www.purplecarrot.com/plant-based-recipes/spring-radish-fattoush-with-sumac-vinaigrette-minted-basmati-rice (#2 tried this with CSA veggies replacing sumac with lemon zest and liked it too. Add some feta and you’ll increase the joy. Noms!)
Grumpeteers, has anyone tried Hello Fresh though? I’m thinking of trying that one day. Other thoughts? Who likes to eat veggies? How do you get veggies into your life?