In my quest to add real food cooked in our real kitchen to our daily lives, in addition to pulling together recipes that look realistic and good, I've also been looking at some of the sites that either help with meal planning or actually putting together a meal. So far, most don't really suit what I think I can expect to be actually eaten to make ordering from Blue Apron or Plated worth it for me, I do see what I great option those site are for, well, people who actually eat food. Not, near facsimile of food-like concoctions that don't scare the fragile, food fearing creatures that inhabit my house. Someday, perhaps, if I dare to dream, we too may eat Zucchini Fritters with Endive, Nectarine & Parmesan Salad (from Blue Apron) or Grilled Vegetables with Pesto, Ricotta, and Mint (from plated) or Mushroom and Cauliflower Tacos with Quinoa (from Hello Fresh). I like that all 3 offer vegetarian options with great ingredients and can make even an out of the ordinary meal simple enough to prep for dinner at home. I also really like that Blue Apron offers up the recipes on the site or via email each week even if you're not ordering meals.
Right now though, if I tried to serve anything that looked as suspicious as endive or cauliflower, I'd have a whole lot of leftovers to pack up while I was making the replacement dinner. I'm working on it, but we're not there quite yet. My goal right now is to get everyone tasting new things, sneaking them in where I can and building up to being able to make 1 dinner per night that everyone will likely eat a decent amount of without fuss, throwing it on the floor or spitting it out in my hand. Building up to the point where planning a menu for the week is actually possible, then comes the real food.
So, for now, I'm sticking to sites that include recipes that offer recipes that I can easily adapt to the state of food that we are in right now and keep us moving forward to our goal of being people that actually eat food. These are a few of my favorites so far.
This one is perfect for me because it's both made for vegetarians AND takes kids into consideration. Everything is simple, straightforward, quick and easy. Many offer vegatrain versions of classic favorites. There is even a meal plan option through the companion site, GetMealPlans.com, that offers what looks to be like something we might be able to actually use in the future. Several cookbooks are also available.
I have loved Martha since the very beginning and my 2 main cookbooks are by Martha (The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook: Original Classics & Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook. Though filled with tons of non-vegetarian options, the site contains a wealth of great vegetarian recipes, easily organized into convenient categories like "vegetarian sandwiches & wraps" and "vegetarian for kids". I can never get enough good sandwich ideas. My next cookbook acquisition will be Meatless (though I may have actually already downloaded the e-book version). And then, of course, there are the desserts, which can even be searched by mood.
One of my most favorite sites because I love the recipes and it's fun. I'm looking forward to the cookbook coming out this fall, available for pre-order on Amazon. (this is just a link. I honestly do have an affiliate account, but I cannot be bothered to use it. at the moment.) You might just feel bullied into cooking something awesome.
This is one of the first, and few, sites that I actually subscribed to the daily email updates for. The photography is lovely and so are the recipes. That blueberry crumb cake above is just the start. It's not all vegetarian, so there's plenty for everyone. And, yes, there is now a cookbook too.