FOOD: Transforming the American Table

Modern Convenience

Meal kit services deliver fresh ingredients and grocery items, along with recipe cards, to subscribers’ homes. They became popular in the 2010s, especially in households where women were employed in jobs outside of the home and willing to pay for the convenience of ready-to-cook meals. Those who regularly cook from meal kits not only find them a handy way to obtain groceries, but also a pathway to discovering new cooking techniques, ingredients, and flavors. While some praise meal kits for their convenience, others criticize their use of packing material, their environmental impact, and their sometimes prohibitive cost.

Blue Apron box, 2017

Blue Apron box, 2017

Gift of Stevan Fisher

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Blue Apron Alsatian spiced chicken recipe card

Blue Apron Alsatian spiced chicken recipe card

Gift of Hillery York

Blue Apron asparagus & summer squash curry

Blue Apron asparagus & summer squash curry

Gift of Hillery York

Blue Apron seared chicken recipe card

Blue Apron seared chicken recipe card

Gift of Hillery York

Hello Fresh nutritional info card for week 06

Hello Fresh nutritional info card for week 06

Gift of Ashley Rose Young

Sun Basket housemade ramen noodles packaging

Sun Basket housemade ramen noodles packaging

iPhone, 2016

iPhone, 2016

Time-starved modern home cooks use every tool available to them, including their phones. Smartphone apps help some home cooks plan and prepare meals by providing recipe suggestions, shopping lists, food delivery options, and helpful cooking tips and tricks. Some meal kit companies have apps that streamline the ordering process and also provide video tutorials of how to prepare recipe selections for the week.