I am always talking with other moms about what they make for dinner and where they get their ideas from—it’s what I love to talk about! The most common thing I hear among other moms is that they want to serve a nutritious meal to their families, but don’t know what to make and they can’t be bothered to search high and low for all the ingredients. When I heard about Fresh Canteen, I thought it might be a perfect answer to the never-ending dinner dilemma.
Fresh Canteen is a dinner delivery service that allows you to choose what you want for dinner from 6 menus per week. Once you have chosen which menus you want and for which days of the week you would like them delivered, you wait for your cooler bag of ingredients to be left at your doorstep. All you have to do is the final prep of the meal. Most of the ingredients are premeasured, and the fruits and vegetables are already washed. I was hesitant to try Fresh Canteen as I do enjoy preparing my meals, but even I get overwhelmed by all the menu planning and work involved.
The week that I ordered, Fresh Canteen sent me 1 meal that consisted of a flat iron steak with horseradish butter, yams, and a peach and arugula salad. I thought my family would enjoy the steak and yams, and only I would eat the peach and arugula salad.
My cooler bag arrived late in the day, so I planned to make the meal a couple days later when I didn’t have a dinner arranged. A cute little cardboard box was waiting for me when I got home. Inside was a foil-like cooler bag with all the ingredients inside, including a reusable Fresh Canteen shopping bag. Everything was perfectly packaged, the steak was in a vacuum sealed bag, the ingredients for the salad dressing were in cute little bottles, vegetables were either whole or cut to appropriate size, and the arugula was washed and stuffed in a small plastic bag. I was impressed with the presentation of all the ingredients. Everything to make the meal was included in the cooler bag, except for butter, olive oil, and vegetable oil, which I had anyway.
Step by step instructions that included photographs were included. I really liked that it stated how much time the prep would take, as my time is always limited. This meal said 40 minutes, and it was accurate. The instructions told me to first begin with the yams, then prepare the horseradish butter, followed by the salad dressing, then the steak, and finally the peach arugula salad. The flow of the recipe made perfect sense and was very easy to follow. I believe you would not need any previous cooking experience to make this meal. When it was all done, I was impressed with how delicious the food tasted, and I felt like I had (which I had) made a beautiful dinner to serve my family, minus the grocery shopping.
The cost for Fresh Canteen meals is $12.50/serving, which is comparable to what one would pay for a fully prepared meal in a grocery or specialty food store. Each meal consists of 2 servings, however my meal fed my husband and myself, plus our 2 young children. For larger families you can order 4 servings or more than one of the same recipe, i.e. 1 4-serving recipe, plus 1 2-serving recipe if you need 6 servings.
If your family is picky and wouldn’t want the sides included, this may not be for you, as you cannot customize what is included with each meal; however, while I didn’t think my children would like the peach and arugula salad, they did eat the peaches, so sometimes having something around might entice your children to try it just by being exposed to it.
I loved the convenience of Fresh Canteen, having all the ingredients ready at my fingertips made dinner stress-free. I also loved choosing from the list of recipes for the week I was ordering from—everything sounded delicious and it was a difficult decision.
With everything premeasured and ready to go, Fresh Canteen would be great to order for before going up to the cottage in the summer or away for a weekend. It would also be great for a couple nights of the week you know you don't have time to do the prep, on your "busiest" days.
The best part of Fresh Canteen is that you know you are making a healthy and tasty meal for your family, because YOU are the one putting all the ingredients together—you just don’t have to do all the decision making and running around, Fresh Canteen does it for you.
For the nights of the week that you don't order Fresh Canteen, here are 5 Kid-Friendly Ideas To Include Veggies In Family Meals and 4 Sanity-Saving Tips For Easy Weeknight Dinners.