/It’s Monday. Do you know what you’re making for dinner tonight? For those of us who didn’t do a Sunday evening grocery run, an after-work trip to the store is in order. This also means trying to figure out what to cook and attempting to remember whether there’s still a jar of pasta sauce in the pantry.
There are lots of services that want to help eliminate the need for such weekday meal scrambling. (Hm, scrambling. Frittatas for dinner?) Blue Apron will deliver you a recipe, plus the perfect portions of the ingredients you need to make it. But that does leave you at the mercy of the site’s meal planners, and their options for the week.
Instacart is hoping to give cooking enthusiasts more flexibility with similar convenience. The grocery delivery company paired with recipe site AllRecipes to get the ingredients they need to make macaroni and cheese or fish tacos on their doorstep in just a couple hours.
You can see it in action on the world’s best lasagna recipe (the recipe is shown as having five stars, but it’s not clear how official that ranking is). If you click on the Instacart button, it whisks you over to the grocery site. The list of ingredients pops up, and you can add the noodles, ground beef, and everything else you need to make the baked pasta dish. If you have a favorite pasta brand, you should be able to choose it, based on what local grocery store you’ve chosen through your Instacart account. Then you wait as a “trained Instacart personal shopper does the shopping, selects the freshest ingredients, and brings the groceries” to your home.
Such convenience comes at a price. First, there’s a $10 minimum, so you can’t just order a bulb of garlic when you’re wrist-deep in a recipe. Two-hour deliveries over $35 start at $4, and the cost for getting your groceries within an hour starts at $6. As you can see, it pays to plan ahead, so if you order from work, maybe you should order that extra jar of sauce just to be safe.
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