During my time in LA this spring, I had the opportunity to sample some meals from a local private chef. I was staying in an apartment in busy, noisy Hollywood so there wasn’t any room service and I dreaded walking around the tourist-packed neighborhood, looking for carryout. I used Seamless and TryCaviar a bit, but it was much more expensive than in NYC.
Part of the point of me renting an apartment instead of a hotel room was the ability to cook but – guess what? – I don’t love cooking and in someone else’s kitchen, I got lazy.
When I tasted the chef’s food and heard her pricing, I jumped on it. Her area of emphasis was low carb, gluten-free and dairy-free cooking so the fact that the meals would be healthy was a big bonus. Let’s be honest: my natural tastes don’t often lead me toward the healthy choices.
Ultimately I spent less than $70 two have five lovely, health-conscious, heat-and-eat meals delivered to me. It was a great move.
But now I’m back in Brooklyn where just about any craving can be delivered to your door in under an hour, often for no delivery fee. That’s great in theory but I knew I needed to find some healthy go to options.
I knew Blue Apron wasn’t for me–I like shopping for groceries, but not cooking them. Fortunately googling “budget friendly personal chef Brooklyn” turned up results, one of which I am loving: CookUnity.
Somewhat corny name aside, CookUnity is just perfect for someone like me who is, by turns, snobbish, hungry and picky. They list every ingredient in a dish. I don’t like a mystery when it comes to food.
Each dish shows an estimated calorie count (fine) but also lets you sort for things like “gluten-free” (not me) and “soy free” if you subscribe to any of these approaches to eating.
The dishes are delivered clearly marked including with very specific heating instructions (e.g., pour enclosed sauce over entree before heating; don’t reheat the plastic lid).
My one complaint is that the minimum for delivery is higher than, say, Seamless and there is a delivery fee. But I love supporting independent chefs and knowing what’s in my meals.
So far, the piperade chicken with farro has been my favorite. While the dish sounded basic, the flavor was terrific. I’ll definitely order it again.
One bonus? Each meal comes with a little cookie. I like cookies.
While this isn’t a sponsored post, I do have a referral link here that gets you (and me!) $15 in credit each. CookUnity is only in NYC right now (unfortunately).