Until recently, I thought the freezer was for ice cream and ice cubes and nothing else. Let me explain: I grew up with a German mother who went to the grocery store (or rather stores, because she liked the deli ham from this one, but that one had a better price on yogurt) at least once a day. She shopped for what she was making that day, maybe the next, but stocking up just wasn't part of her routine—and it wasn't part of mine, either.
Not only did I not stock my freezer (or my fridge), I will admit that I turned my nose down at frozen food. It felt, somehow, like cheating. And if it was frozen, it couldn't be fresh, right?
Daily Harvest, a meal subscription service that delivers "real, unprocessed, unrefined foods in the most convenient format possible: frozen," proved me wrong. The company delivers frozen, preportioned cups of fruits, vegetables, grains and other healthy ingredients. They go straight into your freezer until you're ready for your morning smoothie, latte, or chia parfait. There are also harvest bowls, soups, and even nondairy sundaes.
We chatted with Daily Harvest founder Rachel Drori about the healthy meal service trend, the building blocks of a great smoothie, and the "shiggle."
Rachael Ray Every Day: Healthy meal delivery is officially a thing. When did that happen?
Rachel Drori: We started to see a surge of meal services around 2012, around the same time that people began getting comfortable with grocery delivery services. It wasn’t until very recently that outsourcing errands like groceries and laundry became "normal."
People are increasingly conscious of what they’re putting into their bodies and the effect that food has on overall wellbeing, but they have increasingly less time to research recipes, shop for ingredients, and cook the foods they want to be eating. Healthy meal solutions are the happy medium.
RRED: How is Daily Harvest different from other services?
RD: Many options still come with their fair share of downsides: fresh produce spoils, chopping and prepping ingredients takes time, and then there’s the clean-up associated with cooking at the end of it all.
Daily Harvest is different because everything is ready to prepare on your own time in under 5 minute. Our frozen format allows us to harvest produce at peak ripeness, for flavor and maximum nutrients, and also eliminates the risk of spoilage.
RRED: Okay, let's talk smoothies. What's your smartest smoothie tip?
RD: The biggest thing is making sure you use a balanced combination of whole, unprocessed, mostly organic fruits and vegetables, healthy fats and clean proteins.
RRED: Do you have a favorite source of protein?
RD: I don't always add protein to my smoothies, but I do love a scoop of Vital Proteins. Collagen builds a healthy gut (and gives your hair and skin a lovely glow). It's also a single ingredient protein and not highly processed. Plus it tastes like nothing and doesn't alter the texture of what you are putting it in.
RRED: Bananas are a smoothie go-to, but what if you're a banana hater?
RD: Some people are pretty anti-banana, so we offer lots of recipes without it. The smooth creamy texture that bananas create can also be achieved using frozen sweet potatoes, cauliflower, coconut meat, or zucchini.
RRED: Best greens for smoothies?
RD: We love spinach and kale. They're both packed with nutrients and readily available at most supermarkets. If you're every feeling like you need a little spice, try arugula. It's packed with nutrition and pairs wonderfully with many fruits.
RRED: Do you have a favorite blender?
RD: I love the Vitamix but the Ninja is great too. Any blender works really, but some require a bit more shiggle if you like your smoothies thick.
RRED: Tell us about the shiggle.
RD: The shiggle! The shiggle is the shake and jiggle combo one can use if the blade in your blender spins out or frozen pieces are getting stuck in your blender. It's the best way to achieve soft serve-like consistency and overcome most of your blending consistency woes.
Have we made you a freezer believer? To get started with your own delivery plan, explore your options here.