Easy Meals

A new product developed as part of a Design Research course

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In early 2013 before Blue Apron, Plated, and other similar products were as wildly popular, classmates and I used iterative ethnographic research to develop a new way to help people prepare fresh, healthy food at home. We started out with a concept similar to the meal kit delivery services, but as we spoke to people and collected survey results some interesting trends emerged that led us down a different path. Some of our hey "a-has":

  • People are more interested in cooking dinner for their families than for themselves.
  • People are more interested in cooking breakfast and lunch for themselves, than dinner
  • Fewer people are making lunch from scratch than any other meal
  • People mostly don't prepare their own lunches because it's inconvenient and takes too much time

Putting all this together we discovered that if our target is providing meals for families, then dinner is the best meal to provide, just like Blue Apron and Plated. However if we consider individuals as our customers rather than families, then lunch all of a sudden becomes an opportunity.

Our final proposal was for a meal kit that provides everything needed to prepare 3 days worth of lunches in just 30-60 minutes. The use case is someone spending an hour on Sunday making lunches for the week. They enjoy the experience of scratch cooking as well as the benefits of homemade food several days a week, without any of the hassle of cooking and cleaning each night after a long day. We also determined that since most people visit the grocery store each week, it would be preferable for many to pick up these kits at the store rather than have them delivered, given they work during the day and aren't always available to take delivery of perishable goods.

For the presentation, click the image above or click here