People who visit our website always ask for ways to save money on meat. Here are 5 ideas that will fit into your frugal grocery budget!
Ground Beef has risen in price quite a bit in the last couple years. I remember when my “buy” price for lean ground beef was around $1.50/lb. Lately – it’s hard to find it for less than $3/lb.
1. Butcher-ground beef/pork
My favorite way to get cheap ground beef is to take whatever beef is on sale for the week (For instance, this week, Bi-Lo has London Broil on sale Buy One Get One Free) and ask your store butcher to grind it for you.
There are several benefits to doing this:
- You can get a sale price on ground beef nearly every week – whether “ground beef” is on sale or not
- You’ll be able to get leaner ground beef for the same price (or cheaper) than the more fatty, processed ground beef
- You’ll get FRESHER ground beef
- You won’t have to worry about the dreaded “pink slime” being added to lots of ground beef these days.
You’d be surprised at how willing your butcher is to not only grind your beef, but also cut it into cubes (for grilling kabobs or stew meat) or into steaks (from a roast). Just be extra-friendly when you ask!
2. Cheaper Chicken
We use chicken ALL THE TIME, and my favorite way to buy it is the boneless skinless variety. But often the store wants upwards of $3.99/lb and I’m just not willing to pay that. Get outside of your comfort zone just a little and start keeping an eye out for split chicken breasts. These are even BETTER for grilling or crock pot cooking, because the fat content will help keep it moist on the grill or in the oven – and meat that’s on the bone ALWAYS has more flavor.
When it’s time to shred your chicken, or serve it to kids, just be careful to pull the meat away from any small bones before placing it back in the crockpot (or on the table).
Zaycon is also an AMAZING option for cheap and all natural chicken breasts! If you haven’t heard of Zaycon chicken - read about it here.
3. Look for meat markdowns.
Snatch up meat that has been marked down for quick sale – just make sure you use, cook or freeze it right away! Watch an older video of ours that showcases several Meat Markdowns at Bi-Lo
4. Find Rebates & Coupons for Meat.
Many times around grilling season especially, you can find tearpads for rebates that include meat purchases – Read our post “The Beer Aisle: A Hot Spot for Coupons”. Sometimes you can also find coupons for meat – a good place to look is Coupons.com – just search the “food” category.
5. Buy a Side of Beef.
Find a local supplier and go in on it with another family. This is a great way to know the quality of your beef is good – most local ranchers are proud to offer hormone-free, grain fed beef.
Check out more articles in our How to Save Money Series!