Having 4 kids, 3 of which were boys – our grocery bill was rather large before I figured out how to take charge of it instead of it running our lives.
The biggest portion of that cost went to meat, and even after I changed the way I shopped and saved, it pretty much meant I saved on other things so we could afford the cost of meat.
How To Save Money On Meat At The Grocery Store
I have never been a beans and rice eater, so cutting meat out of my diet, much less trying to take it from my kids, wasn’t an option for our family. But, there are plenty of ways to save on good meat, trust me.
When purchasing your weekly grocery needs from your local supermarket, it’s important to have a budget not to overspend. But if there’s one item on your list that can eat up your budget in a heartbeat, it would definitely be meat since meat prices can often be insane, especially for expensive cuts of meat.
One way to cut the cost of meat is instead of purchasing more expensive cuts you can opt for chuck steaks, sirloin steak, pork shoulder, pork rib chops, chicken thighs, pork chops, and skirt steak, to name a few.
Even though fresh meat can be expensive, it’s a vital part and popular food for every meal in most homes. This is why so many households are looking for ways to cut down on meat consumption. The only solution to this would be a complete lifestyle change to cut this expense out of the budget or at least lower it.
Of course, this isn’t a feasible solution for everyone. After all, people have varying opinions on an entire lifestyle change and erasing meat from the entire family’s diet can be a controversial issue, to say the least.
That’s why I decided to share some tips on how you can save money when you’re buying meat.
Here are some tips on how to save money on meat:
Make The Most Out Of One Meal
A good idea and one of the easiest ways you can save money on meat is to make sure that you consume every little bit and nothing goes to waste. This means that you need to eat the leftovers from previous meals you can even make them into another meal so no one realizes they are leftovers.
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Grind Your Own Meat
Instead of buying ground beef for your juicy burger, you can get chuck roast and grind it at home if you have the right tools for this. This is a great way to get fresh ground beef and a good deal.
Another option is to go to your meat department and have the local butcher grind it up for you at a cheaper and lower price. This will help you save a little extra money and help you bypass the higher prices.
It’s even best if you can buy a chuck roast that’s on sale. Not only will you be able to save on cost, you also get to make sure that the ground beef does not include other ingredients like fillers. This will ensure you have a healthy, better burger
Befriend The Butcher
Another way I would save on lunch meat was to grab a canned ham from the shelf and take it to the butcher and have it cut very thin as lunchmeat and it always turned out cheaper and lasted longer.
The butcher is your friend, and you can have them give you ideas for how to cook a specific cut of meat or kind of meat, even how to make tender meat and have them cut pieces for you as I mentioned before to save you money.
Make good friends with them and they’ll even tell you when a sale is coming or when they regularly mark down items so you can stretch your dollar even further.
Stretch It Out
Not physically though. You can make your food go further by adding fillers to it. Of course, it’s important that you choose healthy fillers so you can have a nutritious meal.
Some ideas include breadcrumbs, oatmeal, carrots, or even potatoes. By adding these to your meat, you can make a filling dish without the need for too much meat.
Go For Cheaper Cuts Of Meat
Instead of picking out the pricier prime cuts, you can get more affordable options and get cheap cuts of meat . You won’t taste the difference once they’re cooked. You just need to know how to marinate, tenderize, or even braise these so they taste as good or better than the premium options.
Shop During A Sale
Another way you can save when you’re buying plenty of meat is to buy when there are meat sales. Make sure to use or freeze it before the date on the package so that you won’t end up throwing it out.
Have A Meatless Meal
Give yourself a challenge by coming up with a meatless meal. This will allow you to reduce the amount of meat you need to purchase each week.
And when you’ve gotten the hang of it, maybe you can go meatless twice a week. You’ll be amazed at just how much money you can save by doing this.
Make Sure To Shop Early
Most grocery stores offer a discount on unsold meat from the previous days. They do this to make sure that the meat they sell is fresh when it’s sold. To make room for the new meat, they sell the previous stock at a discount.
Get The Ends
Did you know that people typically avoid buying the end cuts of meat? That’s because these have an odd shape compared to the other cuts. But if you want to save on meat and you’re not too particular about how they look, you can buy the ends.
Trim It Yourself
Another tip to get low prices and how grocery stores make money is to pre-trim certain cuts of meat. Then they can charge more – it’s kinda like when they cut up onions or celery and charge you a higher price for doing the work.
If you need your meat products to be cut into pieces such as chicken breasts or to have something butterflied, you can do it yourself. It’s a simple way to save money for just a few extra minutes of your time.
It may seem challenging, but there’s a YouTube video for everything. You only need a little practice once you get the hang of it, you’ll be an expert in no time!
Buy During The Holidays
During the holiday season, grocery stores often price meat at their lowest. This is the perfect time to fill up your freezer with turkey and ham. You can even wait a week after the holiday so you can buy these items at an even cheaper price.
Don’t Forget To Explore
It’s important that you do your research when you’re shopping for meat. Since butcher shops, meat markets, or local farmers have different prices on these, especially beef prices, you’ll have to make sure that you choose the best option for your family and get a better meal at a good price.
Best Place To Buy Meat
I have been asked several times over the years: Where is the best place to buy inexpensive meat? I think it depends on your area and situation. Check with local meat markets and do the math on 1/2 a cow or a pig. Talk to friends and see if they’d like to go in with you on the cost.
A lot of people would love to do it, but they don’t need that much themselves, however if a few families got together and split the cost and the meat, it could work out well.
But you don’t have to use a meat market, if you know the best days and times to purchase at your local grocery store – then you can find great buys regularly.
We always buy from the “cheap meat section” or cheapest meat at our store – we know what days and times they fill that area up and we make sure to drop by as close to that time and day as we can and we stock up.
Depending on your area and your needs – the best place to buy your favorite meats could be the meat market, local farms, or your local grocery store. Do the math and figure out which works best for you.
One of the best ways to save on meat and make the most of your grocery budget is to have a plan and to stick with it. Over time you’ll see a big reduction in the time, effort, cost, and stress of meals.
Above all else I cannot stress enough how important a meal plan is. It’s even helpful to have it where the whole family can see it and know what’s up.. Then you don’t have to answer the same question six times a day – “What’s for dinner?”.
Remember to keep your options open when you’re shopping for meat. This is the best way you can save on the costs involved.