By Sara Eckel
Juicy, Savory Meats
During the summer, there's nothing more delicious (and fun) than grilling out. But all that chicken, hamburger and steak can add up. Here are our tips for cutting costs on meat so your summer grocery bill doesn't break the bank. Photo credit: Getty Images
Choose the store's "market grind" rather than the prepackaged meat that comes from national distributors. Not only is it often better quality-made from the trimmings of higher grades of beef-it usually costs about $1 a pound less, says John Smith, a butcher at a Wyoming chain supermarket and author of Confessions of a Butcher.
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Save on sandwiches with one simple step. Some grocery stores let you take a 2-pound cooked ham or turkey out of the refrigerated section and have the butcher slice it, says Patel. You'll get sandwich meat that can be $1 per pound cheaper than what's behind the deli counter.
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"It's almost always on sale during the grilling season, so you should never pay full price," says Smith. Thighs and drumsticks go as low as 89¢ a pound (regularly about $1.70), boneless breasts $1.70 a pound (regularly about $3) or, cheapest of all, a whole chicken for 69¢ a pound (normally about $1.30).
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Buy a whole chuck roast. It's the same muscle as rib-eye, says Smith, and tastes very similar, but costs between $3 and $5 a pound (versus $7 to $11 for rib-eye). Ask your butcher to cut two steaks out of the first 4 inches of the eye of the chuck roast, then have him grind the rest into hamburger.
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When meat starts to get a little brown, but is still perfectly safe, butchers mark it down $2 to $3 per 1-pound steak, says Smith. (Unsafe meat looks fluorescent green.) Ask the butcher what time of day he lowers prices so you can get first choice. Pound of steak is $3 instead of $7!
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Original article appeared on WomansDay.com.
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