Friday, January 2, 2009

Frugal Friday - Going Meatless

Vegetarianism is a way of life for many people. I personally don't think I could do it. I like my meat way to much. That being said, meat can be a HUGE budget buster for the frugal cook.

I decided to do a survey of SavingSomeGreen readers to determine how often you are going meatless. I wasn't surprised at the results. The largest percentage of you are going meatless 1-2 times per week. This is what we do too. It is about all my "meat and potatoes" husband can handle! Here are the poll results:Here are some techniques I have used to save money on meat/go meatless:
  1. Stock up on meat when it is at a rock bottom price and fill up your freezer.

  2. Purchase a family pack of meat and cook all of it and package it into meal sized portions - or better yet, package it into smaller portions so you decrease the amount of meat in the meals that you make with it. See my post here about how I cook, package, and freeze my ground beef. I do something similar with chicken.

  3. Try decreasing or removing meat from your favorite recipes - chili, hamburger helper, stew, casseroles, etc. Keep decreasing until you reach a happy medium of still tasting and enjoying the meat, but using much less.

  4. Go meatless once or more per week. Some satisfying meals that we have had that are meatless are: vegetable soup with corn muffins, grilled cheese sandwiches and soup, broccoli cheese chowder, baked potato bar with broccoli and cheese sauce, vegetable quiche, cheese pizza, etc. The possibilities are endless!

How about you? How do you save money on meat? Do you have some great satisfying meatless meals you'd like to share? Please leave a comment!


Elizabeth said...

I love your baked potato bar idea - definitely need to try that although I can just hear my husband "Where are the bacon bits?!" Have you ever tried tofu? This is another way to get good protein without using meat.

Sally said...

I am a vegetarian, my husband is not, I can make Manicotti without meat in it and he loves it, or I buy a couple thick slices of pepperoni from the deli for around $1.50 and put it the manicotti, which will make enough for dinner for him and lunch the next couple days. Grilled tofu is delicious. You can put it on skewers with veggies, and even mix in a little chicken or steak if you wanted, then throw it on the grill with some olive oil.

SavingSomeGreen said...

I haven't ever had tofu, but I'm glad both of you have had it with success. It is something to think it inexpensive to buy?

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