Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Try It! Tuesday- Making your Meat go Further

Well, I realized in my last post that I was making a lot of meals with chicken breasts, and not a lot of vegetarian meals. I guess in part this is because our family eats a lot, and even when eating a whole vegetarian meal, we end up still hungry in the late evening...wanting something more, perhaps a protein.

My husband ends up making what he calls..." a mess", which I think is literal for what he does in the kitchen, but also what he concocts in a frying pan with eggs, hot peppers, onions, and whatever else he can find.

So I decided to do a little research and try to find ways to make meat, since we are still eating a lot of it, go further.
Here are some things you can add to a meal to make your meat go further for your family aside from the simple fact of having an all-out vegetarian night:

  • Slice your steaks to feed your whole family. Use the strips for a stir fry, or fajitas
  • Include some sort of protein throughout your day and don't just rely on protein for dinner.- ie- eggs, nuts, beans etc.
  • Try cubing your steak to make kabobs, or add to a heart rice meal.
  • Try Casseroles- these usually include rice, or some sort of pasta and beans. You will end up using less meat than serving it separately
  • Have a pizza night, where you use a lot of other ingredients and only one breast of chicken, or one link of sausage.
  • Search around for less expensive cuts of meat. Often times if they are cooked correctly, they actually taste better and are more flavorful than the expensive cuts
  • When making spaghetti, add a lot of vegetables to your sauce. This will make the sauce last well into leftover territory, which is what we want when we are trying to save!
  • Make a soup! Last night I took all the leftover veggies from the past two weeks(even bok choy) and added it to some chicken stock. I had one extra chicken breast from the night before. I chopped it up and added it too. I then added some egg noodles and I had a pretty darn good soup! Don't forget to add a dollop of peanut butter (just make sure kids aren't allergic) for a great rich flavor and no one will even know you did it!
  • Fill your plate with more veggies and starches, cut down the portion size if serving a piece of meat separately. I find that if we have chicken breasts, if I cut them into small pieces, I can use two breasts to feed us and our oldest child. This then leaves a whole breast to make another meal with the next day!!
  • Add a second or third side dish. If you are used to having one veggie, one carb and one meat serving on your dinner table, why not try two veggies at night?
Here are some links that may be helpful and give you more information to cut your budget buy still eat and live healthy!!

5 Dollar Dinners- Blog- With Great Recipes!!

Healthy Frugal Dinner Recipes- Blog

Stuffed Sweet Potatoes Recipe

Porcupines Recipe- Meatballs w/ rice

Budget Friendly Recipes for Ground Beef- AllRecipes.com

Budget Friendly Meals- Allrecipes.com

Cuts of Meat that are Cheaper + Recipes

Vegetarian Meals w/ Beans and Rice


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