Meat can be such an expensive part of your grocery budget, here are some of my best tips on how to save money on chicken!
How to Save Money on Chicken
Chicken or any kind of meat just keeps going up in price and it’s becoming harder and harder to fit it into a frugal grocery budget. With current meat shortages, not only is it more expensive, but it’s hard to find as well.
I know that right now, it’s might be hard to stick to a normal grocery budget, but hopefully, today’s article will help you a little bit.
So many filling recipes call for chicken and since chicken is cheaper than beef (most of the time), it’s easy to see why we’d choose this meat as the main star of our supper. Plus it’s easy to cook and tastes good in so many different ways!
Just like anything, there are some tried and true ways that you can save money on chicken. While it’s not as cheap as rice and beans, there are still plenty of ways to save money on this tasty meat.
Buy the Dark Meat Cuts
While white meat cuts like chicken breast are usually used in recipes you find online, dark meats can be much less expensive and tastier since they tend to retain more moisture during cooking. Look for drumsticks and thighs to get the most money for your dollar. Our family actually prefers the thigh meat over all other cuts of chicken so this tip works out well for us!
If you shop around or wait for a sale, you should be able to find both cuts of chicken under $2 per pound.
Buy Whole Chickens
I’ve already shared with you that I love buying Whole Chickens and how they save us so much money!
Look to purchase whole chickens from alternative sources. Instead of the grocery, I like to get ours from some local Hutterite Colonies who raise and butcher the birds themselves. They always have nice big birds with plenty of meat on them.
Whole chickens can be the cheapest “cut” of meat (usually under $1 per pound) and with them, you get all the cuts of meat to make many meals. Of course, you can also use the carcass to stretch this bird even further which jumps me into my next way to save money on chicken…
Look For Alternative Ways to Buy Chicken
As I mentioned above, we like to get whole chickens from our local Hutterite Colony instead of from the grocery store. If you aren’t able to find a good deal on chicken at the grocery store, check around to any local farmers that might raise chickens. You might just find the best bargain on any cut of chicken by buying them this way.
–Here are some tips on Buying Meat in Bulk.
There are also alternative methods of buying chicken now by ordering online from companies such as Perdue. This might be a good place to check prices if you are unable to find any good deals at the local grocery stores. Also, if you are able to buy it in bulk you might want to consider Canning Chicken.
Raise Your Own, Butcher Your Own
While this is the hardest way to save on chicken than any of the other ideas on this list, for many of you, this might be quite feasible and it might be the cheapest way to get chicken meat so I needed to include it.
Raising chickens for meat isn’t always that fun, they grow quickly and aren’t the cutest birds and then you have to butcher them, which is a messy affair. But if done right, it can be one of the best ways to save on chicken, especially if you are particular about what kind of feed goes into your chicken.
Our favorite chicken breed to raise for meat is Red Rangers which we get from Hoover’s Hatchery.
Watch for Discounts on Sell-By Dates
This has been a pretty easy way for us to stock up on meats that we might not otherwise be able to afford. I don’t go to the grocery store often, but when I do, I go early in the morning and I always look for marked down meats. I’ve been able to get some incredible deals on chicken at the local grocery stores and at Target by doing this. When I find a deal, I stock up as much as I can on the cuts we use the most. I’ve even tried some cuts that I’ve never bought before (like thinly sliced chicken breast) because they were too cheap to pass up. (P.S. Before I get any hate mail…the picture taken above was from many months ago…before the virus was happening and meat was not hard to find. The employee practically loaded into my cart for me because they were so happy to clean it out!)
These discount meats usually have a sell-by date of the day that you purchase them but that’s no big deal. Just repackage them into a freezer bag and stick them in the freezer until you are ready to use them or have a Large Batch Cooking Day and cook them up to have them prepared for your favorite meals.
Make Bone Broth
Throughout history, people have been making bone broth as a frugal staple. It’s definitely a staple in our home! It’s very easy to make homemade bone broth and you are essentially using the part of the bird that you might normally throw away so it’s pretty much free food.
We use bone broth in soups, as a base for sauces such as my Poor Man’s Garlic Sauce, and sometimes just drink it straight when we aren’t feeling our best.
Chicken, or any type of meat, can be expensive when purchased without using any of the tactics listed above, but there is always a deal to be hard when we dig a little deeper.
If you want to save as much money as you can on your grocery budget but still need to have chicken in your meal plans, I hope you will be able to use these tips to save even more when you go shopping again.
Need some recipe ideas to use with your chicken? Here are 18 Chicken Dinner Ideas!
What are your favorite ways to save money on chicken?