How to Save on Meat
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How to Save on Meat

Posted on Monday, March 19th, 2012 at 8:54 am
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Have you seen the commercial where a woman asks the butcher at the grocery store for four steaks, and then tells him to throw two in the trash?  This is a vivid description of where your money goes when you don’t manage to cook the meat you purchased before it goes bad.  Here are some tips that you can use to save money on meat.

Pay attention while grocery shopping.  It is easy to tune out the announcements that come over the store’s loudspeaker.  Sometimes, though, it pays to listen.  Grocery stores will make announcements about the fresh meat that they have on sale right at that moment.  Buying food while it is on sale is a good way to save money.

Have a plan.  Make a plan of the meals that you will be serving your family this week.  This is a good way to know, for certain, exactly how much meat you need to purchase.  The biggest reason why people end up throwing away the meat they buy is because it sits in the refrigerator for too long.  People buy it, and assume they will find a way to use it before it goes bad.  Don’t assume, plan!  This greatly increases your chances of using up the meat you buy while it is still fresh.

Freeze what you aren’t going to immediately use.  If you shop at stores like Sam’s Club, or Costco,  then you end up buying foods in bulk.  Often, the price per item works out to less money than if you bought the steaks, burgers, or chicken individually.  Most families cannot use up a bulk purchase of meat before it expires.  Put what you will use this week into your refrigerator, and freeze the rest for later.

Do an inventory before you shop.  People tend to forget about the meat that is stored in their freezers.  They end up buying more meat, instead of using what they already have.  To avoid this problem, you will need to label the meat you are freezing.  Write down what it is, and when it was purchased.  This makes it easy to find, and much easier for you to know what you already have at home.

Shop after the holiday.  The day after Thanksgiving is a good time to buy a frozen turkey.  Grocery stores tend to drop the price on them when the holiday is over.  If your Christmas tradition involves a turkey dinner, then this is a great way to save money on it.  Corned beef will be discounted after St. Patrick’s day ends.  Some steaks, sausages, and mini hot dogs will go on sale the day after the Super Bowl.

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Good Tip: Saving money is important – especially if you have a lot of expenses like bills to pay, loans to pay off, and all the other things that drain your bank account. Figuring out a way to save money can feel tedious to some, and like a punishment to others. U.S. News suggests that you try one of these money saving challenges. The “No Eating Out for a Month” Challenge This one is self-explanatory. The goal is to avoid eating out for an entire month. This might be super easy for people who enjoy making meals at home. People who really enjoy dining out, or ordering food to be sent to their home, may struggle with this one. It’s worth a try because spending money on take-out is more expensive than buying groceries. The Pantry Challenge This one is a variation of the “No Eating Out for a Month” challenge. The goal is to use up all of your groceries before you buy more. It forces you to try and remember why you bought a food or beverage that you don’t know what to do with, and gives you the opportunity to find a way to use it. The one exemption to this challenge is the foods that have expired. Don’t eat them! Throw them in the trash. The “No Spend” Challenge Make a goal to avoid spending money during an entire weekend. The only exemption in this challenge is that you are allowed to pay bills. This challenge is interesting because it requires creativity. You must be creative and find workarounds for problems that you would typically solve by spending money. You may have a different outlook on spending after finishing this challenge.