Make Your Meat go Further
Meat is generally the most expensive component of a meal, by using less or making it go further we can significantly reduce our annual grocery spend.
Most recipes will suggest 500g (1/2 pound) of meat for a recipe for 4 people. A good kicking off point is to consider if you can to reduce this without compromising the flavour or nutritional profile of the meal.
You can significantly reduce your grocery spending over a year if you simply get in the habit of making meat go a long way.
Will you get enough protein?
Meat is only one source of protein in a healthy diet, you will also get protein from eggs, nuts and dairy products through the course of the day. Many people eat far more protein than their body needs.
Will you get enough iron?
When you use less meat in your meals you will need to be aware of iron. Red meat in particular is an excellent source of iron and in a form that is easy for the body to utilise. Many other foods contain “non haem “iron (not from meat iron). It is not as readily absorbed as the iron in meat but the absorption of non haem iron can be significantly improved by simply including some vitamin c with your meals.
Fresh fruit and veg are the best, cheapest and easiest sources of VitaminC, so eat plenty for optimum iron absorption.
Squeeze lemon or orange juice into marinades and over salads, and finish the meal with a slice or two of fresh fruit.
Try to avoid drinking coffee and tea directly after a meal as caffeine and tannin (present in tea) both significantly inhibit the absorption of non haem iron.
These techniques will help you gradually use less meat in your recipes
- Cut meat very finely for stir fries – allow 350-400g for 4 people
- Shredding cooked chicken using two forks makes it go a long way
- Add lentils or other pulses to mince dishes to extend them
- Add extra vegetables,the healthiest, cheapest way to extend a meal