Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Calculating Cost

 Photos right now are from my phone, so please bear with the fuzziness.

So, I have to share that during G's deployment I am trying really hard to save all of my grocery receipts.  I'm interested in seeing how much I spend on food at the store when it's just me.  Now, some things like my pricey bottle of olive oil will be in use long after G gets home, but for the day to day I'm really curious as to how much the meal planning might help save me money.

And I want to talk chicken.  Organic, free-range chicken.  Yes, it's pricey, but I truly believe the quality of the animals life, the texture of the meat and the knowledge that you aren't pumping excess hormones into your body is worth it.  Last night I bought a chicken for $10.68.  To some of you that price is insane and you would never spend that much.  But here's the breakdown:

* One breast combined with the wings will be used for dinner last night, dinner tonight, and with two helpings of the goat cheese tart which is 4 meals.

* 1/2 of one breast combined with one thigh will be put into the chicken and veggie soup, and I'm estimating that will be enough for minimally 6 meals.

* 1/2 of a breast will be shredded and frozen for later use to be used to make chicken tacos, for a minimum of 2 meals.

* One thigh and the two legs will be shredded and frozen for later use in pesto pasta, resulting in minimally 4 meals.

Even when just calculating the minimum (and many of those are low estimates), that is a total of 16 meals from one chicken.  Meaning each serving of good quality meat is less than $1 a serving.  Chances are I'll actually be able to stretch it to closer to $.50 a serving, which in my opinion is phenomenal.

That also doesn't include the fact that I boiled the giblets and ate the liver for iron, and will use the carcass to make the stock for my soup.  

I'd rather eat less meat and fill up on a variety of healthy veggies (keep in mind I'll still be getting the recommended amount of protein) and be able to buy a better quality meat than eat more and have to buy meat I don't feel comfortable with.  Last night I had a decent portion of chicken breast, sauteed mushrooms, beet greens (covered in hot sauce), smashed potatoes, a beet, and steamed broccoli.  My plate was colorful, satisfying and decadent.  And totally worth the cost.


  1. Wow - you ate the liver! I don't do that.

    I also buy free-range, organic poultry and grass-fed beef. Sacrifice other things, but not your health, and not the humane treatment of animals. If we're going to kill them for food, then we need to be as responsible as God demands us to be.

    Don't forget to boil the chicken carcasse for stock. I have a yogurt container in which I store vegetable scraps and keep in the freezer. When I make a whole chicken and pick the bones clean of meat, I boil the veggies and carcasse to make stock.

    Another grocery bill savings!

  2. I was pretty pleased with my grocery trip this afternoon. Combined with 3 things in my fridge I was able to get the ingredients for 4+ dinners for under $10!

    We seem to have the same mindset about budgets this week!