I’m pretty sure most of us would be delighted to find more time in the day and to find more money in our wallets…but the reality is, well reality. There are however, some easy ways you can save yourself some time and some money, and Canadian beef is here to help!
Tip #1: Cook Up Convenience with Big Batch Ground Beef!
Cook up convenience when you stock up on value-priced bulk packs of ground beef. By cooking the meat before freezing, you will always have cooked ground beef at the ready to use in your favourite pasta sauce, chili, soup, casserole or my favourite, the So Simple Provolone Beef Pizza.
1. Cook 4 lb (2 kg) ground beef in stockpot or Dutch oven using medium-high heat for 9 to 10 minutes, breaking into small chunks with back of spoon, until browned and completely cooked. Drain in colander. Return to pot and add onions and garlic; simmer, uncovered, for 12 to 15 minutes or until vegetables soften.
2. Spread mixture in single layer on several foil-lined baking trays; cover loosely with plastic wrap and freeze just until meat is firm (about 1 hour).
3. Loosen frozen beef into chunks and scoop meal-sized portions into freezer bags or sealable containers. Freeze for up to 3 months. Makes about 10 cups (2.5 L)
Tip #2: It pays to keep a freezer full of beef!
A full freezer uses less energy, so stock up on sale beef items – it pays to keep a freezer full of beef. Beef can be frozen in its original transparent packaging for up to two weeks. For more on how to store your beef, check out the video.
For longer storage, over wrap the beef in moisture or vapour proof material such a freezer paper or bags, or heavy-duty aluminum foil. Squeeze out as much air as possible before freezing. Wrap meats tightly to prevent freezer burn. Label each package with the weight, date, cut name and number of servings.
A note on thawing: always defrost beef in the fridge on a plate in its wrapping, never on the counter.
And did you know beef steaks and roasts can be cooked from frozen? Just allow up to 50% more cooking time.
Tip #3: Think cost per serving, not total price – you’ll get more bang for your buck!
Compare meats on a cost per serving not total price to determine value. A roast of beef is a great economizer and is easy to prepare. Leftovers stretch the grocery budget even further when added to stir-frys, pizzas, lunch sandwiches and pasta dishes. To help you choose the cut that’s right for you, check out the handy video.
Tip #4: Mix it Up and Get More Bang for your Bites!
Try mixing it up and make burgers and meatballs in variety of flavour profiles – try Spicy Saigon burgers or Thai Meatballs. Need some inspiration? Watch the video to make your own beautiful burgers or marvelous meatballs.
Using lean grinds, such as lean and extra lean ground beef, round, chuck or sirloin are all healthy choices.
Try mincing some veggies (like mushrooms, finely grated carrot, diced peppers etc) and adding them to patties and meatballs – adding flavour and nutrition.
Tip #5: A cut above!
Buy sale priced steaks and roasts and cut into stewing and stir-fry beef at home, this saves the extra costs at the store. It also lets you control portion sizes. Whatever isn’t used keep frozen and add to pot pies, casseroles and more.
Want more tips for saving money at the grocery store? Check out our Top Ten Grocery Savings Tips.
So, how do you save yourself time and money?