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Six Steps to Great Turkey

Six Steps to Great Turkey

Turkey, the main dish of most traditional Thanksgiving dinners, is something many of us cook only once a year. For this reason, a refresher is always useful. Although it often causes stress for novice cooks, roasting a turkey is essentially the same process as roasting a chicken, only on a larger scale. Just follow a few guidelines, and the turkey will be the standout of your holiday meal, but it your first or your fiftieth.

Step One: Gather Equipment

Gather all the necessary equipment: a roasting pan, roasting rack, remote-read digital thermometer, bulb baster, oven thermometer, kitchen twine, kitchen shears, and foil.

Step Two

Trim excess fat.

While a knife will work for trimming, kitchen shears are less slippery and easier to grip.

Step Three

Tie legs together with kitchen twine for an attractive presentation. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under turkey.

Step Four

Cover breast with foil to keep the white meat from cooking too fast. This will help you achieve moist, tender cuts.

Step Five

Check temperature in meaty part of thigh, making sure not to touch bone. The turkey is ready when the thermometer registers 165°F.

Step Six

Once you've presented the finished turkey to guests, remove and discard the skin to dramatically reduce fat intake.


Sous Vide Turkey Breast With Crispy Skin Recipe

Why It Works

  • Tying two breast halves into a cylinder makes for perfectly even cooking and gorgeous presentation.
  • Sous vide cooking offers a very high level of precise control over the results.
  • Cooking the skin separately in the oven delivers the roasty flavors and extra crispness that we love about great roast turkey.
  • Using the breastbone to fortify the stock produces rich, flavorful gravy.

Sous vide is a fantastic method for cooking holiday roasts. It delivers reliably moist and tender results, frees up your oven for other tasks, requires almost no supervision during cooking, and makes it very easy to hold the roast hot and ready to serve until your guests are ready.

That said, sous vide turkey comes with a few problems. We've solved these issues to give you a recipe that produces turkey cooked exactly how you like it, with deep, roasty flavors and extra-crispy skin to boot.


Size and Type of Turkey

The grocery store case will have a variety of sizes and types of turkey. When it comes to size, the general rule of thumb is one pound per person, but if you would like leftovers or have a few big eaters in the group, you'll want to increase that to 1 1/2 to 2 pounds per person.

Turkeys are also available in different types, such as organic, free-range, or kosher, and brined or seasoned. What you choose will not affect how you cook the bird, but it is best to stick to a plain turkey the first time around, avoiding any that are brined or seasoned.


Roasting Chart

The following times are based on an oven preheated to 325 F. Use shorter cooking times for wild turkey so it doesn’t dry out.

Weight (pounds) Unstuffed (hours) *Stuffed (hours)

Drumsticks, quarters, thighs 2 to 3½ -----

* Do not partially roast a stuffed turkey one day and complete roasting it the next. Interrupted cooking enhances the possibility of bacterial growth.

Try this specialized Roasted Turkey Recipe submitted to "Cooking Across Turkey Country" by: Gregory Werner, NWTF Director of Information Technology

Ingredients

  • 2 gallons water
  • 2 oranges
  • 2 lemons
  • 1 onion, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup Kosher salt
  • couple sprigs of fresh thyme or rosemary

Make brining mixture, mixing all ingredients. Squeeze the oranges and lemons into the mixture and toss in the rinds too. Soak turkey in a cooler with ice and the brining mixture overnight. If you need more brine, use ½ cup salt and ½ cup brown sugar for every gallon of water. Use additional fruit as desired.

I lightly stuff the turkey with a couple celery stalks, onion pieces and a couple carrots, along with a half lemon and half orange from the brine mixture. Roast turkey.

Special Information

I’ve cooked turkeys for many years and the best ones always start with 24 hours of brining. The acids in the fruit help tenderize the meat, and the salt and sugar makes the turkey super juicy and tasty.


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Cooking Boned And Rolled Turkey / Cooking Boned And Rolled Turkey Rolled And Boned Turkey Breast Supervalu Cut The Turkey Meat Away From The Bone If It S Not Boneless

Cooking Boned And Rolled Turkey

Six steps to cooking a boned and rolled turkey. All reviews for boned, rolled, and tied turkey. Turkey rolls combine the holiday favorites of turkey and stuffing into one convenient roll, wrapped in a crispy bacon shell. If you can't find the smaller, split breasts, look for a 6 1/2 to 7 pound breast if cooking a rolled turkey breast with skin on (shaped and tied into a roast) allow 20 minutes cooking time per pound. Where do the turkey's come from? Turkey rolls combine the holiday favorites of turkey and stuffing into one convenient. This roasted rolled turkey breast with garlic herb butter recipe is a great alternative to making the entire turkey. When carving the breast meat, slice close to the rib cage with the flat of your knife right up against the rib bones. When you reach the wing joint, sever cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft and translucent but not brown.

Once you've prepared your breast and legs here is how to roll the turkey and prepare it for cooking. When carving the breast meat, slice close to the rib cage with the flat of your knife right up against the rib bones. 13 minutes of cooking time for each pound of turkey if roasting empty and 15 minutes per pound if stuffed. Home » recipes » recipes » rolled and boned turkey breast. No estimating cooking times based on. An alternative is to place softened butter (see below) under the skin on here's our guide on how long to roast a turkey.

Roast Turkey Breast Recipe from www.thespruceeats.com Cooking boned and rolled turkey / butterflied rolled turkey breast fillet suffolk food hall : Once finished place in the fridge, when you want to. Add white wine and cook, stirring, until wine is reduced to a syrup, about 3 minutes. The turkey meat on the leg is a. Cook the turkey in the oven at 350 degrees f or 180c/160c fan/gas 4. But i must admit it's not any special cooking skills. 13 minutes of cooking time for each pound of turkey if roasting empty and 15 minutes per pound if stuffed. All reviews for boned, rolled, and tied turkey. The rolled turkey slices wonderfully making perfect sandwiches if any leftovers survive until the next day… cut flesh from shoulder blade near wing and remove bone.

Cooking times will vary according to the weight of your turkey or turkey joint, but as a guide it is a good idea to allow 20 minutes per kg, plus 70 minutes if the mark 4.

This moist, flavourful christmas turkey roll with a crunchy topping and a bacon stuffing from tom kerridge banishes dry turkey nightmares for a perfect christmas completely encase the turkey in the two layers of foil and secure with cook's string at regular intervals along the length of the roll. This is especially true if you're catering for a smaller crowd. The entire turkey roast was moist and the after dinner clean up was a snap. I used the carcass to make turkey broth using chef john s chicken broth recipe. Season with salt and black pepper. Cook the turkey in the oven at 350 degrees f or 180c/160c fan/gas 4. Also, a stuffed turkey takes more time to cook than an unstuffed one, so time your preparations accordingly. · this rolled and stuffed turkey makes for a perfect centrepiece and an alternative to the huge christmas turkey. Slip knife under thigh bone and separate from meat. This rolled turkey recipe offers satisfying, boneless slices that contain both white and dark meat and savory stuffing. If serving turkey later, let cool to room. The baking sheet will catch any drippings from the turkey roll, and the rack will allow the turkey to cook evenly along. All bones removed and an even shape make for very easy carving. Christmas isn't christmas without turkey, but sometimes a whole roast bird isn't suitable for your festive dinner.

Letting the turkey rest before you carve will make a massive difference to the end result. This moist, flavourful christmas turkey roll with a crunchy topping and a bacon stuffing from tom kerridge banishes dry turkey nightmares for a perfect christmas completely encase the turkey in the two layers of foil and secure with cook's string at regular intervals along the length of the roll. Six steps to cooking a boned and rolled turkey. When carving the breast meat, slice close to the rib cage with the flat of your knife right up against the rib bones.

Slow Roasted Turkey Roulade Thanksgiving Turkey Roll The Flavor Bender from www.theflavorbender.com The entire turkey roast was moist and the after dinner clean up was a snap. The baking sheet will catch any drippings from the turkey roll, and the rack will allow the turkey to cook evenly along. Roast, basting every 15 minutes with maple mixture, for 1 hour, then remove foil and roast for a further 20 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Cooking times will vary according to the weight of your turkey or turkey joint, but as a guide it is a good idea to allow 20 minutes per kg, plus 70 minutes if the mark 4. All bones removed and an even shape make for very easy carving. Reserve strained cooking liquid for gravy. You can cook this pressure cooker turkey breast recipe in under 1 hour! Once finished place in the fridge, when you want to. I still can't believe that we pulled it off in a hotel room while traveling!

Turkey rolls combine the holiday favorites of turkey and stuffing into one convenient roll, wrapped in a crispy bacon shell.

Plus, carving is easy peasy with no bones to. But i must admit it's not any special cooking skills. I used the carcass to make turkey broth using chef john s chicken broth recipe. The turkey meat on the leg is a. When you reach the wing joint, sever cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft and translucent but not brown. Slip knife under thigh bone and separate from meat. We serve these beautiful round slices that place the turkey on a work surface with the breast side down. Remove your rolled turkey breast from the frdge and allow it to come up to room temperature before you start. This roasted rolled turkey breast was definitely a winner! The rolled turkey slices wonderfully making perfect sandwiches if any leftovers survive until rolled and boned turkey can roast in the oven for about 3 hours. All reviews for boned, rolled, and tied turkey. Weigh the joint and calculate the cooking time, allowing 15 click here for a rolled turkey recipe.

You can cook this pressure cooker turkey breast recipe in under 1 hour! Remove your rolled turkey breast from the frdge and allow it to come up to room temperature before you start. Ovens vary, so check regularly throughout cooking. Bring the joint up to room temperature.

Rolled Turkey Breast With Cranberry Stuffing Recipes Delicious Com Au from img.delicious.com.au Ovens vary, so check regularly throughout cooking. The turkey should cook at a temperature of 325 degrees. When you reach the wing joint, sever cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft and translucent but not brown. This roasted rolled turkey breast with garlic herb butter recipe is a great alternative to making the entire turkey. Another consideration is whether or not you want a whole bird, a crown, or boned and rolled. This roasted rolled turkey breast was definitely a winner!

This moist, flavourful christmas turkey roll with a crunchy topping and a bacon stuffing from tom kerridge banishes dry turkey nightmares for a perfect christmas completely encase the turkey in the two layers of foil and secure with cook's string at regular intervals along the length of the roll.

For meal plans, cooking tips and new recipes. An alternative is to place softened butter (see below) under the skin on here's our guide on how long to roast a turkey. Cut the turkey meat away from the bone if it's not boneless. When it comes to the cooking time for your bird, you should be more concerned with the temperature of the meat than the. No matter what the cut of turkey, baste regularly. Six steps to cooking a boned and rolled turkey. Brush turkey with butter and season. Some turkey lovers insist brining is essential to making the bird juicy and tender. Add white wine and cook, stirring, until wine is reduced to a syrup, about 3 minutes. The turkey should cook at a temperature of 325 degrees. No estimating cooking times based on. The turkey meat on the leg is a.

This roasted rolled turkey breast was definitely a winner!

Some turkey lovers insist brining is essential to making the bird juicy and tender.

Bring the joint up to room temperature.

It allows for the jusice to settle before carving, which should.

A boned, stuffed and rolled turkey joint is easiest to carve.

Christmas isn't christmas without turkey, but sometimes a whole roast bird isn't suitable for your festive dinner.

A boned, stuffed and rolled turkey joint is easiest to carve.

13 minutes of cooking time for each pound of turkey if roasting empty and 15 minutes per pound if stuffed.

Once finished place in the fridge, when you want to.

Christmas isn't christmas without turkey, but sometimes a whole roast bird isn't suitable for your festive dinner.

When carving the breast meat, slice close to the rib cage with the flat of your knife right up against the rib bones.

The entire turkey roast was moist and the after dinner clean up was a snap.

This is especially true if you're catering for a smaller crowd.

No matter what the cut of turkey, baste regularly.

Six steps to cooking a boned and rolled turkey.

All bones removed and an even shape make for very easy carving.

I still can't believe that we pulled it off in a hotel room while traveling!

A boned, stuffed and rolled turkey joint is easiest to carve.

By removing the bones and rolling the meat with the stuffing, it.

Slip knife under thigh bone and separate from meat.

I still can't believe that we pulled it off in a hotel room while traveling!

If serving turkey later, let cool to room.

An alternative is to place softened butter (see below) under the skin on here's our guide on how long to roast a turkey.

When carving the breast meat, slice close to the rib cage with the flat of your knife right up against the rib bones.

Brush turkey with butter and season.

The turkey meat on the leg is a.

Roast, basting every 15 minutes with maple mixture, for 1 hour, then remove foil and roast for a further 20 minutes or until golden and cooked through.

Turkey rolls combine the holiday favorites of turkey and stuffing into one convenient roll, wrapped in a crispy bacon shell.

Cook the turkey in the oven at 350 degrees f or 180c/160c fan/gas 4.

By removing the bones and rolling the meat with the stuffing, it.

Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft and translucent but not brown, about 10 minutes.

Where do the turkey's come from?

You can cook this pressure cooker turkey breast recipe in under 1 hour!

Cooking boned and rolled turkey / butterflied rolled turkey breast fillet suffolk food hall :


Recipe Summary

  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon salt-free garlic and herb seasoning blend (such as Mrs. Dash®)
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 (3 pound) turkey breast with skin
  • 1 teaspoon minced shallot
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 splash dry white wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons half-and-half (Optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Mix 1/4 cup butter, garlic, paprika, Italian seasoning, garlic and herb seasoning, salt, and black pepper in a bowl. Place turkey breast with skin side up into a roasting pan. Loosen skin with your fingers brush half the butter mixture over the turkey breast and underneath the skin. Reserve remaining butter mixture. Tent turkey breast loosely with aluminum foil.

Roast in the preheated oven for 1 hour baste turkey breast with remaining butter mixture. Return to oven and roast until the juices run clear and an instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast, not touching bone, reads 165 degrees F (65 degrees C), about 30 more minutes. Let turkey breast rest 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

While turkey is resting, transfer pan drippings to a skillet. Skim off excess grease, leaving about 1 tablespoon in skillet. Place skillet over low heat cook and stir shallot in turkey grease until opaque, about 5 minutes. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in skillet with shallot and whisk in white wine, scraping any browned bits of food from skillet. Whisk in chicken stock and flour until smooth. Bring to a simmer, whisking constantly, until thickened. For a creamier, lighter gravy, whisk in half-and-half.


If using ground pork, follow same instructions as ground turkey in Steps 2 and 3, baking uncovered until pork reaches minimum internal temperature, 20-25 minutes.

If using Impossible burger, follow same instructions as ground turkey in Steps 2 and 3, baking uncovered until heated through, 20-25 minutes.

    1

Prepare the Ingredients

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Thoroughly rinse any fresh produce and pat dry. Combine green beans, 2 tsp. olive oil, ¼ tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper in provided tray. Spread into a single layer. Bake uncovered in hot oven, 10 minutes.

Add the Meatballs

While green beans bake, combine ground turkey, panko, seasoned salt, ¼ tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper in a mixing bowl. Form into six equally-sized meatballs. Carefully remove tray from oven. Push green beans to one side. Tray will be hot! Use a utensil. Place meatballs in empty side of tray. Top evenly with marinara and half the Parmesan (reserve remaining for garnish).

Finish the Dish

Bake uncovered in hot oven until meatballs reach a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees, 25-30 minutes. Carefully remove from oven. Remove green beans to a plate or bowl. Stir garlic pepper and butter into tray. Garnish meatballs with remaining Parmesan. Bon appétit!

Home Chef is a meal kit delivery service - order and receive home food delivery weekly. Choose from 21 fresh recipes featuring steak, chicken, pork, fish, vegetarian options, and beyond to meet your cooking needs each week.


Tips for Harvesting Tasty Turkey

My friend, Jim Spencer, who has eaten many more wild turkeys than I have, offered these tips for enjoying a tasty bird. First, avoid body-shooting your bird. This is good advice from a hunting standpoint, too, because the best way to kill a turkey is to shoot it in the head and neck. If stray pellets find their way into the body, remove them when you clean the bird, and remove feathers the shot forced into the meat. Trim bruised and bloodshot meat away as well.

Cool the bird quickly after the kill. To do this, hang it by one foot, allowing both wings and the untied foot to dangle. This spreads the turkey out and allows faster cooling. There's no need for field-dressing if you cool the bird quickly and keep it cool.

Some hunters skin the bird because it's quicker and easier. But if you plan to roast or smoke your turkey, it's best to pluck it. Leaving the skin on helps keep the meat moist during cooking. You can pour hot water over the bird to loosen the feathers and make plucking easier. Eviscerate the bird after it's plucked, and remove the head and feet. Then you're ready to cook.

The boneless breast meat of a wild
turkey can be used as the main
ingredient in a wide variety of delectable recipes.
Photo: courtesy of the National Wild Turkey Federation

Unlike many other game animals, which may be harvested in quantity, wild turkeys are rare commodities, with only one or two killed each season by lucky hunters. For this reason, the hunter typically wants to use a preparation method that makes the most of this delectable game bird. Fortunately, this can be accomplished without a lot of fuss and bother. Simple preparation methods can be used for whole plucked birds, or, if you prefer, you can use boneless fillets of breast meat in the entree and saves other parts of the bird for use in making dressing, soup or other dishes.

All the recipes that follow are easy to prepare without exotic ingredients or hard-to-follow directions. And each transforms wild turkey into a mouth-watering repast that will have your family or dinner guests asking for extra helpings. Try them and see.

1. Grilled Marinated Turkey Breasts

  • Boneless breast meat from one wild turkey
  • 2/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • Lawrey's Seasoning Salt
  • Adolph's Meat Tenderizer

Slice the breast meat lengthwise to create fillets that are about 1/2 inch thick. Make a marinade by combining the soy sauce, brown sugar, lemon juice, honey and garlic in mixing bowl. Sprinkle the fillets with the seasoning salt and meat tenderizer, then transfer the meat to a zip-seal plastic freezer bag. Pour the marinade into the bag with the turkey and seal. Turn to coat all the pieces of meat, and refrigerate for 24 hours. Remove the fillets from the marinade, drain and grill over a medium-hot fire for approximately 10 minutes per side or until done to taste.

2. Lemon-Herb Turkey Breast

  • 2 pounds boneless wild turkey breast
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic

Mix all ingredients but the turkey. Pour the mixture over the turkey breast in a Crock-Pot and cook on low 6 to 8 hours, basting the turkey occasionally with the sauce.

3. Dijon-Breaded Turkey Breast

  • 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sage
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Boneless breast meat from one wild turkey
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

Mix together bread crumbs, sage, parsley, melted butter and half the salt. Season the turkey breasts with the remaining salt and the pepper, then brush them with the mustard and pat on the breading mix. Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 45 minutes or until done to taste.

4. Wild Turkey Parmigiano

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/2 cup Italian-seasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 pound boneless turkey breast fillets
  • 1 cup Italian-flavored tomato sauce
  • 1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a shallow bowl, beat egg whites with water. In another shallow bowl, combine bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Dip turkey pieces into egg mixture, then dredge in bread crumb mixture. Arrange the meat on a greased 10-inch x 15-inch baking pan. Bake 4 to 5 minutes. Pour tomato sauce evenly over the turkey and top with Mozzarella cheese. Bake 4 to 5 minutes more, or until turkey is cooked through, sauce is heated and cheese is melted.

5. Swiss Turkey Breast Over Rice

  • 2 large boneless turkey breasts, cut into three portions each
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 6 slices Swiss cheese •1 (10-3/4 oz.) can cream of mushroom soup
  • 1/4 cup milk •1 (8-oz.) bag herb-seasoned stuffing mix
  • 1/2 stick butter or margarine, melted

Arrange turkey breasts in a lightly-greased, 3-quart baking dish. Top with cheese. Combine soup and milk in bowl. Spoon over cheese. Sprinkle with stuffing mix. Drizzle butter on top. Cover, and bake at 350 for 1 hour. Serve over wild rice.

6. Turkey Breast and Gravy

  • 1 large (14"x20") oven bag
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 packages (7/8 ounce each) turkey gravy mix
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 4 to 8 pound wild turkey breast
  • Salt, black pepper
  • 2 medium onions, quartered

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Shake flour in the oven bag place in 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Add gravy mix and water to the bag, and squeeze the bag to blend. Season turkey breast with salt and pepper, and place in the bag. Place onions in the bag around the turkey.

Close the oven bag with a twist tie cut six 1/2-inch slits in top. Bake 1-1/4 to 2 hours, or until a meat thermometer inserted in the breast reads 170 degrees. For easy slicing, allow the turkey to stand in the oven bag 10 minutes. Stir gravy before serving.

7. Butterflied Wild Turkey with Lime and Oregano

  • 1 wild turkey, plucked
  • 4 limes, cut into halves
  • 4 teaspoons oregano leaves
  • Salt, pepper

With poultry shears or a knife, split turkey lengthwise along one side of backbone. Pull turkey open place, skin side up, on a flat surface, and press firmly, cracking breastbone slightly, until bird lies reasonably flat. Rinse and pat dry. (At this point, you may cover and refrigerate until next day.) Before cooking, rub juice from 1 or 2 lime halves over turkey sprinkle with oregano, then lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Barbecue turkey by indirect heat, placing turkey, skin side up, on grill directly above drip pan. Cover barbecue and adjust dampers as necessary to maintain an even heat. Cook turkey until a meat thermometer inserted in the breast registers 170 degrees, about 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Every 30 minutes, squeeze 1 or 2 lime halves and rub over turkey.

Turkey Fried Rice Photo by Recipe.com

8. Turkey Fried Rice

  • 6 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 small bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup diced turkey breast
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • Soy sauce, as needed
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 cups cooked rice any type (white, brown, wild)
  • 1 cup broccoli florets

Heat wok. Add 2 teaspoons oil. Add pepper, onion, carrots and broccoli florets. Cook until crisp, yet tender. Remove, and set aside. Add 2 more teaspoons oil to wok. Add eggs, scramble, remove set aside. Add remaining oil. Add turkey breast, and stir-fry until cooked, about 10 minutes. Add soy sauce to taste. Return vegetables and eggs to wok. Add rice and additional soy sauce, as desired. Mix thoroughly and serve hot.


How Stretching Meat helps to save money

While I COULD splurge on a rotisserie chicken for one night’s dinner, the side effect would be more meatless nights later in the month. Our grocery budget is frugal, which means we eat our fair share of meatless meals, but we like to eat too!

In order to have more dinner WITH meat than without, we have to be creative and intentional with what we buy and what we make with it when we get home.

Stretching meat helps your grocery budget in many ways:

  • You’ll spend less on meat.
  • Creativity starts to kick in.
  • The cuts of meat you buy will be bigger. And cheaper.

10 Steps to Stretching Meat at Home

(1) Stretch your Meat budget by Making Meat a side dish.

The right mental frame of mind is just as important as what you actually do with the meat, so let’s set the record straight: meat is not the main star of the meal. It’s a side dish, an accompaniment, that small (yet important) role in the school play.

Meat is just one of several ingredients in a dish – not the only one – so keep that in mind as you’re making dinner.

(2) How do you budget meat for stretching? Cut it yourself.

Whether it’s cutting a whole chicken into parts or roasts into steaks, do it yourself and you’ll save right off the bat. Pre-cut chicken thighs and drumsticks average 50¢ per pound MORE than a whole chicken and whole roasts are upwards of $1 per pound more!

(3) Stretch the meat by making it thinner.

Using whole cuts of meat is a treat in our house, but you can still stretch the whole cuts by making them thinner. Before cooking, pound out chicken breasts, pork chops or steaks so that they’re slightly thicker than 1/4″.

Another option is to slice the cut of meat through the middle, at least once. If you’re skilled with a knife, do it three times! (Otherwise, play it safe and stick to the pounding out method.)

(4) Save on your Meat Budget by Grinding the meat yourself.

Ground beef used to be the most affordable option for beef. Not so much anymore. Fear not, because you can make your own ground beef!

Use inexpensive cuts of meat from local farmers or pick up the clearance packages at the grocery store and use a food processor to grind it up yourself. Just like that, you’ve saved big bucks overpaying for the convenience of having the meat pre-ground for you!

The same goes with any type of meat. Turkey (bought after Thanksgiving or Christmas), marked down chicken (on or off the bone) and even pork (steaks or roasts) can all be ground at home and used in whatever recipe you’d like.

(5) Measure two cups instead of whole pounds to stretch the meat.

How many meals can you get out of a whole chicken?

We buy two whole chickens each month and would you believe that it’s possible to stretch that chicken into at least SIX different meals? And that’s just the meat – it doesn’t include making stock from the bones (tip #10 below) or even adding filler items to the chicken!

Simply roast the chicken in the oven or cook it in a slow cooker. Pick all the meat off the bones and measure it into 2-cup portions.

Do the same with beef roasts or carnitas (shredded pork). Shredded, pre-portioned meat goes a long way.

(6) Replace meat with filler – a great way to stretch ground beef and more!

No, we’re not talking about pink slime. We’re talking about beans or lentils in tacos and skillet dishes. Barley in stews and oatmeal in burgers. Even shredded zucchini or carrots!

You don’t have to add much, but it allows you to reduce the amount of meat you’re serving without sacrificing taste and quality. (See how I stretched ground beef taco meat into more than one meal!)

  • For every pound of raw meat, add one cup of cooked filler.
  • For each 2 cup portion of shredded chicken, add 1/4 cup of rice.
  • Substitute 2 cups of your finished dish for 1 pound of ground beef or turkey called for in a recipe.

These fillers are the most common, and most affordable. Choose which to use based on the meal and what you have on hand.

  • Rice
  • Barley
  • Oats
  • Homemade breadcrumbs
  • Beans (cook dry beans from scratch to save even more)
  • Cooked lentils
  • Potatoes
  • Grated vegetables (carrot, zucchini, and squash)

(7) Choose meals and recipes that stretch meat.

Substituting 2 cups of shredded chicken into a whole-piece chicken recipe won’t cut it, so you have to choose a more appropriate recipe from the get-go. Casseroles are the most common ways to use shredded or ground meat, but here’s a list of my favorite recipes that immediately become budget-friendly by using a single 2-cup portion of meat:

Tip: For slow cooker meals, prepare the meal as directed except for the meat. Add the shredded chicken at the very end, about one hour before the meal is set to be done.

(8) A simple way to stretch meat in recipes: Use less meat.

No one but your budget will notice you used only 3/4 lb instead of 1 lb in that casserole dish. And if you’ve stretched it with a hearty filler, that 3/4 lb will go even further!

The same can be said for trimming down to 1 cup of shredded chicken instead of 2 cups. You can’t do this for every dish, but you could easily use less in recipes like these:

  • Soups
  • Fried rice
  • Grilled sandwiches
  • Salads
  • Quesadillas
  • Spaghetti Sauces
  • Sloppy Joe

(9) Stretch your Meat budget by Freezing it Correctly.

Freezer burn doesn’t alter the nutrition of food, but it can affect the taste. Once you’ve cooked your meat, stretched it with a healthy filler, and determined what to use it for, wrap it twice so it’s not freezer burned when you’re ready to thaw.

Tip: Keep your freezer organized AND save on freezer bags by portioning your meat into sandwich-size bags. Label each of those bags with the contents, then place several of these into one larger gallon-size bag. You can toss the sandwich bags but re-use the gallon one over and over.

(10) Save bones for stock.

With the meat taken care of, let’s do something with the bones. We make Instant Pot chicken stock or slow cooker homemade chicken stock because it’s hands-off and easy, but you can make it on the stove if you’d like too. And did you know you can reuse bones over and over again?! Your stock will get lighter, but it’s still nutritious!

Dinner on a Dime

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The Roux

Roux, a cooked mixture of equal parts flour and fat, like butter, oil or pan drippings, is what thickens a gravy. Here’s what you need to know.

A roux is made with equal parts fat and flour. If you’re making classic pan gravy, you’ll use the fat in the roasting pan. If you’re making gravy ahead of time, use butter, melting it in a medium pan over medium heat.

Either way, sprinkle in an equal amount of flour. (If you’re using butter, the ratio is 1/2 cup flour to one stick of butter.) Gently whisk the fat and flour together for at least 5 minutes, long enough for the raw taste of the flour to disappear. Keep cooking, whisking all the while, until the roux has reached your desired color.

A white or light roux, in which the flour is cooked briefly, will give you a mild mixture that lets the flavor of the poultry dominate. It’s also the most effective thickener. A dark, mahogany-colored roux adds an intense caramelized flavor to the gravy, but sometimes at the expense of turkey flavor. Or strike a balance and cook the roux until medium brown, which will give you a nuttiness that still allows the poultry character shine.