|Cooking the Whole Chicken Saves Money!
Prices and going up so fast it makes your head spin! The consumer price index has been rising at about 6.8%, a 39-year high! The increase in prices is due to increased demand and supply shortages. We’re also still dealing with Covid-19, contributing to our grocery prices going up.
With the prices going up so high, how on earth can you save money on groceries? In this post, we’ll take a look at buying a whole chicken. Does it really make sense?
Why Do We Avoid Buying a Whole Chicken?
There are many reasons you may avoid buying a whole chicken. For some people, just thought of touching it is beyond gross. Its’ raw meat and some people have a tough time touching anything that’s raw, including a whole chicken.
Along with that, some people may have trouble cutting a whole chicken into parts. (That’s a problem I have!). The problem here is the cracking of bones and more makes this process gross.
Other people may believe it’s cheaper to buy chicken breasts instead of a whole chicken. A whole chicken might be too much for one person; however, that’s not really the case. We’ll talk about this later in the article.
Then some individuals believe the leftover meat can’t be used for much. However, that’s simply not the case. A whole roasted chicken can make up to four meals (or more, for a couple or one person). The meat can even be used to make sandwiches! We’ll touch on this a bit later.
Some who are pretty new to cooking from scratch may also feel cooking a whole chicken is very hard. This is a common misconception. No matter how you cook the entire chicken, it’s one of the easiest dishes you can learn to cook.
Others believe cooking a whole chicken is a lot of work. But that’s not always the case if you cook the entire chicken and then remove the meat. Cutting does take a little extra time, but even that’s not too much work.
And you’ll find a host of other reasons people won’t buy a whole chicken. If they’re not allergic and regularly each chicken breasts, are they missing anything?
A Whole Chicken is Cheaper Than Buying Chicken Parts
When it comes to choosing a whole chicken or buying chicken parts (such as breast meat), the entire chicken is always cheaper. This is because the price per pound for the whole chicken is more affordable than the parts. Plus, you can use the meat in many different ways!
When the whole chicken has been cooked, you can use some of the meat for a meal that day. The carcass can be cooked down to create a chicken broth. The chicken broth you make at home is much cheaper than store-bought; it also contains more nutrients than chicken soup from the store.
What’s more, a whole chicken can be put in the freezer for later use. For example, if you find whole chickens on sale, you can buy them that day and put them in the freezer for 12 months. Of course, you can use it sooner, but the idea is that if you buy it on sale and put the entire chicken in the freezer, you save quite a bit of money.
The goal of buying a whole chicken is to use it efficiently. Using the chicken efficiently means getting as much value as possible from the carcass and chicken parts.
What Can You Use a Whole Chicken For?
There are many things you can do with the whole chicken! Let’s take a look:
1. Make the broth: you can make chicken broth from the carcass, which means nothing goes to waste. Making chicken broth is relatively easy, and the resulting broth can be used in a number of ways, including:
- Cooking liquid in recipes (such as cooking rice, braising meat, and more)
- And more
2. Sandwiches: it’s possible to use the chicken meat to make sandwiches, such as:
- Pulled Chicken Sandwich
- Chicken salad sandwich
- Honey Mustard Chicken salad sandwich
- And more!
Whole chicken meat used to make sandwiches is healthier than lunch meat, including store-bought chicken lunch meat. Plus, you’re in control of the ingredients and don’t have to deal with all the chemicals and preservatives found in lunch meat.
3. International dishes: Mexican dishes use chicken meat, including tacos, burritos, and more. The same is true of many other international cuisines, such as Indian, Asian, and more.
4. Salads: chicken meat is also great for all kinds of salads and wraps.
5. Cooking & freezing the meat: it’s also possible to cook the entire chicken and freeze the meat for later use. You save money and time by having cooked chicken meat on hand. I do this quite often. If things get busy or I’m sick, it’s easy to reach for the cooked chicken and use it in an easy recipe. Then, just defrost the meat, and it’s ready to use.
These are only a few of the things you can do with chicken meat. The goal is to use up every part of the chicken, including the carcass. The more use you get out of the chicken, the more efficiently it’s used. Stretching the meat out for multiple uses also means saving money.
Putting aside all the myths about using a whole chicken, it’s one of the best ways to make your grocery budget go further. And a whole chicken is much cheaper than buying parts. When used efficiently, you get extra value and more nutrients, too! Oh, and chicken meat is naturally gluten-free!
If you’re looking to stretch your grocery budget, then buying a whole chicken is the way to go!