Monday, January 25, 2010

Why didn't I think of that?

I hate "duh" moments.  But I totally had one the other night.  I was sitting here at the computer thumbing through various money saving blogs.  I'd read so far and then I would click on a link to another post or blog, and before I knew it, I was 43 layers deep and had 2,743 savings tips swimming in my head. 

And then...

...there it was...

My "duh" moment.

I had read that it was cheaper to buy bone-in chicken breasts (on sale of course), and just de-bone them yourself.  Well, that part I knew.  I had planned on doing that this week since Safeway had bone-in chicken breasts for 99¢ per pound.  What I hadn't thought of was what to do with the bones when you are done removing the meat from them.....

Are you ready for this?  You could have your own "duh" moment here.....you boil them!  You get homemade chicken stock, and you can save all the meat that stuck to the bones. 

I'm serious, why didn't I think of that before?!

I bought 30 pounds of chicken for $30 ($29.58 if you want to get technical!), and saved myself $50 because it was on sale.  So far, so good.  I was eager to see how my new information would pay off in our favor.  David and I set up a little assembly line and got to work.  We had one bowl for meat (which turned into 2 bowls by the end of it), a huge pot for the bones, and another bowl (with a plastic bag for easy clean up) for the skin and fat.  You can see it up in the corner of the picture...


I'll admit, it was time consuming, but it didn't feel that bad since we were working together.  And the pay off would be huge (so I hoped.)  Well, right off the bat, I saved $50 just from the sale.  Had I waited for the boneless skinless to go on sale for $1.79, I would have paid out another $24 for someone else to do a little work for me.  I'd rather keep the money thankyouverymuch!

By de-boning the meat my self, what I got was:
  • about 10 cups of chicken stock and I can pronounce every ingredient that went into it
  • 5½ cups of cooked chicken that was stuck to the bones that I would have just thrown away - I can use that for soups, tacos, pizza ~ whatever I want.  I froze it in 3 packs - 2-2 cup packs and 1-1½ cup pack.  In case you missed that, I would have thrown away three meals worth of chicken!!
  • 3 packs of chicken tenders about 1 pound per pack
  • 15 packs of boneless skinless chicken breast, 2 per pack.

All that for less than $30 and a little work.  Yeah, I'd say that was a pretty good deal, and worth every penny saved!

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