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Money Tip and Guest Post: Time to Cut the Fat. How you can save over 80 cents a pound by cutting your own meat

This is an article written by a good friend of mine, Tim.  As long as I’ve known him he’s been sort of a meat and cheese connoisseur, and he’s always looking for ways to save money on bulk meat purchases.

Time to cut the fat.

One easy way to save money on beef is to spend a few minutes with a knife. No, robbing people as they come out of the store is not an efficient way. Knowing how to trim primal cuts of meat yourself is much better, and much less likely to result in jail time. Buying a primal cut means the butcher doesn’t have to spend time trimming the meat down, and the savings gets passed down to you.

2009_01_14-TrimFat2For instance: I saw beef brisket on super sale the other week for around $5 a lb. That’s about the best price I’ve seen around here for “trimmed” brisket. Alternatively, I decided to pick up a whole brisket the other day for the USUAL price of just over $2.50 a lb. I spent about 15 minutes with a knife at home, trimmed out just over 5 and a half pounds of fat, and even assuming I just throw away the fat (instead of making it into tallow), that means I’ve saved just over 80 cents a pound over the super sale prices.

Now imagine I was a smart consumer and shopped around for deals on the whole brisket so that we were comparing sale prices to sale prices, and the savings would be even larger. That’s also ignoring the fact that I would probably have ended up trimming down the store bought cut even more because I’m picky like that.

Another great example of a cut that you can save a lot of money on is beef tenderloin. Costco sells the PISMO (peeled, side meat on). Cut tenderloin? ~$19 a lb. PISMO? just over half that much. Again, that’s without doing any real shopping around.

The list goes on and on. Do a bit of research, watch a youtube video or two on how to trim primal cuts, and you’ll be amazed at how much money you can save.

About Crystal Groves, Google+

Crystal Groves is a farmer, web developer, musician, blogger, and personal finance enthusiast from the back hills of Maryland and Pennsylvania. She started Money Drain as a project to encourage people interested in fixing their financial situation to share their stories and learn from the stories of others. We all make mistakes, but in order to change we have to make changes.

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One Response to Money Tip and Guest Post: Time to Cut the Fat. How you can save over 80 cents a pound by cutting your own meat

  1. Tim says:

    For the record, don’t use a santoku knife for trimming like in the picture. There’s a reason butcher’s have a lot of knives, and with a few bucks and a local flea market you can usually get a pretty decent set put together. The right knife makes everything a lot easier.

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