Simple Savings: Eat a meatless meal.

Today’s tip is one we’ve often heard but may not be popular with everyone. You can save when you eat one meatless meal a week. My husband, however, is a meat and potatoes fan. He would like to have meat at every meal. Of course, I want to please my hard working husband but I also want to keep our budget balanced. How do I reconcile those two? Simple.

I eat meatless meals when he is not home. If he’s coaching a basketball game, I’ll make myself a dish of pasta. If he’s working late at school, I’ll eat leftovers. I don’t mind eating meatless so I save by doing so myself.

Eat a meatless meal to save money. Whether once a week or once a month, it will save you money!

The premise is generally simple. The more meatless meals you eat, the more you can save. Yes, there may be exceptions to this rule if you buy lots of fancy ingredients, but most times, eating meatless will save you money. Not sure how your family feels about this? Pick the frequency that works for you. Maybe you will plan one meatless meal a week or maybe one a month. Every time you skip meat, you will be saving money, especially since the cost of meat continues to rise! This is one savings strategy that I am working towards.

If your family (or husband) prefers meat, start to develop meatless recipes that they like and work towards the goal of less meat at meals. For example, I can make a gourmet grilled cheese sandwich that my husband enjoys. How about serving breakfast for dinner, focusing on scrambled eggs or pancakes? With fall and winter upon us, it’s the perfect time for a hot bowl of potato soup. Instead of tacos, how about cooking veggie burritos or quesadillas? I’d love to hear other meatless meals that your family enjoys for ideas that I can try, too!

If this doesn’t work for you, try to stretch the meat that you currently use a bit further. It’s a good transition step to going meatless. Does the recipe call for 1.5 pounds of hamburger? Can you use 1 pound instead? Can you add some veggies to your chicken enchiladas and use a cup less shredded chicken? As with all our savings, do what you can to save!

To read the 31 other simple tips in this series, you can do so here.

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9 Comments

  1. Awesome idea. I have put this idea into practice in my home, as well. It will take a little more convincing for my hubby, but I have definitely noticed the savings by having more meat-less meals.

    1. Thanks, Jennifer! I think husbands always are the hardest to convince – especially when it comes to the lack of meat! The savings make it worth while and I try to get by with less meat when I can!

  2. My mom added boiled eggs to tuna salad to make it go farther. We sometimes make pasta salad with tuna to make it go farther. Mostly we have a pile of hot tuna with cheese without bread. But that is a lot of cans of tuna to feed the whole family.
    My MIL made tacos by adding refried beans to hamburger to make it go farther. We adapted that to making tacos without the hamburger. By the time you have the mixture of refried beans, pinto beans, black beans, onions and spices, and all the taco toppings we don’t miss the meat. Tacos made like this are a fast, pretty cheap, filling, supper with leftovers for our family. I’m always surprised of how much a treat it is to have tacos at someone else’s house or something at church when it is made with just hamburger.
    I think it does take effort to think about one recipe at a time how you can save but soon your family gets used to the more frugal way.
    One of our favorite lunches is tortilla chips topped with avocado, corn, black beans, tomatoes or Rotel, and cheese. Everyone likes it and it is fast. The hot version of this is rice, black beans, Rotel, and cheese.
    Just a warning, in a few years you will be outnumbered with Nathan and hubby not liking meatless meals. I quickly learned that just pancakes without bacon or sausage or eggs was not enough to fill up my boys. My 7 y old eats 4 eggs plus toast and fruit for breakfast. So even just eggs is no longer a cheap meal. I would be content with just pancakes and fruit, but none of my boys would be. I expect it will be the same for you when Nathan is a little older. It is amazing to me how much my boys eat and they aren’t even teenagers yet.

    1. I know! Boys and their appetites! So, we penny pinch where we can to fill them up – meatless or not. Great ideas there, especially with the chips & nachos. That’s something I could do, too. We are eating more hard boiled eggs because there are a good source of protein. 4 eggs for breakfast for your 7 year old? Good luck keeping up their tummies full! 🙂

  3. I don’t think your link to the previous tips in this series is working–whenever I click on it, a new window opens with this same Day and tip. Thanks

    1. Hi, Kari. It does work, but it’s bringing up all the posts – starting with the current one. Simple scroll down in that new window and you’ll see all the previous posts, starting with the current day and working backwards. I hope this helps!

  4. Yes! We have been doing this at our home too, calling it “Meatless Mondays” and I have made stuff with beans with cornbread.

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