Why pay more for lean ground beef?

by Karen on November 19, 2008

Tony and I don’t eat a lot of red meat. Occasionally we’ll grill a nice lean steak, but we eat more chicken than beef. It’s mostly because when we do buy ground beef, we like to buy very lean beef, usually about 90-94% lean. Have you seen the prices for lean beef? It rarely falls below $4 a pound. We’d just as soon cook with chicken, which is healthier and only $2 a pound.

This week, Tony had a craving for Shepherd’s pie. We were picking up our Thanksgiving turkey and some steaks on sale. We needed beef for the pie, but I wanted to save some money. I decided for this week that the extra 10% fat in the $2 a pound ground beef wouldn’t kill me.

I was shocked at how much extra fat cooked out in the pan. We’ve been cooking with lean beef for so long that I’ve gotten used to seeing very little fat in the pan.

We cooked all of the fat out, drained it completely, and patted it down with paper towels to remove the excess fat. And you know what? It was basically the same. Obviously, I can’t say for sure that it was just as lean as the 90%, but it sure seemed like it once it was drained well.

I know, this one seems like a no-brainer, but it’s a revelation for me. I’ll never pay $4 a pound for ground beef again. That works for me!

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