Saving money on your family’s favorite types of meat can be an ongoing challenge.

The coupons for fresh meat are few and far between. Even general types of meat marked “on sale” are expensive. However, there are some tricks to getting high-quality meats for less!

The USDA has an ongoing data research study that compares the costs of meat pound per pound.

Along with that data, we’ve conducted our own investigation to find out what cuts of meat are less expensive but still full of flavor.

We’ve learned that with a little creativity, adding meat to your dinner table doesn’t have to be a budget buster!

Buying these types of meat will not only give your family the protein it needs to stay healthy, but you can introduce new types of meat and encourage them to try something new!

You can not only still buy great types of meat, but you’ll be helping your family stay on budget.

And using these new types of meat will help you save more for when you want to splurge on those nice steaks for your anniversary cookout!

Here are 7 cheap(er) cuts of meat that will save you money, yet keep ALL the flavor!

types of meat


1. Use Bone-in Chicken Thighs and Drumsticks instead of Boneless Skinless Breast cuts.

The thighs and drumsticks are full of flavor and tend to maintain their moisture better than white meat during the cooking process.

They are great in the slow cooker or oven recipes as well as on the grill, and prices generally run in the range of 40% less than boneless, skinless breast cuts.


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If you really want the white meat, buy the whole chicken and butcher it yourself. Or just cook it whole! I cook one whole chicken in my crockpot. Easy and delicious.

A Couple Recipes To Try:

types of meat


2. Steak: Choose Beef Sirloin instead of New York Strip or Rib-eye.

Sirloin is an often overlooked as cost-efficient types of meat because it contains less fat and can be dry, but when marinated well and not overcooked (grilling for a couple of minutes on each side should be about right) it is delicious.

You can save around 30% compared to the cost of other cuts by using sirloin.

Another money-saving suggestion here is to use less of it.

Instead of serving everyone a large cut of meat, try cutting it up and making steak & veggie kebabs.

types of meat

3. Roast: Buy Bottom-Round instead of Eye-of-round.

This is another good substitution that will save you around 10-20% but will still be big on flavor on these types of meat.

Marinating it well will help tenderize it. These types of meats cook up quickly, but is ideal for slow cooker or pressure cooker recipes, as these environments will keep it most moist.

A Couple Recipes To Try:

types of meat

4. Ground Beef: Use Ground Turkey or Turkey Meatballs instead of Beef.

Whoever thought that $4.99 or $5.99 a pound would be called a “good price” for hamburger meat? Seriously? Long gone are the days of $2 a pound ground beef, so yes, now we have to get creative even with these types of meat.

Ground turkey runs around 20% less than the cost of ground beef, so substitute turkey when possible or mix it in and using half & half.  Save the remainder of both in freezer bags for another meal later.

The benefits of using turkey over beef are well reported, namely much lower fat content, it cooks up well, is cheaper and an overall healthier choice! We love our recipes that call for meatballs.

Know those expensive ones in the store that are Angus beef and run about $8 a bag? Great in recipes, right? Challenge yourself to pay half the price for a bag of turkey meatballs to substitute in your favorite casserole or meatball recipe.

You will be pleasantly surprised at the result! When we brown the turkey meatballs first, my kids can’t even tell the difference with these types of meat!

A Couple Recipes To Try: 

types of meat

Pork Chops

5. Purchase Bone-in Pork Rib Chops instead of Pork Loin Chops.

Go for the types of meat chops with the bone (not the one that looks like a “T” but the other one) because it has the tender and flavorful loin meat attached.

Buying bone-in will save you about 20% compared to boneless with the same great flavor.

A personal favorite is marinated with Dale’s Steak Seasoning and lemon pepper ~ so good grilled are these types of meat!

types of meat

Fish And Seafood

6. Fish – Use Whiting or Pollock instead of Tuna, Salmon or other more expensive types of fish.

You can save about 50% with this choice, and the price gets even sweeter when you buy it in bulk frozen instead of out of the “fresh” case.


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Which in most supermarkets is the same fish you would get out of the freezer case just thawed for you.

And these types of meat are so healthy for you too!

types of meat

7. Seafood – Buy it from the grocery store instead of the fresh market.

Unless you live right on the coast where the fish is brought in daily, most fresh seafood is frozen and then thawed at the market for your “viewing pleasure” ~ but this comes at a cost.

You’ll pay about 20-25% less buying frozen from the grocery store for fish such as tilapia, catfish, mahi-mahi, and cod than when buying from fresh markets for these types of meat.

A Couple Recipes To Try: 

So as you can see, there are some great types of meat that can cost considerably less when you compare the prices.

You can still buy these types of meat for great flavor and taste, but they can help you stay on top of your grocery budget too!

Plus, your family will still be getting the protein it needs to be strong and healthy!

And when you do want to splurge on those steaks for your anniversary dinner, you won’t feel a bit worried since you have been picking the best types of meat for your family!


YOUR TURN: Know of some other less expensive types of meat to substitute for better savings? Please post your comment below! I’d love to hear your ideas too!

types of meat
Seven Cuts Of Meat That Will Save You Money