Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Tip #9: Buy Whole Chicken

After doing some hunting on the website, I found some surprising & good news: Whole Chicken is the cheapest way to buy chicken and also the tastiest! Now isn't that a win-win? After hunting around and keeping track of prices, I found that the cheapest whole chickens can be found at Sam's club for 88 cents a pound. Walmart was a close second at 98 cents a pound. (Clearly this depends on where you live and what stores you have access to!)

Last week, I bought a whole chicken, covered it in spices and set it in the crockpot for a few hours. It was delicious and tender! Michael helped me shred all the chicken off the bone and we ended up with several cups of delicious, tender chicken! Our freezer now has several baggies full of chicken that is ready to be thrown in salads, stir fry, fried rice, soups, quesadillas...the list goes on and on!

I also read about how nutritious homemade chicken broth is. I was shocked and happy to hear this. So, I set out to make homemade chicken broth with the remains of the whole chicken, but it turned out horribly. All the spices I put on the chicken before were not good spices for a broth. It tasted pretty bad (and really strong!).

However, I don't want to waste any part of the chicken (yes, even the gross carcass has benefits!) Thankfully Becca came to my rescue again (Becca, you are becoming quite popular on here!) and showed me this recipe. I have another whole chicken in the freezer and I am so excited to follow this recipe and have lots of chicken broth! I think the only change I'll make is to do it in my crockpot (I am obsessed with my crockpots. Yes, I have two and they make me very happy!) I am so excited to have tasty and healthy chicken broth on hand and I can stop relying on this for large batches:

(Although, I love having these granules around for recipes that call for 1/4 c. broth or even smaller.)

Don't you love when you find something that is cheaper, taste better, and is easier than cooking small amounts of chicken for each meal? What a delicious time saver :)


  1. I love doing this! It saves so much money. Also, if you will put the chicken broth in a tupperware in the fridge overnight to cool, you can skim all the fat off the top the next morning before freezing it for a super low calorie broth!

  2. Anna- brilliant idea! Thanks girl :)

  3. I've actually done the math on this issue and came out with an interesting result.

    I tested a 4lb whole young chicken (aka the fryer), and slow cooked it. I carefully picked all the meat off, and ended up with 1.25lbs of meat. That works out to a ratio of 1lb for every 3.2lbs of precooked weight.

    For boneless skinless chicken breasts, the ratio worked out to 1lb for every 1.33lbs of precooked weight.

    For chicken leg and thigh quarters (which you can still use to make stock from), the ratio worked out to be 1lb for every 1.9lbs of precooked weight.

    So you multiply the ratio amount by the price to get the price per cooked lb.

    Whole chicken: price x 3.2
    Boneless Breasts: price x 1.33
    Chicken leg and thigh quarters: price x 1.9

    I can consistently get the leg quarters for 79c a lb, and breasts for 1.99/lb, and without taking the stock into account, both work out to be vastly cheaper per cooked lb of meat than the whole fryers.

    I slow cooked all 3 for this projected btw, and the meat on poultry is known to have a 25% reduction when cooked, so that accounts for some of the lost weight in addition to the bones and skin.

    The leg quarters will still make a decent stock, and work out vastly cheaper over all, plus they are easier to freeze, store, and defrost than whole chickens are.