One Chicken....Three Meals

So...I'm not a fan of eating meat. Actually, I think meat is healthy (in moderation of course) and I think it tastes great, but I get an icky feeling whenever I cut, cook, or eat meat. Sometimes it even makes me cry. Now, I've been outside enough to see the food chain in action...the real, raw, fight for your life kind of food chain, and I know it's a fact of life. But still, I have a hard time killing or knowing that an animal was killed for my food. I also have a hard time with the way animals are treated in factory farms, but enough about my issues...back to the task at hand.

When I eat meat, I like to eat all of it. I'm not a big fan of wasting in general, but I have an even harder time throwing meat away (see above). So, when I bake a chicken, we get a lot of use out of it. Seriously, a 3-4 pound fryer will make 3-4 meals for us. I usually bake the chicken with some carrots and potatoes, and we eat that for our first meal. Then I save the skin and bones and use them to make chicken stock (or broth).

Then we usually have quite a lot of meat left that we serve as chicken sandwiches, chicken nuggets (as we call them, even though it's just chicken, no breading), chicken fajitas, and some tasty Asian noodle dishes. The picture above is a typical leftover chicken lunch. I had chicken breast with some barbecue sauce and a spinach salad using the spinach from our garden. I had one cherry tomato that got lost in our crisper. I love tomatoes, so I popped it in my salad, all by it's lonesome.

Buying a whole chicken turns out to be a healthy (unprocessed) and frugal option. We buy the chicken once, and eat from it for a couple of days. Plus it's great to have chicken stock on hand to use in soups and rice. In case you are wondering, a typical 3-4 pound chicken on sale costs about $3.50-$4, but I have found them for as low as $1.50 after sales and coupons. If you ever find that kind of deal, they freeze well and last for a long time in the freezer.


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