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Shopping Savvy: Buying Quality Meat On A Budget

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Beer Braised Beef Stew

(Family Features) - If you're looking for ways to eat well on a budget, you're not alone.

So what can you do to keep good quality food on the table? Theo Weening, AKA "The Meat Guy," is the global meat coordinator for Whole Foods Market. He encourages people to try value cuts of meat. Flap steak and chuck roast are great options for creating delicious meals on a budget without sacrificing quality.

Flap Steak

Flap steak is similar to skirt, hangar or flank cuts. It's a versatile value cut that lends itself to marinades, grilling and other easy cooking methods. Great for fajitas and steak tacos or simply marinated and grilled, flap steak also presents well at special dinners for friends or family.


Chuck roast makes a great budget choice for kabobs, stews, chili and soups such as Beer-Braised Beef Stew with Brussels Sprouts, Barley Soup with Beef and Mushrooms and, for special occasions, Venezuelan Roast Beef.

Buy More for Less

Another great way to save is to buy family value packs. Purchasing larger-packaged quantities results in lower prices for poultry, beef and pork. Buy extra to cook more now and have enough protein for several meals. Or freeze what you don't want to cook immediately. Then, you have meat on hand and ready to cook without making an extra shopping trip.

You can keep meat on the table without sacrificing quality and taste. It just takes a little shopping savvy.

For more recipes and how-to videos, visit wholefoodsmarket.com.

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Beer Braised Beef Stew

  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Sea salt and ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup dark beer
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped white onion
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped celery
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped white creamer potatoes (omit if serving over potatoes or noodles)
  • 1 1/2 cups Brussels sprouts, small or mini
  • 2 tablespoons thyme leaves, finely chopped
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    1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
    2. Season beef cubes with salt and pepper and dust with flour. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to Dutch oven, add beef cubes and sear until browned on each side. Transfer beef to bowl.
    3. Add beer to pan and scrape up brown caramelized bits from the bottom. Simmer to reduce beer by half. Pour beer over meat.
    4. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to pan. Over high heat, add onions, celery and carrots. Season with salt and pepper. After 3 or 4 minutes, add garlic and allow vegetables to soften slightly.
    5. Add beef mixture to pan along with beef broth and return to a boil. Cover with lid and transfer to preheated oven.
    6. After about 10 minutes, check stew to make sure it is slowly simmering (don't boil the stew or it will toughen meat). Reduce oven temperature if needed to obtain a slow simmer.
    7. After 20 minutes, add potatoes, Brussels sprouts and thyme. Return to oven for another 40 minutes. If stew still has a lot of liquid, return pan to stove top and simmer with lid off (this will help to thicken stew and intensify flavor). Stir stew occasionally to prevent it from scorching.
    8. After a total of 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours cooking time, stew meat should be fork tender. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and serve immediately.
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Serves 4

SOURCE: Whole Foods Market

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