Meat…it’s what’s for dinner
Over the past couple of years we’ve made an effort to change how we eat. Well…how the adults eat. We have yet to break some of our kids from the cycle of deliciousness that is carbs and cheese. As a “card carrying” lifetime member of Weight Watchers I wasn’t really excited to go back to counting points, but because I lost most of my weight eating real food I wasn’t interested in “Slim Slow” or fad diets. We decided to try Whole30–an eating program that focuses on minimizing processed foods (no sugar!) and getting your nutrition from whole foods and vegetables for 30 days. It allows for a lot of variety, and we’ve done it a couple of times. Sometimes for me it was more like Whole20, or Whole12. Okay I think there was a Whole7 once.
The point is we did (and periodically do) a reset to get our eating more focused on less-processed protein and vegetables. And when you only have meat and vegetables on your plate you want the meat to be good. We tried just regular meat from the grocery store or warehouse club, organic meat from Whole Paycheck (Whole Foods), and meats from animals whom we have known personally and read stories to (not really–but we did buy part of a pig from a farm in Oregon when we lived there). I usually have kids with me at the grocery store and don’t always have the time I want to peruse.
These days we use Butcher Box for most of our carnivore needs. Butcher Box is a meat delivery company based in Cambridge, Mass., that delivers 100% grass fed beef, free range organic chicken and heritage breed pork to your door. You can create your own box or select one of their “curated boxes.” We have a mixed box delivered as we need it. One shipment lasts us 2 to 3 months. Although it’s set to auto ship you can pause until you are ready. Each delivery is like a treasure hunt full of different cuts of meat to discover. Some staples like chicken breast or ground beef can come every shipment. But other cuts vary by what they get from their farms. I like that i get different things that I may not try at the store. Every cut has been good quality.
Your butcher box arrives on your porch like this:
Inside the box is a lot of insulation (can be recycled) and a reusable insulated grocery bag which contains well portioned proteins. Each portion is usually about a pound, and feeds 2 or 3 people. Well 2 or 3 of MY people. Roasts probably feed 4 to 6. Not all of my tribe are big meat eaters yet so we get more out of the cuts than some may.
When we get our shipment I divide it into our freezer bins–one for chicken, one for ground meats and one for pork and beef. Its really easy for me to pull out what I want when I need it. I also have a bin for breads, and a bin for freezer meals or leftovers. The photo of the freezer was taken after we had defrosted and before we had fully stocked it again.
We have really enjoyed the convenience of meat home delivery. I know the quality that comes into the house is good, and I don’t have to spend a lot of time over the meat case wondering what I should get.
A few cautions:
- It does take some flexibility. Sometimes I find a recipe that calls for a certain cut, but I almost always use something similar from the freezer so I’m not paying for meat twice.
- Huge cuts of meat aren’t very economical to ship. If I want to roast a pork shoulder or a turkey I just get it from the store.
- Keep track of your shipments and plan to use what you have. I have picked up fresh from the store before because I had nothing thawed but that defeats the point.
So let me know if you want to know more, and post your questions in the comments!
Disclaimer: I have not been paid by Butcher Box for featuring them in this post. It’s just a service that has simplified a few things for us and I wanted to share.