Four Tips for Eating Well During a Meat Shortage

Why not turn the recent news reports of possible meat shortages into lifestyle changes for the better? Here are some of my tips for cooking with less meat, or better meat, or not meat at all — during these times.

My pot roast with coriander and cardamom is an amazing recipe for grass-fed beef.

1. Order Direct from Farmers Who Sustainably Raise Meat

Like many people, I’ve been trying to cook with less meat in general. And when I do cook with meat, I try to find meat that’s sustainably raised. I don’t always succeed, but it is a goal. While I often head to Whole Foods, I’m not doing that so much lately.

My meat farmer here in Iowa is Nick Wallace of Wallace Farms. If you live in Iowa or Chicago, he drops off meat at several locales in these areas. If not, he’ll ship meat directly to you. Check out the Wallace Farms website — he makes it so easy to source sustainably raised meats from grass-fed animals that there’s really no excuse to not at least give it a try.

The Wallace Farms website is a one-stop shop for just about every kind of animal protein: pork, poultry, seafood and beef, in all kinds of cuts – from chicken breasts, pork chops and roasts to offbeat items, like chicken backs and beef marrow bones. They even sell pet food, too.

My favorite Wallace Farms cuts are the pork chops, ground meats, and the pot roasts. Try them in these recipes:

Pork Chops with Orange and Thyme
My French Pot Roast
7-Bone Pot Roast with Coriander and Cardamom (use any pot roast for this — it doesn’t have to be 7-bone!)

Of course, sustainably raised meat is more expensive than CAFO-raised meat … but it’s like that old advertisement for good Scotch. Remember? It said: “Drinking less? Drink better.” Same goes for meat: Eating less meat? Eat better meat.

2. Eat More Seafood

If you, like me, live in a landlocked state, it can be tough getting great seafood, especially in these times when you don’t always want to go to the the best local seafood shop that’s too crowded for comfort.

That’s why I recently signed up to receive monthly boxes of wild-caught, sustainably raised, flash-frozen fish from the Wild Alaskan Company.  I gotta, say, I’m hooked (pardon the pun!)! A box of 12 individually wrapped frozen filets arrives every month. You can choose from all salmon (a mix of Coho and Sockeye), a combo pack (salmon and white fish) or all white fish. So far, I’ve received all-salmon and the combo back, I’ve been very pleased with every cut so far. Find out more on the Wild Alaskan Company website.

Here are a few of my favorite French recipes for fish:

Best French Method for Cooking Fish (Meunière style)
Roasted Salmon with Pernod Sauce
Salmon Pasta with Creme Fraiche
How to Cook Salmon in a Braiser

Honestly. I thought the Chick Pea Tinga Tacos from Hello Fresh would be a bit boring. They were outa sight … and meatless.

3. Order Occasional Meal Kits from Hello Fresh

I know. It seems really weird for a food writer and cookbook editor to order meal kit services. But the thing I like about getting the occasional box from Hello Fresh is that it makes me cook things that I don’t normally cook.  I also like the way each delivery stretches the time between visits to the supermarket.

In keeping with my goal of trying to eat less meat, I often try their vegetarian recipes. As you know, sometimes the world’s more creative meatless recipes call on a long list of ingredients — ingredients I don’t really feel like chasing down at the moment. That’s why I like getting them all in one box.

Two meatless recipes I’ve adored recently — which tasted infinitely better than I expected when reading about them, were Crunchy Curried Chick Pea Bowls (with pickled golden raisins, pickled cabbage, and kale), as well as Chick Pea Tacos. Seriously — I thought both sounded kind of drab, but ended up just thrilled with these meatless meals.

I’ve also enjoyed many other recipes, both with meat and without. They do really good things with chimichurri and Bibimbaps, especially!

Another thing I like about Hello Fresh is that with each order, you can do “add ons” of extra meats and sides: Ground beef, chicken breasts, Italian sausage, plus salads, breads and casual desserts. That’s a total boon during these “I don’t want to go to the store” kinds of days.

By the way: If you order through a link on this blog post, you can save $40 on on your first delivery. Note that if you use this link, I get a kickback of $10, but believe me, I’m not telling you about this because of the kickback! I truly like this service (and I’d never lend my good name to something for a kickback!).

4. Eat Plant-Based Meals

I saved the most obvious for last! A great response to the current meat shortage is to simply eat less meat. With all the great cheeses and vegetables and worldly seasonings out there, meatless meals are just SO much better than they were back when I went meatless for a year in high school! Lately, I’ve been cooking a lot of Indian, Thai, and Middle Eastern cooking, all which lend themselves beautifully to meatless cooking. But the French do good things sans meat as well. A few recipes on this blog:

French Goat Cheese Alfredo
Asparagus Crêpes with Goat Cheese
Piperade (Great for serving on omelets or baked eggs!)
Market Day Tagliatelle with Goat Cheese (pictured)
Tagliatelle with Morels

Shop Amazon to support this site (simply click on the ad link below — I will get a small commission on anything you order, without it adding to your costs whatsoever.) And, as always, thank you for visiting Chez Bonne Femme.

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3 comments to Four Tips for Eating Well During a Meat Shortage

  • Thomas Blyth

    Brilliant! We’ve been ordering on-line from Wild Alaska for about a year.
    The fish is outstanding and from hook-to-home.. We get their cod and halibut fish option with super fast delivery every six weeks . We also find the six-ounce portion control means each filet is sufficient for two persons with smaller appetites.

    • Wini

      So glad to hear you agree! I am just so happy with their product right now. Thanks for letting me know you’re a fan, too!

      I gotta say — six ounces is way too much food for one person. Our solution is to cook the full two portions for dinner, but to save a bit from each portion to use in fish tacos for lunch the next day. (It’s something we both look forward to, being so both of us are home at lunch these days…..)

      Definitely a good idea to use one portion to serve two people….especially a good idea during the upcoming Salmon Salad Nicoise season!


  • MixShoup

    Thank you very much for the invitation :). Best wishes.
    PS: How are you? I am from France 🙂

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