Is chicken on the menu tonight?

If you’re like most Americans, chicken will end up on your dining table at least a couple times a week. It’s a great choice for many reasons, so it’s easy to see why it’s so popular. Chicken is a good source of protein, can be prepared quickly, and can be used in a variety of recipes – from stews to stir fries to salads. Or it can simply be baked, broiled, or grilled for an easy weeknight meal.


So how much chicken are we eating? According to an article by Slate,  we eat chicken an average of 10 times per month. And 80% of the time, we choose white meat chicken over dark. I have to admit that I often grab a package of boneless, skinless chicken breasts without giving much attention to the other choices in the poultry case. But I realized that I could save money by swapping out chicken breasts for the often-overlooked boneless, skinless chicken thighs.


Boneless, skinless chicken breasts cost around $4.49* per pound, but thighs cost about  $2.69* per pound. A savings of nearly $2.00 per pound!! Looking for less expensive cuts of meat is one way to stretch your SNAP/FNS benefits.


Saving money doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice taste. The other night I tried out this zesty recipe for Spicy Honey-Brushed Chicken Thighs.  The recipe was a hit, and can be made with ingredients that you likely have in your pantry already. I served it with brown rice and steamed broccoli to complete the meal.

Cost breakdown for 4 servings*

Chicken thighs – $2.69 for 1 pound (4 oz. per person)

Frozen broccoli – $1.19 for 16 oz.

Minute brown rice – $.64 ($1.27 for a 14 oz. box. Use half the box for 4 servings)

Total – $4.52

Cost per person – $1.13


Spicy Honey-Brushed Chicken Thighs

Cooking Light | MARCH 2007

Yield: 4 servings



2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper

8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs

Cooking spray

6 tablespoons honey

2 teaspoons cider vinegar



Preheat broiler.

Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl. Add chicken to bowl; toss to coat. Place chicken on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Broil chicken 5 minutes on each side.

Combine honey and vinegar in a small bowl, stirring well. Remove chicken from oven; brush 1/4 cup honey mixture on chicken. Broil 1 minute. Remove chicken from oven and turn over. Brush chicken with remaining honey mixture. Broil 1 additional minute or until chicken is done.


* Prices are from February 2014 for Harris Teeter and Food Lion in Raleigh, NC

Boneless, skinless chicken thighs, Food Lion – $2.69/lb

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, Food Lion – $4.49/lb

Frozen Broccoli (16 oz.), Harris Teeter – $1.19

Minute Rice (14 oz.), Harris Teeter – $1.27