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Enjoy a tasty Memorial Day holiday without breaking the bank

Enjoy a tasty Memorial Day holiday without breaking the bank
Enjoy a tasty Memorial Day holiday without breaking the bank 02:15

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Many butchers and grocers around the Pittsburgh area are bracing for the calm before the holiday storm of people looking for good meat at a good price.

"This is the holiday that kicks off the summer, that brings a lot of people together. That is kind of what grilling does," said Brad Bengele, the general manager and co-owner of Strip District Meats. "A lot of people are doing hamburgers and hotdogs because they are your cheapest bet to feed a lot of people."

Bengele says that it is important for folks to know how many people they are feeding and just how much poundage they need when they come in. One way to save money that is often overlooked is to buy ground beef and make the patties yourself instead of buying them already made.

"Just like anything, when you add labor to something, it is going to cost more," said Bengele. "Maybe instead of buying a box of 24 already-made hamburger patties, buy 10 pounds of ground meat and make your own patties. You will get a cheaper price on the meat itself when it is in bulk compared to patties, but it is pretty convenient to throw the patties down and they are all the same size."

Comparing prices and examining Memorial Day food deals 02:14

Pork is another low-cost meal, and pork butt and pork shoulder are good on the grill.

You can also look for meat on sale; many grocery stores discount meat near its expiration date, so if bought and grilled on the same day, it's a great way to save.

When it comes to grilling, Bengele says that a clean grill is not only safer than a dirty one, but your meat will cook better.

"Clean the rack so that you get good contact, so you get nice grill marks on your meat," Bengele said. "If the rack is all caked up with grease on it, you are not going to get those grill marks. And you can also put some oil on your racks to assist you with grill marks."

Not only are mom-and-pop shops like Strip District Meats planning on being packed, but the big grocery chains in our region will have a lot of people in and out.

With a big holiday weekend comes big sales.

Stores like Wal-Mart, Shop 'n Save and Giant Eagle also had consumer-friendly deals.

While all three have great prices on packs of hamburger and hot dog buns, it is hard to beat Walmart with an 8-pack of both hot dog and hamburger buns for just $1.46.

Walmart also seems to have a good price for corn on the cob at just $.33 per ear.

Shop 'n Save is boasting a deal on meat right now. Any marked five packages of meat can be had for just $25. That includes some ground meat and hot dogs.

While Giant Eagle has several sales right now, you can find a family pack of Ball Park franks for $5.99, and a variety of ground beef burgers, packed and ready to go on the grill.

Any way you cut it, these deals should be around most of the week, but a good rule of thumb is you may want to start buying on Thursday or Friday to make sure they are not sold out of what you want come Saturday or Sunday.

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