The other night my partner and I decided we wanted some mac & cheese. People who exercise a lot know the importance of protein, but mac & cheese doesn’t have that much. What it lacks in protein, it makes up for in carbs and fat. And that’s awesome.
But back to the protein dilemma. Of course we needed the protein for our gains, but we didn’t want chicken breasts. We needed a chicken breast substitute. And we found one.
So then I started thinking. I thought about other things you could use to make a diet fun. You know, as opposed to having chicken tits with your broccoli all the time. Thus was born the following list of 5 things you can use as your own chicken breast substitute. For the inaugural food item, we will start with the one I used to go with our Velveeta just the other night.
1. Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs
Most recipes involving chicken need you to debone and peel the skin off the chicken. That is, unless you are having the chicken by itself. But if you want to make some fried chicken, or some orange chicken, the removal of the bone and the skin is essential. As for chicken breast substitutes, the boneless, skinless thighs (BST) work well. Here are a few reasons why:
- They are inexpensive. The price difference per pound between the chicken titties and the BST can be about three to four dollars, depending on where you shop. And that’s pretty fucking rad.
- Also, macro count is not the worst thing in the world. For the BST the macros are 22 grams of protein and 4.5 grams of fat per four ounce portions. The four ounce portions of chicken titties run you 26 grams of protein and 1.5 grams of fat. Not a whole lot to fuck up your margin of error if you are diligent in tracking your macros. Of course, if you are on point with your tracking, it will not affect you at all because you will have planned ahead.
- Now, the important part. It tastes different. The fat gives you the flavor. The different texture. The variety you need to maintain your sanity. Try it. You’ll dig it.
2. Turkey Titties
Take the skin off the turkey breast. Grab two slices of shitty white bread. Make yourself a big, fat ass sandwich because the macros on turkey breasts are awesome. A whopping 34 grams of protein and one gram of fat per four ounce portion. Throw on some Walden Farms calorie free ketchup, and you have a supreme sandwich. Though not as easy to come by, as far as chicken breast substitutes go, this is a good change of pace.
3. Extra Lean Ground Turkey
Again, turkey gets a second spot because it’s fucking awesome. This is turkey of the ground variety, and there are a few reasons why I go to this, instead of chicken breasts.
- You can make a bomb ass omelette. Do it with REAL EGGS and some cooked ground turkey without adding in too much fat to derail your macros.
- Burgers can be a lot easier too, and you make them the same way as you would a burger out of beef. Except it’s made of turkey. Less fat and a fuck load of protein.
- Whilst on the subject, a four ounce serving of extra lean ground turkey gives you 24 grams of protein and one gram of fat. Combine that with three eggs for your omelette, and you get 42 grams of protein and 12 grams of fat. Sweet, right?
- Price wise, it’s a bit cheaper as far as chicken breast substitutes go. Usually about one or two bucks per pound less than the normal boneless, skinless breasts.
You didn’t think I was gonna leave out this magnificent wonder of nature did you? A trimmed portion of sirloin steak has about 35 grams of protein per four ounce portion. It comes along with six grams of fat. It’s one of the best chicken breast substitutes as far as protein goes. The only drawbacks I can think of are twofold. It is more expensive, and you have to budget your fats accordingly if you eat a lot of it. Other than that, if you cook a steak right, it’s truly wonderful. But even if you fuck it up, it’s still not bad. Kind of like bad sex. It’s not really bad per se, but it definitely could be better.
5. Lean Ground Beef
LGB might be my absolute favorite of the chicken breast substitutes on the list. It’s versatile. It’s flavorful. It’s not a chicken tit. It’s so versatile, you have a world of dishes at your disposal. Here three of my favorites:
- Burgers, of course. When turkey isn’t going to cut it, eat a real burger.
- Omelettes. Kind of like the turkey burger options, but in my opinion, a bit more flavorful. Plan your egg to egg white ratio accordingly to balance out the fat content for your needs.
- Chilli. Who doesn’t love a good chilli? The best part of chilli is you can manipulate the ingredients to fit your macro needs in nay number of ways. You can use half ground beef and half ground turkey if you want. It comes out great.
The sky is the limit on this. You can make all sorts of meat loaf dishes, or anything. Be inventive with your food choices and you’ll be a lot happier in your journey. There are also a few items that didn’t make the list. I will throw them in here for you, though as honorable mentions. The first is actual chicken breast WITH the skin on. My personal favorite poultry product, in general, is duck. Though high in fat, it tastes amazing, especially if you get it from a Thai restaurant.
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