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A cast-iron skillet with beef caldereta with pieces of bread on a black table

8 Tipid Tips When Cooking a Holiday Caldereta Recipe

Beef caldereta is a quintessential holiday handa. It takes its rightful place among the classics, like Christmas ham, Pinoy spaghetti, and macaroni salad. But as prices of its ingredients continue to rise, many are considering eliminating it from their menu this year. Before you decide to follow suit, learn a few money-saving tricks for making your fave caldereta recipe. A few ingredient swaps and some kitchen innovation might be the solutions you need.

Keep reading to learn some tipid tips so you can still enjoy this hearty stew this holiday season – without going beyond your budget!

1. Use Affordable Cuts of Beef

Several cuts of beef on a black countertop surrounded by different knives

Lean beef is a bit on the pricey side. It gets even steeper if you choose premium and imported cuts. Get optimum savings by using meat on the bone, like bulalo or beef shank. You can also mix this with tapadera and tadyang. Tenderize your meat in a pressure cooker for a delectable and affordable beef caldereta recipe.

2. Try a Tofu Caldereta Recipe

A block of tofu with cubed pieces on a wooden counter

Why not go beyond the classic beef or goat caldereta recipes? You can make versions with other types of budget-friendly meats. Try using pork cuts, like pata, ribs, or menudo-style cubes. You can even make it with chicken legs, wings, or nuggets.

For a healthier and affordable protein swap, reach for a pack of tofu. Slice it into cubes, dredge in flour, and then fry until crisp. Top with caldereta sauce right before serving. You can also turn this stew vegan by replacing the liver spread with creamy peanut butter.

3. Make Caldereta With Corned Beef

A bowl of corned beef caldereta over white rice

Need to stick within a tight grocery budget? Skip the meat section and go straight to the canned goods aisle for good-quality corned beef. Opt for brands with chunkier meat pieces or a spicy variant. The best part? This tipid trick cooks in minutes – no need to wait until your meat is tender. It’s also a hassle-free solution when guests visit at short notice.

4. Add Tasty Extenders

A wooden tray with a basket of potatoes, white onions, and carrots

Veggies act as the perfect extender for any ulam. Traditional caldereta has bell peppers, potatoes, and carrots. Give this dish a tasty twist with ingredients that can supplement your meat and fill portion sizes. Consider including green beans, whole olives, button mushrooms, and peas. Or how about other root crops, like kamote, radish, or gabi?

5. Make it Creamier

A bowlful of tender beef stew with carrots, potatoes, and green peas

Who doesn’t love lots of caldereta sauce on their rice? Transform your beefy red base into a rich and creamy sarsa, which for many Pinoys is ulam in itself. Cut down its cost by skipping the all-purpose cream in favor of Knorr Ginataang Gulay Mix. A shelf-stable ingredient, this affordable pantry staple lends sweet and savory flavors to your dish. Make it extra malinamnam by adding a piece or two of Knorr Beef Cubes. With this trick, you don’t even need to add grated cheese to your sauce anymore.

6. Turn Meat Into Shredded Beef

A tray of shredded beef on a wooden picnic table

Extend the life of your dish by transforming it into other recipes. Take inspiration from chicken or pork adobo flakes and do the same with your caldereta. Make pulled beef for party taco cups – a terrific holiday appetizer. You can also stretch a pot of stew by turning it into burritos or adding it to cheesy cannelloni.

7. Add it to Pasta

A plate of spaghetti with chunky beef sauce on a slate grey table

Make a new low-cost meal out of your caldereta. You don’t have to serve it as ulam every time. You can also prepare a pasta dish featuring the same flavors. Try combining macaroni noodles with sizeable pieces of calderetang baka. Top it with some cheese, bake it until warm and gooey, and present it as your original Noche Buena masterpiece. Alternatively, you can use your creamy beef caldereta as a filling for lasagna. Think of it as a 2-for-1 deal!

8. Use it as Pizza Topping

An entire pizza with cheese, red chili peppers, and shredded beef

Planning a party with an Italian-inspired theme but want to keep costs low? The answer is savory pizza that highlights the flavors of this Pinoy beef stew. You can either make the most of leftovers or prepare a downscaled recipe. Use store-bought crust or bread slices, then top them with shreds of tender beef, bell peppers, and mozzarella. Heat and serve for Christmas day merienda.

Skyrocketing food prices are causing many people to rethink their holiday menus. And if you are thinking of taking this beef stew off your list – DON’T! With these simple money-saving tips, you can level up your handaan and still cook a signature caldereta recipe. Try them and enjoy your savings for dessert.

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