Turkey.. The Other, Other White Meat.

So, I was feeling a little adventurous today at the grocery store and I picked up a 1 lb pack of Jennie O Ground Turkey.  I got some other nice healthy stuff too that I will probably talk about later.  Like Kashi GoLean Crunch cereal. The reason I even thought of ground turkey was that I saw someone on MyFitnessPal who had made spaghetti with ground turkey and thought that sounds pretty good.  So of course I’m on the way home and I think to myself… Now what am I going to do with it?

Well I decided to make tacos with it, and they were very good.  Couldn’t tell it wasn’t beef honestly.  So that led me to the question.. is it healthier than lean ground beef?  Obviously it’s a lot better than the cheap stuff I used to buy (80/20 or 85/15), but it appeared to be very similar nutrition wise to the 90/10 ground beef.  Ah, but as always those looks can be deceiving.  What looked similar calories and fat is thrown off by the fact that the ground beef is a 3 oz serving and the ground turkey is a 4 oz serving, so you have to adjust one or the other to make the one to one comparison.  For simplicity I will adjust the beef.  I’m assuming the major difference will be in the fat content so I looked at Fat/Sat Fat and cholesterol.

Jennie O 91/9 ground turkey:
160 calories
9 grams of fat
3 grams saturated fat
90 mg cholesterol
20 grams protein

90/10 ground beef (adjusted to 4oz serving)
261.33 calories (196 3oz)
13.33 grams fat (10 grams 3oz)
5.33 grams sat fat (4g 3oz)
101.33 mg cholesterol (76 mg 3oz)
32 grams protein (24 gram 3 oz)

So besides the higher protein in the beef, the turkey wins hands down.  Lower cal, lower fat, lower Sat fat, lower cholesterol.  And it was tasty.  And it was about the same price as the 80/20 ground beef, and cheaper than the comparable  90/10 or 93/7 ground beef.


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  • About Me

    I am a recent graduate in Food Science (NC State, 2009) and I work for a major food manufacturing company. I love food, but I can no longer eat anything that crosses my path. About 24 months ago I begin a serious struggle to get my obesity under control and reduce my chances of developing Type II diabetes. Since September of '09 I have lost 50 pounds and I still have a long ways to go. I've started eating better and exercising more, including taking up running.