How Much Meat Should I Cook Per Person?

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An average serving of meat is 3 ounces per person, so cooks should prepare portions of meat in this size. Lean meat, fish and fatty cuts all fall under this generalization. Ground meats vary in size, but the weight is consistent with other kinds of meat portions.

Creating a menu for a group requires portioning out meat appropriately, so it’s important to plan on serving each person 3 ounces of meat. An average serving is as small as 2 ounces but never exceeds 4 ounces. Fattier cuts warrant slightly larger portions before cooking as much of the fat and mass dissolves during the cooking process, leaving a proportionately smaller piece of meat. Leaner meats do not shrink as much and therefore are similar in weight on the plate as they are in the package.

Measuring each portion is easy using basic household items. A bar of soap is the same weight and size as an average meat portion. A hockey puck is a good indication of a ground meat portion. Fillets or cuts that are not the same size of either of these options are best weighed with a kitchen scale. In cases where a scale is not available, cooks can use a standard checkbook to gauge the footprint of the slice of meat being cooked.