As the summer draws closer I can’t help but think about our food bill. As a teacher the summer has always been a time when my family has really had to stick to a budget. Part of that means cutting down on food waste. Leftovers to the rescue!! Leftovers are a great way to cut your food bill and keep your budget. So, here are a couple of ideas on how to make use of those leftovers. It’s my Leftover Makeover.
Even if you’re not on a tight budget, making good use of leftovers can come in handy. There are some foods that just scream “use me, use me,” ” please make me over.” Using leftovers can make dinner or breakfast less hectic and sometimes provide a sweet treat for the family.
I know many people don’t like leftovers but making it into a different meal might make you feel a little different about it.
I remember a friend of mine in grad school said I could stretch a meal because I would take the small chili from Wendy’s, add some fresh peppers and onions, a can of beans and eat it for 2 days. Of course then it wasn’t about waste, it was more about stretching my dollar. But turning leftovers into new dishes actually does both. So here are some international comfort dishes that make use of everything from stale bread to that leftover holiday ham.
- Stale Bread – Bacon Mushroom and Spinach Strata (Savory Bread Pudding) This American brunch dish is perfect for using leftover bread. Or spinach or mushrooms.
- Sunday Ham -omelette is a great way to make use of leftover ham or pork you’ve got in your fridge. I like to use that leftover Sunday ham to breakfast for Monday. My ham and cheese egg muffins are a great to go breakfast.
- Rice – Rice is another food that used to be thrown out in our house. Partially because hubby eats brown rice and I eat white rice. But what I realized was leftover rice is perfect to make my Chinese inspired shrimp and bacon fried rice. I don’t know what it is but it works well.
- Beans – Whether Black Beans or Chickpeas, beans provide protein to vegetarian dishes. My Moroccan Spiced Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger is really filling and delicious.
- Vegetables – We seem to have just a couple of random vegetables in our crisper. Sometimes we purchase one too many carrots or too large of a head of cauliflower. No worries, veggie fritters are the way to go. It’s a hit among all age groups.
- Fruit – I’m really talking about bananas. I know a banana doesn’t look very good when it turns brown but most of the time it’s ok. Of course, if you still can convince your family to eat it make a banana bread.
There are tons of ways to make leftovers anew. To me, anything is better than throwing food out. And as a family of 6, using leftovers has become even more important.
If you are looking to reduce food waste you should check out my post about how we reduce food waste in our house.
How do you makeover your leftovers?