Food waste is a huge problem in the United States, and while a large part of the issue occurs before the food ever makes it into our homes, we must also do our part to combat the wastefulness of today’s society.
Often when a meal we have prepared goes unfinished, the leftovers find their way into the refrigerator to spoil and then be thrown away without a second thought. Instead, why not use them to create an entirely new and interesting plate that doesn’t seem like leftovers at all?
List Of Meals You Can Make From Leftovers
Here are some creative ideas on dishes that you can make from a variety of last night’s leftovers.
Curried Noodle Patties
Did you make a little too much spaghetti for dinner last night? Not a problem! You can take the leftover spaghetti and with a little bit of magic and a frying pan, it can be turned into delicious Curried Noodle Patties.
Spaghetti for Breakfast
Another option for that leftover spaghetti that you may not have thought of: add some eggs and milk, sausage or bacon – and presto, a breakfast everyone can enjoy.
Seriously, how much spaghetti did you cook? Why not use it to make pizza? Everyone loves pizza! Use the frying pan to make a nice big base for your pizza from the spaghetti, add some sauce, cheese, and pepperoni.
Stir Fry Pasta
Don’t be fooled by how hard they make this seem on TV. We know you have some leftover pasta, anyway. Throw it in a pan with some veggies (perhaps mushrooms), add some protein like chicken or even meat leftover from another meal, add a sauce of choice and you are set!
We have all dealt with stale bread at one time or another. Here is a perfect idea: save some money at the grocery store and turn your stale bread into breadcrumbs! All you have to do is freeze it and then use a food processor, mix in some spices, and you will have quality tasting breadcrumbs for your next chicken strip or meatloaf dinner.
You know, the tiny pieces of dried up bread on top of a salad. That’s right, it’s nothing but dried up French bread with some seasoning. Cube it, add some olive oil, a few herbs, toss it in a zip lock bag and you’ve got yourself croutons worthy of any salad.
The dinner party is over and now you have a mountain of cheese that wasn’t eaten. The solution is simple. Take your cheese, toss it into the food processor, add some wine, garlic, and a couple of herbs. Blend until smooth and serve. Or you can put it into the fridge if you want it a bit firmer. This dish can be stored in the fridge for up to a week.
Mac and Cheese
Why not recruit the use of one of the most American dishes ever? You can use a traditional recipe, but this time, go crazy on the leftover cheese. The results should be phenomenal.
Tomato Grilled Cheese
I know, it’s getting to be a little too simple. Just assemble some leftover cheese with a few slices of tomatoes onto some bread and grill it. The end result will be a delicious, creamy sandwich anyone can enjoy.
If you have some pizza left over from family night, this dish is a synch. Chop it all up, and add some eggs for protein, fry everything in a skillet, and you’ve got yourself something amazing.
Think about what goes into an omelet. Aren’t most of those ingredients available on top of a pizza? Yes, yes they are. Add eggs to the toppings from leftover pizza for a delicious omelet.
Leftover Pizza Croutons
We might be a bit crazy about croutons, but this is the only way we can enjoy salads. Cube the left over pizza and store in a cool, dry place for later use in soups and salads.
When it comes to soup, most people think of hour upon hours of standing in front of the stove and mixing a cornucopia of ingredients into a boiling pot. Not true, as long as you have some leftover chicken! You can make chicken soup with the most basic ingredients, and there are plenty of recipes out there. No other soup out there has healing powers quite like this one.
Chicken Club Salad
Cut up the leftover chicken and use it to top off a salad. Add some spices to spruce up the chicken and you’ve got the makings of a superb lunch.
Mediterranean Chicken Wrap
Grab some tortillas, add your favorite veggies, and last night’s sliced chicken becomes the heart of an amazing chicken wrap.
Steak or Pork
When cooking meat, we always cook more than we need. Just grab a tortilla, slice the steak right on it, add some veggies of choice, and drop it on the grill!
Feel free to bend the rules with this one. This recipe is very dependent on what you have lying around the house. The main point is to trim all fat away from leftover steak, add some veggies of preference, and top off with some mashed potatoes and cheese for a golden dish of perfection.
Steak Fried Rice
Rice is truly the savior of meals. This kitchen staple can be paired with nearly anything. If you have some rice anywhere in the house, you can fry it in a pan with some of that leftover steak, add some seasoning, and make a meal that is even better that the first.
Go Enjoy Your Leftovers In New And Exciting Ways
The kitchen is your canvas!
The above are only a few examples of what you can do, there are many more out there. You don’t have to search for specific recipes to convert your leftovers into amazing dishes. All you have to do is experiment and have fun with it.
Try different things and give yourself room to learn what works and what doesn’t.
What sounds good in your head won’t always taste good on the plate, but you’ll never know until you try! You can also stick to healthy juice recipes too.