We have all been there, staring into a fridge full of leftovers from dishes we cooked a week ago. What do we do with all of this food now? One thing is for sure, with today’s world being in the condition that it’s in we must do everything to use up as much of our leftover food as possible to cut down on food waste.

Throwing it away is simply out of the question. But what do we do with all this over-ripened fruit, the leftover celery from when we only had to use a few stalks, the extra milk with its expiration date fast approaching, or the leftover egg whites from that cake we made last weekend? The key is to find a way to convert all these leftovers or extend their shelf life beyond their expirations date.

This article will show you how to creatively use up the extra food you have lying around in your fridge with as little effort as possible. We will categorize by primary food type and list a few different ways you can reuse them again to create something delicious and irresistible.

Fruit

Fruits that have been sitting out too long are never the center of attention. No one wants to pick up that apple with a weird brown blemish on the side. But no matter what you do, don’t you dare throw them in the trash. Here are a few ways you can turn that fruit into something that the whole family can enjoy:

– Make bread out of the leftover fruit you have in the house. Banana bread isn’t the only bread you can make out of fruit! Everything ranging from peaches to strawberries can be used to make bread type treats. You don’t have to stop at a bread loaf, either. Muffins with some fruit bits in them can be a delectable treat.

– Does anyone want some pie? Of course, you do! Who doesn’t like pie? This might be the simplest of solutions, but why not take those undesired apples and turn them into apple pie? You can also make peach pie, raspberry pie, and cherry pie. Whatever fruit you can possibly imagine can most likely be turned into pie.

– Making a quick smoothie for lunch is a perfect way to use up all those extra fruits sitting on the table. The best part is that most of the time the over-ripe fruit makes even better smoothies than fresh fruit. Give it a shot, you won’t be disappointed.

– We love toast, especially with some jam on it. What if that jam was homemade? Sounds good, right? So why not put that extra fruit to good use and make some jam? Most of the jam recipes out there aren’t very complicated and should be pretty easy to follow.

– Sometimes, particularly on a very hot day, we just want to cool off. The perfect way to do this could be by making some fruit popsicles. You could turn your fruit into juice and use that for your popsicles or you could incorporate whole chunks of fruit if you would like. Either way, the outcome is sure to be refreshing.

Vegetables

Working with fruit is easy, but vegetables are a bit different. You can’t exactly make vegetable pie or celery popsicles. Well, you could, but I doubt anyone would eat it. Nonetheless, there are a few things you can do with your leftover vegetables that will help you reduce the waste.

– Pickles aren’t the only thing you can pickle. Pretty much any vegetable out there can be pickled, so if you are a fan of pickling, you should definitely give it a shot.

– Using leftover vegetables under a roast will absorb all the juices from the roasted meat and leave you with some delicious vegetables as a side.

– One of our favorite things to do with all the veggies we find laying around is to incorporate them in a stir-fry. You can use many different veggies this way, so there are no limitations for your taste buds. The best part is that since you use high heat for stir-fry, your vegetables can still retain that crunchy texture.

– Last but not least, make some soup! Grab some chicken stock, add some veggies, maybe a few pieces of meat, and you have yourself a scrumptious pot of soup.

Dairy

We have all been there, grabbing that gallon of milk just to find out it’s already spoiled or the expiration date is in two days. Well, there are a few things you can do to fix this problem, but you will have to get a bit creative and put some time aside for it.

– Homemade mozzarella is hands down the best thing you can do with your leftover milk. It isn’t too difficult, but you will have to follow a recipe pretty closely to succeed. There are plenty of them out there, so look a few up and see which one you like the most.

– Got some leftover whipped cream from a few days ago? No problem, we can turn that into chocolate mousse. Did we mention that this is done without any baking?

– Leftover sour cream can be a problem, but not if you use it with your pasta. It sounds a bit strange but trust us when we say that adding sour cream to your pasta sauce will make it taste even better.

– If you love coffee, then you have probably been left with leftover half and half at some point or another. Luckily, you don’t have to make a dozen cups of coffee to use it up. You can also make some ice cream! Almost all recipes out there for ice cream use half and half. Some use cream, but depending on the flavor you might get away with substituting.

Also worth mentioning, a lot of things like milk and egg whites can be frozen for later use, so if you accidentally bought extra milk or have leftover egg whites then you can stick them in the freezer until you need them in the future.

These are just some of the ways you can use up those leftover items in your fridge. We know that there are many more foods that you might need to use up, but if you approach this dilemma in the same way as some of the solutions we offered here then we are positive you will find a way to reduce your food waste.

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