Left Overs really come in two categories. There are what we’re left with for the week, after our meals are eaten, what I call Smidges & Titches, and I have a comprehensive list by category. There’s also Planned Left Overs – using left overs as building blocks and convenience foods for other meals.
Taking advantage of both kinds is a great way to be more efficient with your money & your time. Left overs are the most expensive food in the house, the product of your money & time.
Planned Left Overs
- Twelve Days of Turkey: Holidays can be expensive. Learn how to leverage the low turkey prices & make the most of your expenditure with a dozen recipes and some hints of clean up, too.
- Twelve Days of Ham: A sister post to 12 Days of Turkey, this is a discussion and links to recipes for your left over Holiday Ham. Bought on sale this can be the basis of many great meals.
- Freezer Options: Ideas on what to put in your freezer – there’s no grueling 30 day cooking in my life because I like to save money. Look for the tag, planned left overs, on recipes, too.
- Freezer Foods: After you’ve read about Freezer Options, take a look at some of the ways I maximize my time and effort when cooking and stash away in my freezer.
Smidges & Titches:
- Smidges & Titches: Consider this the “parent page” giving information on all those left overs that cause clutter & waste. A must read, which includes information on storage, use and safety.
- Dried Beans, Peas & Chickpeas: A few ideas on how to use these protein powerhouses when you find yourself with extras. When all else fails, freeze, although there are many ideas.
- Butters, Oils, Fats & Drippings: Not normally considered a “left over” there are times when we all need to know more frugal ways to deal rather than waste. A link to Alton Brown’s oil info.
- Dairy & Eggs: A frank discussion on what to do with a bit of this or that, what’s safe, and hints on how to store excess and avoid wasting these (often) expensive products.
- Left Over Beverages: Sometimes considered to be an annoyance, it can be a great thing to have something left over – especially when it can be a building block to something even better! Think ice-cube trays, here!
- Dessert Sauces, Toppings, Frostings: I don’t know about you, but I sometimes end up with a bit of this or that with no specific use in mind. Sometimes a bit just ends up taking up room.
- Breads, Cereals & Cookies: I am probably the only person who gets super excited about a little left over bread! It means breadcrumbs in the freezer & croutons on salads.
- Fruits & Fruit Products: For some reason, fruits & fruit items are one of the most easily wasted thing in my house. Here’s a few ways to take advantage of them.
- Condiments, Jams & Jellies: While they’re great to have on hand, sometimes room is limited in the fridge doors! Here’s a few great ways to use up what’s languishing there.
- Left Over Meat, Pork, Poultry, Fish, Etc.: A number of great ways to make sure you’re using these items to their full advantage. There are so many ways to stretch small amounts of meats!
- Miscellaneous Items: While I hope to add more in the future, here’s some ideas to get you started in eliminating waste. I’ve started with jars. Maybe you’ll help!
- Left Over Pastas, Grains & Rices: Often these overlooked items are great building blocks for other dishes. Your own instant convenience foods. Toss in soups or salads or reinvent.
- Vegetable Left Overs: Great convenience foods to have on hand but don’t just trot them out a second time – use them for building blocks for other recipes. Even the humblest bit of common vegetables can be easily transformed.
My so and so won’t eat left overs…
Next time you have a left over baked potato or two, make these beautiful hash browns for yourself and the kids as a side. Give so and so a piece of bread or a handful of frozen French fries. “Sorry, you wanted some? But you don’t like left overs…” If you’re nice, perhaps you’ve saved a few for so and so in the kitchen.