There are really two types of leftovers that most of us have to deal with.
- Planned Leftovers; leftovers intentionally made to use as building blocks for future meals and/or your own home-made “convenience” foods.
- What’s leftover from a meal (or meals) from the week. What I call “Smidges & Titches.” I have ideas for these broken out by category.
Leftovers are the most expensive food in the house; they’re a product of both your money & your time. If you take advantage of leftovers you not only eliminate a lot of potential waste, you’ll be more efficient with your time & your money,
- 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 how I 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.
- Leftover 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.
- Leftover 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!
- Leftover 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 Leftovers: 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 leftovers…
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 leftovers…” If you’re nice, perhaps you’ve saved a few for so and so in the kitchen.