Skip to main content
5 recipe tips for common leftovers

5 recipe tips for common leftovers

Even the most careful meal planner can find themselves with stale bread or old pasta loitering in the fridge

While we have every intention to eat everything we purchase each week, sometimes certain items get pushed a little too far to the back of the fridge and forgotten until found sprouting some alien life form. These easy and quick dinner components will put your leftovers at the front of your fridge, as bonus nutritious and delicious free meals.

Vegetables for a delicious energy drink

Save your pennies buying expensive pre-made green juices that claim to turn you into a supermodel and never deliver. Be super-smart instead and toss your leftover veggies into the blender and turn them into a nourishing drink. 

Stale bread for salad

Stale bread is probably the most exciting find at the back of the fridge. You can make the crunchiest of crunchy croutons with stale bread and turn yourself into a salad gourmet at the same time.

Simply season the stale bread cubes with butter or olive oil, salt and your favorite herbs and toast briefly in the oven until golden. Then toss them with a little lettuce and Parmesan for a fresh, tasty salad. 

Pasta pattie

What do you do with a big bowl of left over pasta? Sure it could just be reheated with a sauce, but you have another option is curried pasta patties.

Toss your left over pasta or noodles with as many beaten eggs as you need to hold the patties together in the fry pan. Add whatever other leftovers you have - vegetables, curry paste, tofu, really the list is endless of what works with the patties. 

Rice for salad

That rice sitting in your fridge from last night's takeout is begging to be turned into a easy and chic rice salad.

Toss your leftover rice in with your favorite salad dressing or vinaigrette. Add some fresh herbs and diced veggies and you have a perfect second salad!  (If you are thinking that your rice salad is a bit much with pasta patties, take it to work as the perfect office lunch).

Bananas for dessert

When you find some sad and overripe bananas, don't think compost or bin, think ice cream. 

For a great tasting, highly nutritious and totally guilt free treat, freeze your overripe bananas. When you are ready to make dessert, pull them out and thaw slightly, then blend in a food processor and watch the magic happen as your bananas whip into a indulgent ice cream!  If you are feeling creative you can add natural peanut butter to create a real treat. 

See: 11 Ways to Save Money and Waste Less Food.

Image: Shutterstock

Something incorrect here? Suggest an update below:
Science Notes

There are two important science messages everyone needs to understand about leftovers - and both are completely in our hands.
1. We waste on average, 20% of the food we buy. That means every time we buy 5 shopping bags of food, you pretty much throw one of them in the bin. 
2. Every piece of food that is wasted squanders the water, energy, labour, transport and money that went into making it in the first place.

Each of us has the power to make the most of every piece of food we touch.

Related Tip
Australia produces enough food to feed around 60 million people, yet two million people still rely on food handouts.