The Art of the Leftover: 5 Tips for Making Leftovers New Again

Leftover Spanish rice is just as good the second time around.
Leftover Spanish rice is just as good the second time around.

I don’t know about your household, but in mine, leftovers are a bad word (or at least for hubby).  I personally love leftovers.  For me, it equates to 30 minutes to an hour of time saved.  No planning, no prep, no cooking, and fewer dishes.  What’s not to like?

Hubby points out that leftovers are like used food.  I get it;  especially  if double-dipping or sneezing were involved.  But, by and large, food tastes better after it has set for a day.

So here see my key tips for making the most out of leftovers:

  1.  Use leftovers wisely.  Not every food is good leftover.  Salads, fried rice, fresh pizza, and some cakes and pies need to be eaten immediately.  Otherwise, they get soggy, ooze, and otherwise turn into a science project.
  2. Disguise leftovers.  Leftover turkey easily turns into a turkey tetrazzini casserole.  Ham is great in a ham and pea side.  Chicken makes a great chicken noodle soup or chicken nachos.  An item’s first presentation doesn’t necessary need repeating.   Get creative and repurpose food items into something new and exciting.  If you can’t think of a good way to reinvent your leftovers, do an Internet search.  You will find plenty of ideas.
  3. Go sparingly.  A repeat, or possibly two, may pass the family critics.  After that, you may have mutiny.
  4. Large quantities of most foods may be frozen for another time.  Some items may have texture issues after defrosting, but why not try?  If you are throwing it out anyway, go ahead and see how it makes it through the freezing process.  Most casseroles, soups, and straight proteins will be fine once defrosted and heated.
  5. Family repeats are fine, but company must have fresh offerings.  Just remember, guests should be treated as such.

So go ahead, enjoy a good leftover meal!   Not only will you be saving time, but also saving money.  Plus, you deserve a cooking break.  😀

Leftover salmon and sides from a restaurant were equally as tasty the second day.
Leftover salmon and sides from a restaurant were equally as tasty the second day.

2 thoughts on “The Art of the Leftover: 5 Tips for Making Leftovers New Again

  1. A nice rare steak easily becomes fajitas with the addition of onions & peppers. I purposely cook more than necessary just to have leftovers!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.