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5 Ideas to Use Food Leftovers

06 Jul 2021
food left over meal plans

It has been found in a research study that around 30-40 percent of the food supply gets wasted. This food waste includes everything from processing plant waste, field waste, or food left out in the restaurants. Moreover, this is just at the higher level, it is hard to comprehend the amount of food that gets wasted at the consumer level.

Here are some of the best ways in which you can store your leftover food easily and avoid wasting food:


Leftovers if stored properly remain good for around four days. However, you need to make sure that you store them properly at a moderate temperature so that the food doesn’t get ruined and is edible for the next day.

You can prepare recipes for leftover food along with a meal plan and keep it in your fridge in order to remember. This would help you in remembering when you prepared a certain item and whether to take it out of the storage or not.

If you do not want to keep records, you can use a pen to mark off the date when you are wrapping up the leftovers. Make sure that you clean your fridge every 3 days so that the food leftover remains in good shape and condition.

It is best to use containers with a lid to store food as you just need to take the respective ingredients out and assemble them to prepare the lunch of your choice. This makes the process super quick and you do not need to mix the elements as they are already prepared from the other day.  You can prepare weeklong lunches easily with this method and it won’t even take you much time in preparation.


You can use up leftovers for packing lunches as it is completely quick and easy. If you find it hard to prepare lunches due to your work schedule, you can always cook extra dinner for the next day and use it for lunch.

However, you need to ensure that the packaging is extremely important otherwise the food might go stale and cannot be consumed the other day. Here are some container options that you can use to store your lunch:

Here are my favourite containers for packing lunches:

  • Tupperware boxes made of glass
  • Plastic containers or lunch boxes
  • Black meal prep containers

You can bring out the inner chef in you, and try out different recipes with leftover food. No wonder you will definitely come up with something new and avoid wasting food at the same time.


One of the best ways to switch to freezer cooking is to make extra dinner. You can always use the leftovers for the other day. You can always eat frozen dinners twice a week.

You can also prepare freezer meal kits as they are extremely easy and simple to make. Jot down your favourite dinner that you would want to make on a regular basis. You can also break down the components of the meals and do a freezer-friendly packaging.

For instance, if you like tacos, you might need ingredients such as taco meat, tortillas, cheese, to prepare the dish. So, it is important to freeze these well. For preparation, you can buy twice or thrice the amount of ingredients. Cook one portion and keep the rest in ziplock bags.

If you want to freeze the ingredients, you can choose the freezer bags for easy packaging.

You can always pack up meal-size portions, wrap them well before putting them in the fridge. Chill the ingredients completely and then put them in the cold storage.

Another thing that you can do is to cook something in bulk. It is a misconception among people that freezer cooking requires you to spend a large amount of time and hours to cook but that is certainly not true. You can instead select a recipe that you can make a significant amount that can last long throughout the week.

For instance, you can cook marinara sauce or lasagne sauce in large batches and then put them into the freezer. Doing so will surely take out a lot of time from cooking food at certain times when you are too tired or bust to cook.


If you do not like eating the same dish twice in a week, then you can use the leftovers to make something new. There are several meals that can be prepared using the leftovers. Here are some of the ways to go about it:

  • Incorporate the leftover veggies into making stews, soups, casserole dishes, and quiches.
  • Leftover meat such as chicken or beef can be used to make fillings for burritos, tacos, and quesadillas.
  • Leftover pork, chicken, and rice can be used to make fried rice.
  • You can use roasted veggies and grilled chicken over the pizza or in a sandwich.
  • Leftover veggies can be used to make sauces. Fruit salad can be made into a smoothie.
  • Leftover taco meat can be used up into bolognese and chili.

These were just a few of the options. There is a plethora of dishes that can be made using the leftovers, you just need to experiment with them and throw in some creativity.


It always takes a good amount of time and money to prepare meals and using the leftovers is one of the best ways to make the most of the ingredients that you purchase. We have several options available these days when it comes to refrigeration, etc., you can always make the most of them and prepare meals that are worth eating.

Instead of throwing food, it is always the best idea to save money and use the leftovers to dish out something new.

On a final note, storing food is the best option than wasting it. Keep these tips in mind to save your time and resources for the week.

A variety of meal plans are offered by Reuben’s Gourmet Meal Plans which particularly include weight loss meal plans, weight gain or maintain meal plans. Getting it delivered at your doorstep anywhere in Ireland is an easy thing to do including no hassles at all. These meals are full of nutrition and will be the healthiest option for you when you want to stay away from cooking and save your time.

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