Repurposing Leftovers

Repurposing leftovers is a hot topic! Left-over food in general has a terrible reputation. People dislike them. The growing trend of restaurant type eating at home, where each family member grabs a different processed dinner from the freezer, is popular with many busy families! Day old meals don’t stand a chance! 

Crockpot Pumpkin Chili

Your goal should be to plan and repurpose foods into new and healthy recipes that can be shared together. This new meal might not resemble the original meal at all!

Recipe by Healthy Diet Habits

  • Chilies: If you have extra beef or chicken and vegetables, you can turn them into White Bean Chicken Chili, Beef Chili or a Healthy Chili Recipe. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Stews: If you have extra meat and vegetables, chop them and put them together and make a Chicken Stew, Beef Stew, or Pepper Steak, served over leftover grains. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Burritos: If you have extra meat, add a can of black beans, cheese, salad, chopped tomatoes, salsa, and sour cream with your choice of tortillas. You can vary the tortilla, beans, and meats for different burritos. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Tacos: Leftover meats make great soft taco additions. Chop the meat, and serve lettuce, or cabbage, cheese, and salsa. You can vary between hard and soft tacos or the types of meats, fish, chicken, beef, pork or simply beans! Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Tostadas: Toast corn tortillas under the broiler until they are crispy. Top them with beans, chopped meat, cheese, and put them back under the broiler. Top them with lots of salad. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Taco Salad: Make a huge salad and add leftover meat, tortilla chips, canned beans, cheese, and whatever leftover vegetables you can find. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Cobb Salad: Chop all leftovers and line them up in separate groups on a plate. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea for repurposing leftovers.
  • Super Salad Meal: Chop all leftovers into a large dinner salad, add nuts, seeds, dried fruits, chopped vegetables, and fruits, canned garbanzo or red beans, and clean out the refrigerator. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Omelets, Scrambles or Quiches: Add any leftovers to make an egg dish. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.

Preparing Meat Tacos with Leftovers - Tips on Repurposing Leftovers by Healthy Diet Habits

  • Sandwiches: Buy good artisan bread and add leftover meats, salads, and cheeses. You can also chop any meat and add a bit of mayonnaise to make a meat salad sandwich. Great idea for a Simple Saturday Meal. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea.
  • Meat Loaf: Anything can actually go into a good meatloaf, leftover rice, potatoes, and vegetables; just chop leftovers very finely and add them to the mix of ground beef, ground chicken, or ground turkey. Add an egg and ketchup or tomato sauce to hold the mix together and spices. Meatloaf can provide another meal of meatloaf sandwiches.
  • Pasta Dishes: Any leftover vegetables and meats can be mixed with pasta like Ham Pasta. You can just mix them in and top them with fresh parmesan cheese or mix them into a white or red sauce or use a basic pasta recipe that you love. Great Rotisserie Chicken Idea for repurposing leftovers.
  • Salmon or Tuna Cakes: Leftover fish can make great fish cakes or burgers. Just chop onions, peppers, and any other leftover veggies, and add an egg and salt and pepper. Fry them quickly in a bit of olive oil and serve on artisan rolls. Top with chopped cabbage, tomatoes, and salmon sauce or tartar sauce.
  • Soups: Chop leftover meat, vegetables, pasta, grains, and beans for Vegetable Beef Soup or Easy Chicken Soup. Cover them with water or broth, and a couple of bags of frozen mixed vegetables or more chopped fresh vegetables, and simmer until all of the vegetables are done. Season with basil, salt, and pepper, and any other loved spices. Great rotisserie chicken idea.
  • Slow Cooker Meal: Many slow cooker recipes require cooked meat or rice, so leftovers are great and will save you a step. After dinner one night, you can assemble your next days’ dinner in your slow cooker, place it in the refrigerator, and then program it to cook the next day, before you leave for work. Slow cooker chilies are a great way to repurpose leftovers.
  • Stir fry Meal: Most meats and vegetables in a stir fry are cooked separately because of different cooking times. They are added back together at the end and reheated with sauce. It's simple to use leftovers that have already been cooked as additions to your chicken, beef or pork stir fry using whatever vegetables you have on hand.
  • Frittatas: These are a simple way for repurposing leftovers. Simply blend 6 eggs, 1/4 cup milk, 1 cup cooked pasta, leftover veggies or fresh greens, and cook in your skillet over medium heat until almost done. Add cheese to the top, and chopped herbs, or spring onions.

Chicken Pasta Recipe by Healthy Diet Habits

Repurposing leftovers is a healthy diet habit to adopt, because it discourages grabbing fast food or processed food products. Who wants to eat at McDonalds, when you could quickly whip up a meal at home that you love, and costs little time, energy, or money to prepare?

Creative meal planning and repurposing leftovers will give you a second meal idea that does not look anything like the original meal! No leftover complaints here!

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