Leftovers is not a Bad Word


When did the word “leftovers” become such a dirty word? Why such shame and disdain?

After all, we take such pride in saving money at sales and come away beaming about our deep discounts. You would never hear someone leaving a store declare;

Shhh, don’t tell enyone, but I just got this gorgeous roast for 50% off.

So why do we avoid discussing leftovers, or worse yet, not use them?

Whatever the reason is, I would much rather the word “leftovers” enjoy the same esteem as “sales”.

To help out, we have outlined some great ways to:

  • create a new perspective on leftovers
  • discover uses for leftovers
  • keep control of leftovers

The following ideas save us time, energy, and money. Now, that definitely makes me smile.

Don’t Say Leftovers

One of the best ways to de-stigmatize the word is to just call it “extras”, “ingredients”, or “bonus”. After all, that is exactly what they are. Leftover bacon, is actually extra bacon. Who doesn’t love extra bacon. That leftover piece of chicken is a great ingredient to add to a fresh salad.

See? A whole new perspective. Give it a try the next time you look in the fridge and see all that bonus food.

BOGO Supper

Who doesn’t like a “Buy One Get One” sale? No one that I’ve ever met.

If you tend to collect a lot of leftovers in the fridge, create one supper per week dedicated to eating all of those extras. Having a “leftover night” will save you time and money.

Not only that, you can enjoy the fact that you just took advantage of a BOGO sale. Win, win.

Eat Supper For Lunch

If you don’t create enough leftovers for another full supper, that’s ok. Just create a smaller meal – lunch fits perfectly.

Simply box up the leftovers and designate them as a lunch treat.

When you think about it, this is a great way to have a decadent lunch of steak and potatoes. But, it keeps you from over eating because it is already portion controlled.

Create Leftovers on Purpose

Now that we are starting to see the benefits of leftovers, why not make some on purpose?

When making dinner, purposely make a little extra. Box up the extra and label it. Will it be earmarked as extras, a BOGO, a lovely lunch? You can decide ahead of time.


Create a New Meal

Don’t worry, just because you have leftovers doesn’t mean you have to eat an identical meal later.

Lots of dishes are tailor made for the use of leftovers:

  • Soup
  • Fritatas
  • Salad
  • Sandwiches

Here are some recipes and “Generators” to give you some more inspiration:

Keep Control of Your Leftovers

If you find that you end up over run with leftovers and you are throwing out way more than you want, here are some tips:

  • Use clear containers so that you can see what you have
  • Labeling leftovers with the date helps keep track of when they were put in the fridge
  • Creating meal plans help control how much food is made and helps create BOGO meals

Do you have a favourite way to use leftovers? Let us know in the comments below.







8 thoughts on “Leftovers is not a Bad Word

Add yours

  1. I am so with you on this. I hear sometimes people taking such a pride in saying they do not eat leftovers, and I really cannot understand that. They are throwing away money and offending people that can’t afford to eat (I grew up with my mother saying “think of the poor kids in Africa, starving, and you do not eat that!”). We often cook more at supper so to have our lunch ready the day after, for my husband to bring to work and for me to enjoy at home, sometimes we eat exactly the same meal we had the night before, other times we reinvent the dish. I like all your tips, hope they help people think differently about those “extras”. ๐Ÿ™‚


    1. Thanks for your comment, Nicoletta. Our moms were of the same mind. We always cook supper for 4, even though we are only 3. This guarantees that my hubby will have a great lunch the next day. It didn’t take long to create this habit, and it has saved us so much money. Have a great weekend.


  2. I agree that “leftovers” are great! I always like the little break from cooking that they provide. We’re taking lots of frozen leftovers with us as we head out for a trip with our trailer today.


  3. Great post with lots of great ideas! I completely agree that leftover is not a bad word! I love leftovers! It means I get a night off from cooking but I still eat good food ๐Ÿ™‚


  4. It’s so true ! I couldn’t agree more with this post. Leftovers should be something everyone learns and strives to make/use! They go so far in saving money. A great way to apply this principle is to even use leftover bones and such from roasting chickens, and other meats to make broths, which can then be used in making soup or even just cooking rice!


    1. Hey Marcus! Thanks for popping in. Bones for broth is one of my favourite things to do. The “bonuses” I get from a roast chicken alone, is fantastic. Have a great weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚


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