Making the Most of Leftovers

Posted on: February 26, 2015

Written By: Jen Gale

Leftovers never sound very appealing, but I love them, and think that the best bit about a Sunday roast is deciding what to make with what’s left after everyone has had their fill.

There is no excuse for throwing away edible food, and with a little bit of thought, the leftovers can be better than the original meal!
Just don’t tell the kids that it’s leftovers..!!

  •  One of my favourite ways to ‘re-present’ a roast, is to make the leftovers into pasties or a pie. For pasties-chop all your leftover meat and veg (including the potatoes) into small cubes, and stir in a tablespoon or two of any leftover gravy. Cut circles of puff pastry (shop bought or homemade rough puff), and spoon the meat mix into middle. Fold over the pastry to make a pasty shape, and use beaten egg or a splash of milk to seal around the edge. Press down well. Glaze with milk or egg and bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes at 180C


  • For a simple pie-cut the leftovers into bite sized bits, and combine with a white sauce, or some leftover gravy. Spoon into an oven proof dish and top with a disc of puff pastry.
  • Fritattas or omelettes are great ways to use up leftover bits of pasta. And they are quick and easy too, which is always a winner in my book!
    Heat up the leftover pasta in a large frying pan, stirring all the time. Add 6-8 beaten eggs, and top with cheese (optional). Cook over a gentle heat until almost set, and then finish off under the grill to cook the top.
  • Any fruit that is going slightly soft can be whizzed up with some fruit juice or yoghurt to make smoothies. My kids love smoothies, and it’s a great way to get sneak some extra fruit into them!


  • Fridge soup is another of my favourites for using up any slightly limp veg that is left at the end of the week. Chop everything up, and simmer for 20 minutes in a litre of veg stock with some seasoning. Whiz it all up, and add a splash of cream, or a spoon of cream cheese if you have some kicking around.
  • Bananas can be frozen (peel them first) and then used in things like muffins or smoothies. They never look very appealing when they are defrosting, but they taste just fine!
    Apples can be fried in butter and sugar (not so healthy, but pretty tasty!) and used to top pancakes, or served up with ice cream.
  • I keep a bag in the freezer for all the leftover crusts of bread that the kids leave behind. When I have enough, I use them to make bread pudding-either a traditional sweet one with raisins and cinnamon, or a savoury version with veg and cheese.
    Bread pudding


  • If you don’t have time to make use of your leftovers, then pop them in the freezer so that you can use them at a later date.

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