Soup from Leftover Scraps

Category Soups
Making soup from leftover scraps can be surprisingly good. Use up your leftovers, and freeze your vegetable scraps to make a low cost nutritious soup.


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November 9, 2006

Get more servings out of leftovers by adding more ingredients. For example, if you have some leftover vegetable soup, but only enough for a couple servings, add some chicken broth and a can of vegetables or tomatoes. Another thing you can do is combine leftovers; leftover sauces can be used in casseroles, leftover rice can be used in casseroles and soup, left over meat and can used in numerous dishes, etc.

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Even before the quarantine, I have always had two bags in my freezer; one for vegetable scraps and the other for bones. When the bags are full, it is time to make soup.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 1 1/2 to 2 hours

Total Time: About 2 hours

Yield: 8-10 servings


  • vegetable ends and peelings
  • bones from poultry or other meat*
  • salt and pepper to taste

*I only use poultry bones when I make this soup.



  1. Add the bones and the vegetable scraps to a soup pot. I like to put them in a pasta strainer, so it is easier to remove them later on.
  2. Add water to barely cover. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Simmer 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  4. Remove the strainer pot liner. Taste the broth and adjust the seasonings.
  5. Discard the vegetable scraps. Cut any meat off the bones. You may serve as is, or add potatoes, rice or noodles.
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Save all your vegetable peelings and ends, along with meat bones, in the freezer. When you have enough, make a broth that can be enjoyed as is, or as a base for other soups. I used the Instant Pot soup setting, which is 30 minutes after coming to pressure. If you are making it on the stovetop, allow a couple of hours.

bowls of soup & salad

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Save leftover veggies, gravy (this works better with brown), bits of meat, (rice, noodles, pasta, even mashed potatoes), etc. into a big size freezer bag or plastic container.

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November 7, 2011

A great way to use leftover turkey it to make soup. Start with a tasty stock and create. Whether it is turkey noodle, turkey gumbo, or your own personal favorite, holiday turkey soup is a tradition in itself.


This page contains recipes for leftover turkey soup.

Turkey dumpling soup with carrots.

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April 25, 2019

Make a delicious split pea soup with leftover beef and broth from St. Patrick's Day. This page contains a recipe for leftover corned beef split pea soup.

Corned Beef Split Pea Soup in pot

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May 24, 2017

Leftover corned beef broth can make an excellent base for starting a French onion soup. This is a page about using leftover corned beef broth for french onion soup.

A bowl of French Onion soup with melted cheese over bread.

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ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

October 9, 2007

I hate to waste food and sometimes you might have that little bit of taco meat or sloppy joe meat left over. Save it in a freezer bag and the next time you are at a loss for something good and warm, take it out. I like to dice some potatoes, add water and let them cook awhile. Add a few cans of vegetables like corn and green beans and the leftover meat.

Let simmer awhile then add a can of tomato soup. Makes a nice cheap soup. You can use whatever leftover vegetables you may have instead of canned. I have used cabbage, kale, carrots, leftover navy beans, leftover macaroni, etc. at various times. I don't worry about this soup becoming another leftover, there's never any left over!

By Dawn from Gary, IN


Leftover Soup

I always make soup from leftovers too. I have a freezer, and in the summer when I put up veggies, I pour the water I blanche them in into a container and put it into my freezer. It helps keep my freezer full so it runs more efficiently, and in the cold weather, I have flavored stock for my soups. I have to laugh when people ask for soup recipes. I say, use what you have and be creative. We've eaten some of the best soups this way. (11/08/2006)


By susan

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