LeftoversFood Tips

Fixing Leftovers Instead Of Throwing Them Out

Recently, while running short on time, I prepared a boxed packaged meal for our dinner. None of us liked the flavoring of the sauce, but ate it anyway. We had quite a bit of the dish leftover for another meal. The next day when I had more time, I put the leftovers in a colander amd rinsed off all the sauce. After allowing the food to drain, I took a jar of Alfredo sauce that I knew my family liked and mixed it with the leftovers.


I added a few favorite spices and had a successful meal that everyone enjoyed.

Source: With the economy the way it is, I couldn't afford to toss out this meal just because we didn't like it. It was my own idea to try to revamp it.

By Terri H. from NV

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March 24, 20080 found this helpful

My husband says a wife can throw out more with a teaspoon than a husband can bring in with a shovel but your husband doesn't have to worry about that! Good thinking!!

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March 24, 20080 found this helpful

I have done that same thing instead of wasting food which I hate to do....but that said, there's been a few times that I knew there was no way to change a bad dish that no one wanted to eat again and sadly had to pitch.


I have decided that some of the boxed or frozen prepared dishes just aren't that good so I don't bother fixing 'em. We don't care for Hamburger Helper; however we do like Tuna Helper. Some of the frozen things are just too salty for my taste and they are expensive too.

My mother in law had given us some beans and barley soup a while back. It had a wierd sweet taste to it which surprised me. One container I had frozen and when I defrosted and heated for dinner, I added a few spices and a little chicken broth and that improved the taste.

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March 24, 20080 found this helpful

that was an awesome economical tip! we don't waste anything at my house either - who can afford to? Even when we get down to the heels of the bread that no one likes, i save them for the birds that come to my yard. I like to make sure everything gets eaten! :-D

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March 24, 20080 found this helpful

Very creative. My DH doesn't like packaged dinners of any kind so I just don't get any.

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March 25, 20080 found this helpful

I did something similar recently when I added powdered mustard instead of powdered chicken bouillon to a pilaf casserole. It took me a while to figure out what that odd flavor was! We ate it the first time, then I rinsed the leftovers (there were plenty), and seasoned it right the next time. It turned out great.


I just couldn't throw away a whole meal's worth of expensive wild rice and other whole grains.

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By Kerry (Guest Post)
March 26, 20080 found this helpful

You can always call the toll-free # on the side of the box if it's something your family really dislikes. They'll send you your money back or more likely a replacement coupon for a different product.

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March 28, 20080 found this helpful

This is what I do with Chinese leftovers! I like fried rice and he likes chicken and broccoli. We always have too much for one meal, so I rinse off the chicken dish in a strainer (to get that yucky sauce off) and combine it with the fried rice, adding a little more soy sauce.


I usually have to cut up the vegs to mix better. It makes enough for us to share and doesn't seem like the same old thing. Cay from FL

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April 1, 20080 found this helpful

I've rinsed breading off of chicken and pork chops, rinsed seasoning off of vegetables, saved buttered toast for bread crumbs, added broth to casseroles to make soups, etc. If I can think if a way to reuse or repurpose a leftover or a screw up, I'll do it. Food is so expensive, that when I do have to throw something away, I tell myself, "I just threw away a dollar" or whatever the food cost. It keeps me and my husband from being wasteful.

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