I know this might sound obvious, but you will save a lot of money with some careful meal planning and using everything you buy from the grocery store. When I plan a meal, I plan for the leftovers to be another meal. Sometimes it’s lunch the next day and sometimes it’s another dinner. To keep everyone from getting tired of something like a big pot of soup, I will freeze half of it and save it for another week when I don’t feel like cooking.
When we cook meat like chicken, turkey or pork roast, I like to plan a few meals that will give variety to eating the same meat a couple times that week. Check out our posts on Pork three ways – All-American, Mexican, and Asian. This is our smoked turkey from Thanksgiving. We had it several different ways leftover, like these turkey salad wraps.
I also like to freeze meat after shredding or chopping to add to soups, casseroles, pastas, etc. It works really well for making tacos or nachos in a hurry. This is roasted chicken that I made in a big batch and froze in small portions. Leftover ham is great cubed and frozen for making omelets, frittatas and soups.
I use old apples and pears to make applesauce in my crock pot. If they are little mushy, it doesn’t matter. Add a little cinnamon and 1/2 cup of water. Yum!
I like to use leftover bread that gets too hard to eat. I will cube it up and add to french onion soup with some cheese on top. Your bread won’t turn to mush in your soup if it’s on the crunchy side to start with. This is leftover bread I had from Panera that I used in this brunch casserole.
Another way to use old fruit, is to make banana nut bread. My mom and my friend Jamie say, “the darker, the better” when it comes to using old bananas. You can even cut down on the sugar you add in because the bananas are so sweet. Thrifty and healthy!
Hope this gives you some ideas on how to not waste anything you bring home!