Updated: Jun 30
It was a lovely holiday meal. You had a great celebration. And now you have to figure out how to use and store your leftover food?
1.) Have a Game Plan: Before you start your meal, make a list, and think through how you can package and preserve anything uneaten.
2.) Prepare Storage Containers: Have your storage containers washed and ready to go. You can serve from glass storage containers; when the meal is over, snap on a lid and store your food safely.
3.) Share: Once properly stored, consider giving some leftovers to friends or family so they can enjoy the meal again!
4.) Meat: After the meal, you can divide meat into meal-size portions. Wrap meat in either 1-2 layers of either freezer paper or heavy-duty foil and place in freezer bag. “Trimming excess fat and removing bones, if possible, will conserve freezer space.”
5.) Bone Broth: With leftover bones you can make a delicious and simple broth. Here’s a recipe from the University of Illinois Extension.
6.) Salad: A garden salad makes a great side dish. Put the dressings and toppings on the side. Stored vegetables remain fresher longer when they aren’t covered in dressing.
7.) Prepared Potatoes: Baked potatoes can be turned into hash-browns. Mashed and au gratin potatoes can easily be reheated and served when you’re in a hurry. Cooked potato products can be refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for 3+ months.
8.) Bread: It’s easy to store on a counter in an airtight bag for a couple of days or freeze for several months. You can also make croutons to put on your salad. Here’s a recipe from North Carolina Cooperative Extension.
9.) Fruit: Fresh fruit is a healthy dessert. Uncut fruit can be returned to a bowl or the fridge. Berries can be washed and refrigerated or frozen for use in smoothies or as a topping on other desserts.
For more tips and tricks visit WastedFoodStopsWithUs.org