Use Those Odds and Ends

Odds and ends are not necessarily considered leftovers. They are those foods that you find at the bottom of a pan, or left on a platter when everything else has been eaten. They may be a tablespoon of some type of vegetable, or a few pieces of meat. Perhaps there is a quarter-of-a-cup of rice. Small amounts of food that will add up over time.

If you plan to keep up with it, place everything in one container in the refrigerator. Allow food items to accumulate in this container over the course of a few days, then use everything in omelets or in some other recipe. Freezing is another method of storing bits of food, and will give you more to work with at once. This method does take longer, if you want enough for an entire meal.

There are many food items that may be made with the odds and ends you will save. Choose to make things your family will enjoy. Here are a few options for your consideration.


These can be made with uncooked fruits and vegetables, as well as cold bits of cooked meat. Pre-cooked sweet potato is great for an autumn salad. You can warm the meat through before adding it to your salad, but this is not necessary. Use the odds and ends first, then go through your refrigerator and pantry to see what else you may add in order to make a full meal.

Soups and Stews

Put all of the odds and ends into the pot as you normally would, then add other ingredients. Vegetables, meats, and more can be used in a soup. Adding some homemade broth or stock will add more flavor to the dish.


Here’s an easy one. Place cooked meat in the bottom of a baking dish, and pour a few tablespoons of water or stock over the meat. Use one or two cups of vegetable odds and ends to spread over the meat, then add a layer of mashed potatoes. Sprinkle with herbs. Use a mixture of meat odds and ends if you want, rather than new meat.

Using odds and ends will allow you to save money on your grocery bill. What methods do you incorporate for using up odds and ends?



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