Thursday, January 3, 2019

16 ways to add to your Pantry Using Leftovers from Holiday Meals

The holidays are behind us and it’s time to move on with our pantry building, but before we do did you realize that there were a lot of ways you could have added to your pantry using leftovers from those holiday meals?
Thanksgiving and Christmas meals are usually big and there are almost always leftovers.  From a pantry building aspect, let’s look at some ways we could use those leftovers to build up our pantries.
Veggie tray:  chop and freeze veggies to go in soups, stews and casseroles.
Fruit tray:  freeze fruit in small size portions for use in smoothies or to go in yogurt, you can also dehydrate the leftover fruit, grind it into powder and use it in smoothies and to sprinkle on yogurt.
Turkey carcass:  make and can or freeze broth.
Leftover turkey:  can it or freeze it in meal size portions.  Freezing the slices allows you to be able to have turkey sandwiches later!
Leftover turkey bits and pieces:  freeze to add to soups, casseroles and to make pot pies.
Potatoes:  freeze for a future meal.
Leftover corn:  freeze (along with the liquid you cook it in) to add to soups and casseroles.
Leftover green beans:  freeze (along with the liquid you cook them in) to add to soups and casseroles.
Ham bits and pieces:  dice and freeze for use in omelets and salads.
Ham slices:  freeze for future meals and or sandwiches.
Don’t forget the ham bone:  use it to season a pot of beans or to make bean soup.
Casseroles:  freeze in meal size portions.
Use freezable divided plates, fill them with meal size portions of your choice from the meal and freeze them for future heat and eat meals.
Deserts:  divide and freeze in meal size portions.
Mixed greens salads:  dehydrate, grind and turn into a powder.  You can add this powder to soups, casseroles, stews and meatloaf.
Stuffing/cornbread dressing:  freeze in meal size portions.
Bread/Rolls:  crumble, let dry completely and turn into bread crumbs.  Add these bread crumbs to your freezer and use as needed.
As you can see, having leftovers from those big holiday meals is a good way to add to our pantries!
Can you add anything to this list?

She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27

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  1. Patsy what a great list you have for creating so many more dishes for our families thank you :).

    One more I can think of for us who don't like turkey is left over chicken can be broken off the bone and skin removed and packaged in meal sized portions in the freezer for stir fries, pies and soups and the chicken roast pan juices can be frozen in meal portions for chicken broth.

    Have a great week :).


    1. Sewingcreations15, yes, you can do everything with chicken that you can with turkey! Thanks for the tip!

  2. That is a great list. I try to put things right into the freezer as the holiday week goes on so that I don't find it in the back of the fridge later. Kids started arriving from out of state on Saturday before Christmas. We started out with a roast pork lion and an apple pie. On Sunday I ran the leftover pork loin through the meat slicer and we had some really delicious sandwiches. The rest of the pork went into a ziploc bag and into the freezer. I also saw that the pie was half eaten and being ignored so into the freezer it went. Christmas Eve we had our traditional big Mexican food feast and I put the meat that was leftover that night right into the freezer in meal size portions for us for later. After the kids left Wednesday morning we got busy and put all the baked goods into smaller containers and into the freezer. The ham bone was stripped of meat and all that was chopped and packaged into 11 half cup packages. Everything is listed on my inventory for the freezer that keep cooked foods so that it gets used and not forgotten. Not only will the food get eaten but it freed up refrigerator space while we had a house full of company.

    1. Lana, I like your idea of an inventory list of cooked foods in the freezer. That way they don't get forgotten in the freezer. Great idea, thanks for sharing!

  3. Dear Patsi,
    What a great list. I always save the carcasses to make broth. I keep a little bag in the freezer that I just keep adding bits and pieces of vegetables to (like celery leaves and carrot ends) and when I am ready to make the broth, I dump the bag in with the carcass.
    You gave me some great ideas that I never thought of, like dehydrating fruits and grinding them to powder for smoothies. I know what to do with the jar of dried strawberries in my pantry now! I'm also going to go out to the garden and harvest an abundance of greens to do the same thing! Thank you SO much! (Why did I never think of this?!)
    Love, Kelsey

    1. Kelsey, LOL! I sometimes ask myself 'why didn't I think of that' when it's sometime that should have been so obvious to me. Those dehydrated strawberries will make delicious powder for your smoothies!

  4. Hi Patsy. We had seafood as our Christmas feast. The left over prawns(shrimp) became garlic prawns served over rice. The left over garlic prawns became small garlic prawn pies. The leftover fruits mostly ended up in smoothies. A bit of water melon got to a point that it wasnt going to be used so it went out on the lawn for the local birdies. The Rainbow Lorikeets loved it.

    1. Jane, that all sounds delicious! I love seafood!

  5. I made stock with my bones. Then made a huge batch of soup and a bunch of pot pies. We ate some and the rest went into the freezer for future meals. I made potato corn chowder yesterday and used some more of the stock. It calls for chicken stock but I have never had a problem swapping them. Great list.

  6. Making Cents of It All, pot pies are so convenient to have on hand and fall under the category of comfort food too!


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