Holiday Leftovers - Trash or Treasure?


If the holiday festivities take place at your home, then you may find yourself left with an abundance of leftover food.  This can be viewed as a blessing or a curse, trash or treasure.  As long as it isn’t a ton of unhealthy fare, then it can be viewed as a blessing (or treasure).  The first thought to cross your mind should be, “Yay! I don’t have to cook tomorrow!”

Obviously, what you can do with your leftovers will depend on what the leftovers actually are.  If you are left with any type of meat - turkey, ham, brisket, or roast - that can be used for sandwiches the next night.  Pair with some of the other leftovers or some soup or salad, and you have a pretty quick and easy meal.

If you cooked the meat yourself, then you may be left with (for lack of a better word) the carcass.  In this case, you can make a great homemade soup like turkey noodle or ham and bean or split pea with ham.  This can be frozen for later use or used in the next night or two.  If it makes a lot, you can use it for a meal AND freeze some for use at a later time.

Mashed potatoes still taste great reheated and can be used alongside your meals during the next few nights.  Another tasty treat is to make mashed potato patties.  These are good for dinner or breakfast, kind of like a hash brown patty.  You can mix the mashed potatoes with flour and egg adding any seasonings you want like onion or salt and pepper.  Drop a blob of the potato mixture into hot oil and cook for a few minutes per side.  Obviously, frying is not the healthiest choice, so if you do choose to make these, you may want to use olive oil to increase the health factor.

Green salads usually do not fare well as leftovers, getting soggy.  Pasta salad, however, stays good for days.  It can be taken in a Tupperware with an ice pack for lunch.  It’s a nice way to switch up your lunch or kids’ lunches from the usual peanut butter sandwich.  You can also turn it into another hot meal by heating it and adding spaghetti sauce.

If you have a lot of leftover rolls, they can be used for sandwiches.  If they are too small for sandwiches and you don’t want to eat them for the next few nights, they can be frozen and used at a later time.  Fruit salad can be thrown into a blender with milk or yogurt to make a healthy breakfast or lunch smoothie!

One last nice idea for your leftovers is to fix a couple of plates and take them to any elderly or single neighbors you may have.  They would probably love a night off from cooking just as much as you!

We hope you enjoyed our suggestions on how to use your holiday leftovers.  If the holidays have left you with “extra fluff” or you have always battled your weight, then let us help.  At Advanced Surgical and Weight Loss Institute we specialize in rapid weight loss and weight loss surgeries.  If you live in the Melbourne or Merritt Island areas and need help with your weight loss, then call us today and start your new year off right - healthy!