Tips for reducing waste
We’ve got lots of bright ideas about how you can use up leftovers, plus clever ideas to make food last longer or go further! See our top tips below...
Chop and Freeze
If you only use half an onion when cooking, chop the rest and pop it into the freezer. It stops the fridge smelling of onion and can go straight into your cooking the next time.
Tomato Sauce for One!
Freeze left over tinned tomatoes in individual portions – ideal for pasta sauces when not feeding the whole crowd at dinner !
Freeze any left over ends of blue cheese, and melt from frozen into cauliflower or broccoli soup. Great at Christmas when you’ve bought too much for your cheese board!
If you have any cheese or other savoury sauce left over, you can freeze it for later. Add to a pasta bake or a savoury flan filling. Add natural yogurt to the sauce for extra tastiness.
Shock with your Delicious Stock
Keep peelings from carrots, onions and celery and use this with meat bones to make stock
Any unused herbs can be finely chopped and placed with a little water in ice cube trays. Supermarkets never sell small quantities of herbs so this is a good way to save money and reduce waste.
Bubble and Squeak
Don’t waste leftover cooked vegetables. Chop small, then mix with mashed potato and seasoning. Form into ‘bubble and squeak cakes’ and either fry or freeze for later.
Don’t Throw Those Bananas!
Freeze whole over ripe bananas and eat them frozen like a healthy lolly, or blitz in a food processor for instant ice-cream.
Seeds for Breakfast
All types of squash/gourd/pumpkin have wonderful seeds inside that you can remove and roast for 10mins (180′).
Perfect sprinkled on your granola with Yeo Valley yogurt for breakfast!
Cook the ends of veg i.e tomatoes, leeks, carrots, onions with herbs, food process and then portion and freeze to use as sauce for pasta
Ye-oats for the family
Got a large family to feed? Add a cup of oats and extra gravy when cooking mince – it takes on the beefy flavour and thickens the meal – it’s a delicious hearty meal with plenty for everyone!
Go Go Garlic
Only need a few cloves from your garlic bulb? Grate the remainder into a small container and freeze, it will last for ages and when time is tight just take a teaspoon and spoon out what you need for your cooking, no need to thaw, easy!
Be a Little Cheesy
If you have milk that’s going to expire soon, turn it into a custard that you can keep in the fridge or try to make a soft cheese like ricotta or cottage cheese!
Left over squeezed lemons can be used to make ” preserved lemons ” a middle eastern cuisine essential.
Bready to crumble
You can use a food processor to whiz up the ends of any loaves of bread you might have leftover. The breadcrumbs can be used for burgers, toppings, etc.
Ice and a slice
If you have lemons or limes that need using up, cut them into slices or wedges and freeze. They’re then ready to pop into your G&T or lemonade anytime!
Freeze any unfinished bottles of wine in ice cube trays so you can pop them in sauces, spag bolognese and other meals without having to open a whole bottle.
Use any leftover veg in a soup – just boil up stock, a tin of tomatoes, lentils and any veg for a healthy lunch or snack. Try gazpacho in the summer.
You say tomato
Any over-ripe tomatoes can go in a great big pan of tomato sauce that can be frozen and used in pasta sauces, chilli con carne and lots more besides.
Pizza the action
If you’ve made too much pizza dough, remember that you can freeze the second half for a quick and easy future dinner rather than binning it.
If your bananas are going black, remember you can freeze them. Thaw them out before using them in banana bread, or you can pop them frozen into smoothies.
Grow your own!
You can regrow food from kitchen scraps – plant the root end of an onion in a sunny place in your garden and cover it with soil. Keep it watered and watch it grow!
Have a good browse online for recipe ideas that use up that last ingredient you aren’t quite sure what to do with. There are lots of great ones on this website!
Stick to your list
Always write a shopping list before you head to the supermarket or farmer’s market. That way, you’re less likely to buy things you don’t need or won’t use.
You can eat anything that’s leftover from your evening meal for tomorrow’s lunch – simply add couscous or quinoa to bulk it out, if it’s not quite enough.
The big freeze
If fruit or veg ripens before you can use it, get it ready by peeling and chopping, then pop it into a sandwich bag and freeze. It’ll keep until you need it.
Make a plan
Before shopping, think carefully about the meals you’ll make over the week, then have a look in your cupboards and only top up the ingredients you really need.