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Delicious Dinner Ideas with Leftover Foods

Do you have leftover rice, potatoes, chicken, or ham in the fridge from the weekend get-together at your place? You must be tired of making a meal for today’s dinner after all the arrangements, and you don’t want to order food as you will have more leftovers.

So, why not turn the leftover items into delicious dinners? Cooking meals with leftovers will provide you with a fresh flavor, and it will save time, energy, and money.

In this article, we have collected quick and easy delicious dinner ideas with leftover foods. Let’s jump to the recipes so that you can figure out what you are going to have for today’s dinner.

1.               French Onion Soup With Leftover Bread

Most individuals would consider throwing out leftover bread because it has a shorter shelf life than other foods. However, you can make French onion soup with the leftover bread.

The recipe is high in calcium and flavonoids and is highly nutritious. So you're making a great and nutritious meal for your family today.


Butter, olive oil, onions, garlic, salt, pepper, bay leaf, vegetable stock, crusty or baguette bread, and cheese.


In a large stockpot, melt butter and oils before adding garlic, onion, and spices. Pour in the vegetable stock when the garlic and onion have caramelized. While preparing the soup, slice the bread and warm it slightly to soften it. You can toast it and smear it with butter before serving it with the soup.

To serve, take an oven-safe serving bowl or mug and place a piece of bread at the bottom, then add soup and another bread loaf on top. You can use grated cheese to cover the meal. Broil for a few minutes to melt the cheese, then garnish with thyme.

2.               Shrimp Fried Rice with Leftover Rice

Having leftover rice and cooked shrimp in the fridge can be a game changer as shrimp adds its own extraordinary flavor to any dish. And fried rice is the best option to cook for dinner as it is easy to cook, requires ingredients you will find in the kitchen, and the cooking time is less than thirty minutes.

However, before tossing the shrimp in the fried rice, check whether it is still edible. Do you know how long does shrimp last in the fridge? You can use it in the dish if it is cooked and stored in the freeze properly for 3 or 4 days.


Rice, shrimp, vegetables, eggs, onion, salt, pepper, and oil.


Pour in oil and add onion and other vegetable options you have in the fridge. Toss in the shrimp and add eggs. After that, add the leftover rice and seasonings, and spices to taste.

3.               Pancakes with Leftover Milk

Pancakes can be the comfort food you are looking for that will give you an escape from the daily spicy food. Nevertheless, you can add new variations to the traditional pancakes to make them more appetizing.

Although traditional pancakes can be your go-to option for today’s dinner, you can also try Russian Syrniki Pancakes or Mediterranean aubergine.


Milk, sugar, eggs, baking powder, and flour.


Whisk eggs and sugar together for a few minutes and add milk, flour, and baking powder to make the pancake batter. You can add a little bit of butter before pouring the batter into the hot pan and cover the lid.

Enjoy fluffy-sweet pancakes with honey or maple syrup.

4.               Fish Wraps with Leftover Salmon

You will find plenty of dinner ideas with leftovers that allow you to use the food item as a tortilla wrap or sandwich filling. It is a quick dish to prepare and can be made only by heating and mixing the leftover items.

So, if you have leftover salmon or any other fish sitting around in the fridge that you don’t wish to waste, start preparing for a wrap.


Whole wheat tortilla, kale or fresh spinach, sliced vegetables, salt, pepper, and sauce.


Reheat the leftover fish in the oven or on a skillet and make small pieces. You need to take a bowl to make the filling.

Add all the vegetables in the bowl, for example, cucumber, bell paper, and the usual salad dressing you love.

Add salt and any sauces you want to taste in the wrap, even though garlic, chili, or mixed sauce are better options.

Heat the tortilla if mentioned in the packaging. Otherwise, you can take one, make a wrap and have it if it is ready to eat.

5.               Sandwich with Leftover Ham, Eggs, and Cheese

Do you have a waffle maker in your kitchen and leftover eggs and ham in the fridge? If yes, let’s make a sandwich rich with cheese and the flavor of eggs and ham.


Olive oil, bread, eggs, pepper, salt, and cheese.


You need to preheat the waffle iron after lightly applying oil to the top and bottom of it. While you are heating it to medium-high heat, prepare the filling of the sandwich.

Take a large skillet and cook whisked eggs with seasoning. You will have to cook it till it thickens for 3 to 5 minutes and take it off the stove.

Now it’s time to make the sandwich. Set one piece of bread on the iron and add the toppings. Don’t forget to add tomatoes if you have any. Add cheese and cover the toppings with another piece of bread.

Close the lid for another 3 to 4 minutes until the bread is brown and crispy.

6.               Chicken Pot Pie with Leftover Chicken

Whether you have arranged a barbecue or ordered fried chicken for the movie night, it is common to have leftover chicken. And the good news is, when it comes to cooking dinner with leftovers, using that chicken can never go wrong.

You can follow the old-fashioned pot pie recipe; however, we will provide you the recipe with mushrooms and leeks for extra punch in the dish.


Olive oil, chicken, lemon, onions, carrots, water, potatoes, chopped leeks, unsalted butter, sliced cremini mushrooms, chopped garlic, green peas, flour, chicken broth, heavy cream, and egg.


This recipe is for 6 to 8 persons serving; you will need some extra time to prepare the dish. So, try this one out when you have at least 2 to 3 hours to cook dinner.

Pair this dish with white wine, light up a few candles, and share it with your friends.

     Cook potatoes, sliced leeks, and carrots in a cast-iron skillet coated with unsalted butter until the veggies get tender. Toss in garlic, black pepper, kosher salt, and mushrooms. It may need About 8 minutes total cooking time for the potatoes and mushrooms to cook.

     If the vegetables begin to stick to the pan, add 1 tablespoon of water at a time. Add 12 ounces of skinless, shredded leftover chicken and green peas, then turn off the stove.

     Stir flour into melted butter in a skillet and simmer over medium heat while stirring frequently. Slowly stir in chicken broth and continue cooking until the sauce thickens. Blend with some spicy sauce and heavy cream.

     Combine chicken and cream mixture by stirring together. Set the defrosted puff pastry sheet on top of the filling, allowing the edges to hang over the plate. Cut three or four small slits and brush with egg wash.

     Put into an oven that has been warmed to 400 degrees and bake for 20-22 minutes or until bubbling and golden. Give it 15 minutes to settle.

7.               Fried Pasta with Goat Cheese, Eggs, and Tomatoes

Finding leftover recipes with pasta can be challenging as cooked pasta usually doesn’t taste good after reheating. So, why not fry it and turn it into a gourmet meal?


Oil, pasta, eggs, cheese, and tomatoes.


Fill a medium-sized skillet with oils to deep fry the pasta. Poach eggs and serve with cheese and tomatoes. Bake it to melt the cheese, and enjoy the dish with mayonnaise. 

8.               Curry Samosas with Mashed Potatoes

Since we have moved to fried dishes, let’s have a look at one of the popular Indian dish-Samosa that you can make with leftover mashed potatoes.


Olive oil, sliced onion, curry spice, frozen peas, salt, pepper, pie crust, and mashed potatoes.


Put curry powder, salt, pepper, and a little bit of water into olive oil and sauté onions and peas until they are soft. After a few minutes, toss in the leftover mashed potatoes and stir them in.

To make the outer layer of the samosa, take the pie crust and then cut it into triangles. Fold it to make a pocket and fill it with the curry of mashed potatoes.

You can either bake the samosas or deep fry them in hot oil or taste them with your favorite sauce.


9.               Hummus with Leftover Steak:

The ingredients we use in this recipe can vary widely depending on what we already have in the fridge and pantry.

Or, you can take a walk to the nearest store and buy a can of Hummus Made Easy to try with the leftover meat.


Steak or ground pork, veggies, cheese, and spices.


You need to trim the fat from the steak and chop it before being added to the potatoes and other veggies. The addition of cheese gives it a comforting, golden hue. One serving provides a decent amount of protein and calcium.

So, you can check your healthy food diet as well.


Despite their unsavory reputation, leftovers can help you stretch your food budget and cut down on dinner prep time.

So throw off the stereotype of uninteresting leftovers. Before you dump them in the garbage, consider how you may incorporate them into other delicious dinner ideas with leftover foods and have a more fulfilling meal.





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