Leftover Food Hacks

March 26, 2024

Turn your leftovers into delicious meals with these food hacks from the Queen of scrappy cooking, Carleigh Bodrug!

MAKES 12 servings START TO FINISH: 40 minutes

3 cups gluten-free rolled oats
1 cup chopped walnuts, pecans, or pumpkin
2 tbsp. ground flaxseed
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ tsp. sea salt
2/3 cup pure maple syrup or liquid sweetener
1/2 cup brewed coffee or tea
3 tbsp. spent coffee grounds or tea leaves
2 tbsp. tahini or nut butter of choice
1/2 cup vegan dark chocolate chips or cacao nibs

For the Granola:
Preheat the oven to 350°F, and line a baking sheet with a reusable baking mat or parchment paper.
In a bowl, combine the oats, nuts, ground flaxseed, cocoa powder, and salt.
In a separate bowl, combine the maple syrup, brewed coffee, coffee grounds, and tahini.
Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until fully combined. Spread the mixture evenly on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 30 minutes, tossing it every 10 minutes to ensure the mixture is baked evenly. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before stirring in the chocolate chips.

Enjoy with plant-based milk or vegan yogurt, or as a topping on morning cereal.

Storage: Store in a sealed container for a few weeks at room temperature, or in the freezer for a month or longer.

Substitution Note: If you’re not a coffee drinker, omit the spent coffee grounds and replace the brewed coffee with 1/2 cup of your favorite brewed tea.

Pro Tip: Spent coffee grounds can be kept in an uncovered bowl in your fridge as a natural deodorizer or utilized as a fertilizer for some plants.

MAKES 2 to 4 servings START TO FINISH: 30 minutes

2 to 4 broccoli stems
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons panko bread crumbs
Vegan chipotle mayo or dipping sauce of choice

For the broccoli stem fries
Preheat the oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with parchment.
Peel the hard outer layer of the broccoli stems, then slice into ¼ inch wide “fries”
Transfer the broccoli stems to a bowl, and drizzle with the olive oil. Toss with the garlic powder, cornstarch, salt, nutritional yeast and panko.
Arrange in a single layer on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake until crispy and golden.

MAKES 10 servings START TO FINISH: 5 hours

3 cups mixed berries
1 tbsp. tablespoon chia seeds
2 tbsp. pure maple syrup (optional)

For the Fruit Leather:
Preheat the oven to 175°F, and line a baking sheet with a reusable baking mat. Parchment paper can also work, but it must lie completely flat on your baking sheet. Alternatively, if you’re in a warm climate, you can dry this fruit leather in the sun for several days.
In a high-speed blender, combine the fruit, chia seeds, and maple syrup (if using), and blend until smooth.
Pour onto the prepared baking sheet, and using a flat spatula, spread out into a rectangle around 1⁄8 inch thick. Ensure the edges are thicker than the center because they will dry faster.
Bake for 21/2 hours and then rotate the baking sheet. Bake for another 2 hours and check the consistency—the water content of the fruit. The fruit leather is ready when it effortlessly lifts off the reusable baking mat or parchment paper. This can take up to 6 hours. If it is dry around the edges, you can rehydrate those areas with a clean, wet cloth. The fruit leather is ready when you touch it with your fingers and it does not stick.
Remove from the oven, slice into six to ten equal strips, and roll with parchment or waxed paper for a homemade fruit-roll-up experience.

Storage: Store rolled in waxed paper or parchment in a sealed container on your counter for up to 5 days.

*Almost empty jam jar (1 serving)
– add 1 ½ cups unsweetened almond milk and shake until you have “strawberry milk

*Almost empty mustard jar (2 servings)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon maple syrup
2 lemons, juiced
⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
¾ teaspoon salt
Black pepper, freshly cracked

Add all ingredients to the mustard jar and shake until a dressing is formed.

*Almost empty peanut butter jar (2 to 4 servings)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 ½ tablespoons rice vinegar
1 lime, juiced
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
2 tablespoons sriracha
2 tablespoons warm water

Add all ingredients to an almost empty peanut butter jar and shake until mixed.

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