3 tips for a game plan against food waste
Don't let Super Bowl Sunday score points on the environment this year
Are you ready to reduce food waste?
As nearly 70,000 people fill the stadium in Nevada to watch the Super Bowl this Sunday, we were thrilled to hear that the Food Recovery Network will collect the estimated 140,000 pounds of surplus food from the event to feed the food-insecure people in Las Vegas. But, we can’t help but think about the additional 300 million people who will be tuning in across the nation, many also hosting or attending parties that often lead to extra leftovers and food waste.
So, whether you’re a sports fan or not – this weekend is the perfect reminder that it’s easy to use leftovers and prevent food waste at home! And we couldn’t resist sharing one of our favorite recipes that would make an ideal addition to your game-day feast.
#1 - Review & Plan
What’s your leftover plan? When you create your menu, consider how you might use leftover meals or excess ingredients later. This gives you the opportunity adjust your preparation technique so it’s more useful later. Are you a fan of chicken wings? Maybe prepare pulled chicken sandwiches instead so any leftovers can be turned into soup, casseroles, topped on salads or even frozen for later use. Small adjustments to how and what you prepare can set you up for multiple successful meals!
Stay Flexible! If a recipe calls for something you rarely use and won’t use in its entirety, consider a substitution or omission. And if that ingredient is crucial to the dish, look up other recipes so you’ll use it all! Reference this helpful guide from the New York Times to for ways to adapt in the kitchen.
#2 -Give the Gift of Leftovers
Keep the party rolling!
When we hosted Friendsgiving for our volunteers, we encouraged people to bring Tupperware to bring leftovers home! This small action means the host keeps only what their household can eat while sharing in the abundance. Invite friends to bring dishes or provide reusable takeaways as a thoughtful gift. Either way, you’ll enjoy having less in your fridge and knowing less food is going to waste.
Most leftovers are only safe to eat 3-4 days after preparation *if stored properly* thinking forward can help you immediately freeze or share items you know you won’t consume in that period. Review this article from Consumer Reports: Thanksgiving Leftover guide for proper food storage and handling tips.
#3 - Repurpose Ingredients Into New Meals
People waste food at home because they don’t like how something tastes the next day – textures can change, or maybe you had your fill and crave variety. Whatever the reason, get creative and transform leftovers into something you will eat.
Did you know Crudités or leftover veggie tray items can easily be transformed into a soup, frittata or strata? Fried rice is another dish that you can easily adapt to include leftover ingredients of all kinds! Get inspired for the perfect ways to repurpose popular game-day meals from Food and Wine.
Or revisit our past recipes below for more adaptive ways to use leftovers!
A special Game-Day Recipe!
Try our Jerk-Turkey Meatballs with BBQ Pinneapple Glaze!
We make a lot of meatballs in the Second Chance Foods kitchen. They’re easy to make, travel, and keep well, and are enjoyed by all ages of our food recipients. Meatballs are also very adaptable – so you know we throw veggies whenever possible! So, if you want to try a new meatball or make an easy appetizer for Sunday, you’ll love these Jerk Turkey (or Chicken) meatballs. Serve them as a main course over rice or reduce the size for a crock pot treat.