Continuing along with our stress-free Christmas ideas, let’s talk about food. I used to think Christmas leftovers were a curse, but now I find them to be a blessing that makes it easy for me to prepare meals for several days after the big day.
If you’ve struggled with wondering what to do with Christmas leftovers, here are some ideas for you.
• Make soup. Leftover ham, turkey, pork and beef can all be used to make delicious soups. Look up some recipes, or just cut them up and put them in the slow cooker with some leftover veggies and broth. The possibilities are endless.
• Use them on sandwiches. Among the easiest post-Christmas meals is the ham or turkey sandwich. Just cut off a slice, put it on some bread, add a piece of cheese and you have an effortless lunch. You don’t mind expending a little energy, ham salad and turkey salad are easy ways to change it up.
• Reinvent leftover potatoes. Plain baked, mashed or boiled potatoes can easily be transformed into a whole new dish. Add baked or boiled potatoes to soups or use them to make potato salad. Use mashed potatoes to make potato pancakes or add them to casseroles.
• Vegetables go far. Incorporate leftover vegetables into new meals. From salads to omelets and all the way to shepherd’s pie, there are plenty of things to do with your leftover vegetable side dishes.
• Wrap it up. Tortillas and leftovers go wonderfully together. Just chop up any leftover meat, add lettuce, tomato, cheese and mayonnaise or dressing, and you have a refreshing light lunch. You can also try making burritos or quesadillas out of leftovers.
• Freeze them. To prevent food poisoning, leftovers should be refrigerated promptly and used within 3 to 4 days. If you won’t use your leftovers in that amount of time, freeze them for later use. Place them in freezer containers or plastic bags, label them with the contents and date, and freeze them as soon as possible. If you have specific plans for them, you can go ahead and chop them up or separate them into portions to save time later on.
With the right planning, your Christmas meal could actually help feed your family for several days after the big day…and you don’t even have to eat the same thing every day to do it.