Home Eat Well, Be Well No Waste Food: How to use what is starting to spoil

No Waste Food: How to use what is starting to spoil

by Bethany

Do you smell that? *Sniff* Do you think it is still good? The answer is probably; or at least it can be baked, roasted, fried or generally exposed to a high heat and still used so nothing is wasted. When things in your pantry or kitchen start to ooze, gush or develop some beauty marks it does not mean you need to throw it away. No waste food is an option.

NOTE: I am not a doctor or nutritionist. These are just my own opinions. Please do not eat seriously questionable food especially if it is an animal based product. We are also vegan and therefore do not have animal products in our home- so again do not eat bad milk. Please.

No Waste Food: The Frugal Food Strategy

No Waste is a movement that has been in action in many homes in order to spend less and preserve the environment. No waste food is the same concept, only it is the idea that we use all that we have in our fridge and pantry. This sometimes means using the veggies that have started to not look straight out of the bins at the market. Below I will share our own No Waste food strategies we use for things that have started to turn- but not yet have you turning over in your grave.

Bananas:

Probably the most easy to use item when they turn brown. We have done the following with mushy brown bananas:

  • Banana Bread
  • Freeze them in little chunks for smoothies
  • Smoothies
  • Chocolate Brownies (use to replace part of the butter or fat)
Apples:

Another easy one I know. I cannot stand mushy apples so they must go into something!

  • Apple Sauce
  • Apple Strudel
Mushrooms

When they start getting a little slimy and may smell a bit …mushroomy.

  • Ramen.- they are excellent simmered in broth and bring out a strong flavor that is SO yummy
  • Mac & Cheese – they act like a “meat” for us while always pairing nice with the “cheesy” flavors
  • Risotto- who doesn’t love some risotto
  • Put them on a Pizza
Beets and Tomatoes

There is really only one thing to do with cooked beets that sat in the fridge too long or those tomatoes that started to get a bit ooey.

  • Chocolate Cake
  • Brownies
  • Chocolate bundt
  • Anything with chocolate! The beets will give it a fake “red velvet”look
Carrots, Potatoes or Any Root Vegetables:

Cut them, dice them and turn up the temp on that oven.

  • Soup
  • Pan Roasted till crisp
  • Potatoes Au Gratin
  • Breakfast hash- slice them up thin
  • Shred carrots for cake
Mangos, Blueberries, Berries or most Fruits
  • Jam
  • Sauces- simmer them down to a sauce for pancakes
  • Breads- breakfast breads or dessert breads
  • Muffins
  • Smoothie bowls
Veggies I have not been able to use once they go “bad”

If you have any secrets or ideas please drop them in the comments below- but these veggies are ones I have not found a way to make work once they start to turn.

  • Avocados
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Citris
  • Herbs

Our signature No Waste Frugal Food Dish:

Crap in a Wrap:

Not the most creative title, but when we are down to bare bones in the kitchen we throw crap in a wrap and it typically tastes pretty darn good. This means we use beans, corn, rice, hummus, pesto sauce, and whatever veggies are in the fridge from carrots to cabbage.

Epic Frugal Food Fails

Broccoli soup. It sounded like a great idea. I make a mean asparagus soup and I am not kidding. However the broccoli had gone a bit rancid. Let me tell you, when you blend rancid broccoli your entire home will smell like sulphur for 3 days or more. Like awful rotten egg in a natural hot springs kinds of sulfur.

Cauliflower “Rice”. Use super fresh cauliflower for this and not your older stuff that is looking a bit more brown. Other wise you will have tasteless cauliflower mush that sucks the life and flavor out of your tacos.

Smoothies. Not a typical smoothie- but a throw it all in smoothie- we have tried this a few times and on top if it turning out baby poop brown- it tastes more like a tropical hurricane aftermath instead of a tropical storm. So just plan your smoothies a bit more. 🙂

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