By Debbie Braden-Lane, Branch Operations Specialist, Oregon Food Bank-Tillamook County Service

Some tasty and easy ways to eliminate food waste and save time and money, by utilizing leftovers!  Especially during the holidays or after other family get-togethers, or big Sunday dinners.

  • Sunday: Ham Dinner w/ German Potato Salad, Cooked Carrots and Applesauce
  • Monday: Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches
  • Tuesday: Ham and Bean Soup
  • Wednesday: Scalloped Potato and Ham Casserole Dinner
  • Thursday: Red Beans and Rice with Diced Ham
  • Friday: Homemade Hawaiian Pizza Night!

On Sunday, bake a ham and prepare a German Potato Salad (this week’s YOW recipe, provided by Crystal Hayes), include cooked carrots and applesauce for your sides.   (Reserve the ham bone as you will use it later in the week for a meal.)

For Monday make up some delicious hot ham and cheese sandwiches.  Lay ham and assorted cheeses on a hoagie roll with mustard, wrap in foil and bake in the oven until the contents are hot and the outside of the rolls are slightly crispy.  Yum!!  This is delicious with a small garden salad.

For Tuesday evening, pick up a loaf of crusty bread and pair it with Ham and Bean Soup, made from the ham bone, great northern or navy beans, diced or shredded ham, celery, onion and carrots.  If you don’t want to do a bread two nights in a row, make another garden salad for a soup and salad night!

Ahhhhhh, we are halfway through the work week!  Yay!  It’s all downhill from here.  So, let’s get going on Wednesday’s supper….  Scalloped Potatoes with Ham Casserole. Total comfort food to help us get through the rest of the week.

You can either set up this meal in the crock pot so it’s ready when you get home from that long day … OR throw it together after work.  You will need some of your leftover ham, thinly sliced potatoes, a white sauce and shredded cheese, if desired.  Bake in the oven at 350 degrees until potatoes are at the desired tenderness.  Serve with peas.

How about something really simple for Thursday night?  Red beans and rice with ham.  Good stuff right there.

Okay, we are heading into the weekend on a Friday evening.  Pizza night!  Make a Hawaiian pizza with ham and pineapple and add other toppings.  Use your imagination and go wild with veggie toppings!

Note:  By mid-week, if you notice that you are going to have excess ham for the rest of the week, this would be the time to figure out how much you will need to freeze and put it in the freezer.  Or, if you can handle ham for breakfasts and lunches throughout the week, that is, of course, another way to use up your leftover ham.  Also, please be careful seasoning your dishes with salt when using ham, as most of the time, the ham provides PLENTY of salt on its own.

There you have it… a whole work week of meal ideas using leftover Sunday dinner!  Bonus – You won’t have to remember to get something out of the freezer every morning for dinner that night. I’m sure I’m not alone here!


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