ArrowDownFill 1arrow-small-lineFill 1GroupStaff FaveGroupClose IconEmailLike Cooking Light on FacebookShapePage 1 Copy 3Page 1 Copy 2Grid IconFollow Cooking Light on InstagramList IconMenu IconPrintSearch IconSpeech BubbleFollow Cooking Light on SnapchatFollow Cooking Light on TwitterWatch Cooking Light on YouTubeplay-iconWatch Cooking Light on Youtube

7 Ways to Use Up Leftover Vegetables

Photo: Jennifer Causey

Eating vegetables doesn't have to be tasteless or sad, even when they're leftovers. Re-purpose all of your hearty veggies from leafy greens to zucchini to peppers.  Why waste your vegetables (and money) by throwing them out when you can use them tomorrow in a new, clever way?

Some foods are easier to re-purpose than others, and often times, people look at leftover veggies and think there's no way to use them the next day. Don’t be one of these people! Whether you roasted too many veggies for one dinner or you got a little carried away in the produce aisle, there are plenty of dishes that are just begging for you to toss in your day-old vegetables that would otherwise be thrown away.

  • Omelets: Why chop up fresh vegetables, when your leftover roasted veggies from last night's dinner will taste just as delicious with breakfast? This is a great low-calorie, protein-packed option to start your day.
    Photo: Jennifer Causey
  • Hashes and stir-fries: Veggies like squash, zucchini, asparagus, eggplant, and broccoli make for an excellent one-pot hash. Throw them together in a sauté pan and toss in soy sauce, olive oil, or teriyaki sauce for a flavorful medley. We like to top ours with a fried egg for runny-yolk goodness.
  • Frittatas and quiches: For an easy breakfast that you can prep at the beginning of the week, frittatas and quiches are fantastic for getting rid of onions, leeks, greens, fresh herbs, and tomatoes. Buy a store bought quiche crust, or use sweet potato slices for a homemade low-calorie option. These are good to freeze ahead of time and defrost them when you’re ready.
  • Pizza: We'll take any excuse to make pizza, and topping your pie with hearty vegetables is a great way to add nutrients and fiber to your meal. Our favorites are mushrooms, onions, spinach, or peppers, but when it comes to toppings paired with melted cheese, you really can’t go wrong.
    Photo: Jennifer Causey
  • Rice bowls and Fajitas: No need to run to Chipotle, because you can just cook up a pot of rice and add whatever veggies you have on hand. Incorporate roasted squash, peppers, and onions with taco seasoning and spices for that sought-after, sizzling taste. Add meat, poultry, or black beans for a hearty, well-balanced meal. We recommend brown rice so that you’re getting a serving of whole grains.
  • Salads: It might seem kind of obvious, but an easy way to use up leftover veggies is to eat them with… more veggies. Toss up a bowl of your favorite leafy greens with roasted cauliflower, parsnips, sweet potatoes, corn, carrots, or whatever else you’re trying to use up. 
    Photo: Jennifer Causey
  • Pasta bake: This kid-friendly technique is a surefire way to sneak veggies into their dinner without them even noticing. Whether it’s lasagna, baked ziti, or stuffed shells, don’t be afraid to add zucchini, squash, greens, or mushrooms.