The Joy of Leftovers

Today’s lunch rocked.


Baked pasta for one? Sign me up.


I love when meals turn out even better than you imagined.

I had about 1 cup of the pesto + kale pasta in the fridge and knew I needed to eat it today. I also knew that 1 little cup of pasta wasn’t going to fill me up, so I bulked it up with some broccoli + butternut squash.


While the oven heated up (to 400), I quickly steamed about a cup of broccoli and 1/2 cup of butternut in the microwave.

Then I just mixed the veggies with the leftover pasta, topped it with a little bit of parmesan, Italian seasoning, and crushed red pepper and sprayed it with a little olive oil from my Misto.


Baked it at 400 for about 10 minutes, or until the pasta was heated through and the cheese melted.


Why can’t every lunch be this good?

And for a sweet ending, I’m digging into a little yogurt with jam + almonds.


I’m about to take this sad face for a walk – it’s actually pretty right now! Blue skies and the sun is shining, but considering the snow storm that’s supposed to hit tomorrow, we better take advantage while we can.


On the topic of leftovers

I got a question today asking about eating the same stuff for a whole week or multiple meals.

We (obviously) eat a lot of leftovers. It’s only 2 of us in the house, and I don’t always want (or have time) to cook a new meal every night. Most leftovers are GREAT, and some often get better the day after you make them (think pastas, soups, stews, chili, etc).

I don’t mind having “the same lunch” for a few days if it means I’m not wasting food. And, if that happens, I try to make sure I’m not having the same breakfast AND dinner, just so I can get some variation and different nutrients!

We don’t mind having a meal more than once, although I’m more likely to take leftovers for lunches than Nick.

I used to make something on the weekends (a soup or grain salad) JUST to have for easy lunches during the week! I love having things in the fridge that are easy to grab for lunches or quick dinners, but I know some people just can’t take eating the same thing for more than 1-2 meals a week.

What do you think of leftovers?

Love ‘em? Hate ‘em? Wish you had them more?

Do you make certain things JUST so you can HAVE leftovers? (I’ve done that before) :)



  1. I love leftovers, I tend to eat the same meals over and over (and over)….

  2. I just want to get rid of leftovers! They are darn convenient, though

  3. I’m not a HUGE fan of leftovers but sometimes it’s great having them around :P
    My mom makes soup every sunday and during the week that soup is part of several of my meals.

    I think your lunch looks so good! :)

  4. Pro-leftovers here! I make our dinners to feed 4 usually so that we have extra servings for the next day’s lunch :) So economical too, we have saved so much money by doing this and get to enjoy homecooked meals from our work desks – win win!!!

  5. I adore leftovers, especially something like leftover chili or veggies because I can take them and turn them into entirely new meals.

    When I was growing up, however, I HATED leftovers and gave my mom a hard time about them constantly. It took me making/buying my own food to truly appreciate how awesome they can be. :)

  6. That looks so good!! Pesto + butternut squash? Sign me up!!!
    I love leftovers–especially the not having to cook if I don’t feel like it part :) I like revamping them a little each time too.

  7. i love leftovers now that it’s a treat to get a “real” meal at college. so whenever i go home i take back practically an entire meal. growing up i hated the idea of leftover. maybe i was just being bratty though and wanted my mom to make me something new hhaha

  8. I’m pro-leftovers although my husband is less likely to get enthused. The downside is after the third time? I. Am. Done. So I try to make up lunch sized portions and throw them in the freezer right away. Then I’ll have a stash to pull my lunches from.

    Like Lean Cuisine, only real food.

    That pup. Oh my heart.

  9. I love leftovers! I figure, if I’m going to put in the effort to make a healthy dinner, I might as well get a few healthy meals out of it!

  10. Nothing makes me happier than coming home from work knowing I have leftovers in the fridge!!! I love your combo of broc and butternut!!

  11. dang, leftovers never looked so good! i cook for one (sometimes 2) and so i always have leftovers. love ’em!

  12. I puffy heart leftovers! Many times the meals I make are just for me, so I make it a big batch and freeze or just keep for the week. I like to vary them up a bit (plain chili one day, chili on top of a salad the next, etc)

  13. I live on leftovers! I love them and yours looks deeelicious!

  14. leftovers make life 10x’s easier…. and with your amaze recipes it’s only right to enjoy them twice :)

  15. I need to try baking more dishes. I always go for the stove top. Looks amazing!

  16. Leftovers are SUCH lifesavers, in my eyes. Granted, I would have no problem eating the same meal 4x in a row, but I digress: usually I’ll make two servings of whatever for dinner – dinner for the night, and lunch or dinner for the next day. I love being the envy of my co-workers when I show up with a delicious meal! haha. On weekends, I’ll usually throw together quick small batches of salad-y type things for wraps and sandwiches, too.
    I am the same as you in that I hate wasting food, so then of course there’s the occasional “every little bit of anything in the fridge” dinner, lol.
    Your leftovers always look so great, too!

  17. butternut squash is SO good with pasta. I love it!!!

    I love leftovers as I hate wasting food. And since it’s only me and Andy, we have leftovers quite often!

  18. I adore leftovers! They’re especially wonderful for lunch. And it’s definitely nice to come home from work and not have to cook because something delicious is ready to eat!

  19. oh girl leftovers are a LIFE SAVEER in college-love em!

  20. I really really hate to waste food too, so if there are leftovers to be eaten, I will eat them just out of spite of not wasting. Plus, leftovers usually ROCK so it’s a win win!

    Glad you are having a better day today! :)

  21. I hate leftovers unless they are soups or stews or chilis.

    Hunni loves them and eats them for lunch all the time. It’s just the two of us so often we make enough for four so he can have some for lunch.

  22. I love leftovers – It makes my life so much easier. Especially when I make soup, I purposely make a huge pot so I can have leftovers to look forward to =)

  23. I love leftovers and eat them all the time. It’s hard to cook for just one, so I’ll make a big batch of something and either eat it throughout the week or freeze it for later.

  24. I love leftovers! I recently wrote a post for the Plummelo blog on making one meal and using it 5 different ways. Its fun to get creative and to already have something made, especially when we are always on the go, and like your house, there are just 2 of us.

  25. i absolutely adore leftovers. as a single gal i cook up recipes and divide the leftovers in individual servings. then any servings i don’t eat within a couple of days i freeze so if case i need a fast lunch or dinner without buying those frozen meals.

    i loooooooove leftover chili!

  26. I don’t mind leftovers — it makes my life easier! I heard the term “planned-overs” somewhere and liked it.

  27. I love leftovers! Mainly for the same reason – I’m all about grab ‘n’ go to save time in the morning. I often intentionally make things so that I’ll HAVE leftovers available. Glad you’re feeling better! :)

  28. i love leftovers, as most of my meals usually are :) i usually do all my cooking on the weekend for all week. i don’t like having things more than 2-3 times, though, so it makes more work for me…

  29. Way to use up leftovers–it looks delicious! I am a huge fan of multi-meals :-)

Comments are closed.