It’s time for Leftover Lovin’: Easter Edition!!! Any time we have a huge holiday meal, I love to give ideas for what to do with all those amazing leftovers!! Let’s dive into the best way and safest way to use up all those Easter Dinner leftovers!
Easter is upon us! And with Easter, comes that huge family meal that everyone loves. But what happens when you are left with tons of leftovers? You don’t want all the wonderful food to go to waste, but there’s SO much of it – what do you do? I’m not a huge fan of leftovers myself, so I like to re-make my leftovers into something new and different. So, before you eat ham sandwiches for the next week, try some of these ideas to give your leftovers some lovin’. This is Leftover Lovin’: Easter Edition!
Leftover Lovin’: Easter Edition – Ham
There are SO many things you can do with leftover ham. And don’t get me wrong, it DOES make a delicious ham sandwich with those delectable ham slices! You can’t go wrong with a good ham sandwich, ever. BUT, there are so many MORE things you can do with all that half-eaten ham (or any leftover meat you have!)
Ham and Meat Safety:
First things first with ham leftovers. Food safety is key. No one wants to get a case of food poisoning or foodborne illness from bad ham. To store your ham leftovers, it’s best to use an airtight container rather than the original packaging. Airtight containers are a great way to limit bacteria growth and help combat the dehydration of leftovers as well.
Room Temperature Ham
According to the Food Safety website from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, ham that’s been at room temperature is only good for two hours. After that, throw it out. Try to get your leftovers put away before the two-hour mark if possible. You spent all those hours of preparation for your meal, don’t let it go to waste!
***The Food Safety website is a great resource for all kinds of food safety information. Keep it handy!
No matter what your ham of choice is, for the most part, any type of ham is good if kept in the refrigerator for about a week. This goes for a whole ham, boneless ham, fresh ham, smoked ham, country ham, bone-in ham, spiral-cut ham, uncured ham, dry-cured hams, and all the rest of the ham products. Ham is one of the best parts of the feast! Make sure you take good care of your leftovers!
Signs Your Ham Has Gone Bad
- Slimy texture – you don’t want your ham to have a slimy texture for sure. Throw out slimy ham. Ew.
- Mold – Also, make sure to look out for any signs of mold. Gross!
Smell – If your ham has a sour smell or unpleasant smell, it’s also best to throw it out. Definitely don’t eat ham that has an unpleasant odor.
Leftover Ham Meal Ideas:
Ham Quiche from Chelsey’s Messy Apron is delicious. Cheese? Eggs? Ham? Flaky buttery crust? Get in the oven, pronto!
I like to have these ham biscuits for breakfast and snacks. This is very similar to the recipe my Grandma uses for biscuits and they are a staple at all holiday events in our family. It’s kind of like a biscuit meets a yeast roll and its so, so delicious!
This ham strata from Lil Luna (it’s just a fancy baked omelet with bread!) is amazing. Plus, it calls for bread, so if you have leftover bread too, it’s perfect!! Stale bread is even better!
It definitely doesn’t have to be a fancy recipe though. My
Lunches and Dinners:
The ideas for lunches and dinners are nearly endless! Try panini sandwiches, soups,
I found this idea a few weeks ago, and though I’ve not had it yet, I can’t see where you could even conceivably go wrong with Ham and Pea Pasta Carbonara from Self Proclaimed Foodie’s blog. This is the first thing I’m making with our leftover ham this year!
I love to make these Ham and Cheese Hot Pockets by A Mind “Full” Mom. Bonus, you can freeze these for another time if you are all “hammed” out.
Ham is also fantastic in soups. I love to throw into potato or bean soup especially. If you have some fresh corn, I’d highly recommend trying this Corn and Ham Chowder from House of
Another option for your leftovers is to simply freeze the ham for a later date. I’d go ahead and slice it up and separate the slices with parchment paper. Or if I know I just have a little bit left, I’ll go ahead and chop up that thick-sliced ham and use it for omelets and salads! Then, wrap the ham (separated with parchment paper slices) in plastic wrap really tightly, and then put the wrapped ham bundle in a freezer bag. Make sure you label it so you know when it will go bad.
Also, don’t you dare throw that ham bone away. If you aren’t going to immediately make a pot of pinto beans then at least freeze the ham bone and use it in your NEXT pot of pinto beans or soup. Don’t you even consider throwing that ham bone away!
Leftover Lovin’: Potatoes
Leftover mashed potatoes are just never as good as the original fresh mashed potatoes. You can totally heat them up, but it’s just not the same. Try making them over into potato cakes, twice-baked potato casserole, mashed potato flatbread, mashed potato rolls, or even gnocchi! I’ve never tried mashed potato flatbread, but I’m intrigued and I’m trying it the very next time I have leftovers! Here is a recipe I found for it on Happy Foods Tube.
Roasted Potatoes are delicious too. If you have some leftover roasted potatoes try throwing them into an omelet (Potatoes in an omelet are really common in Spain. And I have to say the people of Spain really nailed that idea! Potatoes in an omelet are DELICIOUS!). Also try using the leftover roasted potatoes as a simple breakfast hash, soup addition, or a whole new dinner with peppers, onions, and smoked sausage. This Kielbasa, Peppers and Potato Hash from Mom On Timeout looks delicious!
Leftover Lovin’: Vegetables
You can make a delicious soup with leftover vegetables! Put them on a baking sheet lined with foil and roast/broil them in the oven for just a few minutes. Or simply warm them with some chicken broth in a pot. Throw them in the blender with some warm chicken stock, and boom – Creamy Vegetable Soup. Any veggie combo will work here! (Be careful blending hot foods!)
The veggies also make a delicious addition to the breakfast bakes and omelets from the breakfast section above in this post!
Leftover roasted veggies are delicious on sandwiches, or sprinkled on top of salads as well!
Little of Everything Leftover?
If you haven’t turned the bits and pieces into something yet, walk on the wild side and try this: Easter Leftover Eggrolls!
This is an idea I’ve seen, and haven’t had a chance to try yet. I actually saw it on a post for Thanksgiving leftovers but I can’t see why this wouldn’t work for Easter leftovers just as well! I also can’t see how you could go wrong and this be anything but delicious!
Plain bread and rolls can be used for bread pudding, cinnamon toast, or my favorite – croutons for salad!
Here’s how you can make homemade croutons for yourself. You’ll never buy them again! I follow Gimme Some Oven’s recipe for Homemade Croutons and they are perfect every time!
Under penalty of law, I can’t do anything to re-make deviled eggs. These are my husband’s favorite thing on the planet, and as such, there shall be no altering of the perfect deviled eggs. But if I WAS going to do anything with them (which I’m not – we don’t want deviled egg psycho husband to come out), I’d make egg salad sandwiches. Or I’d just slap the deviled eggs on a ham sandwich. But I wouldn’t know, there are rarely leftover deviled eggs at our house for any amount of time.
Do you have way too much cake left over? Maybe send some home with everyone. Is it a cake that would freeze well? These are my first two choices when I have too much leftover cake.
Another idea is to totally make it over and put it in little mason jars for individual trifles. Simply cut the cake up into pieces and put some Cool Whip or whipped cream in layers with the cake and with some fruit and enjoy a trifle. Fresh dessert again! Throw the trifle in mason jars for grab-and-go treats all week.
I have to say – there isn’t usually a ton of leftover Easter candy at our house. Mainly because I love candy and eat most of it in sight. But on a whim, I searched in Pinterest to see if there are ideas for leftover Easter candy. HOLY REESE CUPS, BATMAN! I was floored at how creative you can be with leftover candy.
My word! Throw them in cookies like they are chocolate chips, put them in brownies or blondies, mix them with Rice Krispy treats or make a pie crust or cheesecake crust out of them! The possibilities were nearly endless! I will have to consider leaving Easter candy behind to try these recipes this year… I make no promises.
Suggested Kitchen Equipment:
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- Chef Mixing Bowls with Lids
- Rubbermaid Meal Prep Premier Food Storage Container
- Aluminum Disposable Pans with Lids
Leftover Lovin’: Easter Edition – Beating the Overwhelm
A fridge full of leftovers can be totally overwhelming if you don’t have a plan of attack. Instead of being overwhelmed by all of the food, and burning out on all the leftovers, try some of these new ideas and recipes and totally turn all of your Easter leftovers into something new and fun this week. I can’t wait to see what you come up with!
- Leftover Lovin’ – Thanksgiving Edition
- One-Pot Tuscan Chicken Gnocchi Bake
- Easy One-Pot Cheesy Meat Bake