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    6 Food Hacks & Ways to Reduce Food Waste this Thanksgiving

    From green bean casserole to cranberry sauce, and a multitude of desserts, every family has their go-to items that are on the Thanksgiving table each year to pile onto our plates.

    Most of us look forward to this holiday just for the leftovers alone. However, the day after Thanksgiving we are often so full we cannot even think about eating another thing.

    The problem is, as good as the mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie are, how many times can you really eat them in a row before becoming sick of them? Here are a few tips to use up or repurpose leftovers so that they do not go to waste!

    6 Ways to Repurpose those Thanksgiving Leftovers

    pumpkin pie breakfast

    1. Freeze leftovers. Portion out turkey and side dishes into individual glass containers and freeze for up to four months to have for quick grab-n-go lunches or dinners when you are short on time.
    2. Repurpose leftovers into new recipes! Turn the turkey into a pot pie or sandwich for a meal the next day. For a turkey pot pie, you can use green beans, carrots, mashed potatoes, or any other vegetable. The mashed potatoes make a great topping in place of a pie crust! You can also make this pot pie and freeze in individual slices to have on hand.
    3. Turn pumpkin pie into a breakfast parfait. Simply take a slice of pumpkin pie and remove the crust. Layer with vanilla Greek yogurt (for protein) and granola. Now you have a delicious and somewhat healthy breakfast to fuel all the Black Friday shopping!
    4. Plan out your menu carefully so that you do not end up with a large surplus of food.
    5. Pack a plate or two of leftovers to give to others. Think about any friends or neighbors who may not be able to get out of the house and could use a warm meal. This is something often overlooked, yet a prevalent theme that many are alone during the holiday season.
    6. Donate. If you know you bought too much before you even begin to prepare your Thanksgiving meal, think about donating what you do not need to a shelter to give back.

    Regardless of how you choose to repurpose your leftovers, there is no reason that food should go to waste, especially since 40% of the food in America is thrown out.

    Remember, while most holidays are centered around food, shifting the focus to spending time with friends and family can be a huge benefit. Wishing you a wonderful holiday season!

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    Melissa Bailey

    About Melissa Bailey

    Melissa Bailey is a registered dietitian at a large hospital in Philadelphia where she focuses on liver transplant patients. In addition to her full time job, she runs a social media account and blog, which focus on creating healthier recipes. When she is not working, you can find her at a local workout studio or on the Schuylkill trail with her dog, Marlie.

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