Food Waste

Cranberry Banana Coffee Cake

#WhyWasteWednesday

#WhyWasteFood Wednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into delicious meals!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agricultural

Scraps: Leftover Cranberry

“I make this moist cake for Christmas morning every year. It tastes like banana bread but has a sweet golden topping with a nutty crunch.”

—Gloria Friesen, Casper, Wyoming

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 medium ripe bananas, mashed (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1 cup whole-berry cranberry sauce

Toppings

  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted

Cooking Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Combine the dry ingredients; add to the creamed mixture alternately with bananas, beating well after each addition. Spread into a greased 13×9-in. baking pan. Top with cranberry sauce.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, pecans and flour; stir in butter. Sprinkle over cranberries. Bake at 350° for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in a pan on a wire rack.

Nutrition

1 serving: 264 calories

11g fat (5g saturated fat)

49mg cholesterol

186mg sodium

39g carbohydrate (22g sugars, 2g fiber)

3g protein 


If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#whywastewednesday  #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Nutrition

Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Orange Vinaigrette

“This salad has all of our favorite elements–crunchy bites, creamy goat cheese, fresh greens, and the rich sweetness of roasted sweet potato, all with a tangy citrus dressing.”

Serves: 6

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

  • 5 ounces Baby Spinach, about 3 cups
  • 5 ounces Baby Arugula, about 3 cups
  • 4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1 apple, preferably sweet, cut into matchsticks
  • 3 cups Roasted Sweet Potatoes
  • 1½ cups Candied Pecans
  • ¾ cup Orange Vinaigrette

Cooking Instructions

  1. In a large serving bowl, toss the spinach, arugula, ¾ of the goat cheese, ¾ of the apple, 2 cups roasted sweet potato, and 1 cup candied pecans with ¾ of the orange vinaigrette until everything is coated.
  2. Top the salad with the remaining goat cheese, apples, sweet potatoes, and pecans. Drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve immediately.

Nutrition

  • Calories 386
  • Protein 6g
  • Carbohydrates 33g
  • Total Fat 27g
  • Dietary Fiber 5g
  • Cholesterol 0mg
  • Sodium 251mg
  • Total Sugars 17g

Roasted sweet potato salad with Orange Vinaigrette. The Modern Proper. (n.d.). Retrieved November 10, 2022.

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #meatlessmondays, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #FoodRescue #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Nutrition

Vegan French Toast

#MeatlessMonday

How to make the BEST Vegan French Toast! So easy to make in just 10 minutes, using everyday ingredients. You won’t miss the eggs at all in this delicious weekend morning breakfast. A secret ingredient makes these French toast incredibly crisp, thick and perfect!

How Can You Possibly Make French Toast Without Eggs?

The secret ingredient in this vegan French toast recipe is so common it’s probably in the pantry right now: Cornstarch. It’s perfect for getting that crisp exterior, and works like a charm as the bread cooks in the pan.

Without eggs, your batter for vegan French toast includes these ingredients: Soy milk (or any other non-dairy milk), cornstarch, ground flaxseeds (just a teaspoon, to help thicken the batter), 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, maple syrup, cinnamon and vanilla.

Prep: 5 mins

Cook: 5 mins

Total: 10 mins

Servings: 3 people

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsweetened soy milk (or other non-dairy milk)
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon ground flaxseeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 6-8 slices thick sliced quality bread, such as ciabatta or French
  • 2-3 tablespoons vegan butter or coconut oil for frying
  • For serving: maple syrup, powdered sugar, or fresh fruit

Cooking Instructions

  1. In a shallow bowl, wide enough to hold a piece of bread, whisk together the soy milk, cornstarch, ground flaxseeds, baking powder, cinnamon, maple syrup and vanilla.
  2. Add a little bit of vegan butter/coconut oil to a pan over medium-high heat and melt. Whisk the batter again right before dipping bread, as the cornstarch will settle to the bottom of the bowl. 
  3. Dip each side of the bread in the batter and let soak for about 10 seconds, then add the bread to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Add more vegan butter/oil to the pan as needed in between pieces of bread. 
  4. Serve with maple syrup, powdered sugar and fresh fruit, if desired.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 404kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 648mg | Potassium: 165mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 524IU | Calcium: 141mg | Iron: 1mg

Nora. (2021, August 9). Vegan French toast. Nora Cooks. Retrieved November 8, 2022.

READ MORE
Food Waste

Tips and Ideas for using those Thanksgiving Scraps and Leftovers

#WhyWasteWednesday

#WhyWasteFood Wednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into delicious meals!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agricultural

Scraps: seeds, butternut squash peels, apple peels, vegetable fat, turkey carcass, giblets, pie crust

Ideas for Leftovers

Thanksgiving leftovers are a huge part of the holiday. A celebration of harvest, many spend time with family, and indulge in large spreads of savory and sweet dishes. Read about ways to reduce your Thanksgiving food waste here: https://foodfinders.org/2022/11/16/tips-for-reducing-your-food-waste-this-thanksgiving/. Even with steps to be mindful and take action against food waste, leftovers on Thanksgiving are unavoidable, and often sought after. Here are a few quick tips to make something new out of your holiday scraps and leftovers:

  • Use seeds and butternut squash peels as a crispy garnish for any soup or salad
  • Use apple peels with cinnamon, sugar, and lemon juice for baked crisps
  • Any scraps can be used for vegetable broth (freeze scraps for future broth, or make and then freeze broth)
  • Rendered or strained fat can be refrigerated and saved for roasting vegetables or sautéing ingredients for hash made with other leftovers
  • Simmer turkey carcass with some aromatics for an outstanding soup stock 
  • Giblets included with our turkey can be used as part of dressing or gravy 
  • Leftover pie crusts can be brushed with butter, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, twisted into any shape and baked for a quick, sweet treat

Check out all these and more in Food editor Joe Yonan’s piece on root-to-leaf and seed-to-stem cooking with fruits and vegetables.


Yonan, J. (2021, April 23). Perspective | cut waste and boost flavor with skin-to-seed recipes that use the whole vegetable. The Washington Post. Retrieved November 14, 2022.

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#whywastewednesday  #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Food Waste

Tips for Reducing Your Food Waste This Thanksgiving

#WhyWasteFoodWednesday

#WhyWasteFoodWednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into delicious meals!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agricultural

How to Reduce Food Waste at Thanksgiving Dinner

Food waste is a year-round concern, and the large Thanksgiving meal can present a challenge. You’re buying many more ingredients, and you’re making large-scale recipes with lots of potential leftovers. You may be preoccupied with the business of the holiday season, so keeping your food waste in mind can become a small concern. But there are easy ways to reduce food waste and, therefore your environmental impact, even around the holidays. Here are a few tips geared toward Thanksgiving dinner.

Plan How Much Food to Make

Until you know how many people you’re cooking for, you’ll be unable to plan portions accurately. Press for answers and get people to commit. Not only will this ensure you’re not overcooking, it will also benefit party planning in general.

Make an Entire Thanksgiving with Fewer Ingredients 

The variety of dishes is a key part of Thanksgiving dinners. Part of the problem is that it can mean separate lists of ingredients for every recipe. But it’s ok if there’s some overlap between your courses; it’s smart, thrifty, and eco-friendly, because it means less packaging and less of a chance that you’re going to have lots of half-used bottles and cans hanging around your fridge or pantry waiting to go bad. Even better, synchronizing ingredients and flavors can make your meal seem like a well-thought-out package and make you look like a genius menu planner. 

Use Every Ingredient Wisely

After you’ve shopped and before you reach the leftovers phase, there are ways to make smart use of the extra bits of various ingredients. A great read is a piece by Food editor Joe Yonan’s; “root-to-leaf and seed-to-stem cooking.” He shows you how to use the more expected seeds and the less expected peels of butternut squash for a crispy garnish that would work on any soup or salad. When you have peels left from an apple pie, toss them with cinnamon, sugar, and lemon juice and then bake them to make crisps. At the very least, hang on to scraps for vegetable broth. Freeze the scraps, or make the broth and then freeze that.

The same line of thought applies to whatever meat you may be serving, as well. Rendered or strained fat can be refrigerated and saved for roasting vegetables or sautéing ingredients for hash made from leftovers. Get the most out of your turkey carcass by simmering them with some aromatics for an outstanding stock to be used in future soups. Giblets included with your turkey can become part of the dressing or gravy. Extra pie crust or crust trimmings can be brushed in butter, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, twisted into any shape you want and baked for a quick sweet treat.

How to Use and Store Leftovers

Even if you’ve calculated the exact amount for the number of people at your Thanksgiving, you’re probably going to end up with at least some leftovers. And, to many, leftovers are an important part of Thanksgiving.

To prepare, have lots of containers for packing up food on hand. Your usual glass or plastic hard-sided options are perfect. If you’re planning to send guests home with food, consider asking them to bring their own storage containers. That way, no one is scrambling when it comes time to pack up.

And be mindful of how long food is put out for. Perishable food, including turkey and many sides, can be left at room temperature for 2 hours. Even less is better, so as soon as everyone is done eating, start cleaning up, as much of a drag as it can be. Eat your refrigerated leftovers within four days. If you need to buy yourself more time, go ahead and freeze them before the four days are out, though ideally sooner for the best quality. Hand out leftovers to guests when they leave.


Krystal, B. (2022, November 10). Advice | how to reduce food waste at Thanksgiving dinner. The Washington Post. Retrieved November 14, 2022.

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#whywastewednesday  #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Nutrition

The Best Thanksgiving Cranberry Sauce

#MeatlessMonday

Look no further for the Best Ever Cranberry Sauce! This easy and delightful recipe takes only 15 minutes to make and a handful of ingredients! Spiced with cinnamon and sweetened with orange juice, it is the best combination of sweet and tart! The perfect complement to your holiday meal! 

One Thanksgiving recipe that often seems to be overlooked is the cranberry sauce. So many people go for the canned stuff, and while it’s great in a pinch, it doesn’t even come close to homemade.

Cranberry Sauce for the Holidays

Cranberry sauce is an essential part of every holiday meal for one simple reason – it cuts through the heaviness of all the other dishes. It’s light, it’s bright, and it’s actually pretty darn healthy. Adding orange and cinnamon to cranberry sauce really gives it more depth of flavor and sweetens it just slightly. It’s still lovely and tart, but not quite so tart that you’ll be puckering your lips.

Can I Make This in Advance

You betcha! In fact, this is a great make-ahead recipe. It’s served chilled so you need to make it at least one day in advance anyways. The flavor is even better after two or three days so if you have time beforehand, consider just getting this recipe out of the way at the beginning of the week. Another note: you might want to double the recipe for plenty of leftovers!

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • ½ cup water
  • 12 oz fresh cranberries rinsed and picked through
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 piece of orange peel just use a potato peel or paring knife

Cranberry sauce is the perfect way to cut through the heaviness of a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner and it adds a gorgeous pop of color and flavor to every bite. I hope you give this super easy recipe a try this holiday season!

Cooking Instructions

  1. Combine sugar, orange juice, and water in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir to combine.
  2. Add cranberries, salt, cinnamon stick and orange peel.
  3. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  4. Continue cooking, for about 10 minutes, or until all or most of the cranberries have popped. I like to leave a handful of berries whole.
  5. Let cool for at least 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  6. Can be made up to 3 days in advance.

Nutrition

Calories: 100kcal 

Carbohydrates: 25g

Sodium: 2mg

Potassium: 67mg

Fiber: 2g

Sugar: 21g

Vitamin A: 55IU

Vitamin C: 13.4mg

Calcium: 9mg

Iron: 0.2mg


Timeout, T.- M. O. (2019, November 12). The best cranberry sauce: Ready in 15 minutes! Mom On Timeout. Retrieved November 14, 2022.

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #meatlessmondays, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate #meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #FoodRescue #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Nutrition

Creamy Goat Cheese Polenta with Ratatouille

#MeatlessMondays

Classic French ratatouille sounds fancy, but is actually a simple, lovely way of cooking vegetables that are all in season at the same time together in a single plan. Ratatouille together with creamy polenta make a dinner that’s at once hearty and warming, fresh and oh-so-flavorful.

“Ratatouille—a classic combination of late summer vegetables, cooked to tender perfection—is an ideal partner for creamy goat cheese polenta. Together, they’re the vegetarian dinner of your dreams!”

The Modern Proper

Serves: 6 minutes

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Calories: 513

Ratatouille

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, halved
  • 1 small globe eggplant, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 medium yellow squash, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 yellow, red, or orange bell pepper cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher sea salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 5 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed

Polenta

Ingredients

  • 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 cups whole milk, plus more as needed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups stone-ground polenta or yellow cornmeal
  • 8 ounces goat cheese
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 10 to 12 fresh basil leaves, minced

Cooking Instructions

  1. Make the ratatouille. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease an 8 x 8-inch baking dish with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and rub the cut sides of the garlic clove all over the bottom and sides. Discard the garlic clove.
  2. On a clean work surface, spread out the eggplant, zucchini, squash, bell pepper, tomato, and onion. Drizzle them with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sprinkle with the garlic powder, salt, and black pepper to taste. Toss to coat well.
  3. Transfer the veggies to the prepared baking dish.. Scatter on the thyme leaves.
  4. Cover. and bake for 20 minutes, then uncover and continue baking until the vegetables are tender, about 25 more minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, make the polenta. In a medium pan, combine the stock, milk, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium and slowly whisk in the polenta.
  6. Cook, stirring often, until the polenta begins to pull away from the sides of the pan, about 30 minutes.
  7. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in 6 ounces of the goat cheese. If you’d like the polenta a bit thinner, stir in a bit more milk.
  8. To serve, divide the polenta evenly among six bowls and spoon on a generous serving of the ratatouille. Top with additional goat cheese, toasted pine nuts, and basil. Serve immediately.

Nutrition

  • Protein: 18g
  • Carbohydrates: 56g
  • Total Fat: 25g
  • Dietary Fiber: 8g
  • Cholesterol: 45mg
  • Sodium: 1213mg
  • Total Sugars: 12g

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #meatlessmondays, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

Creamy goat cheese polenta with ratatouille. The Modern Proper. (n.d.). Retrieved November 1, 2022.

#meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #FoodRescue #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Food Waste

Corn Husk Smocked Chicken

#WhyWasteFoodWednesday

#WhyWasteFood Wednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into delicious meals!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agriculture

Scraps: Corn Cobs, Corn Husks, Corn Silks

Corn Husk Smoked Chicken

Corn is delicious, but creates more waste than what ends up on the plate. That’s the inspiration behind this dish. This is a delicious dinner that uses all the parts that typically end up in the compost. 

Creamy Polenta

Ingredients

  • 5 corn cobs
  • 1½ tsp (9g) kosher salt
  • ⅓ cup (90g) coarse ground cornmeal 
  • 2 tbsp (30g) freshly grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano 
  • 1 tbsp (14g) unsalted butter

Directions

  1. In a heavy-based saucepan, combine the corn cobs with enough water to cover them. Heat over medium-high heat just until it begins to boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer for 1 hour, covered. 
  2. Strain and discard the corn cobs. Return the corn stock to the stove and simmer over medium-high heat. Add the kosher salt. Add the cornmeal and whisk the mixture as it comes to a boil. Continue whisking for an additional 3 minutes. 3 4 
  3. Reduce the heat to very low, cover the pan, and cook the polenta, stirring every  5 minutes or so (switch to a wooden spoon from this point forward), until the cornmeal is completely cooked and quite tender,  2½ to 3½ hours. It may seem too thin initially, but it will gradually thicken.  As the polenta cooks, a skin will form on the bottom and sides of the pan (if you are not using a non-stick pan), which is proper and gives the polenta a slightly toasty flavor. 
  4. Fold in the cheese and butter until fully incorporated.

Corn Silk

Ingredients 

  • 2 cobs of corn worth of corn silk 
  • 4 cups (1 L) canola oil 
  • ½ tsp (3 g) kosher salt 
  • ¼ tsp (1 g) smoked paprika

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 165F(75C)
  2. discard any dark brown/black silk. Transfer the remaining silk to a parchment lined baking sheet and dehydrate in the oven overnight. 
  3. Fill a heavy-bottomed pot with oil and bring to 400°F (205°C) over medium heat and fry the silk for 15 seconds, or until crispy and golden. 
  4. Transfer to a paper towel to drain, and season with kosher salt and smoked paprika.

Chicken

Ingredients

  • 2 whole corn husks 
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts, skin on 
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) canola oil 
  • 1½ tsp (9 g) kosher salt 
  • 2 tsp (2 g) rosemary, finely chopped 
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced 
  • 1 cup (125 g) chanterelle mushrooms, cleaned and torn

Directions

  1. Submerge the corn husks in cold water and soak for 1 hour. 
  2. Preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C). 
  3. In a mixing bowl, combine the chicken with 1 tbsp (15 ml) of the canola oil, 1 tsp (3 g)  of kosher salt, 1 tsp (1 g) of rosemary, and 2 cloves of garlic. 
  4. Drain the corn husks and place in an ovenproof pan. Warm the husks over medium-high heat until they begin  to smoke. immediately transfer to the bottom of the oven. 
  5. In a different ovenproof pan, warm the remaining canola oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers and runs easily across the pan. Add the chicken breasts, skin side down, and cook until the skin turns a medium golden brown. Flip the chicken breasts over and transfer to the oven. Be sure to turn on your hood fan as the smoke from the corn husks will billow from the oven and potentially irritate your eyes. roast for 15 to 20 minutes, until the chicken is cooked completely. 
  6. Transfer the chicken to a plate to rest. return the pan to the stovetop over medium-high heat and add the chanterelle mushrooms. Once they begin to sizzle in the rendered chicken fat and juices, add the remaining rosemary and garlic. Cook for another minute and remove the pan from heat.

Plating

Place half the polenta in the center of a plate and garnish with mushroom-rosemary-garlic mixture. Top with 1 chicken breast and finish with a nest of silk. Repeat with the remaining polenta and chicken breast.


If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#whywastewednesday  #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Food Waste

Flotsam Filo Pie

#WhyWasteWednesday

#WhyWasteFood Wednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into delicious meals!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agriculture

Scraps: leftover meat or fish, leftover vegetables, leftover herb stems

Serves: 6

Prep: 40-45 minutes

Cook: 35-40 minutes

Vardagen: Baking Pan

Flotsam Filo Pie

Filo pie is known as börek in Turkish. It’s a quintessential dish you can eat almost every day, with there being countless varieties that offer different shapes and fillings that will satisfy every taste. This recipe is perfect to change and make the best use of leftover food and still enjoy a tasty, pleasant meal. Serve it with tomato cucumber salad in summer and with mixed salad greens in winter.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (150 g) leftover cooked protein such as fish, beef, lamb
  • 1 cup (90 g) leftover vegetable bits (raw or cooked); can be a mixture, finely chopped
  • 1 cup (200 g) leftover herb stems such as parsley, dill, cilantro, tarragon, chives, or chervil, finely chopped
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup (250 ml) milk
  • ½ cup (125 ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 package filo sheets
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp (9 g) nigella, sesame, caraway, or fennel seeds (optional)

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Mix all chopped ingredients, and depending on their original seasoning, add the salt and black pepper.
  3. Combine the milk and vegetable oil in a small bowl.
  4. Lay the filo sheets on the kitchen counter or a table and cover them with a slightly damp cloth to prevent them from drying and cracking.
  5. Use 2 filo sheets per pie, brushing them with the milk and oil mixture. Spread 2 to 3 tbsp (30 to 45 ml) of filling on 1 long edge, about 1-inch (2½ cm) thick. Roll the filled portion of the sheet loosely to the other end, and then swirl it to create a snail shape. Repeat until all of the filling has been used.
  6. Place them on the parchment-lined baking sheet.
  7. In a small bowl, beat the egg yolk with a ½ tsp (2 ml) of water. Brush the mixture onto each pie and sprinkle them with the seeds.
  8. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes, and enjoy!

Note

Nigella and sesame seeds pair with any filling, while caraway seeds pair well with a meat filling. Fennel seeds complement any fish or seafood filling.


If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#whywastewednesday  #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Nutrition

Vegan Walnut and Lentil Bolgnese

#MeatlessMondays

A store-bought jar of marinara is such a beautiful thing—it’s a shortcut that doesn’t short. Tomatoes are an ideal food for preserving and jarred marinara sauce is no exception—loaded with wonderful, slow cooked tomatoes and herbs, it’s a time-saver that really delivers. And in this case, it pairs up with lentils and walnuts to make a flavorful, rich vegan bolognese sauce that packs a huge nutritional punch, too! Healthy, hearty, vegan, rich, quick, easy, yummy—this walnut and lentil bolognese is an update on childhood favorite and a weeknight superstar.

“Boldly flavored, super hearty and incredibly easy, this vegan walnut and lentil bolognese recipe takes your plant-based eating goals to new heights.”

How to Buy and Store Walnuts

  • Buy them in sealed packaging. This will ensure that they’re as fresh as possible when you first get them.
  • Store them in the fridge or freezer. Once you’ve opened the package—or if you’ve bought walnuts from the bulk section—store the walnuts in the fridge. Or, if you want to store them for more than a month or so, store them in the freezer.

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup grated carrots
  • 1 cup minced celery
  • 1 cup finely minced yellow onion
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup raw walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1 cup dried brown or green lentils, rinsed
  • 4 cups vegetable stock or broth
  • 1 (24-ounce) jar marinara sauce
  • 1 cup red wine, such as Pinot Noir
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 pound cooked pappardelle or tagliatelle, for serving
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese or vegan Parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)

Cooking Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan or braiser over medium heat. Once the oil is glistening, add the carrots, celery, and onions and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more.
  2. Add the walnuts and lentils, stir to combine. Add the stock, marinara, wine, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, pepper, and salt. Stir to combine again, then increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens and the lentils are cooked to your liking, about 35 minutes.
  3. Transfer 2 cups of the sauce to a blender or food processor and blend until mostly smooth. Return the blended sauce back to the pan and stir to combine. Taste and add more salt as needed.
  4. Serve the bolognese over your favorite pasta, topped with Parmesan if desired.

Nutrition

  • Calories 320
  • Protein 10g
  • Carbohydrates 23g
  • Total Fat 19g
  • Dietary Fiber 7g
  • Cholesterol 0mg
  • Sodium 344mg
  • Total Sugars 7g

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #meatlessmondays, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #FoodRescue #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
MAc & Rinds from above on white marble tableFood Waste

Mac & Rinds

#WhyWasteFood Wednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into delicious meals!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agricultural

Scraps: Cheese Rinds, Stale Bread

Enjoying a selection of cheese is always a treat, but often leaves leftovers with no set purpose. With such offerings, let’s make a béchamel with all those ends. Rich and delicious, it’s sure to be enjoyed!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (500 ml) milk
  • 1 cup (225 g) cheese trimmings
  • ¼ cup (56 g) butter
  • ½ cup (65 g) flour
  • Salt to taste
  • 1¾ cups (250 g) macaroni
  • ½ cup (120 g) cheddar or mozzarella
  • ¼ cup (30 g) bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup (60 g) parmesan cheese, grated (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (205°C).
  2. Gently simmer the milk over medium heat with the cheese trimmings in a medium-sized pot for about 15 minutes. Stir frequently to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pot and burning. Strain and set aside.
  3. In a separate medium-sized pot, melt the butter and add the flour.
  4. Cook on low heat until the butter and flour comes together. Continue to cook for another 5 to 10 minutes until the raw flour taste disappears.
  5. Slowly drizzle the infused milk and cheese mixture into the flour, whisking continuously to prevent lumps from forming. Simmer gently until the mixture comes together and looks smooth. Season with salt.
  6. While the sauce is simmering, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the macaroni, reduce heat, and gently boil until al dente, according to package directions.
  7. Drain the macaroni, add to the sauce, and stir. Once the macaroni is well coated, transfer to an ovenproof dish.
  8. Evenly sprinkle with cheddar or mozzarella, followed by the bread crumbs and Parmesan, if using.
  9. Bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown.

Notes

I like to use Parmesan rinds, ends of brie, or any soft cheese. The stronger the cheese flavor, the stronger the sauce flavor. Avoid blue cheese and goat cheese if you don’t like the strong aroma.

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#whywastewednesday  #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

The scrapsbook. IKEA. (n.d.). Retrieved October 18, 2022.

READ MORE

Vegan Potato Soup

#WhyWasteWednesday

Thick, hearty and creamy Vegan Potato Soup. It’s really simple to make and very budget-friendly. You can enjoy it just as it is, or get crazy with toppings. I like to finish mine off with some crumbled tempeh bacon, crispy roasted potato chunks & a sprinkle of parsley for a pop of color!

Who’s up for a bowl of the best comforting, creamy, vegan potato soup?

If so you are in the right place! Soothing, Comforting, Full of veggies, Low in fat, and low budget, this soup is the perfect meal for any group!

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Serves: 6

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter , or olive oil, or to make oil-free omit and use a few tablespoons of water for sautéing instead
  • 2 medium onions , chopped finely
  • 2 ribs celery , diced
  • 2 large carrots , diced
  • 4 cloves garlic , chopped finely
  • 2 teaspoons salt , plus more to taste
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper , plus more to taste
  • 4 tablespoons all purpose flour , or gluten-free all purpose flour
  • 2 cups / 480 mls non dairy milk , cashew milk or soy milk are my milks of choice for savory recipes but any other unsweetened creamy non-dairy milk will work too
  • 2½ – 3 cups / 600 – 720 mls flavourful vegetable broth/stock , divided
  • 5 medium / about 700 g potatoes , cut into ½ inch cubes
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg , (optional)
  • 1 bay leaf

Cooking Instructions

  1. To a large saucepan, add the vegan butter/oil and warm over a medium heat before adding the onions, celery and carrots. Cook, stirring constantly, until the onions are just starting to get a little color, then add the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. 
  2. Add the salt and pepper, then the flour to the pan and stir it all around for about a minute to cook the raw flour taste out, then slowly add the soy milk, stirring as you go to work out any lumps. Then add the vegetable broth (reserving about ½ a cup / 120 mls) , chopped potatoes, nutmeg and the bay leaf. 
  3. Stir really well then let it simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are soft and just starting to break down. Add all of, or some of, the reserved ½ a cup / 120 mls of broth if you prefer a thinner consistency. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. 
  4. Serve as it is, or with toppings. See the post above for ideas.

Notes

It is normal for the soup to thicken as it cools. Soup reheats really well. Thin with more broth or water if it becomes a little thick. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1of 6 servings

Calories: 107kcal

Carbohydrates: 13gProtein: 4gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 1264mgPotassium: 269mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 4627IUVitamin C: 5mgCalcium: 125mgIron: 1mg


If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #meatlessmondays, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate#meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #FoodRescue #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Food Waste

No Waste Carrot Gnudi

#WhyWasteWednesday

#WhyWasteFood Wednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into delicious meals!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agricultural

A great way to reduce your food waste is trying as often as you can to cook meals using as many parts of the ingredients as possible. This Gnudi is a perfect example, making use of the entire carrot. Gnudi are gnocchi-like dumplings made with ricotta cheese instead of potato, with semolina. Pillow-y and lighter than gnocchi, this fresh Carrot Gnudi, as a delicious way to reduce your food waste. 

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch baby (Dutch) carrots, trimmed, leaves reserved
  • 500g carrots, cut into 2cm pieces
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • 60g unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 250g fresh ricotta
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup (40g) finely grated parmesan, plus extra to serve
  • 2 heaped tbsp plain flour, plus extra to dust
  • Finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon, plus lemon wedges to serve

Cooking Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Wash carrot leaves and set aside. Place chopped carrots and baby carrots on 2 baking trays and drizzle each tray with 2 tbsp oil. Season, then roast for 40-50 minutes until tender and lightly caramelized. Set the carrots aside to cool.
  2. Melt 20g butter in a frypan over medium-low heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook, stirring, for 5-6 minutes until soft. Transfer to a food processor with chopped carrots (don’t use baby carrots) and whiz until almost smooth.
  3. Transfer to a bowl with ricotta, egg, parmesan and flour, and stir to combine. Season. Using two dessert spoons, shape spoonful’s of mixture into ovals and place on a baking paper-lined baking tray dusted with extra flour. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil over high heat.
  4. In 3 batches, cook gnudi for 2-3 minutes until they float. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel.
  5. Melt remaining 40g butter in a pan over medium-high heat. Cook gnudi, turning gently, for 3-4 minutes until golden. Remove and keep warm.
  6. Add baby carrots, leaves and lemon juice and zest to the pan. Season. Cook, tossing, for 2-3 minutes until wilted and warmed through.
  7. Serve gnudi with baby carrots, leaves, extra parmesan and lemon wedges.

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#whywastewednesday #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Nutrition

Vegan Stuffed Jumbo Shells with Spinach

#WhyWasteWednesday

These Vegan Stuffed Jumbo Shells are filled with the most amazing spinach ricotta, covered with marinara sauce and baked to perfection! Comfort food that is perfect for feeding a crowd

Tips for Success

  • Don’t overcook the pasta. We don’t want mushy shells, and they will continue to cook a little in the oven. Rinse the cooked shells in cold water as soon as they are done.
  • Try using a piping bag to stuff the shells. It makes filling the shells a breeze! You can also use a small spoon.
  • Frozen or fresh spinach – I use whatever I have on hand, and either is perfectly fine.
  • Make ahead – You can assemble the shells in the casserole dish ahead of time, such as in preparation of a holiday meal. Cover and refrigerate until ready to bake. I would not let them sit longer than 8-10 hours before baking. Give them a few extra minutes to cook since they will be cold going in.

Ingredients

(1) 12-ounce package jumbo shells

(1) 26-ounce jar marinara sauce (about 3 cups)

Spinach Ricotta

2 cups raw cashews

(1) 14-ounce firm tofu, drained from package

1/2 cup nutritional yeast

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 1 large lemon)

1/4 cup water

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons dried basil

2 teaspoons dried oregano

1 teaspoon garlic powder

(1) 10-ounce package chopped frozen spinach, thawed, or 2-3 cups fresh

Cooking Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. 
  2. Boil the Shells: Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the jumbo shells. Cook for 8-10 minutes, until done. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside. Some will likely break, but you will only need about 3/4 of the package so that is okay.
  3. Make the Spinach Ricotta: Add the cashews to a food processor, and process until fine and crumbly. Now add the rest of the ricotta ingredients EXCEPT the spinach. Process until smooth and creamy, scraping the sides as needed. Now add the spinach, squeezing out excess water before adding. Pulse to combine.
  4. In a large casserole dish, evenly spread about 1 cup of the marinara sauce in the bottom.
  5. Stuff the Shells: Scoop about 2 tablespoons of the spinach ricotta into each shell and place open side up into the baking dish. Repeat until all the filling is used up. I love using a piping bag and large tip for this, it makes filling a breeze!
  6. Spoon remaining marinara sauce on top of the stuffed shells, and place in the oven. Cook, uncovered, for 25 minutes. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Nutrition

serving: 1serving, calories: 425kcal, carbohydrates: 51g, protein: 20g, fat: 18g, saturated fat: 3g, sodium: 954mg, potassium: 815mg, fiber: 6g, sugar: 8g, vitamin a: 4563iu, vitamin c: 12mg, calcium: 154mg, iron: 5mg


If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #meatlessmondays, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #FoodRescue #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

READ MORE
Food Waste

Leftover Chicken, Tostada Cups

#WhyWasteFoodWednesday

Wondering what to do with leftover chicken?

A dinner classic, chicken is a staple of any house, and often leaves extra for the rest of the week. Finding new ways to liven them up can become a challenge.  Follow this recipe to make tonight’s leftovers better than yesterday’s family favorite. 

Ingredients

  • 12 corn tortillas (6 inches), warmed
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1 can (16 ounces) refried beans
  • 1 cup shredded reduced-fat Mexican cheese blend
  • Optional toppings: Shredded lettuce, reduced-fat sour cream, chopped cilantro, diced avocado, sliced jalapeno, lime wedges, sliced ripe olives, sliced green onions, sliced radishes, and pico de gallo or additional salsa

Cooking Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°. Press warm tortillas into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray, pleating sides as needed. Spritz tortillas with additional cooking spray.
  2. Bake until lightly browned, 5-7 minutes. Toss chicken with salsa. Layer each cup with beans, chicken mixture and cheese.
  3. Bake until heated through, 9-11 minutes. Serve with toppings as desired.

Nutrition Facts

2 tostada cups: 338 calories, 11g fat (4g saturated fat), 52mg cholesterol, 629mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 6g fiber), 25g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 2 starch, 1 fat.


If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

Taste of Home. (2022, March 31). Chicken tostada cups. Taste of Home.

READ MORE
Food Waste

Great.Com Talks with Executive Director Diana Lara from Food Finders

Feeding Southern California Millions Of Pounds Of Salvaged Food

click image to listen

Danielle Riberio from Great.com interviewed Food Finders as part of their ‘Great.com Talks With…’ podcast. This series is an antidote to negative news stories that aims to shed light on organizations and experts whose work positively impacts the world.

Many think of California as a mecca for the rich, the glamorous, and the famous. But there’s another side to the Golden State. California experiences some of the most significant levels of wealth inequality in the USA. Diana Lara discussed the importance of redistributing food that would otherwise go to waste so that struggling families don’t have to worry about going hungry.

What Is Food Insecurity?

Food insecurity means not knowing where your next meal will come from. By some estimates, up to 15 percent of the people living in Orange County, California, live on or near the poverty line. For many families, paying for food means economizing on other essentials, like basic utilities or school equipment. 

A Food Rescue Organization

Food Finders Executive Director Diana Lara explained that a shocking 30 to 40 percent of manufactured food does not make it to our tables, and an even higher percentage is thrown away directly from our refrigerators. Food Finders’ mission is to provide food to those who need it most. Food Finders works with grocery stores, manufacturers, event centers, hotels, schools, and other organizations to rescue edible food and provide it to a network of 600 food donors (a food bank or food pantry).

Listen to the whole interview to find out about Food Finders’ Food For Kids Program, ensuring families don’t go hungry over the weekend. Food Finders also welcomes donations. 

Great.com is an organization that generates money for climate research. Why climate change? Because they believe that the climate crisis is the biggest threat facing humanity right now. How do they generate money? By moving revenue, they earn directly as an advertiser for the New Jersey online gambling industry. Why online gambling? This is a wealthy industry with endless opportunities for profit. They believe it would be better to take this money and put it towards a great cause — like climate research — instead of going to already wealthy casino owners. Find out more about their unique business model.

READ MORE
why waste food wednesday blog postFood Waste

Stop Wasting Food: Plan It Out

According to the FDA, an estimated 30% to 40% of the food supply is wasted in the United States. This is a problem for several reasons. First of all, it costs a lot of money—more than $400 billion in 2019, according to ReFed. In addition, all the water, energy, and labor used to produce this wasted food could have been reallocated for consumption instead of lost. That means that we could not only be saving water and the environment, but helping to feed food insecure people as well.

As a full-time Nutrition and Dietetics student and intern at Food Finders, nutrition and reducing hunger and food waste are essential to my life.  In my junior year at California State, Long Beach, I learned how many people in the United States go to bed hungry every night, so many of them are children, and my heart broke.  I knew then that my passion for nutrition and eating for wellness was not all I would devote my time to.

Planning Reduce Food Waste

I have found out that most people are not aware of how throwing away food is changing our planet. Since working with Food Finders, A food rescue organization in Southern California, I have learned that reducing the amount of food that goes into landfills would help address climate change. I know that sounds crazy, but it is true! Food waste that decomposes in landfills releases methane—a greenhouse gas nearly 30 times as potent as carbon dioxide. And since 20% of U.S. methane emissions come from landfills, reducing food waste in landfills would help lessen methane emissions and improve our planet.

How can you help? PLAN.

Low-carb chicken enchiladas, black beans, and Spanish rice

Just by planning out meals each week, in most cases, I can prevent food waste in my home.  Having meals, fresh fruits, and vegetables ready for a busy week is a great feeling.  I know how life is. We get busy and forget what is in the refrigerator. Maybe they order pizza at work and your delicious leftovers go bad. It always made me feel bad to throw away a good meal but now that I know I am hurting planet earth too–well, we can all be better.

One of the ways I reduce my overall waste and save on my grocery bill is to plan out meals, cook them, and package them up for lunches and dinner throughout the week.

I just love the feeling of getting in my home, tired, hungry and opening up the fridge to a choice of delicious meals already prepped and ready to eat.

Avoiding Disaster: FREEZE ‘EM

It is super easy to forget fruits and veggies and when they go bad, it is fast! So I use the freezer to help me reduce food waste. I like to freeze most of my fruits for future use in smoothies, spreads, and salad dressings. I place the fruit in vacuum-sealed bags and label and dated them (you can also use zip lock bags but be sure to remove as much air as possible).

On those weeks when I have prepped and planned my meals and realize that I am not going to be able to eat them all I prefer to reach out to my neighbors. Most of them know I am nutrition student and now a #FoodWasteHero (who is mindful not to throw good food away) so they will usually take the meals off my hand.  Before I started working with Food Finders, I usually didn’t have a backup plan in case they couldn’t use them. Now I am a member of a social media group that is all about giving and receiving for free.  It is where I have witnessed the kindest of strangers cooking hot meals for group members in need and giving away perishables and non-perishable foods.  It makes my heart happy to see my community in action. 

Making A Plan

Start by writing out a grocery list with all the recipes you will cook this week. Not only will this save on your grocery bills, but it makes shopping faster. Next, have a prep day and cook everything you need, dividing portions into containers. Sometimes you can freeze meals, depending on what you are preparing for the week. Households throw away 43% of all the food that ends up in landfills in the United States. That is a horrible statistic and one that is very preventable with planning.

Get the whole family involved in the planning, prepping, and packaging. You might be surprised at how fun and easy it can be to #stopfoodwaste and help save the planet.

##

Kelly Alarcon is a full-time student and Intern at Food Finders, Inc.

READ MORE
Leftovers QuicheFood Waste

Managing Extra Leftovers

#WhyWasteFoodWednesday

We’ve all bought more than we have had a use for. Maybe we had different intentions of how we would use it, or the vegetables and packages of meat or dairy were just too large. No matter the cause, what can we do to make use of this excess? Avoid wasting food, save money, increase sustainability, and maximize convenience; there are many reasons to plan meals around the food on hand and make use of items you may otherwise have thrown out. There are many ‘go to’ lunches and dinners that are a perfect way to use this surplus. 

A great plan is to cook food today so it lasts longer for future meals. Wilting spinach today can be cooked and saved for meals up to three or four days longer than if left raw. 

Use the food you have on hand in a delicious and super easy Quiche recipe. Extend food life and avoid wasting food by using the vegetables, dairy, and meat you have in your home right now; true home cooking idea. This recipe helps you make a delicious, nutritious, and now sustainable, healthy quiche.


#WhyWasteFood Wednesday is a call to action to take those almost-in-the-trash food items and turn them into a delicious meal!

At least 1.3 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year around the world—in fields, during transport, in storage, at restaurants, and in our homes! If each individual made a call to action to stop their own food waste–the planet benefits, we have less hunger, and your own grocery bills will go down through the savings.

UN Food & Agricultural

Leftovers Quiche

Ingredients

  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yokes use whites to brush the pastry for golden brown color
  • 2 cup dairy or dairy substitute: cream, milk, sour cream, ricotta, creme fraiche, plain yogurt, cottage cheese use up what you have; 2 cups / 300 grams
  • 1 tsp salt to taste
  • ¼ tsp pepper and spice to taste
  • 1 cup cubed, cooked meat use up what you have; 1 cup / 150 grams
  • 1 ½ cups vegetables (uncooked or cooked) use what you have, or one package of frozen; 1.5 cups / 200-250 grams
  • ½ cup cheese use what you have; 0.5 cup / 75 grams
  • 1 sheet shop-bought pastry – puff pastry or pie crust or made a quick pastry from your pantry

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Directions

Prepare the Crust

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F / 180 C
  2. Line tart/pie dish with rolled out pastry (rolled out at 5 mm or thickness of a nickel thick)
  3. Put parchment paper over the dish and fill with ceramic baking beans/rice/lentils
  4. Bake for 5 minutes; remove from oven; remove parchment paper and baking beans/rice/lentils
  5. Brush pastry base, interior sides and top crust with egg white, OXO Good Grips from Amazon has excellent pastry brushes and more
  6. Bake again for 5 minutes until golden – your crust is now “Blind Baked” and ready to be filled

Make Filling

  1. Lightly beat eggs and egg yolks in a bowl
  2. Add dairy (cream; sour cream; ricotta; crème fraiche; plain yogurt; cottage cheese; milk) and salt, pepper, spices (to taste) and continue to beat until mixed together

Assemble the Quiche

  1. Place the cubed, cooked meat and vegetables inside the blind baked pastry crust
  2. Pour in the egg mixture
  3. Bake for 30-45 minutes until golden brown and fully set

Serve slices warm or cold. Keeps well refrigerated for up to 4 days.

Notes

Great Combinations Include:

  • ham and cheese
  • spinach, cauliflower or broccoli and cheese (cauliflower & broccoli and other tougher vegetables are best cooked first)
  • roasted vegetables
  • asparagus and salmon
  • roasted potatoes, cubed or sliced thinly
  • fresh tomato and cheese
  • mushroom and onion, with cubed steak/pork if you like

Be inspired to bake your own creative combinations from your favorite foods.  Perhaps taco meat and cheese.  Whatever you enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 1 slice

Sodium: 310 mg

Calcium: 16 mg

Vitamin A: 51 IU

Sugar: 1 g

Potassium: 9 mg 

Cholesterol: 25 mg

Calories: 16 kcal

Saturated Fat: 1 g

Fat: 1 g 

Protein: 1 g

Carbohydrates: 1 g

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #whywastewednesday, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger, help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

READ MORE
Meatless Monday Recipe-Cauliflower Food findersNutrition

Cauliflower is good for you and the planet!

Meatless Monday

Every other Monday, we’ll be spotlighting a #meatlessmonday recipe. Quick and nutritious, these recipes and guides are perfect for on-the-go meals; they are good for you and the planet. 

Tons of food is wasted every year. Good, nutritious food is thrown into the trash because it might not look right, wilted, or even if we just don’t know how to cook it! It’s estimated that approximately 20% of produce gets thrown out for cosmetic reasons–like weird shapes, odd colors, or blemishes on a peel you don’t even eat. That’s 1 in 5 fruits and vegetables getting tossed into landfill even though they’re just as nutritious and delicious to eat. Check out how to store Cauliflower so you don’t waste it (below)

https://savethefood.com/storage

Buffalo Cauliflower Kebabs

For this #meatlessmonday, we’re sharing a tangy, savory recipe for buffalo cauliflower kabobs. Kebobs are the best recipe to clean out the veggie drawer and prepare all your misc items in a delicious, family-pleasing way. Glaze the kebabs in zesty buffalo sauce, grill until the cauliflower is tender, then top with a drizzle of blue cheese and serve!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c. (1 stick) butter, melted 
  • 1/2 c. vinegary hot sauce
  • One head cauliflower, florets only
  • Four stalks celery, cut into 1 ½” pieces
  • One large yellow bell pepper, cut into 1 ½” pieces
  • One large orange bell pepper, cut into 1 ½” pieces
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Blue cheese dressing for serving

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together butter and hot sauce until combined. Add cauliflower, celery, and bell peppers, season with salt and pepper, then toss to coat.
  2. Preheat the grill to medium-high for 3 minutes, and soak skewers in a shallow pan filled with water for 10 minutes to prevent scorching. Thread the cauliflower, celery, and bell peppers onto the soaked skewers. Reserve the hot sauce left in the bowl.
  3. Transfer the kebabs to the grill and cook for 3 minutes, turning halfway. After the first 3 minutes, brush the skewers with the buffalo mixture. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes until the cauliflower is tender and slightly charred.
  4. Transfer kebabs to a platter, drizzle with blue cheese dressing, and serve.

Yield: 4

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes 

If you have a recipe you would like to share with us for #meatlessmondays, please email christian.bearden100@gmail.com.

If you would like to make an impact on reducing food waste and hunger help us grow our food rescue operations: Donate

#meatlessmonday #foodfindersinc  #foodrescue #stopfoodwaste #reducehunger #improvenutrition #helpfoodinsecurecommunities #HelpEndHunger #Volunteer #Charity #fightinghunger #rescuingfood #Donate #makeanimpact

Recipe Source:

Justin Sullivan , Assistant Food Editor. Justin Sullivan is the Assistant Food Editor for Delish. (2022, June 1). Grilled buffalo cauliflower kebabs will make your meatless Monday. Delish. Retrieved July 11, 2022.

READ MORE