We throw away an obscene amount of perfectly good leftovers every year in the UK and I’m on a mission to do my bit to change that and I want you to help.

Instead of automatically scraping leftovers into the food recycling after meal times we should all try to think about how we can turn leftovers into another meal. The great part is that it’s actually a lot easier than you would think.

So, here are a couple of super easy, super tasty meals you can make for you and your family from common leftovers you’ll likely have from meal times. Try them this week and let me know how you get on.

Leftovers idea 1: Cajun chicken and crispy slaw

Chicken in the freezer that you want to use up to make space? Try this Cajun chicken recipe and if you don’t have the ingredients for the crispy slaw then go for mixed roasted veggies and use up what you have.

Ingredients (serves 1)

140g lean chicken breast

90ml low fat natural yoghurt

¼ lemon

½ carrot

¼ red cabbage

1.5 tomatoes

¼ cucumber

6 sprigs fresh parsley

2 tsp Cajun spice

1 tsp wholegrain mustard

1 tsp paprika


Cut the chicken breast into thin slices and toss with a little oil.

Mix the paprika and Cajun spice and coat the chicken in the spice mixture.

Place the chicken slices onto a hot grill pan, or frying pan and grill for 3-4 minutes each side until fully cooked.

Meanwhile make the coleslaw by mixing the yoghurt and mustard together.

Chop the onion, carrot, cucumber, tomato and red cabbage into very small chunks or thin slices and mix with the yoghurt mixture and chopped parsley.

Serve the chicken with the coleslaw and a wedge of lemon to squeeze over if desired.

Homemade spinach pesto

Leftovers idea 2: Basil and spinach pesto


2 handfuls spinach leaves

55g/2oz pine nuts, toasted

Small bunch fresh basil leaves

5 tbsp olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Blend all of the pesto ingredients in a food processor to a paste. Add more olive oil as necessary to loosen the mixture.

To serve, place in a bowl with a plate of crudites on the side.