According to the EPA, the average American household throws away 25 percent of the food they prepare. On a global scale, between 1.3 and 1.6 billion tons of food are estimated to be wasted each year. Most of this food ends up in landfills that are one of the leading sources of methane—a greenhouse gas. So long story short: Eat your leftovers and save the world (and your money). These recipes include an easy soup you can make on Sunday night and two other Leftover Makeover recipes you can enjoy later in the week.
Pumpkin Curry Soup
Makes 8 to 10 servings
$0.89 per serving
You never regret the soups you make—only the Pumpkin Curry Soup you don’t.
¼ cup olive oil
2 red onions, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups vegan chicken broth or vegetable broth (we recommend Better Than Bouillon)
1 cup coconut milk, from a carton, not a can
2 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree
3 tablespoons soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
2 tablespoons curry powder
1 teaspoon crushed black peppercorns, plus a little more to sprinkle over the top
2 teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
Bread, for serving
In your largest Dutch oven or stew pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until they are tender, then add the remaining ingredients and reduce the heat to maintain a simmer.
Cook the soup, stirring occasionally, until it begins to bubble, then remove it from the heat and use an immersion blender or food processor to puree the soup until creamy and smooth.
Serve hot, with bread and extra crushed pepper over the top.
Leftover Recipe: Pumpkin and Spinach Orzo
Makes 6 to 8 servings
$0.37 per serving
3 cups leftover Pumpkin Curry Soup (above)
1 1/3 cups orzo, uncooked
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
¼ cup coconut milk, from a carton, not a can
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 teaspoon soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
1 cup baby spinach leaves
Crushed black peppercorns or red pepper flakes, for sprinkling
In your largest Dutch oven or stew pot, use a large spoon to mix all the ingredients except spinach and pepper. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring, then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer. Simmer until the orzo is tender, then stir in the spinach.
Serve hot, with pinches of crushed pepper over the top.
Leftover Recipe: Savory Pumpkin Biscuits
Makes 8 to 10 servings
$0.15 per serving
2¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon sea salt
½ cup vegan margarine, cold, plus more for serving
1 cup leftover Pumpkin Curry Soup (above)
Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, garlic powder, and salt. Then, using a pastry blender, mix in the cold vegan margarine until the dough resembles pea-size pebbles. Mix in the soup using an electric handheld mixer fitted with bread hooks.
Once the dough is mixed, use floured hands to move the dough to a floured surface and carefully knead it into a large mound. Don’t handle the dough too much; it will melt the margarine and the biscuits won’t be as flaky.
Using a floured rolling pin, roll the dough out until it is a little less than 1 inch thick. Use a biscuit cutter or the top of a pint glass to cut out 10 to 12 biscuits. Place the cut biscuits on the lined cookie sheet.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
Serve warm with margarine.
Annie Shannon is the author of VegNews Magazine‘s Cookbook of the Year in 2013: Betty Goes Vegan and Mastering the Art of Vegan Cooking. Her work has appeared on The Today Show, Mtv, Oprah.com as well as in several publications such as The New York Times, Washington Post, Vegetarian Times and BUST magazine.
All photos by Annie Shannon