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Nov 15, 2013

Clean Out the Fridge With These Delicious Dishes

You might not realize just how full your “empty” fridge and cabinets really are. With a few base ingredients, you can make a variety of delectable meals with just the components you already have on hand.

Got eggs? Get creative with your omelets! Fill them with any combination of sautéed veggies, diced or shredded leftover meats, and melted cheeses. Top with salsa, hot sauce, hollandaise, ketchup, even Alfredo sauce. Take your eggs a step further, and mix any of these ingredients with cooked angel hair noodles for a filling frittata.

Have a box of pasta on hand? You’re in luck. What doesn’t taste good with noodles? Any combination of chopped veggies (especially the ones you should have used earlier this week), meats, herbs and spices or even nuts make wonderful additions to a pasta dish. No sauce on hand? No problem! Make your own by roasting grape tomatoes (if they’re starting to shrivel in the fridge – that’s okay!), or toss with a little bit of butter or olive oil and grated cheese for a lighter coating. Looking for something the kids will love? This American Goulash is the ticket.

Want to cozy up by the fire tonight? Dump everything into a pot and wait for your soup to cook! Okay, so maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration … but not by much. We love this post at Hey, That Tastes Good! It shows how you can make a delicious soup out of almost anything by following a process rather than a recipe.

Too many condiments? Somehow, at the end of every summer, we end up with at least three bottles each of ketchup and mustard. Where do they come from? They don’t go bad quickly, but they do take up valuable fridge real estate. Use them quickly: ketchup makes great meatloaf, sloppy joes or BBQ sauce. Mustard makes a tangy marinade for chicken breasts or sauce for new potatoes.

Need to use stale bread? Make French toast! … Still a little too stale for that? No problem! Dice it into one-inch squares, roll it in some olive oil and bake in the oven for croutons, or throw it into the food processor for homemade bread crumbs. Both options are much tastier than the store-bought variety.

Phew! Inspired yet? If not, don’t worry – we’ve just scratched the surface. Consider stews, casseroles and pot pies, oh my! Looking for more specific recipes? Bon Appetit and Oprah.com feature lots.