If you are anything like me, you have leftovers. Often. I love to make an extra big pot of soup, double a lasagne, and make extra servings of chicken almost any time I cook.
By making larger batches, I end up saving money and lots of time in the kitchen. I cannot count how many times we’ve eaten leftovers, grateful to not have to cook from scratch or eat out at the end of a long day.
Really, I do love leftovers. My husband doesn’t think so, though. What he doesn’t realize is that my large family of 6 rarely had enough leftovers for us to reheat them later in the week, so I never learned how to reheat many things in a way that made them palatable. Rubbery noodles, soggy breading, and hard rolls are not appealing.
I also don’t like to eat the same dish for more than 2-3 nights in a row. That’s just a personal preference…unless we are having cake for dinner. 😉
Now that I’ve been married to the champion of leftovers, Kent, for over a decade, I’ve learned a few things from him. I think you’ll find these tips from Kent useful, too!
Breaded chicken strips, fried chicken, etc: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On top of a cookie sheet, place a cooling rack (one that is a grid works best.) Place breaded food on top, and pop in oven until it is hot, about 10-15 minutes.
Noodles/pasta without sauce: Boil water. Turn off water. Add leftover pasta for 1-2 minutes. This one is like magic, for real. No more rubbery and dry noodles from the microwave!
Soups are best reheated in a pot on the stove with a bit of water added to prevent scorching. Stir often. You can also do this in the microwave, but stir often. I prefer using a pot on the stove because I’m usually reheating enough for more than one person and I don’t have to handle a scalding hot bowl out of the microwave.
Rice: Add about 1 tablespoon of water to every 2 cups of rice. Cover with a microwave safe lid and microwave on high in 20-30 second increments; stir during the pauses.
Burritos: If you have a pre-made leftover burrito, heat in the microwave on high until it is heated through. Then, sear it in a pan so that it doesn’t have a gummy tortilla on the outside. Brilliant.
Hopefully some of these tips will help you through your reheating woes. Try some of these out and let me know what you think!
Do you have any questions about reheating certain foods? Leave me a question and I’ll get the answer for you from the king of leftovers!