Planning your Thanksgiving dinner? Here are some tips for reducing the amount of wasted food.
- Plan your menu. If you know what you’re cooking or who’s bringing what tater tot casserole, you won’t have three bowls of mashed potatoes on the table — though that wouldn't be the worst thing.
- Get a head count. This is step two of menu-planning. If there are only eight guests coming, cooking for 20 is 1) stressful and 2) unnecessary. Knowing the length of your guest list will help you decide what size turkey to buy.
- Think about portions. Whether you are cooking for 2 or 20, Love Food Hate Waste’s portion calculator can help you make just the right amount.
- Open your refrigerator — and pantry — first, so you don't buy what you already have.
- Make a shopping list with only the food you need on it.
- Keep the giblets and other bits. Don't throw away the turkey "extras". They will make the best-tasting gravy. You can also use the pile of vegetable trimmings to make stock for soup.
- Let the leftovers leave. Encourage your guests to bring containers so that they can take home some of the leftovers.
- Use the rest of the leftovers. Even if everyone takes home some leftovers, you’ll probably still have something to use up. Search the web for 'thanksgiving leftover recipes' for some creative ideas.
- Use your freezer. Thanksgiving leftovers will taste especially good in January. Just be sure to store properly and put them in the freezer right away.