Okay so I live alone and find that cooking for one can be challenging. I do cook and freeze but I only have so much freezer room and even then I get tired of rotating through the same foods. If that makes sense.
When I cut recipes in half, I end up with ingredients to use up, since you can't actually buy half of a can of this or half of a eggplant. So I thought that maybe some of the creative cooks around here could help me figure out ways to recycle foods so I'm not eating the same tastes all the time.
This week I want to make something with spaghetti sauce, but I don't know what to do with the rest of it, other than freeze it. I had spaghetti and meat balls last week, so that's not on the top of my list. I know I'll have about 3 cups of sauce left.
So my question is:
What are 5 things you can do with spaghetti sauce?
Do you have any favorite recipes or things you cook using spaghetti sauce?
What about 5 things you can do with cabbage? I've been eating it boiled for a week and while I like it, I need a different taste.
They dont have to be official recipes just ideas using it in a different way. I know there has to be simple ideas out there that are just escaping my mind right now.
As a side note, I am working on eating better (losing weight), so Im looking more for low calorie ideas, rather than those wonderful, rich, heavy calorie meals.
My favorite thing to do with spaghetti sauce is make "stuffed shells" :] here's my recipe, it's for a big size but it would be easy to cut in half I think:
You need: 12 oz. Jumbo Shells (Cook as Directed)
1 Pound of Grated Mozzarella Cheese (save 3/4 cup for topping)
3 cups small curd cottage cheese
2 eggs beaten
2 tablespoons of Parsley Flakes
½ cup grated Parmesan Cheese
Salt & Pepper (to taste)
Combine cheese mix in large bowl saving one ¾ cup of mozzarella cheese. Stuff cooked shells with cheese mix and place them in a large casserole dish. Cover shells with your favorite Tomato or Meat sauce.
Bake @ 425 degrees, uncovered for 20 minutes. Top with mozzarella cheese and bake for 10 minutes.
Let stand for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
stuffed bell peppers, topped with spag. sauce
(I use ground turkey breast and cut the pepper in half from top to bottom, 1 half w/ turkey breast and some rice and sauce is a little over 100 calories)
turkey sausage w/ peppers and onions and some spag. sauce MMMMM...if you have the extra calorie alotment, add a hoagie bun (I love bread) or some pasta to stretch the meat
OOHH, here's one for ya (utilizing cabbaga AND spag. sauce) stuffed cabbage......I'm too lazy to roll the meat in the cabbage leaves so i just used ground turkey again (or even the meat replacement, tastes just like ground beef and very little calories) add a little rice and some shredded cabbage, top with spag. sauce and you get a cabbage roll casserolle, tastes like cabbage rolls all cut up for you.
chicken parmesian, YUM (you don't even HAVE to bread the chicken either if you want to save the calories)
my kids also like sloppy joes made w/ spaghetti sauce instead of the manwich sauce (they're weirdos).....they call them "mini meatball sandwiches"because the ground beef looks like really tiny little balls of meat
Oh and with cabbage what about making some cole slaw, you can make it with a viniagrette or use a low calorie mayo
another favorite use for cabbage in our house is to make veggie egg rolls! Shred a mixture of veggies (we even add brocoli stems shredded up) and add some soy sauce, oyster sauce, whatever chinese sauce you have.......the egg roll wrappers are less than 100 calories themselves too! So they're very low in calories and there is no fat. Bake them at a high temp. with a spritz of non stick cooking spray and there is no need to fry them!
hope that gives you some ideas!
There is a fantastic recipe on the minute rice box
its super yummy!
1. I would have mentioned stuffed shells or lasagna, too.
2. Add sauteed chicken tenders, mushrooms, onions, peppers and call it chicken cacciatore.
3. Spoon it over a mild white fish (like cod) or shrimp and bake, wrapped in foil.
4. Eggplant or turkey cutlet parmagiana. (You'll use up the rest of that eggplant, too)
5. Use some to cook veggies such as green beans and onions, zucchini or summer squash; just simmer the veggies, fresh or frozen, in a little of the sauce instead of water. The cabbage might work in it, too.
oh that reminds me.........I throw frozen chicken breasts, mushrooms, sliced onions, even bell peppers into the crock pot, top w/ spag. sauce and OH MAN is that good stuff!!! I guess it is a chicken cacciatore....I just kinda threw in stuff one day and it's one of my family's favorites now!
If you use chicken breasts on the bone still it's VERY tasty!
Jae, the recipe sounds good, unfortunetly I'm trying to avoid items that are high calorie, and cheese is one of those things.
KH, see I wouldn't have thought about the stuffed peppers. My mom use to make some all the time, but we just used a can of tomato sauce over the tops of them. My mom also makes cabbage rolls when my uncle's garden produces cabbage. And she's so nice she makes some for everyone. But I love the idea about the cabbage roll casserole, especially since all my cabbage is roughly chopped now.
I think I'm going to have to go out and buy some more turkey meat this week. I didn't buy any the other night when I was at the store because I need to straighten up my freezer first.
Foxy, thank you for that recipe.
Elcee, I like the chicken cacciatore idea. I do have all of those things on hand, just have to thaw me a chicken breasts (or use the pre-cooked chicken breast meat I have in the fridge).
Thank you everyone! And please if anyone else has any more ideas keep them coming. Or if you find yourself in the same situation that I am, ask away.
So what are your ideas for cauliflower? I have some already cut up but I've just been steaming it when I cook it.
If you don't like coleslaw, or if you're looking for something a little different, try this variation: Mix the shredded cabbage, carrots, etc. with cashews and poppyseed dressing (my favorite brand is Brianna's, but I've tried Kraft and it works, too).
As for the spaghetti sauce, I love the previous ideas...in fact, I'm now craving cabbage rolls. They're really good for you, too. Depending on what your spaghetti sauce tastes like, you might be able to turn it into pizza sauce -- and if you make it thin crust and control your toppings, pizza isn't too bad for you either.
I like coleslaw and have a yummy recipe for it that isn't mayo/yogurt based. My cabbage is currently roughly chopped chunks since I separated it out into single serving portions last week.
I like to wrap chicken breasts in a couple of slices of bacon each and bake in a tomato sauce. It's really delicious served with rice and veggies or salad. The chicken stays really moist and juicy and the bacon gives a nice flavour.
you mentioned two of my favorite ingredients. I cut up eggplant, onion, green peppers, tomatoes and saute them then add spa sauce over it. You can get more creative with the veggies if you like.
and caulifower!! You know i love carbs.. but dont do the potatoes... I have found that you can make a version of mashed potatoes using califlower. I boil it, drain really well. then add a little butter and mash just like potatoes. It tastes great.
i only make slaw with cabbage.
my favorite meal with cabbage, you could probably use your pasta sauce instead of the tomato soup!
1 pound ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1 medium head cabbage, shredded
1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed tomato soup
1 3/4 cups water
salt and pepper to taste
1.In a large pot over medium high heat, combine ground beef and onion. Saute for 10 minutes, until beef is browned and onion is tender.
2.Add the cabbage, soup, water and salt and pepper to taste. Mix together well and reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, until cabbage is at desired tenderness.
with cabbage, you can put it through stir frys and such, for a bit of "crunch" =) also as many people have mentioned, you could do a coleslaw, i know you are watching your weight, so what about just mixing it into a normal salad? thats the great thing about salald.. you can pretty much throw anything in a bowl and call it a salad. haha.
now for the spag. sauce. my all time fav. recipe is vegetable tortialla lasgne!
its very basic, and you can use anythign really,.. flexible.lol
so pretty much what you want to do is orast a whole heap of vegies cut into chunks, i like to use butternut pumpkin, eggplant, zucchini.. whatever in my fridge.. if you cant roast it.. just cook it however it need to be cooked. When you are roasting, i like to add lots of flavour using garlic and herbs and spices... yuip.. im big on strong flavours.. again you can do what you want tho. =) then get your cooked vegies, add a can of beans (optional..kidney are my fav tho.=)) and stir in yoru spag. sauce.
in a baking dish, but a layer of tortillas down (or flat bread.. whatever you like!.. there are alot of low cal flat breads around.. you just have to hunt themm some like to trick you..lol) put a layer of your vegie sauce in.. then i know you say no cheese.. so you dont need to but.. a little wont harm you, put a small spinkling of grated cheese on top of that.. or parmesen.. again.. its felxible..whatever you have handy. =).. continue to layer in this fashion as you would a traditional lasgne, for the final layer, put a small amount of sauce, with some cheese. Pop into the oven until the tortilla is golden borwn and the cheese is metleted. =)
so so so good. =) and great way to use up all the little leftovers lying around.. it should really be called "leftover lasagne" hey... oh well..
If you haven't tried it yet, try oven-roasted cauliflower. It's super easy--just cut the cauliflower into bite-sized pieces and toss in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil and some seasonings (such as minced garlic, red pepper flakes, freshly ground pepper) and then dump into a shallow baking pan and roast covered at 375 for about 20 minutes, then take off the cover, stir, and give it another 10-15 more minutes, until soft and yummy. (Depending on the size of the pieces, it may take a little longer.)
I always put soy sauce on my cabbage..lol..a few veggies perhaps some bean spouts and I would think it would make a great stir fry.
I love some cabbage rolls and that sounds delish.
You can get low cal bread and make sloppy joes with that or the whole wheat buns.
I have some of the same issues you have. During the week I live alone and also have small freezer space. I often cook for my dad at his house (he's 80) and he doesn't really like "healthy" food but he'll go along with it a few times.
I'll tell you one of my fave meals (and he loves it also). Take a chicken breast put in crock with salsa. Shred the breast, take out bones, layer over lettuce, sprinkle of cheese (can use lowfat), tomatoes, more salsa and.....no one believes me when I tell them this that it's good on Mexican food, esp with salsa but I buy cottage cheese and cream it with an imersion blender until smooth as sour cream. I put it on everything and it's really good. I put it on cabbage rolls too. I mix dill in it and put it on salmon. Take a can of tomatoes, heat it up and put a big dolop in it and it's like a rich cream of tomato soup...
That's all I can think of right now.
I use leftover sauce in and on my meatloaf. You can substitute ground turkey for the ground beef to lighten the calorie content. Now I'm hungry!
oh tex.. i forgot to mention that when i make my slaw i make my own dressing.
equal (sugar substitute to kill the carbs)
sorry I dont measure it out. after so many years i just make it from mental/eye measuring. I also make this as a dressing for salads and veggie dip.
I just wanted to add since I saw several people mentioning lasagna is that you can use egg roll wrappers instead of lasagna noodles.........weight for weight they have the same calories and all, but since the egg roll wrappers are so thin, you wind up with MUCH less overall calories in your piece of lasagna because 1 lasagna noodle is equal to about 4 egg roll wrappers, just thought I'd mention that.
Also, something else my kids love using egg roll wrappers is to make pizza rolls. If you use low fat mozzarella, a little spag. sauce and I chop up 3 slices of pepperoni (to watch the calories, but you get the pepperoni flavor all through it) and roll one up, doing weight watchers, 1 pizza roll is only 2 points! REally nice when you need a treat and want something that feels like junk food, and tastes like junk food but isn't any worse for you than one of those 100 calorie bagged snacks.
Thank you everyone! This is what I am looking for!
Oh and I'm not against a little cheese here and there, but when you are trying to keep your meals down to 300-400 calories the calories in cheese really adds up, so I try to use it in smaller amount. Apparently all those really yummy things like that add up quickly on the calorie count.
I grew up cooking for 5-6 people, and it was mostly things my mom taught me that didn't really have a written recipe. When I moved out I found it hard to cook for just one. And for a while I'd cook the things I was taught, and freeze it. Problem with that is when I started watching what I ate, alot of those things were on the higher calorie side.
I enjoy cooking and don't have a probelm throwing things together, but I find myself getting in to a rut where I tend to cook the same things over and over, and while I know there has to be other combinations out there, I fall back on the familar.
I love the toss a little of this and that in a pan kind of 'recipes'. Ya'll are great!
Tesso, the dressing I have been using on cole slaw is vinager, oil, dyjon mustard and salt and pepper. I made it last year for a couple of family celebrations and almost everyone loved it over the creamy white dressings. It'd be good on just plain salads as well.
KH, does your family have a thing for eggroll wrappers? Hehe. I love it though, because if I bought some I'd have to have serveral uses for them to use them up.
I guess we must LOL never realized it until I started typing these ideas out to you LOL
See and if you asked me about egg roll wrappers I would have said, take some cheese cake, slice it up, wrap it int he egg roll wrapper and fry it. Place your now fried cheese cake on some grilled pineapple and place a scoop of ice cream beside it. Can we say yummy? Or course only the pineapple would be healthy there.
Also at Carino's Italian resturaunt, I've about decided their Italian nachos are the egg roll wrappers fried. They call them "crispy pasta chips". They are good though!
My nephew would probably love if I invited him over for dinner and I used them. And I do know you can freeze them, so I think I'll have to pick some of them up next trip to the store.
What I love about your ideas for using them is that they are all different. I wouldn't have gotten past the egg roll usage and would have gotten tired of making egg rolls.
When you use them for lasagna, do you need to cook them anyway before placing them in the pan? I think this sounds like an interesting idea, especially since I could use the wrappers for other things. How many things can you use lasgana noodles for, ya know?
nope, I put them in there right out of the package!
OOH...........pierogie casserole.......layer lasagna noodles/egg roll wrappers (for you fanatics out there like me lol) with mashed potatoes, cheddar cheese, and crumbled up bacon pieces.......alternating layers........serve w/ sour cream......YUMMMMMM
Okay so you are talking to a polish girl here, well a part of me anyway. My family actually makes peirgoies in Dec for Christmas Eve. Which reminds me, I have some sitting in my mom's freezer waiting for me. But would you believe that I have never had a potato one? My grandpa didn't like them so he never made them. We do pork, saurkraut and cheese ones.
But I like your idea! Maybe you need to write a blog, 101 uses for egg rolle wrappers. HeHe.
lol......it's funny because I never knew that I had SO MANY uses for them..........see, I did weight watchers a couple years back and I just could NOT let go of the pasta! I love pasta! So I wound up trying to find substitutes and tried everything I could get my hands on that would allow me to still have pasta tasting stuff! When it came to lasagna I was stumped....I tried using thinly sliced zuccini, squash, eggplants, etc. but it just didn't cut it for me. Then one day I was making egg rolls and thought......these things are like sheets of fresh pasta!!! DING the light went off. Then I tried to figure out other things to use them for (my family LOVES egg rolls) so that was a no brainer.....but then my DD saw something in her egg roll one day (some random veggie) and whatever it looked like to her, grossed her out so she won't touch them anymore lol.........so I started making them with pizza stuff in them for her, and they're DELICIOUS!
I've also by the way stuffed them with taco meat/cheese....sooo good.
You are definetely inventive! Keep thinking I bet you can give us a list of ten things to do with them. hehe.
I just want to thank everyone again for their ideas. I made stuffed bell peppers Monday and had the sausage with pepper and onion last night. Mmmm, yummy!
I did buy some egg roll wrappers that I'm going to play around with. Can't wait! I opened a jar of alfredo when my nephew was over this weekend so I think I'm going to make a white lasagna using it and the egg roll wrappers.
Hear is another one for ya'll. I bought some sun dried tomatoes for a dip but never ended up making it, so now I still have the tomatoes. Ideas for those??
I didn't see this mentioned, but you can make a cauliflower mash. I steam cauliflower and use an immersion blender. I normally add milk, part-skim ricotta, and some salt and pepper in it. Very tasty and healthy alternative to mashed potatoes.
but I buy cottage cheese and cream it with an imersion blender until smooth as sour cream. I put it on everything and it's really good. I put it on cabbage rolls too. I mix dill in it and put it on salmon. Take a can of tomatoes, heat it up and put a big dolop in it and it's like a rich cream of tomato soup...
What a great idea...I can't wait to try this, thanks!
I love cabbage and brussel sprouts. I like to cut the cabbage in thick shreds and pan fry in a little olive oil. just till it gets brown. I then drizzle a little balsalmic vinegar on it.
Very healthy , but satisfies my craving for something fried.
I also use spaghetti sauce for cabbage rolls and stuffed peppers. It could be used for a veggie lasagna too.
A healthy lowfat pizza on a ready made crust. top with lo-fat mozzarella , or no cheese at all, lots of veggies and pop it in the oven.
Grilled skinless bonelss chicken breast seasoned with a little olive oil, garlic, & italian seasoning over brown rice and topped with spaghetti sauce.
Layer some pan grilled eggplant steaks with lowfat ricotta chese and spaghetti sauce for a low cal eggplant parm.
Mix a little in with ground beef or turkey with some diced onion , mushrooms, green peppers, and shape into a meatloaf, top with more sauce and bake.
A quickie is to mix some into some cheeseburger macaroni hamburger helper, instant Goulash. you can use ground turkey and I also add diced onin and green peppers.
Add a can of Cannellini beans to about 1 cup sauce for a kind of italian chilli, serve with Chive rissotto cakes.
Use it to make Adult sloppy Joe's serve on grilled sourdough.
I will think of more and post later.
Spaghetti sauce moussaka
3 cups leftover spaghetti sauce
1 chinese eggplant, sliced into 1/8″ rounds
1 medium zucchini, sliced into 1/8″ rounds
8 white muchrooms, sliced thinly
1 roma tomato, sliced very thinly
3T olive oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper
Put 1T of olive oil into the bottom of a baking dish and smear to cover the bottom. Layer half of the eggplant and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Layer half the zucchini and then all the mushrooms. Layer all of the tomato. Cover with all of the spaghetti sauce. Layer the rest of the eggplant and zucchini, adding more salt and pepper. Mix the garlic, parsley and 2T of olive oil. Spread on top of the casserole. Bake uncovered at 350F for about 45 minutes or until the vegetables are soft. If it starts getting too brown on top, cover with foil until done.