Forks in the Road: Food and Travel in Central PA - A Community Blog

Adrienne Wolter shares local restaurant reviews, day trips and cooking adventures

5 Things to Make with Leftover Rice

Written by Adrienne Wolter, Community Blogger | May 19, 2014 9:46 AM

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Photo by Lali Masriera

Last night, you cooked an amazing chicken and rice dish for dinner, using up all of your meat and vegetables in a delectable dish that was to die for. However, as it typically happens, you made more than enough rice. In fact, it's enough to feed a whole army. You're thinking, "how did I make so much rice? When I poured it in, it didn't look like a lot." So, maybe it's time to start measuring again...

Now that you've learned your lesson, you're still stuck staring at a refrigerator that looks very empty, all except for that daunting bowl of rice. You wouldn't dare to eat it plain. Sure, it tastes fine, but it's not exciting. You're also too busy to run to the store to pick up some more groceries. So, what do you do?

Stop staring at that bowl of rice and do something about it. Don't waste it by tossing in the trash and don't let it get too hard that it is inedible. Put your leftovers to good use and try one of these fun rice recipes on for size.

1. Rice Pancakes

Breakfast is here and there is not a piece of toast or cereal in sight, just that large bowl of rice sitting in the refrigerator. Craving for something to fill you up and give you energy? Try this excellent Rice Pancakes recipe. If you cannot have eggs or do not have any around, use applesauce instead. This recipe makes a light and fluffy batter, the perfect foundation for any topping you wish. Choose strawberries, syrup, whipped cream, blueberries or bananas. Serve it up and enjoy!

2. Rice and Lentil Salad

Summer is just around the corner and this Rice and Lentil Salad is such a great dish to bring to a picnic or cookout. With fresh ingredients, herbs and spices, your side dish will be the hit of the summertime block party. Top off your creation by drizzling lime zest and limes all over for that fresh pop of flavor. If you just love a healthy, filling lunch, take this salad to work. The lentils will give you some great protein and give you energy to greet the day.

3. Fried Rice

So, maybe your refrigerator has a little bit of everything in it, but not enough to make a full meal out of one thing. Try cooking up some Fried Rice for a wonderfully known international dish. Get creative and add corn, carrots and even small chucks of protein to give you nutrients and energy. With a 12-minute prep time, you can't go wrong with this flavorful masterpiece. It sometimes pays to include "everything but the kitchen sink."

4. Chickpea-Brown Rice Veggie Burger

Want a meal that is an excellent source of protein and fiber-rich ingredients? The Chickpea-Brown Rice Veggie Burger is the perfect fix. If you use your leftover brown rice in this recipe, you will be able to enjoy a dish that has a serving of whole grain, great for any balanced diet. Don't forget to include some of your favorite vegetables into the mix.

5. Rice Pudding

Maybe your kitchen isn't as well-stocked as you had hoped. As you pull on your Cliffside knobs, you begin to realize how dire your situation becomes. You really need to go to the grocery store. However, fear not, because this healthy Rice Pudding recipe can be made with some of the most common ingredients in your pantry. Using just milk, vanilla, cinnamon and sugar, you will experience the comforts of home in every bite.

Be creative in the kitchen and waste nothing. What starts as a simple, somewhat bland bowl of cold, rice, you can completely transform it into something you'll crave for meals to come. With these delicious leftovers, you just hope you make too much rice the next time you cook so you have an excuse to use your extra rice.

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