When I started eating a plant-based diet over 15 years ago, this cookbook became my Bible. I had no clue what I was doing in the kitchen to begin with and needed all the help I could get!
As you can probably tell from the picture, this cookbook is well-loved and well-used. I think I have a bookmark on nearly every page. The Clueless Vegetarian is available here on Amazon* if you are looking for some easy veggie friendly recipes!
One unexpected thing I learned from this cookbook was how to get some extra life out of my veggie scraps.
I describe myself as a lazy cook. I like simple, quick, from-scratch food, but I don’t like wasting food, so I like stretching things and getting creative where I can to make sure everything is used up.
Here is how to get some extra life out of your vegetables:
What to do
Any time you have vegetable scraps, put them into a bag in the freezer.
Keep adding to it until you are ready to make a pot of broth.
What to add
This list is long: carrot peels, celery leaves, insides of your bell peppers (not the seeds), wilted veggies you’re just not wanting to eat…basically anything! Anything, minus the obvious unhealthy bits such as green potato skins or eyes.
Once you are ready to make a pot of soup broth or when your bag is full, you have two options.
1. You can add these vegetables to a soup broth recipe you’re already planning, such as this simple recipe from The Spruce Eats.
2. You can simply boil the frozen veggies and have an unseasoned broth.
I usually do the second option as my goal is to get the nutrients out of these unappealing veggie scraps and into a usable form.
Once I have boiled the vegetables, I strain the liquid out and freeze it in smaller portions. I use the broth for making soups, making rice, or any recipe that might call for broth. It’s important to keep in mind if you don’t season this at the beginning, you’ll need to adjust for taste in the recipe you are making.
This “recipe” is a great way to minimize food waste and save money by extending your grocery budget, which are both important parts of a sustainable lifestyle.
How do you use up your vegetable scraps? Do you have any tips or tricks on using up food items others might throw into the compost?
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