Ways to enjoy the leftover ham after your family feast

Easter Ham Leftover Magic

by Kathryn Tyler

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My family used to eat turkey for almost every holiday. Then, about two years ago, ham was on sale, and I announced we would be having ham for Easter dinner. While we enjoyed the feast night equally well with ham as with turkey, we enjoyed the days "after" the holiday much more when we had ham.

It was then that I realized ham is more versatile than turkey. For us, leftover turkey, turkey sandwiches, turkey soup, and turkey enchiladas got old pretty quickly. In fact, I'd been known to (gasp!) throw turkey out after a few days (or feed it to the dog) because we were just sick of eating it. When we have ham, this doesn't happen with our leftover ham because we find so many ways to use it.

If you have a lot of leftover ham this Easter, consider making:

  1. Ham and bean soup - Use the ham bone and some leftover ham to make a hearty soup. I like to use Ham Been's 15 Bean Soup Mix (about $2). Soak the beans overnight, beginning on Easter, so that they are ready to use on Easter Monday.
  2. Ham and eggs - Not just for Dr. Seuss anymore, kids love breakfast for dinner. Eggs are one of the cheapest sources of protein available (aside from tuna fish). Pair this dish with some toast and juice or milk, and you've got a nutritious, quick, and inexpensive dinner.
  3. Fried rice with ham - This is a great way to use up leftover white rice. Throw it in a wok with some butter, chopped carrots, sauteed onions, and sesame oil (at the end for flavor, not for cooking). Delicious!
  4. Ham salad - An unemployed single friend of ours came for a ham dinner one night. I sent her home with some of the leftover ham, and she made this dish. She said it lasted for days!
  5. Homemade pizza with ham topping - Use ham instead of pepperoni. It tastes better, is cheaper, and has less fat and fewer preservatives.
  6. Fried potatoes and ham - I like to mix the fried potatoes with onions and pieces of ham, but you can serve the ham on the side, too. Sprinkle with a little cheddar cheese for a "skillet" type of meal.
  7. Ham sandwiches - This old standby is great for lunch. No more expensive lunchmeat!
  8. And, of course, you can just eat it leftover with the same dishes you had on Easter.

The next time you're planning a big holiday meal, consider not only what you'll eat that night, but also how you'll use the leftovers. It may make a difference in your original menu!

Kathryn Tyler is a freelance writer, homeschooling mom, co-author of Guerrilla Saving: Secrets of Keeping Profits in Your Home-Based Business (John Wiley, 2000), and the author of the eBook Convince Your Husband to Homeschool: A Five Step Strategy available from The Old Schoolhouse Store. Visit her website here.

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