With Easter right around the corner, I’m betting menus are being planned, guest lists are shaping up nicely, and those beautiful pastels are making their debut in home decor and outfits. As with any holiday, there always seems to be gobs of leftovers languishing in Tupperware oblivion until they inevitably end up in the trash. 

Not this year, peeps.

I’m hoping to provide the inspiration you need to transform your Easter feast remnants into scrumptious creations fit for weekday lunches and weeknight meals. Why not turn leftover ham into hearty breakfast casseroles and give last night’s lamb a flavorful makeover in stir-fries and tacos? There is no reason for those treasures to wither away in your fridge or freezer. You’ll not only save food and stretch dollars, you’ll get to turn up the creativity in your kitchen. 

Ham and Cheese Breakfast Casserole 
Use leftover ham to make a delicious breakfast casserole. Mix diced ham with eggs, cheese and your favorite vegetables, such as bell peppers, onions and fresh spinach. Bake until set for a hearty morning meal. If you made a honey crust ham, those little bits of sweet crust will be a pleasant surprise in every bite. 

Lamb Fried Rice 
Leftover lamb can be transformed into a flavorful fried rice dish. Sauté diced lamb with chilled, cooked basmati along with rice, peas, carrots and onions. Splash in a little soy sauce, garlic chili paste, and ginger for an Asian-inspired twist. 

Ham and Asparagus Risotto Cakes 
If you’re a risotto fan like me, you more than likely have it on your menu for Easter Sunday. Combine leftover risotto with diced ham and chopped, cooked asparagus. Shape the mixture into patties, coat with breadcrumbs, and pan-fry until crispy. Serve with a side of zing by way of spicy mustard sauce. 

Lamb Tacos 
Shred leftover lamb and use it as a filling for tacos. Warm up corn or flour tortillas, top with lamb, and add your favorite toppings such as salsa, avocado, cheese and sour cream for a delicious Tex-Mex meal. Dare I suggest serving it with a spicy tzatziki sauce? I’m a rule-breaker, so give it a shot! 

Ham and Potato Soup 
Make a comforting soup using leftover ham, potatoes, onions, celery and carrots. Simmer everything together in chicken or vegetable broth until the vegetables are tender. For a creamier texture, blend a third of the soup, and then add back into the pot.

Spring Salad Frittata 
If you have leftover spinach or arugula salad, combine them with beaten eggs and cheese to make a flavorful frittata. Cook on the stovetop in a large nonstick skillet until the edges are set, then finish under the broiler until golden and puffed. For a little added dazzle, top your frittata with thinly-sliced heirloom tomatoes before cooking. 

Ham and Cheese Panini 
Layer sliced ham, cheese and any leftover Easter dinner condiments like cranberry sauce or mustard between two slices of bread. I like to use ciabatta loaf or a nice sourdough. Grill in a panini press or on a skillet until the cheese is melted and the bread is crispy.


  • Ruthie Martinez

    Ruthie owns Black Fig Food catering and is proprietor of the online cooking platform Elevated Plant Plate. Learn more at blackfigfoodprograms.com and blackfigfood.com.