Loving Leftovers: How to Use Up Leftover Rice

Updated on February 13, 2019
Carb Diva profile image

Exploring food facts, folklore, and fabulous recipes, one ingredient at a time.

Source

Use It Up

My grandparents immigrated to this country in the late 1800s—a new century full of optimism and promise. But then there were two World Wars, a Great Depression, and a pandemic that took thousands of those who should have been the strongest. This was the era in which my parents were raised; hardship and loss formed their values and shaped their regard for people and possessions. Life in this 21st century seems so far removed.

But my siblings and I are a product of that previous generation—we were brought up to use it up, wear I out, make it do, or do without. Dad drove a used car, the house was old, we handed down clothing (and even toys), and food was never wasted. That’s the way I was raised and the thinking I use in my own kitchen even 60+ years later.

This is my eighth article in a regular first-day-of-the-month series on using leftovers in a thoughtful, frugal, and tasty way. The first seven installments focused on:

  1. Leftover mashed potatoes
  2. Meatloaf
  3. Stale bread
  4. Too much zucchini
  5. Barbecue meats
  6. Spaghetti
  7. Ham

Today we're going to look for innovative ways of using leftover rice.

Recipes

Before we create the perfect use of rice leftovers, don't we need to have the perfect rice? Just in case you don't (or wonder if there is something better than the recipe you have in your file), here is my recipe for perfect rice.

Foolproof Rice (in the oven)

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups white rice (long- or medium-grain)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place rice in a colander and rinse under cold running water to wash away exterior starch and any surface dust. Drain well.
  2. Heat the butter in a Dutch oven; add the rice and stir to coat. Cook for about 2 minutes or until rice is translucent. Add broth and bring to a boil. Cover and bake until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest covered, about 10 minutes. Fluff with fork.

Or Stovetop Rice

If you prefer to cook your rice on the stove top (or want to use short-grain or brown rice, here's a handy chart to help you).

Type of Rice
Ratio of Rice to Water
Minutes to Cook
Long-grain white
1 cup / 2 cups
18
Short-grain white (aka sushi)
1 cup / 1.25 cups
15
Brown rice
1 cup / 1.75 cups
45

Now, let's look at some innovative ways of using up those leftovers.

Arancini

Source

Arancini (the word means "orange" in Italian) can be a small one-bite appetizer, or as large as an orange. They are so much a part of southern Italy that they are sold by vendors on street corners.

According to the blog GrandVoyageItaly:

...the arancino has been a part of traditional Southern Italian cuisine for several centuries. In the Campania region, the arancino was first introduced into the Kingdom of Naples by the Aragones who called them, simply, palle di riso (rice balls). It seems that the term arancina was first coined in Sicily, where several regions and provinces claim to be the homeland of the dish. There are even those who claim that Milan’s signature dish of Saffron Risotto is nothing more than a poorly executed arancina that fell apart on a plate–the Milanese, of course, don’t agree.

This recipe for arancini from the blog JustATaste is the best one I've found.

Chinese-Style Fried Rice

Source

Chinese-style fried rice. It's what you always ask for when dining in an Asian restaurant, or grabbing take-out. But have you ever tried to make it at home? How did that work out for you? If anything like my first attempt (or second, or third) it was pretty disappointing.

Ali (GimmeSomeOven) has the magic solution (actually there are several keys to the castle, and she has found them all). Her fried rice recipe is what you've been craving, and now you can make it at home.

Mexican Fried Rice

Source

What's that you say? You're not in the mood for Chinese food? What about "Mexican" fried rice? All the flavors you love an expect in Mexican rice plus the texture of Chinese stir-fry create this wonderful fusion dish your whole family will enjoy. Thanks to the blog PremeditatedLeftovers (what a great name!) for this recipe.

Rice Pudding

Source

Years ago I made rice pudding for my girls. It's such a sweet, warm bowl of comfort on a cold evening. I like it just "as is", but my two little ones always wanted to add a few chocolate chips or a swirl of raspberry jam.

Somehow in the move from our old house to the farmhouse, the family favorite recipe got lost. This one by CreationsByKara is what I (and my children) remember.

Rice Balls

Source

Holly is, in her words "...the chief editor, photographer, writer, recipe developer, cook, CEO & COO, and/or any other title you can think of", behind the blog BeyondKimchee. She is a proud full-time housewife who likes to cook and feed, and feed well she does.

Now, these rice balls are not anything like the arancini in the first recipe. These are made from sticky sushi rice, combined with sauteed shiitake mushrooms and cooked bacon (who doesn't love bacon?) and formed into balls that are perfect as an appetizer or wrapped in lettuce leaves for a light lunch.

Questions & Answers

    © 2018 Linda Lum

    Comments

      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment
      • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

        Linda Lum 

        10 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Mary, I love rice pudding, but it takes 15 hours to fly to where you are, so I fear I'll be too late.

      • Blond Logic profile image

        Mary Wickison 

        10 months ago from Brazil

        I just made some rice tonight to have with sweet and sour pork. Since I am the only one eating, I have leftover rice. You must have been psychic to know I would need inspiration.

        Like the others, I foresee a bowl of rice pudding in my future.

      • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

        Linda Lum 

        10 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Shauna, it's not easy to make rice for 1 (but then, that's why we have leftovers, right?) Treat yourself to some rice pudding, you deserve it. You are many things, but lazy is not one of them.

      • bravewarrior profile image

        Shauna L Bowling 

        10 months ago from Central Florida

        I haven't had rice pudding in forever! I grew up on it, so why haven't I ever made it myself? Hmmmm.

        Good options for using leftover rice, Linda. I really don't eat much rice, with the exception of Near East rice mixes. Guess I'm just lazy!

      • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

        Linda Lum 

        10 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Ooh Eric, it seems like forever since I've made paella and I have absolutely no excuse for my actions (or lack thereof). Thanks for the reminder. Enjoy your day.

      • Ericdierker profile image

        Eric Dierker 

        10 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

        Linda the Mistress of the kitchen is back on a work schedule so after days of fantastic Pho' dishes that were to die for the domain is mine once again.

        We are off to the Basket ball courts next to the grocers. This leftover rice dish will be served one spicey and the other every good thing to eat. Yes we eat two small servings, unless if I nail it, two large servings. I am leaning to Paella but let see what is fresh.

        You bring such good things into my home. Muchas Gracias from the border.

      • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

        Linda Lum 

        10 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Manatita, I am glad to know that you are safely home.

      • manatita44 profile image

        manatita44 

        10 months ago from london

        Yes, you told that story before. Good to know that it shaped and moulded your journey to some extent.

        You are the queen of leftovers. We needed you in Germany last night. Back home now. Peace.

      • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

        Linda Lum 

        10 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Good morning and Happy New Year to you Pamela.

      • Pamela99 profile image

        Pamela Oglesby 

        10 months ago from Sunny Florida

        Linda, I think your way of cooking rice sounds delicious and I will try it. I am going to check out the Chinese fried rice as well. Another helpful article to begin 2019. Happy New Year!

      • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

        Linda Lum 

        10 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Flourish, I think that rice pudding in the morning is a good way to start the New Year. Thanks for stopping by. Happy New Year to you my dear.

      • Carb Diva profile imageAUTHOR

        Linda Lum 

        10 months ago from Washington State, USA

        Eric, there are tears in my eyes that Gabe appreciates me. My love to him and to you.

      • FlourishAnyway profile image

        FlourishAnyway 

        10 months ago from USA

        My mother makes rice pudding but I haven’t had it in forever. Now you have me thinking about it. I like both the fried rice ideas and the rice balls. Will definitely be experimenting with these! Happy New Year!

      • Ericdierker profile image

        Eric Dierker 

        10 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

        Dear Aunt Linda, i liked your story. Thank You.///

        Yes you were are the reading for the day. But keep in mind he and I eat a lot of leftover rice at least 4 days a week.

        Peace be upon you as we create new rice recipes.

        (The first part really is his)

      working

      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, delishably.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://delishably.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

      Show Details
      Necessary
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Features
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Marketing
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Statistics
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
      ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)