12 tips of Christmas food savings

Let's save our Christmas favourites from the bin this year! 

Did you know that each year in the UK at Christmas...

263,000 turkeys
7.1 million pigs in blankets
11.3 million potatoes
17.2 million Brussels sprouts
7.5 million mince pies.......get thrown in the bin?

With our 12 tips, see what else you could try to make the most out of your Christmas food.
Meal planning

In the run up to Christmas the temptation to grab and stockpile seasonal goodies ‘just in case’ is strong. Make a festive meal plan to avoid buying too much, including what you'll do with any leftovers.

Portion planner

Take the guesswork out of planning using Love Food Hate Waste’s handy online portion planner which will calculate how much of everything you will need for the number you need to feed. 

In your freezer

Do you know what’s in your freezer? We recommend having a look now and planning to eat what’s in there in the run-up to Christmas to make space for festive treats and leftovers. Get prepared for the big day by preparing and freezing vegetables now ready for Christmas morning. 

Going away for Christmas? Before you leave, move fruit from the fruit bowl into the fridge. Veg can be par boiled and then frozen. You can also freeze milk and slices of meat.
Home-made bread sauce and stuffing

Freeze odds and ends of stale bread in the run up to Christmas to make home made bread sauce and stuffing. It's surprisingly easy!

For a simple home-made bread sauce - make your bread into crumbs, add milk, pepper and butter. Simmer over a low heat.

To make sage and onion stuffing - add chopped cooked onion and chopped herbs to breadcrumbs. Add an egg to bind it before baking.

Brussels sprouts are a must-have on the Christmas dinner table. 

Jazz them up a bit this Christmas to make sure all plates are empty. Try out this recipe by Love Food Hate Waste 
Let them help themselves

Finding space on the table can be a challenge, but if you can make room for serving bowls from which people can help themselves there is likely to be less waste on the plates and the leftovers can be stored and used again. 

Leftover turkey?

After your millionth turkey sandwich, you might fancy changing it up a bit – check out Love Food Hate Waste’s leftover recipes.


Sooo much cheese! If you just cam-em-bert it to see all those Christmas varieties go to waste, you will love these cheeseboard recipes from macaroni cheese to toasties...


If your fridge is full of chutneys for the Christmas cheeseboard add them to casseroles and ‘one pot’ dishes or stews baked in the oven to sweeten and enhance the flavours.

These one pot dishes are a great way to use up any leftover meat or veg too, and can be frozen for use in the New Year.

Leftover crackers

Leftover crackers from the cheese board? Zoe from the Smart Living team suggests crushing them to make a breadcrumb-like topping which can be frozen and used later on top of pasta bakes or savoury pies.

Christmas pudding

After everyone’s indulged on Christmas day you may end up with some leftover pudding. Any leftover panettone can be made into bread and butter pudding.

How about turning mince pies into brownies for a different take on the dessert?

Feeding the birds

Turn cheese, dried fruit, and unsalted nuts to make a fat ball for the birds in your garden! Use two parts fat to one part dry ingredients. Mix together and set in an old yoghurt pot in the fridge overnight before cutting the plastic away. Just make sure you don’t use turkey fat or bread in the recipe, as it’s not suitable.

Do you have a tip that helps you make the most of your food shop at Christmas? Share it with us at waste.prevention@hants.gov.uk, tweet them to @smartliving_hcc or visit our Facebook page ‘Smart Living – Hampshire’.

For more tips and advice to save money and make the most of the food you buy at Christmas and all year round, visit Love Food Hate Waste.