Repurposing your leftovers is a surefire way to make you feel like a kitchen maven. Whether you’re using up the last of your Halloween candy corn or turning your remaining Thanksgiving turkey into some delicious sandwich fixin’s, anyone who loves clean plates, tidy fridges and wallet-friendly recipes can agree. So, what do you do when you have a bunch of leftovers from your herb garden? Tossing the excess sure doesn’t feel right. Here are 11 easy-breezy and creative ways to use up those leftover herbs, and keep your wallet happy!
1. Garlic Confit: This might be the easiest way to save your leftover garlic cloves. Cook the garlic cloves in oil low and slow for about fifteen minutes before letting it cool and transferring it to a jar. It’ll keep in the fridge for two to three weeks. (via Blogging Over Thyme)
2. Mint ice cubes: Take your hostessing game to another left with your mint ice cubes. Just add mint to your ice cube tray before popping it into the freezer. You can switch it up with some truly creative variations. (via Veranda Magazine)
3. Rosemary Infused Vodka: Infusing your vodka with rosemary adds a distinctive touch of elegance to your cocktails — plus, it couldn’t be simpler! Just add several sprigs of rosemary to a jar of vodka and let the concoction rest in a cool, dark place for five to seven days. (via Potluck at Oh My Veggies)
4. Pesto: Of all the pasta sauces in the world, pesto must be one of the easiest. First of all, no flame required. Secondly, you can make pesto out of almost any green herb. To make a traditional basil pesto, just blend basil, pine nuts, olive oil and parmesan cheese until chunkily smooth. (via Snapguide)
5. Cocktail Garnish: A sprig of thyme, a bunch of rosemary or a few basil leaves can really liven up an adult beverage. Garnishing your cocktails with herbs is as old as, well, mixology. Deck out your cocktail with some greenery, like this delicious Rhubarb Southside Cocktail with a side of basil. (via Brit + Co)
6. Oregano and Parsley Herb Butter: Making your own herb butter from scratch is more of a breeze than you’d think. You need the greens (in this case oregano and parsley), heavy cream and salt. Add to a mixer and blend until it becomes a thick cream. Delicious! (via PDX Food Love)
7. Rosemary Infused Olive Oil: We’ve taught you this before, but it’s still one of the best ways to store your leftover herbs. In this case, we use rosemary, thyme and sage, but feel free to use whatever you’d like. Combine herbs and olive oil in a pan over low heat for 20 minutes. Strain after cooled into a bottle, and store in the fridge for up to two weeks. (via Brit + Co)
8. Herby Lime Salad Dressing: Fresh herbal dressing really says summer. Purée some jalapeño, arugula, mint, vegetable oil, olive oil, lime zest, lime juice, and sugar until smooth. Drizzle on your salad, and voilà! (via Bon Appétit)
9. Herb Salad: There couldn’t be a simpler salad in existence. All you need is a salad mix (think mesclun, arugula or spinach), throw in whatever leftover herbs you’ve got, and boom! Herb salad. (via Essex Girl Cooks Healthy)
10. Basil Simple Syrup: Another tasty addition to your cocktail — or drizzle it on your sorbet for a summer treat! Combine sugar, water and washed basil leaves in a small saucepan and simmer on low heat until all the sugar has melted. The concoction will last in the fridge for several weeks. (via Oh My Veggies)
11. Chive and Garlic Cream Cheese Spread: Mm, cheese. Up your bagel and cream cheese game by adding your leftover chives and garlic into the mix. A pinch of black pepper and garlic powder will really top it off. (via The Little Epicurean)
Do you have any tricks up your sleeve when it comes to saving your herbs? Share it with us in the comments below!