One of the most common things to be stashed in the back of my fridge is a half-used carton of berries. Berries go bad so quickly, and I hate throwing them away, especially when they’re so good for you and add so much flavor to any dish from breakfast to a quick snack. Instead of throwing them away, here are some of my favorite ways to use up extra berries.
Our Mission: Help give new life to your leftovers!
Our mission is to stop food waste at home! We have tons of ideas for leftover proteins, but what about leftover berries?
Give New Life to Leftovers
If there is one thing we really don’t like, it’s food waste. Repurposing these leftovers in creative ways ensures that nothing will get wasted, which makes us totally happy! So much food is wasted in the United States, but we are here to make sure that never happens again by bringing your leftovers back to life!
Extra Berry Ideas
#1: Make Jam with Extra Berries
Before berries go bad, make them into jam! I think a lot of people are intimidated by the idea of making jam because they think that they need to learn how to use gelatin or pectin to make the jam set. While that is the case for making jams out of leftover fruits like peaches and apples, it’s much easier to make a quick, no gelatin jam with berries because of the high amount of pectin that is naturally found in berries! Pectin helps the jam set quickly and easily, which means that almost any jam you make using berries will turn out perfectly.
Here are some of my favorite jam and jelly recipes, plus a few extra ways to use up the jam you make!
- 20 Minute Jam
- Blueberry Jam
- Cranberry Jam
- Raspberry Jam
- Spicy Blueberry Jam
- Raspberry Peach Jam
- Linzer Cookies
- Homemade Pop-Tarts
#2: Make Kombucha with Extra Berries
If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I’ve gotten really into brewing my own kombucha lately! It’s so easy, fun, and fast to whip up a batch of this probiotic-full fermented tea. Plain kombucha is delicious, but adding berries is a GREAT way to add interesting flavor and help it get even fizzier. Plus, even if your extra berries are getting a little bit elderly, they’ll still work great.
Here are some of the recipes I’ve been loving in my home brews!
- Triple Berry Kombucha
- Blueberry Kombucha
- Strawberry Kombucha
- Gingerberry Kombucha
- Blueberry Ginger Kombucha
- Berry Lemonade Kombucha
#3: Make Smoothies with Extra Berries
If your extra berries are about to go bad, use your freezer to help you extend their lifespan! I usually have a few cartons of berries going at a time, and sometimes they start to go bad before I’m able to use them all. When this happens, I have a great method for freezing berries.
How to Freeze Extra Berries
To freeze my extra berries, I portion a few servings out, put them in small leftover containers, and then carefully label them before freezing them. I pull these frozen packets of berries out when I’m making pie, in need of a way to spice up my oatmeal, or, my favorite, when I’m making a fruity smoothie!
I love using frozen extra berries to make my smoothies because I’ve already done most of the work for myself! I just pop one of the packages of frozen berries into my blender with some almond milk, a few extra flavorings, and some protein powder and give it a whiz!
Here are some of my favorite smoothie recipes:
- Mixed Berry Smoothie
- Antioxidant Smoothie
- Citrus Berry Smoothie
- Hidden Spinach Smoothie
- Tropical Berry Smoothie
- Strawberry Beet Smoothie
#4: Make Infused Water with Extra Berries
It’s so important to drink water, but sometimes, I get SO BORED with drinking just plain water all day long! When I have extra berries or any sort of fruit on hand, I love using it to make infused water! Infused water is a really good way to add flavor and healthy benefits to the water you’re drinking all day. Plus, using extra berries you have on hand adds a zing of flavor and antioxidants!
Here are some of my favorite inspirations for infusing water:
- Berry Infused Water
- Basil Berry Infused Water
- Fresh Berry and Mint Infused Water
- Citrus and Berry Infused Water
- Blackberry Lemon Infused Water
- Strawberry Cucumber Infused Water
#5: Make Overnight Oats with Extra Berries
I love making overnight oats! They’re such a healthy, nutritious, and filling breakfast, and it’s hard to get any easier than just soaking oats overnight! When I have extra berries on hand, I throw them into my overnight oats to add flavor and some fun texture. It makes a healthy breakfast that’s ready as soon as I finish my morning coffee!
Here are some recipes for overnight oats that you can add leftover and extra berries to so you reduce food waste:
- Triple Berry Overnight Oats
- Easy Blueberry Overnight Oats
- Berry Banana Overnight Oats
- Peanut Butter Blueberry Overnight Oats
- Almond Milk and Berry Overnight Oats
- Cherry and Banana Overnight Oats
#6: Make Simple Syrup with Extra Berries
When the extra berries sitting in my fridge are getting a little too old to eat, I love making a big batch of berry simple syrup. Simple syrup is just a sugar and water syrup that can be used in cocktails, mocktails, or even on pancakes or waffles! It’s a great way to use up extra berries that are just about to go bad, and you can even throw in extra spices, citrus, or whatever else you have laying around to add some extra flavor!
Check out these recipes for simple syrup that I love: