8 ways to give new life to leftover rice

8 ways to give new life to leftover rice

Rice is one of the most popular foods worldwide, yet in New Zealand over 4,000 tonnes of cooked rice go to waste every year.

We often throw away leftover rice because we are worried about how to reheat it properly. While rice is a higher-risk food, it is safe to eat leftover rice.

To ensure your leftover rice is safe to eat, cool it as quickly as possible after cooking.

To cool your rice quickly, take it out of the pot or rice cooker as soon as you can and spread your rice on a tray or in shallow containers. Label and freeze it as soon as it is cool.

It’s time to stop throwing away leftover rice, instead, make it the star of a meal.

Video Recipes:
Tuna Rice Croquettes
Creamy Coconut Rice Pudding
Rice-crusted Quiche


Here are other tasty ideas using cooked rice:

Crispy Fried Rice Cakes

Crispy Fried Rice Cakes
Yum! Leftover rice is easily transformed into dainty, crispy fried rice cakes which make an ideal side dish. If you prefer you could adapt the recipe to make sweet rice cakes.

Easy Fried Rice

Easy Fried Rice
Fried rice is a quick and easy family favourite, and great for using up all sorts of odds and ends in your fridge or freezer. Make sure your rice is cold before making fried rice, otherwise it won’t separate properly.

Curried Rice Salad

Curried Rice
This fresh, nutritious curried rice salad would make a great addition to any barbeque this summer.

Rice and Vegetable Stuffed Tomatoes

Rice Stuffed Tomatoes
Use leftover rice and vegetables in these impressive stuffed tomatoes, or use the rice mixture to stuff other vegetables such as capsicum or eggplant.

Omelette Wrap for Leftovers


If you just have a little bit of rice lurking in your fridge, add it next time you make an omelette.

Click here if you always struggle to cook the right amount of rice.