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Long live leftovers!

Our Favorite Uses for Leftover Bread

By: Lodge Cast Iron / October 12, 2023

Leftovers are synonymous with big holiday gatherings, but the reality is, you’re likely to have a few extra rolls, bread slices, or pastries hanging around most days. Read on to discover some of our favorite ways to fill your leftovers with fresh, new flavors.

Jalapeno Popper Sandwich Loaf
Cornbread Panzanella

Let’s start with salad, shall we? Chop up stale bread hunks, mix with olive oil, garlic salt, and a dash of rosemary and toast them in the oven on a baking pan or pizza pan until crispy. Throw those savory bits into a green salad—or pop them over a cup of soup.

Speaking of salad, what if salad was actually bread? Our July 2023 Recipe of the Month features day-old cornbread tossed together with fresh produce and a peachy sauce for a potluck-friendly salad. Panzanella can be made with sourdough bread, baguettes, or rolls, too. 

If you don’t have time to put that stale bread to use right away, grind up the bread and add a few herbs and spices for a homemade breadcrumb blend. Simply pulse them in a blender or food processor until you hit the desired crumb. Store in an airtight container and freeze until ready to use!

Cornbread Dressing

Dressing & Stuffing
At Thanksgiving, we’re actively looking for extra bread to add to dressing or stuffing. This year, make a batch of cornbread the day before specially for this Stuffed Cornbread Dressing. You can cube up about half a batch and mix it with seasonal herbs, spices, sausage, and apples for a side that’s got big main energy.

Breakfast Casseroles & Strata
Stale bread is a perfect way to freshen up your brunch. Savory bread puddings, stratas, and breakfast casseroles can be a great way to put leftover biscuits, cornbreads, or sandwich bread to good use—plus you can often make these the night before and pop them in the oven while the coffee’s brewing.

Sorghum Bread Pudding

Bread Pudding 
Bread pudding is an easy and highly forgiving dessert that does its best work with day-old breads, rolls, and pastries. Fill yours with leftover biscuits, croissants, or even donuts for something extra decadent. Layer the leftover bread into a casserole or skillet, top with a mixture of fruit, eggs, milk, butter, and a sweetener of your choice, then let everything marinate for about an hour before baking.

French Toast
Think outside the crust with your french toast! Consider using a croissant, hamburger buns, or hotdog buns for something a little different but no less delicious. Give your bread a quick bath in a sweetened egg and milk mixture and then let it hit a preheated pan for a crusty outside and tender middle.

Cinnamon Raisin Bread


How to store bread so it’s fresh today and leftover-friendly tomorrow

Maybe you’re not ready to turn that sandwich loaf into french toast just yet—after all, there are so many sandwiches to make and enjoy in this world! So the question is: what’s the best way to store bread so that it’s fresh today and crunchy in all the right ways tomorrow?

We recommend using plastic wrap or bags if you need to preserve cornbread or sliced bread, provided it’s headed for the freezer or fridge. 

If you’re leaving sandwich bread on the counter, use a paper bag to keep it fresh longer and to keep moisture out. You can also pop a loaf in your empty dutch oven for an improvised bread box!

Beware of mold! Stale bread makes excellent leftovers but moldy bread does not—throw it out if you see any signs of mold. Avoid storing your bread near a high-moisture appliance like a dishwasher or sink; even an overly-warm place like next to the fridge or microwave can trigger mold production.

Shop these bread-making favorites!

Contributed By: Lodge Cast Iron

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