My Foray Into Food Storage

A regular gal learning about Food Storage, Home Cooking, Canning, Gardening, and more!

Homemade Breadcrumbs a.k.a. I Hate Throwing Anything Away

28 Comments

It’s true.  I’m not a hoarder (at least not so much of a hoarder that you have to walk through tiny pathways through my house with your arms close to your body), but I do hate throwing perfectly useful things away.  Things like the heel on a loaf of bread.  My kids won’t eat them.  They’d rather not have bread than to eat a heel.  I don’t know why.  If I turn it with the heel side in, I cannot taste the difference.  But, apparently, my boys can.  So, they don’t eat them.  Ever.

 

Instead of throwing them away, I stick the heels in the freezer and wait.  After a month or so, I have a stack of heels and older bread that look something like this.

 

That's a lot of bags!  But, trust me, there's bread in there, too.

That’s a lot of bags! But, trust me, there’s bread in there, too.

 

That’s a lot of bread!  I was running low on breadcrumbs, so I decided to replenish my supply and clear out my freezer at the same time.  It’s super simple, and the breadcrumbs are fresh and yummy.  First, I put the bread on a cookie sheet and put it in a 275  degree oven until the bread was completely dry.

 

Lots and lots of bread, especially heels.  This has white bread, sourdough wheat sandwich bread, and other whole grain breads.

Lots and lots of bread, especially heels. This has white bread, sourdough wheat sandwich bread, and other whole grain breads.

 

After cooking it for a bit, I ended up putting the bread on two cookie sheets, but I didn’t snap a pic of that.  Sorry.  I did that to speed up the process a little.  If the bread is stacked, it takes FOREVER!  Once the bread was ready, I actually made a few bread crumbs for my homemade meatballs (recipe to come)…

 

Spaghetti sauce with homemade meatballs containing my homemade bread crumbs.

Spaghetti sauce with homemade meatballs containing my homemade bread crumbs.

 

…And I stuck the rest of the toasted bread in my breadbox until the following day.  Here it is.

 

See?  Nice and toasted, and ready to go into the food processor.  You can put this in a bag and crush it with a rolling pin or can, but it is so much faster and easier to use a food processor (or blender).

See? Nice and toasted, and ready to go into the food processor. You can put this in a bag and crush it with a rolling pin or can, but it is so much faster and easier to use a food processor (or blender).

 

I stuck several slices in my food processor and pulsed until the breadcrumbs were the right size.

 

I put several pieces into the food processor and pulsed until the bread became breadcrumbs.

I put several pieces into the food processor and pulsed until the bread became breadcrumbs.

 

Then, I stuck them in my old breadcrumb container and put them back in my pantry.  This was a pretty new container, so I reused it, but next time, I’ll stick it in a Tupperware something and store it that way.

 

Perfect breadcrumbs for free!  (Well, except for the electricity for the food processor.)

Perfect breadcrumbs for free! (Well, except for the electricity for the food processor.)

 

Now I have a huge supply of breadcrumbs and they didn’t cost me a cent (other than what I would have spent on bread anyway).  I consider this a win-win.  I didn’t throw away anything useful, and I didn’t have to buy something I use regularly.

 

Do you think you’ll try your hand at breadcrumbs? 

If not, what’s another way you prevent food waste?

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Author: Laurie Nguyen

I am a happily married, stay at home mom with four sons, ages 24, 22, 18, and 14. I'm not a professional blogger, and I'm certainly not a foodie or a chef. But I like food, so I think I'm qualified to write about my own life experience with food. Want to be a little more prepared for the unexpected? Check out my Food Storage Blog, http://forayintofoodstorage.com. Have a question about Food Storage? Email me: forayintofoodstorage@gmail.com.

28 thoughts on “Homemade Breadcrumbs a.k.a. I Hate Throwing Anything Away

  1. I have been doing the same thing for years .. I also make bread pudding out to the left overs and the family LOVES it

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  2. I actually put the bread in my food processor before I toast it. Crumbs are smaller. Then I toast the breadcrumbs. Sometimes I shake on some herbs so I have seasoned bread crumbs. I bake all my own bread, so never have much get leftover. (darn).

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  3. Great way to use up the bread! we usually eat even the heels, but we have been known to not eat it in a timely manner, so maybe next time I’ll freeze it before it goes bad and then turn it in to croutons or breadcrumbs! I usually use a stuffing mix anytime I need breadcrumbs, because the spices are already there – but I could technically do that here, too!

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  4. I do the same. I hate throwing things away that can be used for something else. I have made breadcrumbs this way and have used them for many different things. Waste not….. I love food storage and understand your passion. My food storage blog is http://www.todaywhilethesunshines.com if you want to check it out. Nice to meet you Laurel.

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  5. ( hate throwing things out as well. I keep margarine bowls washing them out and I use them for storage and for flower pots as well. I have a plant right now growing in a big water bottle with the top cut off. Several plants in margarine bowls small and large, some in the cereal bowls that you can get at gas stations. I have a big pickle jar that serves as a cookie jar, and smaller jars for storing dry rice or beans in. Ig toy wan them to be colorful you have use spray paint, or if it is a jar you can mix food coloring with elmers glue and paint the jar with it and then after it is dry spray it with water based polycrylic spray by Minwax to that you can wash it.

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  6. I usually toast mine in the oven and then put them in the food processor, or I cut the bread in to smaller pieces roll them in oil and fresh or dry herbs and toast them in the oven to make salad croutons 🙂 The breadcrumbs I use for homemade meatballs, breaded pork (so called Wienerschnitzel) or desserts, like the white chocolate apple crumble dessert I made the other day 🙂 http://jordbrovej.wordpress.com/2014/04/18/apple-sauce-with-chocolate-crumble/

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  7. I also process old baguettes and similar breads. However, I just let them get dry on the air, put them into the food processor after a few days and have bread crumbs eg to bread meat.

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  8. I’ve made bread crumbs in the past. I actually have a sourdough baguette that has gone stale that I can’t bear to throw out, so I might toss that in the food processor and have delicious sourdough breadcrumbs!

    How long do fresh breadcrumbs typically last? In the past, I’ve stored them in the freezer, but I know storebought ones are fine just in the cabinet.

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  9. I started doing this a while ago, too. Rather than storing the bread to make a big batch of bread crumbs at once, I use a pie plate and bake in smaller quantities- otherwise I forget, and don’t have crumbs when I need them. ***Lesson learned the hard way: use any kind of bread EXCEPT for rye bread. Rye in the breadcrumbs can give strange undertones to many dishes :)***

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  10. I do this too, I love the textures of using many different types of bread. I also throw a little garlic salt and dried parsley in and it makes the bread crumbs delicious.

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  11. Breadcrumbs and croutons are infinitely useful, so they should not be tossed…check the price of breadcrumbs in the store..

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  12. We do the same. We eat the heels, even fight over them on a hot loaf of bread! By the time I put extra bread in the freezer it is usually already dried out so I just toss it straight in the food processor. We also use it for duck food if headed to the park.

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  13. Ah, I do this as well and almost just posted an entry about it. I love the idea of not wasting, too. I also started juicing early this year and love that I no longer waste any parts of my vegetables, including broccoli stocks! Just juice them up!

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  14. How long can you store the bread crumbs for? In a pantry or in the refrigerator?

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  15. They get eaten at our house. They are really good for sandwiches when you toast them!

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  16. I love how frugal you are with this!

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  17. Freezing the bread slices is a great idea!

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  18. Pingback: Saving Time and Money By Making 2 Dinners At Once! | My Foray Into Food Storage

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