• January 31, 2013

    Creative Sandwich Fillings – Leftovers reinvented!


    I went into the office the other day with my shirt on backwards.  It was a simple, knit pullover – so ordinarily, this might be understandable. However, it was a maternity pullover.  So we’re talking heavy runching and gathering, with an excess of fabric where the belly goes. How do you get that wrong?

    I noticed the boo-boo when I went to the washroom a couple of hours into my day and, upon doing the standard how-does-my-butt-look-in-these-pants backwards glance in the mirror on my way out the door, I noticed that the back of my shirt looked like a giant deflated balloon.  Very attractive.

    I fixed it, and carried on with my day.  It was only when I got home and changed that I noticed a smear of peanut butter on the actual back of the shirt.  My powers of deduction tell me that while I had it on the wrong way, I got my breakfast all over myself, didn’t notice, switched my shirt around, and spent the remainder of the day with peanut butter between my shoulder blades. This is when I to bed where I was safe and sound, with a bowl of avocado frozen yogurt and season one of LOST.

    Lesson learned: two brains in your body does not offer the guaranteed mental prowess I’d hoped it would, even when you just know your kid’s gonna be a genius.  

    With the limited mental resources I am experiencing, I find myself leaning heavily on super-convenient, fast meals. Especially at lunch.

    I am not a big leftovers person.  I eat something once, really enjoy it, and move on! I don’t want to see last night’s salmon on my plate again the next day. I’m okay with it only if it’s reincarnated as something different. Which is why I love minced sandwich fillings!

    My grandmother (not this one, the other one) would make me minced pork sandwiches, studded with bits of tangy relish, slathered between pillowy soft slices of white bread.  She’d always cut them into triangles (which I’ve figured out tastes better because it optimizes the crust-to-surface-area ratio. Draw a square and cut in triangles, then draw another one and cut in squares – see what I mean?).

    These days, I make delicious sandwich fillings with leftover fish, pork, beef or even beans! I don’t limit myself to bread, either – I enjoy it on crackers (as photographed), on toast, wrapped in a tortilla, scooped up on/wrapped up in lettuce or endive leaves, or with sturdy veggies like cucumber slices, radish slices, celery sticks, etc.

    There are lots of optional flavour boosters, too.  I’m partial to relish with pork, horseradish and green onions with beef, capers and lemon with fish… but there’s lots of room to be creative.  And I often cut the mayo with some thick greek yogurt – it’s just as creamy, lighter and adds a really pleasant tang that cuts the richness of the meat.


    • Leftover beef, pork, fish, chicken or beans
    • Mayonnaise (or a combination of mayonnaise and greek yogurt), to taste
    • Optional additions, like green onions, shallot, olives, capers, pickles, relish, horseradish, etc.
    • A squeeze of lemon, optional
    • Salt and pepper


    1. Pulse leftover protein and any large optional additions (like shallot, whole pickles, whole olives) in a food processor until coarsely minced (you don’t want it to be pureed).

    2. Stir in mayonnaise and any optional additions that are already in small bits (like relish, horseradish, capers). Season to taste with lemon juice, salt and pepper.

    3. Serve between slices of bread, or on crackers, toast, wrapped in a tortilla, scooped up on/wrapped up in lettuce or endive leaves, or with sturdy veggies like cucumber slices, radish slices, celery sticks, etc.


    Hi, I'm Jenn! I'm in the Foodess kitchen making a spectacular mess + something delicious, in roughly equal parts. Join me for seasonal baking punctuated by globally-inspired comfort recipes and (healthy-ish) dinspiration, plus with lots of tips and resources. So happy that you're here!

    Review this recipe


    Notify of


    Thanks for signing up! Check your inbox to confirm.
    Ground Beef Stir Fry | Foodess Recipe September 17, 2018
    Ground Beef Stir Fry

    This ground Beef Stir Fry is an easy, comforting dinner full of healthy veggies, and the savoury all-purpose soy-garlic stir-fry sauce is a staple recipe.

    The Best Meat Sauce Recipe April 20, 2018
    The Best Meat Sauce

    This meat sauce recipe will satisfy all of your homey, cozy, I-need-a-hug-in-a-bowl-of-pasta feelings. It’s deeply flavourful and richly tomatoey. The recipe is simple. Nothing fancy. Just regular old ground beef  like your mom made, no wine, no veal or pork or sausage. Just exactly the comfort food you want. 

    Sweet and Sour Meatball Recipe March 2, 2018
    Sweet & Sour Meatballs

    These Sweet & Sour Meatballs transport me back to a million cozy gatherings in my mom’s kitchen. The sticky-sweet-savoury thing they’ve got going on is completely irresistible.