Upcycling Foods: 3 Recipes to Turn Food Scraps Into Delicious Snacks

Food The List
By: Kristina Guerrero | Jessica Robertson Posted: 8:42 PM, Apr 12, 2018

Food waste is a huge problem in America. It is estimated that people will throw away a third of their groceries. This translates to billions of pounds and billions of dollars a year in food waste  and perfectly edible produce leads the waste race. Chef and Nutritionist Teresa Hansen is teaching us about "upcycling foods," and how it's turning into the latest way to reduce food waste. She's sharing a list of three treats that turn food scraps into good snacks. 

1. Carrot Top Hummus 

Our first recipe is the perfect way to get good use out of a whole carrot. Instead of tossing your leafy tops, use them for a delicious dip that's an amazing, healthy snack. 


1 bunch of carrots with green leafy tops 

1 tbsp minced garlic 

1 15oz. can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained 

2 tbsp tahini 

2 tbsp lemon juice 

½ tsp sea salt 

1 tsp ground cumin 

¼ cup olive oil 


Remove leafy tops from carrots. Peel whole carrots and cut into two-inch sticks. Set aside. 

Add green leafy tops, garlic, chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, salt, cumin and olive oil to a food processor. 

Process until smooth. Serve with carrots. 

2. Quick Pickled Kale Stems 

Kale isn't just for salads and sautées. Use that watermelon well after the picnic is over. We're pickling kale stems and watermelon rinds.  


1 bunch kale, leafy greens removed and stems cut into two-inch sticks 

½ cup apple cider vinegar 

½ cup water 

1 ½ tsp salt 

2 tbsp honey 

1 garlic lcove 

½ a jalapeño 


Place kale stems in mason jars and set aside. 

Add vinegar, water, salt and honey in a pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, pour over kale stems. 

Cool completely, then cover and store in fridge for at least 24 hours before eating. As mixture sits, the more “pickle-y” it will taste! Keep in for up to one week in refrigerator. 

3. Lemon Syrup 

And here's our final food upcycle. When you're done zesting and juicing lemons, make lemon syrup! 


2 ½ pounds zested and juiced lemons 

1 cup granulated sugar 


Add zested and juiced lemons to a large bowl. Pour sugar over lemon rinds and stir. 

Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 3-5 hours. 

Pour lemons into a strainer, with a bowl underneath. Strain out lemons, reserving 1 ½ cups lemon syrup. 


Try these three recipes that will turn what you once thought was garbage into gourmet snacks – helping save the environment, one dish a time.  

Do YOU have an upcycled food recipe of your own? Share it with us on our Facebook page @TheListShowTV. 
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