Three recipe ideas for using up leftover or stale bread

You'll never look at stale bread the same way again

Don’t bin that leftover bread - put it to good use instead

Bread is best when its fresh, but it's not always possible to use it up in the ideal time frame.

If you’ve reached for the loaf of bread in your cupboard only to find it's gone stale, don’t give up hope - there's a whole host of tasty dishes you can whip up that specifically require stale bread.

Blitz into breadcrumbs to use in puddings or stuffing, flavour with garlic and herbs to sprinkle over pasta or risotto, or use it to coat chicken or fish. You could also tear it into chunks and bake for rustic croutons to top soup and salads, or use it to make a beautiful tart.

Keep scrolling for three delicious recipes to use up those leftover loaves, or bread that's almost past its best.

Bread, shallot and tomato tart

Bread, shallot and tomato tart

Ingredients, serves four

1 tbsp oil

4 shallots, halved lengthways

50g butter, softened

4 slices wholemeal bread

2 tbsp sun-dried tomato paste

50g Cheddar cheese, grated

2 tomatoes, thickly sliced

1 tablespoon chopped chives


1. Preheat the oven to 200C.

2. Heat the oil in a small frying pan and fry the shallots for four to five minutes until golden.

3. Meanwhile, butter the bread and press into a 20cm square tin in a single layer, butter side down, coming up the sides a little. Spread with the tomato paste and scatter over half the cheese.

4. Arrange the shallots and tomatoes on top, overlapping them as you go. Sprinkle over the remaining cheese and the chives. Bake for 20 minutes until golden.

Leave out the bacon for a vegetarian version of this frittata

Full Irish breakfast frittata

Ingredients, serves four

1 tbsp oil

4 rashers smoked back bacon, diced

150g chestnut mushrooms, quartered

150g cherry tomatoes

100g baby spinach

5 medium eggs, beaten

2 tbsp milk

200g Irish soda bread


1. Heat the oil in a 23cm frying pan and fry the bacon and mushrooms for three minutes.

2. Add the tomatoes and spinach and cook for a further two minutes until spinach has just wilted.

3. Meanwhile, mix together the eggs, milk and seasoning in a large bowl, dip in the bread and leave to soak while the bacon mixture is cooking.

4. Pour the bread mixture into the pan and gently mix, then spread to the edge of the pan, and cook on a gentle heat for four to five minutes until set on the bottom.

5. Place the pan under a preheated grill for a further three to four minutes until golden and just set. Allow to cool slightly before removing from the pan.

This tarragon crumb works beautifully with salmon

Salmon with crunchy tarragon crumb

Ingredients, serves four

3 slices medium wholemeal bread

50g walnuts

4 spring onions, sliced

3 sprigs tarragon, leaves only

4 salmon fillets


1. Preheat the oven to 200C.

2. Place the bread, walnuts, spring onions, tarragon and seasoning in a food processor and blitz to give a coarse crumb.

3. Press onto the salmon fillets and place on a greased baking tray. Bake for 20 minutes until golden and salmon is cooked through.