Leftovers pilaf recipe

(49 ratings)

This pilaf is an excellent way to use up leftover meat and vegetables. This recipe uses chicken but any other meat will work just as well.

Leftovers pilaf
  • healthy
  • Low-fat
Preparation Time10 mins
Cooking Time30 mins
Total Time40 mins
Cost RangeCheap

You can whip up a traditional pilaf using all leftovers from your Sunday roast. Simply throw together your leftover meat and veg and it turns out perfect every time.

This leftovers pilaf recipe is perfect for using up leftovers such as meat and vegetables from the traditional weekend roast. We’ve used chicken but whatever meat you have leftover will work. For an extra kick add 1tsp of mustard powder or a diced red chilli to the cooking broth.


  • 500g cooked chicken, shredded into bite size strips
  • 250g basmati rice
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 1tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 50g garden peas
  • 50g spinach leaves




  1. In a large casserole dish, fry the onion and carrot in the oil until softened a little. Add the chicken and rice and stir to coat everything in oil.
  2. Pour over the stock and bring to a simmer. Clamp on a lid and allow to bubble away gently for 15 mins.
  3. Add the peas and check add any more stock if necessary. You want the rice to absorb all of the liquid but not be too dry. Cook for a further 5mins and take off the heat.
  4. Once liquid is disappeared, stir through the spinach leaves which will wilt in the residual heat. Keep warm in a low heat oven or serve immediately.

Top tips for making leftovers pilaf

Try using whole grain rice for a healthier option or perhaps try using pearl barley instead. Learn how to cook rice to perfection with our handy rice guide.

Jessica Dady
Food Editor

Jessica Dady is Food Editor at GoodtoKnow and has over 11 years of experience as a digital editor, specialising in all things food, recipes, and SEO. From the must-buy seasonal food hampers and advent calendars for Christmas to the family-friendly air fryers that’ll make dinner time a breeze, Jessica loves trying and testing various food products to find the best of the best for the busy parents among us. Over the years of working with GoodtoKnow, Jessica has had the privilege of working alongside Future’s Test Kitchen to create exclusive videos - as well as writing, testing, and shooting her own recipes. When she’s not embracing the great outdoors with her family at the weekends, Jessica enjoys baking up a storm in the kitchen with her favourite bakes being chocolate chip cookies, cupcakes, and a tray of gooey chocolate brownies