We love to buy cases of fresh fruit but using it all up before it all spoils can be a challenge. Luckily, I have all kinds of recipes for leftover fruit that help ensure it doesn’t go to waste. From drinks to baked goods and everything in between here are all kinds of ideas to use up leftover fruit.
When I was little, a harvest of fruit from my mom’s garden, a return from picking at the orchards, or a great discount during the last minutes of the farmers market meant only one thing: a race to consume as much fruit as possible before it spoiled and the fruit flies took over.
My family ate fruit for breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner. We consumed apricots, peaches, and plums in the double digits, daily. At first, it was enjoyable, even exhilarating. But after a few days, it would get tiring and repetitive, and keeping up consumption with supply always seemed to be a losing war.
When I moved out on my own, gifts of boxes of fruit gave me a headache. Without my siblings, I couldn’t possibly consume all of it. Then I started my food blog and found all sorts of recipes and ideas for using leftover fruit. So now when I get presented with boxes of fresh fruit, I say “Bring it on. I’m ready for the challenge.”
Summer is a bountiful season for so many of my favorite fruits. I love them all — peaches, cherries, strawberries, apricots, mangoes, and lychee. I still always end up with more fruit than I can eat, though, so I find other uses. I bake, I freeze, I puree. Here are some of my favorite ways to use up too much fruit.
The possibilities are endless for using leftover fruit in baked goods: crumbles, pies, loaf cakes, tea cakes. You can add fruit to almost any baked good to use up leftovers. Here are some of my favorite recipes you might like to try.
Apple Rose Tarts | Baked mini apple rose tarts made with puff pastry sheets are easy to make and are a great presentation for a party.
Mango Mousse Tart | This summer tart is light and not overly sweet. It’s topped with fresh sweet mango slices and makes a beautiful dessert centerpiece. I also have a mango coconut tart that is delicious, too.
Blueberry Cupcakes | These cupcakes have a beautiful blue color without any food color. They’re made with blueberry puree. I like them plain, but they would also be delicious with mascarpone frosting.
Blueberry Mochi Cake | This mochi cake is one of my favorite ways to bake with fresh blueberries. The cake has a chewy texture and it’s studded with sweet fruit.
Mango Bread | This is an easy mango-flavored quick bread. The batter is mixed by hand, no mixer needed. The cake-like bread is moist and filled with sweet mango pieces.
Blueberry and Strawberry Muffins | I love blueberry muffins but they’re even better with some fresh strawberries added in for an extra fruity punch.
Mini Lattice Pies | These are like homemade pop tarts but a thousand times better. I make strawberry and blueberry mini pies, but you can use your favorite fruit for the filling.
Blueberry Pie Bars | A buttery crust, bursting blueberries, and a sweet crumble topping, these pie bars are delightful.
Cherry Tea Cakes | These cute little cakes combine fresh cherries with almond which is a delicious combination.
Dragon Fruit Financiers | Financiers are small french tea cakes made with almond flour, egg whites and brown butter. They are light and sweet and topped with fruit. I used dragon fruit for this tropical version.
Easy Cake Recipe | We all need an easy cake recipe and this is one of my favorites. You only need one bowl and a few minutes to make the batter. You can customize it with your favorite fruit – there are so many options!
Blueberry Almond Mug Cake | This fluffy blueberry almond mug cake cooks in the microwave and is ready in minutes. It’s also wheat flour-free, gluten-free and paleo.
Pluot Buckle | I love fruit buckles and this pluot buckle is great for dessert or as a snack cake. If you can’t find plouts you can use any stone fruit like peaches or plums.
Strawberry Mug Cake | This mug cake is fluffy and sweet with little pretty red pieces of strawberry mixed within the cake.
Flourless Banana Brownies | These flourless banana brownies are rich, fudgy and full of banana flavor. They taste like a cross between banana bread and brownies. As an added bonus, the batter can be easily prepared in the blender.
Strawberries and Cream Cupcakes | These cupcakes with a whipped cream cake base are simple, sweet, and perfect for summer.
Strawberry Scones | Cream scones are very easy to make. This version has fresh strawberries baked inside the scones.
Strawberry Shortcake Cookies | Strawberry shortcake cookies are a sweet way to use fresh strawberries when they are in season. The cookies are similar to scones and have a light and fluffy texture.
Whole Lemon Bars | If you’re looking for an amazing lemon bar recipe, this is it. These lemon bars are the best I’ve had. A thick and velvety custard that isn’t too sweet or too tart, with a great lemony flavor. What is really interesting is that it uses an entire lemon (minus the seeds).
Making smoothies, fresh juice, or fruit milk is a great way to fulfill your daily fruit requirements and use up a lot of leftover fruit. You can get creative and create your own special smoothies and drinks or try some of these easy recipes.
Watermelon Juice | Watermelon juice is so easy to make at home and a healthy way to stay hydrated during the summer.
Papaya Smoothie | This 3-ingredient smoothie is an easy drink with many health benefits and one of my favorite ways to use up fresh papaya.
Fruit Ice | Freezing fruit puree in fun shapes is an easy way to dress up drinks and cocktails. I use them to make festive champagne cocktails, but there are many other ways to use them!
Sweet Avocado Smoothie | This creamy avocado smoothie is made with just four simple ingredients and no additional fruit, letting the avocado flavor shine through.
Teagaritas | This drink is a combination of a margarita and iced tea and I love to garnish it with lots of fresh fruit like strawberries, lemons, limes and raspberries.
Strawberry Champagne | Strawberries and champagne are a classic combo and I like to make frozen champagne cocktails using frozen strawberries.
Homemade ice pops are so easy to make and perfect for summer. I no longer buy them and just make my own, which I like because I can create flavors I can’t find in the grocery store including boozy popsicles.
Rose Sangria Ice Pops | Rosé sangria in ice pop form. This pink popsicle consists of rosé wine sweetened with simple syrup and filled with fresh fruit. You might like my Iced Tea Sangria Popsicles, too.
Watermelon Ice Pops | These ice pops are made of watermelon juice and lime juice and layered to resemble real watermelon slices. They are light, refreshing and thirst-quenching.
Mimosa Popsicles | I love to serve these for summer brunches. They’re just like regular mimosas but served up as popsicles. Plus, you can use a variety of fruit to make them.
Blueberry Swirl Yogurt Ice Pops | These ice pops have fresh blueberries and nonfat Greek yogurt and a great summer treat.
Creamy Mango Ice Pops | These popsicles are cold and creamy with a tropical flavor from the mango.
Strawberry Cheesecake Popsicles | These are just like strawberry cheesecake but made as popsicles instead.
Fruit Bars | You only need two ingredients to make these easy ice pops. Fresh fruit and fruit juice. They are so simple and refreshing when it’s hot out.
I like homemade fruit ice cream so much better than store-bought and I’ve made several different kinds over the years. I really like fruit ice cream and it’s a great way to use up fruit that might otherwise go to waste.
2-Ingredient Coconut Ice Cream | This creamy, no-churn ice cream is just 2 ingredients! No ice cream maker needed and the outcome is a fluffy, creamy, coconut flavored ice cream.
No-Churn Avocado Ice Cream | Creamy, sweet, homemade avocado flavored ice cream that can be made without an ice cream maker. It’s just 3 ingredients and eggless!
Watermelon Sorbet | Watermelon sorbet is a simple frozen treat. I like to serve it in hollowed out lime rinds so they look like little watermelons, or you can serve it like watermelon slices. Both are a fun way to serve the sorbet for parties.
Whole Lemon Ice Cream | This creamy lemon ice cream uses just 3 ingredients. It’s super easy to prepare and you’ll have no-churn ice cream the next day.
Cherry Ice Cream | This homemade ice cream is creamy and speckled with a few cherry bits that add flavor and texture.
Mango Ice Cream | This mango ice cream tastes so much better than store-bought and easy to make with just three ingredients.
[H2] Homemade Fruit Snacks
Once I learned how to make homemade fruit snacks I started making all different kinds. It’s my favorite way to use up a lot of fruit and the flavor options are endless!
Homemade Gummy Bears | You can make homemade fruit snacks like gummy bears with fruit puree. It’s nice to know exactly what’s in them and they’re fun to make!
Homemade Fruit Roll-Ups | It’s very easy to make fruit roll-ups and in this post I show you how to make a variety of different flavors.
Persimmon Fruit Roll-Ups | My mom has persimmon trees in her yard and so every year I make lots of recipes to use up all the fruit. Fruit roll-ups are a great way to use them up!
Mango Fruit Rolls | If you love mangos you will love this easy recipe. It’s perfect for snacks.
Strawberry Fruit Leather | This is another fruit leather recipe I love to make. You will love how easy it is!
Other Recipes to Try
Here are just a few more creative ways to use up fruit!
Fruit Cones | This is my favorite way to serve fruit at a party. Just fill waffle cones with different berries, grapes and sliced peaches and you have a pretty treat to serve.
Avocado Watermelon Salad | This is one of my favorite summer salads. The juicy sweet watermelon is perfect with creamy avocado.
Lemon Fruit Bruschetta | These colorful bites are perfect for summer. Crunchy baguette slices, lemon cheese spread, fresh sweet fruit and a drizzle of honey.
Japanese Fruit Sandwiches | Japanese fruit sandwiches, also known as fruit sando, can be found in bakeries all over Japan but they can also be easily made at home.
Stuffed Strawberry Cheesecake Bites | If you want an easy dessert for parties these stuffed strawberries are a great choice. I’ve also made Nutella stuffed strawberries and ones stuffed with mascarpone cheese which are great, too!
Mango Mousse | This mango mousse is super easy. Only three ingredients, no gelatin or cooking needed.
So there you have it — lots of recipes for using up leftover fruit. No more throwing away rotten fruit or batting away fruit flies. As the fruit trees continue to blossom, you can embrace summer’s sweet offerings and enjoy fruit in many different ways.