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left·​over ˈleft-ˌō-vər How to pronounce leftover (audio)
: something that remains unused or unconsumed
especially : leftover food served at a later meal
usually used in plural
: an anachronistic survival : vestige


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: not consumed or used
leftover food
leftover space

Examples of leftover in a Sentence

Noun Are we having leftovers again? The law is a leftover from earlier times.
Recent Examples on the Web
The Thanksgiving leftovers are thoroughly gone, the Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals found, and the calendar is about to flip over to the final month of 2023. Sarah Boyd, Forbes, 29 Nov. 2023 So warm up your leftovers, get out those scrolling fingers, and assemble your brand-new glam game plan. Jennifer Hussein, Allure, 27 Nov. 2023 How To Make Cornbread Croutons Quick, easy, and impressive, these croutons are a great way to use up leftovers, while adding flavor and crunch to any dish. Marianne Williams, Southern Living, 27 Nov. 2023 Thanksgiving has come and gone and our leftovers have been cleared from the fridge, which can only mean one thing — Cyber Monday deals are finally here. Cai Cramer, Peoplemag, 27 Nov. 2023 The Everlasting Meal Cookbook: Leftovers A-Z by Tamar Adler Tamar Adler is on a quest to make leftovers more appealing—and lower food waste in the process—with her latest book, The Everlasting Meal Cookbook. Devorah Lev-Tov, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 Nov. 2023 Perishable foods like meat, dairy, leftovers and some vegetables should be stored in a refrigerator within two hours. Caitlin O'Kane, CBS News, 21 Nov. 2023 This idea for Thanksgiving leftovers is just the recipe for it. Andrea Beck, Better Homes & Gardens, 17 Nov. 2023 Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for two to three days, but the crisp coating will turn softer once refrigerated. Karen Schroeder-Rankin, Southern Living, 17 Nov. 2023
Meteors are the product of leftover comet particles and bits from asteroids. Skyler Caruso, Peoplemag, 29 Nov. 2023 Sign up for one of the many apps that allow customers to buy leftover food from restaurants and grocery stores at reduced prices. John Wogan Carmen Winant, New York Times, 28 Nov. 2023 The storm will have mostly moved off of the Northeast by Monday morning as people head back to school and work, with the exception of leftover rain in northern New England. Daniel Amarante, ABC News, 26 Nov. 2023 How To Store and Reheat Leftover Pecan Pie Cobbler Store leftover pecan pie cobbler in the refrigerator for up to four days, or freeze for up to two months. Micah A Leal, Southern Living, 24 Nov. 2023 Turkey Gumbo With Artichokes And Andouille A leftover Thanksgiving turkey carcass brings big flavor in this gumbo recipe, packed with Andouille sausage and artichokes for a hearty bite. Julie Giuffrida, Los Angeles Times, 19 Nov. 2023 This sleek metal compost bin is small enough to fit on any tight countertop space and is a hand way to get rid of leftover food without trashing it. Anna Tingley, Variety, 16 Nov. 2023 In a one-pot solution for the turkey and snippets of leftover vegetables, French Laundry chef Thomas Keller’s Turkey Casserole uses it all — and an add-in or two — to create an entirely different, memorable meal. Julie Giuffrida, Los Angeles Times, 19 Nov. 2023 That could make the I-10 blaze complicating LA traffic this week the third fire in the area involving leftover hand sanitizer. WIRED, 16 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'leftover.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use


1866, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1864, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of leftover was in 1864

Dictionary Entries Near leftover

Cite this Entry

“Leftover.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/leftover. Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


: something remaining
especially : food left over from one meal and served at another
usually used in plural
leftover adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on leftover

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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