Whisk.com, a free, smart shopping list tool that helps users organise, discover and enjoy great recipes, today announces the launch of Whisk Leftovers. Whisk’s leftover search engine sources more than 250,000 online recipes from leading publishers to inspire people with recipes that help turn leftover ingredients into great meals instead of landfill.

The award-winning startup built the leftover recipe search functionality in collaboration with Unilever’s Project Sunlight, which recently launched its #ClearAPlate campaign to raise awareness of the issues of Food Waste and Food Poverty in the UK. Unilever has supported Oxfam’s work in the UK to provide over 2 million meals to families in need, whilst highlighting the steps we can take to waste less food at home.

According to WRAP, the UK government’s resource efficiency body, the average household throws away six meals a week - a huge contributing factor to the more than 4.2 million tonnes of food and drink that are being thrown away each year in UK. WRAP estimates that 24 million slices of bread, 1.4 million bananas and 1.2 million yoghurts are thrown away every day in the UK.

Whisk Leftovers is a powerful recipe search engine that is oriented towards meals that use highly perishable and frequently wasted food items like herbs, dairy, vegetables and eggs. People can simply enter leftover ingredients, such as ‘chicken’ + ‘basil’ + ‘cream,’ to see a range of recipe ideas like chicken stroganoff, risotto al verde and creamy chicken pesto pasta that use up items that might otherwise be thrown in the bin.

Founded by former BBC One The Apprentice candidate Nick Holzherr, the Whisk app simplifies the process of finding, shopping and cooking great meals. With the click of a button, Whisk turns online recipes into a shopping list that can be uploaded to online grocery baskets – Whisk has secured partnerships with Tesco, Asda, Ocado and Waitrose – or viewed on mobile devices so users can tick off items as they shop. These shopping lists can also be printed to bring into the store, or emailed to family members for collaboration.

From its own analysis of users’ purchases versus recipe ingredient amounts, the company identified the possible food wastage occurring and began creating a leftovers recipe site. Whisk went on to calculate the cost of this wasted food and as one example, found that parsley was one of the most wasted, as well as one of the most expensive items people buy. Parsley is often sold in 31g packs, but the average recipe calls for 20 grams, meaning 11 grams of each parsley pack goes to waste – a wastage totalling upwards of £1,000 each month in the UK alone. Whisk’s recipe search engine includes more than 17,000 recipes to use up the fresh herb.

In a Whisk user survey conducted in September 2014, Whisk found that nearly 40% of their users believed their food wastage was above the national average and 79% believed this could be reduced through better meal planning.

The survey also found that double cream sits firmly in the waste sin-bin, as in the last three months alone Whisk users would have thrown away almost £900 on double cream leftover after completing recipes. Some, however, are already getting leftover savvy, as in the last six months, recipes or banana bread and banana cake have topped its shoppers’ online grocery orders.

Whisk has created a collection of some of the web’s most popular leftover recipes, which include:

Nick Holzherr, CEO and founder of Whisk, said “The sheer scale of ongoing food wastage is an urgent problem with the average family throwing away the equivalent of six meals a week. We hope Whisk Leftovers will help reduce food wastage in every household, allowing users to be creative with their cooking while having a positive impact on the environment and also their wallets.”

For more information, please visit Whisk Leftovers: whisk.com/leftovers. Additional data on food wastage and useful hints, tips and tricks on what to do with leftover food can be found on Whisk’s blog, The Mixing Bowl.