Wait, the color of the twist tie on a bread bag actually means something?

Behind every great sandwich is a fresh loaf of bread. Though you can search a bread bag for the expiration-date fine print, there's another small detail that will quickly and easily tell you how fresh its contents are: the twist tie.

That's right, the plastic tags or metal ties that are piling up next to your paper clip collection tell you which day of the week bread was baked on. The codes are as follows: Monday – blue, Tuesday – green, Thursday – red, Friday – white and Saturday – yellow. (We didn't forget about Wednesday and Sunday: Most sources refer to a five-day delivery schedule.)

Related: Leftover bread hacks

20 Things to do with Leftover Bread
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20 Things to do with Leftover Bread

Read on to learn several ways to use leftover bread.

French Toast With Amaretto Crème

Morning decadence at its best—vegan-style. Simplify this recipe by skipping the Amaretto Crème and serving it with fresh berries and a bit of maple syrup. Although, if you’re a sucker for anything almond-flavored, the crème is a must.

Get the recipe: French Toast with Amaretto Crème

Whole-Wheat Skillet Croutons

Forget the salty, greasy croutons from the store. Keep this homemade version around for salads and soups.

Get the recipe: Whole-Wheat Skillet Croutons

Grilled Dark Chocolate Sandwich

Both simpler and more decadent than a chocolate croissant, a grilled chocolate sandwich is a marriage of bread and chocolate in which the two components are evenly matched.

Get the recipe: Grilled Dark Chocolate Sandwich

Creamed Kale Crostini

Looking for the perfect appetizer for entertaining? Try this creamed kale with two cheeses and red pepper flakes served on toast.

Get the recipe: Creamed Kale Crostini

Sweet-Spiced Bread Sticks

The kids will love these sweet bread sticks—and they're super easy to make!

Get the recipe: Sweet-Spiced Bread Sticks

Toast With Honey Mascarpone And Nutella

This recipe is so simple and delicious. All you need is mascarpone, honey, strawberries and Nutella.

Get the recipe: Toast with Honey Mascarpone and Nutella

Avocado Toast

Also known as “earth’s butter,” velvety avocados add richness to your plain toast, and their heart-healthy fats will keep you satisfied with this snack until lunch.

Get the recipe: Avocado Toast

Chocolate-Bread Parfaits

Turn leftover loaves into creamy, nutty parfaits. This is another one the kids will love!

Get the recipe: Chocolate-Bread Parfaits

The Pizzawitch

This is a white pizza-inspired grilled cheese with taleggio, fresh ricotta, basil, spinach, bacon, red pepper flakes and olive oil—all sandwiched on sliced focaccia.

Get the recipe: The Pizzawitch

Savory Bread Pudding with Spinach & Mushrooms

Bread pudding, an economical dish designed to use up stale bread, is most often associated with dessert. But this version is equally comforting as a savory option, enriched with cheese and studded with vegetables.

Get the recipe: Savory Bread Pudding with Spinach & Mushrooms

Breakfast Fruit Bread Pudding

Studded with strawberries, this breakfast recipe is a cross between a baked French toast and a dessert bread pudding. Swap in almost any fruit depending on what’s in season. Although we typically suggest using whole-grain bread, we stuck with challah for this recipe (because the results are so luscious).

Get the recipe: Breakfast Fruit Bread Pudding

Garlic Bread With Everything

This garlic bread is topped with an abundance of herbs, garlic and butter. A sprinkling of spices is mixed in to perk up the flavors, while a bit of lemon acts as a brightener.

Get the recipe: Garlic Bread with Everything

Egg Salad Sandwich

This high-protein, low-carb salad has gotten a bad rap because of unappealing deli versions served on soggy bread. But, oh, how wonderful an egg salad can be when well made, with its bright yellow yolk, flecks of herbs, and a bit of mayonnaise. This basic salad can be embellished with many flavorings—crumbly bacon, a chopped pickle, diced red bell pepper, capers, olives, chives, dill, or a sprinkling of curry powder. Serve with lettuce, and maybe cheese and tomato, on hearty bread (sliced on the thin side).

Get the recipe: Egg Salad Sandwich

Baked Onion Soup With A Gruyere Cheese Bread Crust

You can’t beat a good bowl of onion soup with beautifully sweet slow-cooked onions.

Get the recipe: Baked Onion Soup with a Gruyere Cheese Bread Crust

Bruschetta With Homemade Ricotta, Prosciutto And Arugula

This is a quick and perfect snack to treat yourself to—and it's an ideal use for homemade ricotta.

Get the recipe: Bruschetta with Homemade Ricotta, Prosciutto and Arugula

Roasted Tomato-Bread Soup

Tomatoes, onions and garlic develop a deep, rich flavor when roasted for this warm meal. A mix of different colored cherry tomatoes will add a playful note.

Get the recipe: Roasted Tomato-Bread Soup

Bread & Tomato Salad

Gather tomatoes and basil from your garden, cut up some day-old country bread and make this flavorful, easy salad. It's our take on the classic Italian bread salad known as panzanella.

Get the recipe: Bread & Tomato Salad

Cornbread & Sausage Stuffing

Cornbread stuffing, a Southern favorite, is a nice change from more traditional white bread stuffing. This delectable recipe uses Italian turkey sausage, rather than pork, and omits all the butter and cream to cut the fat by two-thirds. This stuffing is lower in sodium as well, and it's so easy to make that it’s sure to become a favorite side year-round.

Get the recipe: Cornbread & Sausage Stuffing

Apple-Raisin Stuffing

Do you prefer a stuffing that's a little sweet? Try this exquisite version that balances the savory ingredients with apples, raisins and a touch of cinnamon.

Get the recipe: Apple-Raisin Stuffing

Pineapple & Ham Bread Soufflé

A bread pudding-soufflé hybrid, this dish gets its inspiration from a rich, pineapple soufflé traditionally served as an accompaniment to baked ham. For the best texture and flavor, look for soft whole-wheat sandwich bread without any added malt or molasses. Be sure to use canned, not fresh pineapple—fresh pineapple makes the soufflé too wet.

Get the recipe: Pineapple & Ham Bread Soufflé


The reason behind the color coding is to make it easier for employees to remove stale loaves from the shelves and replace them with fresh ones. Need an easy way to remember the schedule? The colors go in alphabetical order, making it one less thing to forget as you cruise the aisles.

Keep in mind that some companies might have their own system, so check the expiration date when in doubt.

Check out our best sandwich recipes.

Related: Amazon shopping hacks

14 Amazon shopping hacks
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14 Amazon shopping hacks

1. Cash in Those Gift Cards

You probably have Visa or MasterCard gift cards laying around with balances too low to shop with. Instead of leaving them in a drawer, transfer the balances (50 cents or above) to Amazon. It’s a wee bit tricky, but here’s how to do it: Proceed as if you were buying an Amazon gift card (or click on “Reload Your Balance”), choose “enter amount” instead of clicking on one of the set quantity boxes, and enter the gift card account number as the payment method. Bingo — you now have Amazon credit to shop with.

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3. Don’t Ignore Warehouse Deals …

If you turn up your nose at the open-box and pre-owned items in Amazon’s Warehouse Deals section, you may be missing out on a great bargain. The discounts can be substantial, and you have 30 days to decide whether what you’ve received is a keeper.

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4. … or Amazon’s Outlet

The Outlet is kind of like the clearance rack in your favorite store. It’s hit or miss, but these are items that Amazon is trying to clear out, so the discounts can be great (from 20% to 80%).

5. Enroll in Prime Student

If you’re in school, enjoy free two-day shipping for six months through the Prime Student program. If you want all the other benefits that come with Prime, you can then snag a Prime membership for 50% off after a six-month trial period.

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6. Give to Charity

Why not give back while you shop? Courtesy of AmazonSmile, 0.5% of eligible Amazon Prime purchases can be donated to the participating charity or school of your choice.

(Peter Dazeley via Getty Images)

7. Fill ‘Er Up

If you are not a Prime member, sometimes it’s a challenge to get your order to that $35 free shipping threshold without going way over. The Filler Item finder provides low-cost suggestions to help you get there.

(Emmanuel Faure via Getty Images)

8. Hold Onto Damaged Merchandise

If something you’ve ordered arrives in less-than-perfect condition, Amazon will replace it through their Online Returns Center and may not require you to send it back, especially if it’s inexpensive. And if the item is salvageable, you’ve scored! Let’s say you receive a bottle of household cleaner with a faulty pump. You can just hang on to it and switch the pump once you’ve finished the replacement.

(Jan Stromme via Getty Images)

9. Join Amazon Family 

Expecting moms and parents who are also Amazon Prime members can get 20% off Subscribe & Save diapers with the Amazon Family program. There’s also a 15% discount on all baby registry gifts within 60 days of your due date.

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10. Take Advantage of Late Deliveries

You usually get your packages on time with your Prime Membership, but if there’s a time that you don’t, let them know. It’s very likely they will offer you something, like a credit to your account or an extension of your Prime membership.

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11. Try Subscribe & Save

Subscribe & Save users can receive up to 15% off their items and free shipping. I use Subscribe & Save for my toilet paper, paper towels and a few different vitamins, and the price is definitely right. Before subscribing, do your homework and compare prices with your price club and grocery/drug stores. I like how you can specify when you want items to ship, so your essentials arrive right when you need them. One less thing to think about!

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12. Use Promo Codes & Coupons

Amazon does promo codes and coupons too. If you’re shopping for groceries on Amazon, be on the lookout for coupons and codes that can be applied to your purchase. They are typically on the main product page, and once you’ve clicked on them, they will appear in your cart.

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13. Save an Extra 5%

You may not feel like you need another credit card — and you may not — but with the Amazon Store Card, Prime Members can get 5% back on all purchases. Like other store cards, the annual percentage rate (APR) is not fabulous, so if you go for this card, plan to pay it off every month. Otherwise, the 5% reward will be meaningless.

(Not sure whether you can qualify for the credit card? You can view a free snapshot of your credit report, updated every two weeks, on Credit.com.)

(Nicholas Rigg via Getty Images)

14. Watch for Lower Prices

You may have noticed that Amazon has pretty fluid pricing. If you see that something you purchased sold by Amazon LLC has dropped in price, Amazon will usually honor the lower price by giving you a credit or gift card. Live chat seems to be a reliable way to get this done. A good way to keep track of Amazon pricing in general is with CamelCamelCamel price tracker.

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