Jamie washes some dishes during his school dinners campaign

Rustling up delicious, nutritious food is a great way to support your community. Whether you’re cooking for your local NHS heroes, community centre, neighbours or beyond – these recipes will serve you well. All of these dishes are perfect for batch cooking and can be scaled up or down depending on what you need – serving sizes range from 25 portions to over 200.

Taken from Jamie’s successful School Dinners campaign back in 2005, these tried-and-tested recipes were created with fresh, tasty and affordable ingredients in mind. The portions were designed for primary- and secondary-aged kids, so just use them as a guide if cooking for adults.

We know they were a big hit back in the day, so cook up a batch, portion it up, and spread some joy – you’re guaranteed to put a smile on someone’s face.

Tomato base sauce

Tomato sauce in a big saucepan

The beauty of this sauce is that it’s jam-packed with loads of gorgeous veg, making it not only nutritious, but super-versatile. It’s a great freezer staple, and a recipe you can come back to again and again.

Download the tomato sauce recipe

White saucewhite sauce in a skillet

Brilliant for making dishes feel rich and creamy, this simple Béchamel sauce is perfect for everything, from fish pie to mac ’n’ cheese, to a classic parsley sauce and, of course, lasagne. 

Download the white sauce recipe


Lasagne with salad

There’s nothing quite as comforting as a lasagne – the combination of a beautiful white sauce, a rich ragù, and soft sheets of pasta is hard to beat. 

Download the lasagne recipe

Chilli con carne 

Chilli con carne in a saucepan

A good old chilli con carne always goes down a storm and is so flexible – serve with fluffy white rice and a mixed leaf salad, with baked sweet or regular potatoes, or with toasted tortillas, smashed avo and zingy salsa on the side. 

Download the chilli con carne recipes

Spaghetti Bolognese 

A saucepan of ragu

Make this super-useful Bolognese sauce your own by mixing up the ingredients. Bulk up the sauce with extra seasonal veg – it’s great for using those odds and ends.

Download the spaghetti Bolognese recipe

Chicken tikka masala 

Chicken tikka masala with rice and salad

Full of fragrant spices, this delicious curry can be made with a variety of meat or veg,  and is sure to make people very happy. 

Download the chicken tikka masala recipe

Cool Mexican bean wraps 

Mexican bean wrap

A real crowd-pleaser, these colourful Mexican-inspired bean wraps are perfect served with a mixed leaf salad and a dollop of crunchy coleslaw. 

Download the cool Mexican bean wraps recipe

Looking for more community-cooking inspiration? Check out more recipes here, all of which can be scaled up to 50 portions! 


Basics, How to