Nutritional Information

The nutritional information supplied on our recipes is based on theoretical data and cooked weight. Nutrient values may vary from those published and are based on the lower number of servings. They do not include extras such as optional bacon, or serving suggestions such as custard or ice cream, unless the amount is quantified, such as "1 tablespoon yogurt to serve". Where you see the description "season" or "a pinch" of salt, we will have accounted for 2g of salt, 1g for a "light seasoning" or "small pinch". For recipes which serve 2 or less these amounts will be halved. Where regular household measures aren't stated for olive oil, our nutrition figures will have accounted for 7ml of olive oil for a drizzle, 4ml for a splash, 10ml for a lug and 20ml for a good lug or glug.

Health and nutrition claims

Our conditions for a healthy recipe meet specific criteria set by us. For example, a healthy main meal would contain less than 35% of an adult's Reference Intake for calories, less than 30% of an adult’s Reference Intake for saturated fat, and less than 25% Reference intake for salt. Recipes for side dishes, starters, drinks, and desserts all have their own nutritional targets. At the other end of the scale, there are some naughtier recipes that may be more indulgent and high in calories, sugar, salt or saturated fat. These recipes can be part of a healthy and active lifestyle, there is no such thing as "good" or "bad" foods, it’s everything in moderation. It is important however to be mindful when making your choices. Please note that nutrition claims made on individual ingredients are based on EU health claim regulations unless otherwise specified. For information regarding quantities of nutrients per 100g where claims are made, please refer to McCance and Widdowson's Composition of Foods 7th Edition.

Child specific recipes

Child-friendly recipes are based on the same criteria but using the previously recommended GDAs for a 7-10 year old. We utilise the previous GDAs for children's recipes as no guidance or provision has been given by the European commission for children. Salt is something that we have to be extremely careful about when cooking for children, because too much salt in their diet can be especially harmful. For this reason we only season with a tiny pinch, which equates to 0.5g of salt, and we have published nutritional information based on this. In addition to this, where salty ingredients are used in children’s dishes we try to avoid any added salt. The recipes do not state whether to use whole-fat dairy products. We leave that up to the cook to decide, but we recommend that semi-skimmed milk and natural or fat-free yoghurt are used for children over the age of two, unless they’re underweight. For this reason, we have based our nutritional analysis on these lower-fat dairy options. In children of different age and gender there is a variation in energy level requirements and nutrient recommendations, therefore our targets are based on guidelines only, as the Department of Health have stated that there are no children’s reference intakes. Wherever adult recipes are used for children, you should be aware that seasoning and serving sizes should be adjusted accordingly, and recipes that contain a lot of naturally salty ingredients should be avoided. Our children’s dishes will abide by these guidelines on an international basis unless otherwise specified.

Cooking with alcohol

In a variety of our recipes, alcohol is traditionally used in many dishes to add flavour e.g. risottos, guinness and cider based stews. Although the majority of alcohol is cooked off, traces may remain but not in amounts that would be harmful to a child. If you are cooking for an infant (under 2), then remove the alcohol or replace with stock or a fresh, unsweetened fruit or vegetable juice.

Nutrition messaging

Our Nutrition messaging and educational resources have been written in accordance with UK government guidelines. Nutrition advice in other countries will vary.

Recipe categories

Specific targets are created for individual categories of recipes (such as special diets, light meals and so on) please see below for the qualifying criteria for these categories:

Special diet recipes

Gluten-free recipes

All of our gluten-free recipes exclude ingredients deemed by the NHS to be unsafe for people who suffer from coeliac disease, an autoimmune disease caused by intolerance to gluten. Foods that contain wheat, barley, rye and oats (i.e. bread, pasta, cereals, biscuits, crackers, cakes, pastries and pies) have been excluded from this category, as have foods that regularly contain flour. These include sausages, mustards, stock cubes, soy sauces, shredded suet and malt vinegar. We advise those who follow a gluten-free diet to always check food labels thoroughly, as even some additives can contain gluten.

Vegetarian recipes (Lacto-ovo-vegetarians)

All of our vegetarian recipes are based on guidelines from The Vegetarian Society ( and exclude all products that contain "any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish or any by-product of slaughter". This category includes recipes that contain dairy products, eggs and Parmesan (refer to Bookhams Foods for a Parmesan vegetarian alternative at While our vegetarian recipe selection includes recipes containing suet, we advise those following a vegetarian diet to replace these with vegetarian alternatives, available in most supermarkets. We also advise people to always check cheese food labels to ensure they are made with vegetarian rennet.

Vegan recipes

All of our vegan recipes exclude all products taken from animals. These include any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish, by-products of slaughter or any foods that come directly from killing an animal, such as fats and gelatine. This category also excludes recipes containing dairy products, eggs and honey. For further information, refer to:

Dairy-free recipes

All of our dairy-free recipes exclude ingredients deemed by the NHS to be unsafe for people who are lactose intolerant or allergic to dairy products. This category excludes recipes containing milk, yoghurt, cheese, cream, crème fraïche, butter and any other ingredients commonly containing dairy. This category does not exclude recipes containing eggs.

A note on cooking with allergies

The allergens in some food products, which contain more than one ingredient, can vary from one food manufacturer to the next. Where these products appear in our recipes, we make a judgement on a case-by-case basis, usually based on the most popular brand on the market. As a result, the allergens listed may vary, depending on the type and brand of ingredients you use. If you have an allergy, it's important that you always check the label on all food packaging. You are advised to assess your own level of risk. We cannot accept any liability in this respect. Allergen, ingredient and nutritional information provided on our website or in our recipes should not be considered any form of guarantee but a best faith effort to provide you with information. You should use this information to assist you in assessing your own level of risk to any allergen based on your own personal circumstances prior to preparing and consuming any of our recipes.