Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis of 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 optional extras such as 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 that serve 2 or less, these amounts will be halved. We don’t include “season to taste” or “season to perfection” in our analysis.

Where regular household measures aren’t stated for olive oil, our nutrition figures will have accounted for 20ml of olive oil for a good lug or glug, 10ml for a lug, 7ml for a drizzle, and 4ml for a splash

Children’s recipes

Recipes created specifically for children 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, as well as using UK School Food Standards. 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 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 has 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.

Healthier recipes

Our healthier recipes contain at least three of the four food groups and one portion of veg (at the very least). They must contain less than 30% of your recommended daily calories, saturated fat, sugar and salt. We monitor portion size and make sure recipes are within the green or amber colour-coded scale for saturated fat, salt and sugar. At the other end of the scale, there are some less healthy recipes that may be more indulgent and higher 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.

Health and nutrition claims

Please note that nutrition and health 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 or USDA ingredient data. 5-a-day information is based on UK guidance for what counts towards a portion.

Cooking with salt

Salt is one of the oldest ingredients and is used all over the world to season food. It brings out the flavour in food, but it is also used to preserve food and make it last longer. Although we need a small amount of salt in our diets for bodily functions, there is a strong link between consuming too much salt and bad health. If you’re aware that you need to reduce your salt intake, you can choose not to add extra seasoning when cooking.

Cooking with alcohol

In a variety of our recipes, alcohol is traditionally used in many dishes to add flavour e.g. risottos and 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’re cooking for an infant (under two), don’t add the alcohol or swap it for 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.

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 can 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.

Vegan recipes

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

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 fraîche, 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 that 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.