Frequently Asked Questions
If you’ve got a question for us, you might well find the answer below. If not, do get in touch. We’re always up for a chat.
Can you freeze our food?
All of our dishes are made with fresh ingredients, so we know they taste their very best when cooked from fresh.
If you do wish to freeze your dish check the back of pack; not all of our dishes can be frozen (as a rule, any of our dishes that are creamy or with rice aren’t suitable for freezing). If you do plan to freeze your dish, please pop it straight in the freezer on the day you buy it and eat it within one month. To cook, defrost the dish fully – a day in a fridge is should do it – and then follow the cooking instructions on the pack.
Can you recycle our packaging?
The cardboard sleeve and plastic film are both recyclable. Unfortunately, our wooden trays are not recyclable but are suitable for the garden waste bin and compost. Many others use them for kindling or growing their own herbs!
I’m a vegetarian – are any of your dishes meat free?
We make a delicious Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni available in Waitrose, Ocado and Booths. You’ll also find two vegetarian dishes in our brand new World of Grains range: Cauliflower & Paneer Curry and Roasted Aubergine & Halloumi. At the moment they’re available in larger Waitrose stores and online through Ocado.
We’re also always looking at new recipes, so if you do have any lovely vegetarian dishes you think we should make, do let us know.
I can’t eat gluten – which dishes can I have?
We don’t add any ingredients containing gluten to the following recipes: Breton Chicken, Moroccan Chicken Tagine, Thai Green Chicken Curry, Thai Red Chicken Curry, Chicken Tikka Masala, Chicken Korma, Chicken Jalfrezi, Beef Stroganoff, Paella, and Spanish Chicken.
…but please bear in mind that other dishes cooked in the same kitchen do have gluten in them.
I don’t do dairy – which dishes can I have?
We don’t add any ingredients containing dairy to the following recipes:
Vietnamese Chicken Curry, Spanish Chicken, Thai Red Chicken Curry and our Paella.
…that said, we do make other dishes that do contain dairy in the same kitchen.
What can I do with my leftover ramekins?
Once you have polished off your pies there are lots of fantastic ways to reuse your ramekins. Here are some of our favourites:
Plant pots for herbs. Dishes for pre-dinner nibbles and dips. Individual Yorkshire pudding dishes.
A brilliant way to cook and serve shepherd’s pies, or apple crumbles.
Finger bowls (just add hot water and a slice of lemon). Sous-chef dishes (add your chopped ingredients and get organised in the kitchen.)
If you have any other ideas, do let us know. And by the way: our ramekins, being pottery, aren’t recyclable.
Who is Charlie Bigham?
Charlie is the clever chap behind all of our food. He was inspired to start the company after his travels around the world, where many of his best meals were created from a handful of fresh ingredients tossed into a pan.
Where can I buy Charlie Bigham’s dishes?
An excellent question and one we’re glad you’ve asked. Check our ‘Where to buy’ page for the latest info on who stocks us.
Where do your ingredients come from?
Every single ingredient that we use in our dishes, ranging from meat and poultry to vegetables and spices, is very carefully chosen from a handful of trusted suppliers, many of whom we have worked with for several years, and the quality is extremely high.
The way we see it, if the ingredients are fantastic, our job is far simpler. If you have any queries about specific ingredients, do get in touch.
Is your chicken free range?
Our chicken is not free range. For us, finding the right chicken isn’t simply about choosing free range, it’s about working closely with suppliers we know and trust. It’s about quality, provenance and traceability. We can trace each and every chicken back to the exact farm where it was born. The feed is a nutritious mix of whole grains, and we can trace this back to the farm that produced it, too. Welfare is top of our agenda and our chickens are reared in The Netherlands in littered houses with enriched environments, which include perches and scratching stations, similar to the UK’s Red Tractor Farm Assurance Poultry Scheme. Not only do we carefully audit our supplier on a regular basis, we have them independently audited too, just to be sure. They don’t seem to mind!
Where do you source your palm oil from?
We make sure all of our ingredients are sourced responsibly. The palm oil we use is Certified Sustainable Palm Oil (CSPO), which is the highest grade of responsibly sourced palm oil available and it’s endorsed by the WWF as one of the founder stakeholders in the scheme. The entire supply chain is segregated from the rest of the industry and as such even the refineries are ‘green’ and don’t process any other type of palm oil.
How many people does each pack serve?
Most of our dishes serve two hungry grown-ups when served with some creamy mashed potato, a nice salad, or maybe some simple boiled rice. For ideas on what goes well with each dish, just follow the link on the product pages. We now also offer a small range of our dishes in a ‘perfect for one’ size.
What are the holes/perforations around my dish?
Rest assured, the small line of perforations that you’re referring to are in fact meant to be there. There needs to be small pin pricks in the cellophane wrapping of our curries to stop the wrap from opening up.