Why does your packaging look different?
You may have noticed our packaging looks a bit different to usual. The cardboard we use is in short supply at the moment, but we’re hoping to have our normal outer sleeves back soon. Don’t worry though, the recipe, ingredients and careful cooking are still the same as ever.
Why don’t you supply gas cooking instructions?
We have recently removed this information from our packaging as we found that gas ovens are far too variable in temperature. As customer safety remains of utmost importance at Charlie Bigham’s we felt on this occasion this was the right move.
However, following customer feedback, we will be putting this information back on our packaging as soon as we can. In the meantime, you can find all gas cooking instructions under each separate dish on our website.
How do I cook your meals once they have been frozen?
As a general rule, we recommend that all of our dishes are cooked from fresh to enjoy the optimum taste, but most dishes except for those containing rice are able to be frozen. To cook our dishes once you have frozen them, please ensure you have thoroughly defrosted the dish in the fridge, and then follow the instructions on the back of our packaging in the usual way. Please ensure that the dish is piping hot throughout before eating.
Please note that our dishes cannot be cooked directly from frozen.
Why have you changed the ceramic pie pots?
New ceramics for the planet! We are committed to being as environmentally friendly as possible in everything we do, and that includes our packaging. We’re using a new design of ceramic pot made from a clay source closer to the pottery. In addition, the new pot is also 50% more energy efficient to make.
For more information about our environmental commitment, information about our packaging and how we make our food, please visit here
Please do let us know your views on our new, lower impact packaging at email@example.com
Can I recycle your packaging?
Yes absolutely! We are always looking at ways we can be environmentally friendly. Here is the best way to recycle your dishes:
Wooden Trays – Our wooden trays are bio-degradable but not fully compostable, so this means that they will compost over a period of time, but cannot be recycled as such. Many of our customers like to tell us how they can be re-used. For example, they make great seed planters and serving trays! We would love to see what you do with yours – do let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ceramic pots – Whilst our ceramic pots cannot be recycled, we have found that many local charity shops will accept these. We’ve also found some animal rescue charities do really appreciate these, as they can be used as water and food bowls for some of their smaller residents. They can also be re-purposed in every way imaginable, from candle holders, to jewellery trinkets, to nut and seed serving dishes!
Cardboard Sleeve/box – can be recycled with your usual household paper and cardboard
Plastic Film – can be recycled at plastic bag collection points
Foil – can be recycled with your usual household metal packaging
I’m a vegetarian – are any of your dishes meat free?
We are delighted to announce that we have an excellent range of vegetarian dishes. These include our Spinach & Ricotta Cannelloni, Cauliflower Macaroni Cheese, Sweet Potato & Bean Chilli with Mexican Rice, Vegetable Lasagne, Mushroom Risotto, Vegetarian Cottage Pie with Sweet Potato Mash, and Cauliflower and Paneer Curry with Spinach, Chickpea and Lentil Dhal.
To discover more about our vegetarian dishes, including a full list of ingredients and serving suggestions, please visit here
We think these are absolutely delicious so if you do get a chance to try them, we’d love to know what you think!
I can’t eat gluten – which dishes can I have?
We do not add any ingredients containing gluten to the following recipes: Chicken Jalfrezi, Paella with Chicken, King Prawns and Chorizo, Chicken Korma, Chicken Tikka Masala, Thai Red Chicken Curry, Thai Green Chicken Curry, Spanish Chicken & Roasted Potatoes
However, please bear in mind that other dishes cooked in the same kitchen do have gluten in them.
Also as our recipes can change from time to time, we recommend double checking the back of our packaging before purchase.
I can’t eat dairy – which dishes can I have?
We don’t add any ingredients containing dairy to the following recipes:
Spanish Chicken, Thai Red Chicken Curry and our Paella.
…that said, we do make other dishes that do contain dairy in the same kitchen.
Also as our recipes can change from time to time, we recommend double checking the back of our packaging before purchase.
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 shepherds 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, please do get in touch at email@example.com.
And by the way, just to let you know our ramekins, being pottery, are recyclable in the hardcore section of your local tip, and many charity shops take them.
Who is Charlie Bigham?
Charlie is the clever chap behind all of our food. He was inspired to start the company 25 years ago 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. Our dishes can be found in Waitrose, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Booths, Budgens and Co-Op stores. They are also available on Amazon Fresh, Gorillas and Zapp for online quick delivery.
You can also check our ‘Where to buy’ page here for your nearest Charlie Bigham’s retailer. Type in your postcode to find your nearest store!
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 where 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. For example, we can trace each and every chicken back to the exact farm where it was born and the feed is a nutritious mix of whole grains. We are proud that our chickens are reared in the UK and EU according to a scheme similar to the UK’s Red Tractor Farm Assurance Poultry Scheme. As part of this scheme, our supplier is independently audited and audited by ourselves to ensure the high welfare and quality standards we have always adhered to are maintained.
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.
Can I freeze your dishes?
As passionate believers in creating the very tastiest food, we think that fresh food is the best food. As such we do not recommend freezing our food if you want to enjoy it at its very best.
However, we appreciate that some of our customers do occasionally choose to freeze our food. If you do choose to freeze our dishes, then please freeze on the day of purchase, defrost thoroughly in a fridge before cooking, and then follow the cooking instructions as normal and remember that 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).
Where does your meat come from?
With regards to our pork, the majority is British and from Red Tractor approved farms. The only exception to this is for our cured meats. For example, our chorizo, prosciutto, and pancetta are sourced from Spain and Italy, where they are originally from. All of our beef is British and our lamb is sourced from New Zealand.
Where does your fish come from?
When it comes to fish, we are very careful about the source to ensure that it is as sustainable as possible. We will only accept a sustainable and environmentally sound way of fishing and farming, both for ethical reasons and because it means the fish is of better quality. Our salmon is farmed in the Faroe Islands and is ASC accredited, and our cod and smoked haddock are fished in the Barents Sea and are MSC accredited.
I hear you do puddings now, what are they?
Yes we do indeed! We launched our pudding range in February 2020. After listening to lots of our customers asking us to do puddings, we have created 6 proper puds for you to enjoy: Chocolate Fondant, Sticky Toffee Pudding, Cherry Bakewell, Bread and Butter Pudding and Lemon Drizzle pudding. For more information on our pudding range and list of ingredients please visit our pudding page here
I have a question, how do I contact you?
Please do contact us. At Charlie Bigham’s, as ever, customer satisfaction is of paramount importance. We are available from Monday – Friday from 9am-5pm, excluding weekends and Bank Holidays. There are four ways to reach us:
By email: firstname.lastname@example.org or via our feedback form here
By phone: – 020 8453 9898
By letter:- Bigham’s, Coriander House, 2 McNichol Drive, London. NW10 7AW
Social Media – Facebook / Instagram / Twitter
Are any of your dishes vegan friendly?
Currently we do not have any vegan friendly meals in our range, but Charlie is always looking at new recipes and how we can improve, so if you have an idea for a recipe, please get in contact with us at email@example.com
Where can I find allergy information?
On each of our dishes, you will find allergens clearly printed in bold under the list of ingredients on the back of our packaging.
What is your policy on animal welfare?
All our animal products are sourced from suppliers that we trust and who we know meet the welfare standards of our business.
Do you do mini meals/smaller portion dishes?
Whilst we do not do mini meals as such, many of our most popular dishes are available for one as well as for two. to see our current meals for one, please visit us here to find the latest information
Are your eggs pasteurised ?
Yes. We use pasteurised free range egg yolks and whites that are sourced from farms that have the British lion stamp. In addition, the pasteurisation of the egg raw materials and the cooking process at Charlie Bigham’s also removes the risk of any salmonella.
Why do you use Soya Lethicin in chocolate?
Soya Lethicin is commonly found in chocolate dishes, and is added to lower the thickness of the chocolate during the tempering process to help make it more workable when setting. Without this ingredient, the chocolate tends to go very hard.
Does your Fish Pie contain shellfish/crustaceans ?
No, our Fish Pie is made with salmon, smoked haddock, and cod and topped with a creamy mash and sauce. We have kept the fish content the same since we started making this dish, without the addition of seafood, as we find that the vast majority of our customers prefer it this way. This also assists those of our customers who have a seafood allergy.
Are your ceramic dishes dishwasher safe?
Yes they are! But just in case there is any water left in the dishes after the dishwasher cycle, these should be thoroughly dried before storing. The reason for this is because moisture can build up and cause mould if they are not thoroughly dried.