Henderson Wholesale has launched 13 new products for the professionally handmade The Chef range.

It brings the number of recipes developed for the range to over 50, with this latest expansion including health-conscious bowls which will be made fresh every day using the best fresh ingredients.

The Chef was launched with a half a million-pound investment in November 2019, bringing 14 new jobs to Henderson’s new kitchen facilities in Randalstown, headed up by SPAR NI’s Executive Chef, Carl Johannesson who has previous experience with the James Street South Group.

Now, three new staff have joined The Chef kitchen, and the Fresh Team will invest a further £100,000 developing the site and its equipment in the next year.

Neal Kelly, Fresh Foods Director at Henderson Group which owns the SPAR and EUROSPAR franchises in Northern Ireland says; “Over the past few months, the way we’ve been buying and cooking food has changed dramatically. With fewer options for takeaway and eating out not looking likely for the foreseeable, shoppers have turned to higher quality pre-prepared meals that takes the work out of prepping a tasty meal.

“The Chef was launched to great success, which has led to the expansion and diversification of the range. We have conducted research and know our shoppers are looking for something lighter as we move into the summer season. It’s an opportunity for us to compete within the meal-plan market and help those who are following a calorie or portion-controlled diet to stay on track with added convenience.”

The Under 500 calorie range is made up of Beef Chilli, Chicken Tikka, Katsu Chicken Curry and Sweet Potato Coconut Curry all served with with rice and spinach, plus noodle dishes including Sliced Chicken Noodles with Spinach and Thai Sauce, and Pulled Pork and Smoky Mixed Bean Chilli with Spinach and Noodles. Each is served in recyclable bowls and perfectly portioned for one.

The team is also continuing to work in partnership with local suppliers including K&G McAtamney, Bradmount Foods, Daily Bake and Elmore Fish.

The seven new products additional to the new Under 500 calorie range are Katsu Chicken Curry, Crispy Potatoes with Sweet Pepper and Chorizo, Chicken and Bacon Chowder, Crispy Potatoes with Beef Chilli and Cheese, Corn Chowder, Peri Peri Chicken with Sweet and Sour Peppers and Spicy Beef in Black Bean Sauce.

Neal finished; “our shoppers can be assured that these are quality meals, handmade locally in our own kitchen with a professional finesse. Each Under 500 calorie meal is portion controlled to ensure the correct amount of protein and carbohydrates to make a well-rounded meal.”

The Chef is available in selected SPAR and EUROSPAR stores and supermarkets now. For further information, behind the scenes and supplier videos, visit eurosparni.co.uk/thechef.