Fray Bentos brings out new recipes – thanks to a MasterChef

The pie’s the limit: Queen’s favourite ready meal Fray Bentos brings out new recipes – after turning to MasterChef semi-finalist for inspiration

  • Fray Bentos annoyed fans three years ago by cutting meat amount to save costs
  • Queen enjoyed the pies on long-haul flights in 1990s, according to her ex-pilot
  • Darren Sivewright, semi-finalist on MasterChef in 2015, works at Fray Bentos – and has come up with new recipes, including one for steak and gravy 

Fray Bentos, makers of the iconic tinned meat pies, is set to have a MasterChef recipe overhaul – in a move that will no doubt delight the Queen.

It is understood that Her Majesty loved to tuck into the pies on long-haul flights during the 1990s rather than ‘all that fancy food’, her former pilot told The Sun.

However, sales have been in a state of flux in recent years – dipping as people moved away from salty, fatty foods, but seeing a resurgence as consumers stockpile meat treats over fears of Brexit food shortages.

And three years ago, the company outraged pie fans by cutting the amount of meat to save costs. 

Now, Darren Sivewright, a semi-finalist on MasterChef in 2015 who currently works at Fray Bentos, has come up with some new tinned varieties to keep the customer satisfied. 

Fray Bentos, makers of the iconic tinned meat pies, is set to have a MasterChef recipe overhaul – in a move that will no doubt delight The Queen

Over the past six months, he and his team have perfected new recipes for steak and gravy, just chicken, steak and kidney, along with a vegetarian cheese and onion choice, the paper reported.

Fray Bentos takes its names from the port in cow-rearing country Uruguay, where it was originally produced

Fray Bentos takes its names from the port in cow-rearing country Uruguay, where it was originally produced.

It has a special place in the hearts of millions of Brits, many of whom have a tin lurking at the back of their kitchen cupboards for emergencies.

Fray Bentos tinned steak and kidney pies first hit supermarket shelves in 1961.

Since then, the popular pie range has expanded to include chicken pies, minced beef pies, chilli beef pie and a range of other options. 

Last year, Fray Bentos went vegetarian for the first time in its 140-year history.

And since the coronavirus pandemic, Fray Bentos meatballs have featured in the Government’s emergency food parcels for the vulnerable. 

The brand, founded in 1881 and owned by Baxters since 2011, launched its first ever meat-free snack in 2019 – with hungry customers able to pick one up for just £1.

The Vegetarian Balti is packed with potato, onion, red pepper, tomato, carrot and peas in a spicy balti sauce, topped with puff pastry, and is ready to eat after 25 minutes in the oven. 

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