We recently created carbon labels for some of the nation’s favourite dishes to show you their respective carbon footprint.

From our research, we were able to work out the CO2e of each dish (including the production, distribution and cooking). The numbers reflected that meat dishes generally produce a higher amount of CO2e, whereas vegetable based recipes had a considerably lower carbon footprint.

After our analysis, we collaborated with two eco-bloggers to show how we can still enjoy our favourite meals while being environmentally friendly. They have provided alternative recipes for anyone looking to create low-carbon dishes at home.

Vegan Fish and Chips

It’s the tasty Friday night treat that Brits have been enjoying for decades. This staple recipe has always included fish such as cod or haddock, but thanks to Lowly Food, the classic dish can now be made to suit a vegan, more eco-friendly diet.

The recipe contains ingredients such as Banana Blossom and Nori, which help to replicate some of the tastes from the original dish. But most importantly, by removing the main ingredient of fish from the recipe, the updated version is around 90 per cent less polluting and will save around 2.64 kg CO2e per person.

Vegan Sunday Roast

A roast dinner is one of Britain's most versatile dishes. It can be served with a variety of meats, vegetables and potatoes; but this meal often carries a high CO2e label.

With the help of Lowly Food, a low carbon recipe has been created which means we can now enjoy this hearty dish with a reduced impact on the environment.

The low carbon recipe includes roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings and harissa roast cauliflower which is packed with flavour. Opting to use this recipe instead of the normal Sunday Roast version will mean your dish is around 86% less polluting and and saves around 2.50 kg CO2e per person; which is equivalent to the emissions produced driving 20.60 km in a modern car.

Vegan Bolognese

This Italian classic is loved by foodies from all over the world. A typical recipe will include beef mince as the main ingredient, but for a low carbon, meat-free option, you may want to try this tasty alternative from Lowly Food.

This mouth-watering recipe sees minced beef being replaced by lentils, which are accompanied by a selection of vegetables and herbs. These simple changes mean that the recipe reduces the carbon levels by around 86 per cent and saves around 2.50 kg CO2e per person.

To put these numbers into perspective, that's equivalent to the emissions produced driving 20.60 km in a modern car; so you can see how much of an impact these simple swaps can have.

Vegan Full English

It’s the preferred breakfast choice for millions of people not only in the UK, but across the world as well. A typical full English will feature ingredients such as bacon, eggs, sausages and beans; but with all of these ingredients comes a high level of carbon emissions.

To give this classic a more eco-friendly twist, the Lowly Food alternative is meat-free and packed with nutritious flavour. The dish, which is around 87 per cent less polluting than the classic full English, contains scrambled tofu, tempeh bacon and fried potato slices.

Packed with a variety of nutritious ingredients and delicious flavours, you can enjoy this meal while knowing the recipe will save around 2.58 kg CO2e per person; which totals the same amount of emissions produced driving 21.04 km in a modern car.

Vegan Shepherd's Pie

It’s the winter warmer we all like to enjoy during the colder months. Typically this recipe would include lamb mince as the main ingredient of the base of the dish, topped with a generous portion of mashed potato. Although it’s a tasty recipe loved by millions of people across the country; we want to share Eco Green Love’s version with you which is low carbon and meat-free.This dish replaces meat with copious amounts of lentils, chickpeas, mushrooms and celery.

The important thing to understand about this recipe and the others we have featured, is that you don’t have to sacrifice flavour just because you have swapped meat for alternative low-carbon ingredients.

The amount of CO2e that each meal produces may have never crossed your mind, but when it comes to the environment, every step in the right direction helps. We want to know what you think of the low carbon recipes we’ve featured and if you have any of your own to share.


Join in the conversation on social, using #CarbonLabelling.

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