Tesco unveils new City Kitchen ready meals range

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Tesco is trying to challenge the perception that ready meals are intrinsically unhealthy with the launch of a new premium range of chilled dishes.

The retailer is trialling a six-strong range of upmarket ethnic meals under a new tertiary brand, City Kitchen, which it trademarked in May.

The range, which is made by Irish chilled food supplier Kerry Foods, comprises King Prawn Linguine, Moroccan Spiced Giant Cous-Cous, Chorizo Paella, Spaghetti Carbonara, Six-Mushroom Stroganoff and Chicken Tandoori Sizzler. Prices range from £3.12 to £4.16 for the 385g tubs.

Tesco is targeting City Kitchen at on-the-go professionals and the trial is being rolled out across 17 Tesco Express stores located in affluent areas of London, such as St John’s Wood, Belsize Park and Fulham Palace.

A Tesco spokesman said the range would be rolled out across other Express stores if the trial was a success.

The meals are free of artificial ingredients and additives. There was a gap in the market for a new range of chilled, convenient ready meals made with quality ingredients, said the spokesman.

“This launch is not about the packaging. It’s very simple: it’s all about the food,” he said. “The current range of ready meals in Tesco is so vast – you can get something from unhealthy to extremely healthy. If you went over to someone in the street and asked what they think of ready meals, many have a perception that they are unhealthy and processed. What we are trying to do is just to get rid of this myth. The City Kitchen range is convenient, healthy and fresh.”

Meanwhile, Asda has confirmed it is working on a new range of ready meals, called Little Lunches. The retailer said it was too early to provide details but that the “concept was planned for launch next year”.

Asda boss Andy Bond told The Grocer two months ago that the retailer was considering launching children’s meals in the next 12 months.

Readers' comments (21)

  • Had the King Prawn Chicken & Chorizo Paella for supper last night,3 bits of chicken,2 prawns 2 bits of chorizo,rest made up of rice,onions,and lots & lots of peppers.Waste of money.Tescos Finest is much better.

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  • @Linda. What exactly were you expecting from a Tesco's King Prawn, Chicken and Chorizo Paella? half a Lobster perhaps? some fresh oysters? A spanish waiter bringing it to you directly from Spain?

    For what it is, it's fine. it's fast to cook and it's tasty. enough said really.

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  • This range of food is great - I've recently returned from travelling throughout asia and have taken a liking to the food - it's good to see a big supermarket producing tasty and relatively healthy food for a very reasonable price. I've not found better yet.

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  • Sorry I found the Prawn Linguine sundried tomatoes & chili pretty bland. I bought 3 portions and we all said the same thing.!

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  • Had the King Prawn Chicken & Chorizo Paella last night was enjoying until i very nearly broke a tooth and choked on a piece of chicken bone left in the piece of chicken, googled The City Kitchen to try find telephone number to report and complain to be more careful when preparing before someone else is less fortunate. so to whom it may concern would appreciate feedback please

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  • I have had the veggie curry and think it is one of the best I have ever tried. But the packaging is very poor: leaks if overturned. Similarly, could not find where to complain about this.. Also very disappointed there are not other veggie options of this range available.

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  • I have this range in the tecos express in st pauls. All of my staff eat it for there lunch and absolutely love it! I am absolutely addicted to the king prawn red thai curry! better than the one i had in Jamie Olivers Kitchen across the road!

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  • We had one of The City Meals tonight - Asparagus and Pea Ravioli - and it was simply delicious! Way, way ahead of what is served in many of the "smart" Italian restaurants! Carluccio eat your heart out!!

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  • Had malaysian curry yesterday and bangers and mash today. Soooo tasty, best meals (including my cooking) for ages. Post op and not able to manage heavy pans etc so stocked up on ready meals, these are so good think will be a permanent fixture.
    Wtg City Kitchen on titillating my jaded taste buds. Tesco, every time I find something nice you stop selling it PLEASE do not do it with these xxx

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  • Have been eating these for quite some time now, well worth the extra price, they're healthy, fulling and great tasting! south indian sweet potato and chicken curry is my favourite!

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