Remembering The Hairy Bikers' best-ever recipes

The best of The Bikers



Loved for their unique blend of foodie expertise, warm humour and infectious enthusiasm for pretty much everything, British duo David Myers and Si King – known collectively as The Hairy Bikers – travelled the world on their motorbikes, spawning more than 30 cookbooks and countless food-focused TV shows. Sadly, in February 2024, Dave (pictured on the left) passed away after a long battle with cancer, leaving fans around the world utterly heartbroken. Here, we gather some of the duo's best recipes – and celebrate their most memorable moments.

Read on to discover 20 of The Hairy Bikers' best-ever recipes.

Southern-style chicken wings



For the 2012 series The Hairy Bikers' Mississippi Adventure, Si and Dave revved up their motorbikes for a road trip along the length of the Mississippi River, exploring the roots of soul food and Southern music. These succulent chicken wings are cooked in sweet and spicy Creole seasoning and were inspired by their travels around America. We love them served on a platter with celery sticks and a creamy blue cheese dip.

Get the recipe for Southern-style chicken wings here

Corn dogs



Another dish inspired by the duo’s Deep South adventures, corn dogs are the ultimate American fairground snack and make a tasty treat for kids and grown-ups alike. To make them, frankfurters are skewered on a stick, coated in cornmeal batter and deep fried until puffed up, crisp and deep golden brown. They're best served with ketchup and yellow mustard for dipping or drizzling over.

Get the recipe for corn dogs here

Potted salmon



This traditional salmon dish appeared in Si and Dave’s bestselling 2011 recipe book Mums Still Know Best: The Hairy Bikers' Best-Loved Recipes, which is a homage to Britain's unsung home cooks and the nostalgic recipes created by the nation’s mothers and grandmothers. This tasty dish is made by blending smoked and poached salmon together with herbs, lemon and cream cheese until silky smooth. The mixture is then spooned into a pot and sealed with homemade clarified butter, making a portable treat that’s perfect for picnics.

Get the recipe for potted salmon here

Squash, lime and chilli soup

<p>Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials</p>

Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials

When researching their 2021 book, The Hairy Bikers' Everyday Winners​, Si and Dave ran a survey to find out what their fans really loved to eat at home. Foodies answered in their thousands, and their ideas for go-to dinners eventually inspired the recipes in the book. One of them was this crowd-pleasing creation, which sees a simple squash soup elevated to new levels of deliciousness with chilli paste, fresh lime, coriander and pumpkin seeds. It’s inspired by Mexican tortilla soup and really packs a punch.

Get the recipe for squash, lime and chilli soup here

Masala frittata

<p>Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials</p>

Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials

The Hairy Bikers really excelled at transforming everyday dishes into flavour-packed feasts. This potato and cauliflower frittata is given a tasty twist with warming Indian spices, fresh chilli and Cheddar cheese, then served with a zingy coriander and yogurt sauce. It makes a deliciously different breakfast or brunch and is great with some roasted cherry tomatoes on the side.

Get the recipe for masala frittata here

Margarita chicken fajitas

<p>Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials</p>

Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials

This bright and zingy fusion dish makes a fabulous weekday supper but is also special enough for entertaining too. The classic margarita ingredients of tequila, fresh lime and triple sec combine to make a spectacular marinade for these juicy chicken fajitas. Just allow plenty of time to marinate the chicken (ideally overnight) and the rest is easy.

Get the recipe for margarita chicken fajitas here

Lamb vindaloo



The Hairy Bikers were known for their love of curry and their epic tour of India for the 2007 series The Hairy Bikers Ride Again saw them visiting temples and fast food joints alike, making cocktails at a Maharaja's palace and discovering the intricacies of the local cuisine. Their classic lamb vindaloo is a British curry house favourite, but actually comes from the Goa region of India, which was once a Portuguese colony. As a result, the recipe has subtle Portuguese influences, including marinating the meat in vinegar and salt before cooking for a delicious tang.

Get the recipe for lamb vindaloo here

Spaghetti and meatballs

<p>Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials</p>

Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials

This next-level family favourite takes the familiar spaghetti and meatballs recipe and ramps the flavour up to eleven. The pork meatballs are made extra tasty with the addition of chilli flakes, lemon zest, fresh basil and pine nuts, while the wine-infused tomato sauce is made with fresh tomatoes and cooked slow and low for maximum richness.

Get the recipe for spaghetti and meatballs here

Beef stifado



This Greek meat stew is traditionally made with beef, but can be made with lamb, pork or even rabbit. What makes it distinctive is the addition of lots of little onions or shallots, which are cooked whole in the sauce. The recipe has masses of Mediterranean flavours in the marinade, as well as spicy undertones from the red wine, cloves, allspice and cinnamon. It's best served with orzo or short macaroni-style pasta to soak up all the saucy goodness.

Get the recipe for beef stifado here

Roast belly of pork

<p>Angelika Heine/Shutterstock</p>

Angelika Heine/Shutterstock

Thrifty and crowd-pleasing, pork belly is a great centrepiece for a Sunday roast or family gathering. Taken from their 2015 bestseller The Hairy Bikers’ Meat Feast, this foolproof recipe will ensure wonderfully tender meat and that all-important crunchy crackling. First, the pork belly is cooked on high so the rind bubbles and becomes really crisp. Then it continues roasting alongside the apples, onion and sage to take on heaps of extra flavour. The juices are saved and spiked with cider to make a wonderful gravy to accompany the meat.

Get the recipe for roast belly of pork here

Superb steak and ale pie



The Bikers were such massive fans of the humble pie, they dedicated an entire recipe book (2011’s The Hairy Bikers' Perfect Pies) to the fine art of encasing a delicious, bubbling filling in a golden, flaky crust. Their steak and ale pie is extra decadent and a guaranteed winner. Crisp puff pastry is used to top a rich filling of melt-in-the-mouth beef chunks, juicy chestnut mushrooms, crispy bacon and an ale-infused sauce. Wilted green cabbage and buttery mash would be excellent on the side.

Get the recipe for superb steak and ale pie here

Meatloaf with gravy

<p>Svetlana Foote/Shutterstock</p>

Svetlana Foote/Shutterstock

Another American classic from the Bikers’ road trip along the length of the iconic Mississippi River back in 2012, this meatloaf recipe is perfect for carnivores as it uses three types of meat – minced beef, minced pork and sausage. As they cook, all three release masses of tasty juice, which can be used later to make the most delicious gravy. You’ll often find meatloaf made with a spiced tomato glaze, which brings additional flavour, but you can leave it plain if you prefer.

Get the recipe for meatloaf with gravy here

Wild boar ragù

<p>Pronina Marina/Shutterstock</p>

Pronina Marina/Shutterstock

While the Bikers were probably best known for putting a tasty twist on everyday dishes, they also loved encouraging their fans to try something new, like this mouth-watering wild boar ragù. The ultimate free-range meat, wild boar is similar to pork, but is leaner, richer in flavour and tougher in texture – making it ideal for cooking low and slow, until the meat falls apart. This also gives the tomatoes, red wine, pancetta and beef stock time to mull together and deepen in flavour. In this recipe, juniper berries and herbs add a nod to the wild boar’s woodland origins too.

Get the recipe for wild boar ragù here

Turkey and ham casserole

<p>Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials</p>

Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials

This hearty dish is a great way to use up any leftover turkey and ham you might have at Christmas, but it works all year round too – you can substitute the turkey for chicken or whatever you have left from your roast dinner. The ingenious topping is made from stuffing ingredients and turns out beautifully crunchy and tasty.

Get the recipe for turkey and ham casserole here

Crayfish macaroni cheese

<p>Oksana Mizina/Shutterstock</p>

Oksana Mizina/Shutterstock

Inspired by Si and Dave’s travels around the American Deep South, this indulgent dish is a Southern take on macaroni cheese, made with chorizo and crayfish tails for added luxury. However, if you can’t get your hands on crayfish, you can easily swap them for prawns. Using both Gruyère and Cheddar in the cheese sauce makes it extra tasty, while paprika, nutmeg and cayenne pepper add a wonderfully warming kick of heat. The super-crispy topping of golden breadcrumbs finishes things off perfectly.

Get the recipe for crayfish macaroni cheese here

Cod with chorizo and white beans

<p>Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials</p>

Andrew Hayes-Watkins/Seven Dials

Who doesn’t love a one-pot wonder? This Mediterranean-inspired dish combines the classic Spanish flavours of cod and chorizo and looks impressive, but can easily be thrown together in just one pan – saving you time on the washing up. Wholesome from the vegetables and filling from the white beans, it’s a fantastic family dinner that everyone will love. We recommended serving crusty bread on the side to mop up those lovely juices.

Get the recipe for cod with chorizo and white beans here

Bananas Foster



This wonderfully retro dessert hails from 1950s New Orleans and is so much more than the sum of its parts. It elevates bananas and vanilla ice cream to something special by smothering them with a bubbling sauce made from butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, dark rum and banana liqueur. In restaurants it’s traditionally flambéed at the table, similar to other retro favourites like cherries jubilee and crêpes Suzette – feel free to try this at home, if you’re feeling brave.

Get the recipe for bananas Foster here

Apricot and almond crumble



A British classic, crumble is delicious made with pretty much any fruit, though Si and Dave’s apricot version takes some beating. The dessert is fantastic with fresh apricots, but it’s almost as good made with canned fruit if that’s all you can find. We also love the extra special crumble topping, made with almonds and marzipan for a grown-up twist. This recipe is for one big pudding, but you can cook the crumble in individual dishes if you like, just quarter the apricots (rather than halving them) and cook for around 30 minutes.

Get the recipe for apricot and almond crumble here

Luscious lemon Swiss roll

<p>Weidenfeld and Nicholson/loveFOOD</p>

Weidenfeld and Nicholson/loveFOOD

The Bikers were known for their love of hearty pies and curries, but they were also experts at delicate bakes, like this luscious lemon Swiss roll. The classic teatime treat features a light-as-a-feather lemon sponge filled with lemon icing and homemade lemon curd. If you fancy a more traditional Swiss roll, flavour the sponge with half a teaspoon of vanilla extract and simply fill with raspberry jam and buttercream instead. The lemon curd is also fantastic spread thickly on freshly buttered bread or scones.

Get the recipe for luscious lemon Swiss roll here

Peaches and cream malted milkshake

<p>Good Food/loveFOOD</p>

Good Food/loveFOOD

If you like the classic combination of peaches and cream, you'll love The Hairy Bikers’ sweet and smooth ice cream milkshake. Ready in a matter of minutes, it’s the ultimate summer refresher. Adding malted milk powder to a milkshake is an American tradition (technically making the drink a ‘malt’ rather than a shake) and the resulting flavour is richer, sweeter and toastier than a regular milkshake.

Get the recipe for peaches and cream malted milkshake here

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