Leon Launches UK’s First Gluten-free Highstreet Katsu Curry


NATURAL food chain LEON has today (Thursday) launched the UK’s first gluten-free version of one the nations’s favourite dishes - the Katsu Curry.

The popular dish is now readily available on the high street for the first time Which will come as great news to the one in ten people who now avoid gluten in their diets.

The UK has a growing market of gluten-free eaters, with 8.5 million following a gluten free diet and one in every hundred UK citizens being affected by auto-immune digestive condition, Coeliac disease

LEON has seen the impact of this growing demographic since launching its gluten-free chicken nuggets in August last year, with over one million portions already being sold. 

The proportion of those previously unable to eat Katsu curry due to its gluten levels haven’t stopped the dish becoming a favourite with consumers across the UK. In-fact, Katsu curry has become one of the most popular take away dishes in cities across the nation.

The dish is notoriously difficult to make with a gluten-free recipe, due to the chicken or veg being coated in Japanese-style panko breadcrumbs. LEON, however, is the first high-street restaurant brand to make this possible by using its GFC (gluten free) chicken. 

The curry, coined ‘Lucky Katsu’ is made with LEON’s GFC (gluten-free chicken nuggets) and a coconut-based curry sauce, making it the first Katsu curry available at a high-street restaurant brand that is both coeliac friendly and made without dairy. Made using sustainably sourced gluten-free chicken with Red Tractor accreditation* and fresh herbs and spices.

LEON’s Head of Food, Erica Molyneaux said “Introducing the UK’s first gluten-free Katsu Curry on the high street is a natural step for us. It’s always been important to drive free-from innovation, to create and reimagine dishes that everyone can enjoy. This has allowed us to take dishes like the Katsu Curry and make it bolder, more flavourful, and conveniently made without gluten or dairy.

“We make our Katsu with our GFC recipe and a gluten-free sauce, made by frying off garam masala, ginger and garlic, alongside a seriously good curry powder before adding coconut milk for creaminess and slices of carrots for a sweet finish. We hope that our gluten-free and coeliac fans will finally be able to taste the flavour of a true Katsu curry and really enjoy it!”

LEON is leading the way creating fast food that everyone can enjoy – food that tastes good, does good and make people feel good after they’ve eaten it, regardless of their dietary needs and preferences.

The gluten-free Katsu joins other best-selling dishes on the menu such as the vegan Jack Wings and vegan LOVe Burger.

Named Lucky, after the double meaning for the word Katsu (meaning ‘cutlet’ and ‘to win’ or ‘to be victorious’ in Japanese), the curry will launch on 12th September in all LEON restaurants at a price of £7.45 and will be accompanied with LEON’s brown rice and vegetable slaw.

 The Lucky Katsu joins additional dishes, such as the best-selling Lentil Masala that will return to the new Autumn menu at the same time for £4.95.

About LEON

LEON was founded in 2004 with the mission to make it easy for everybody to eat and live well, creating the category of Naturally Fast Food: food that tastes good, does you good, is affordable and is kind to the planet.

The brand has always championed seasonal, Mediterranean-inspired and free-from food, being the first to display nutritional symbols on their menus and releasing its cookbook “Fast & Free” in 2017. LEON has continued this commitment with an increasingly plant-based menu and launched its bestselling “Fast Vegan” cookbook in January 2019.

LEON was named Raymond Blanc Sustainability Hero in 2017 and focuses its sustainability strategy on three main pillars: sustainable energy, with 100% renewable energy across its restaurants; reducing its use of plastics, with recent switches from plastic to paper straws and compostable coffee cups; and increasing the number of plant-based dishes on its menu.

LEON has 69 restaurants throughout the UK as well as in Washington DC, Oslo, Amsterdam, Dublin, Rotterdam and Gran Canaria. The brand has launched 11 cookbooks, along with cookware and tableware ranges.

*LEON’s Gluten Free Chicken Nuggets are accredited to Red Tractor Plus. The sourcing standards set out by Red Tractor mean LEON’s chickens are never caged and always have high-quality air on their farms. They have perchable space, hay bales and other peckable things to keep them stimulated. For more information please visit https://leon.co/vision/sustainabilitysourcing/

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