Wednesday, 11 October 2017

60 Seconds with Katie & Jane

In one sentence, what do you do?
k. Co-founder and creator of Not Dogs

j. Co-creator of Not Dogs ‘meaty… without the meat’ - unique, meat-free fast food that’s focused on tasty, food for everyone - no labels!

Virgin

Why did you start?
k. Once the idea of reducing meat clicked and after months of research into ways to solve the problem I was fascinated by the idea of how Not Dogs could bring everyone together, in the same way the legends of McDonalds, Starbucks and Nando’s has, but without any contribution to the meat industry… just tonnes of fun, exciting and addictive fast-food! Now we are on a relentless pursuit to push the boundaries and grow Not Dogs into a brand that really is at the forefront of exciting the masses with meat-free fast-food!

j. When Katie and I started our first business (in social media) together, I’d been vegetarian for about 6 years and we simply started talking about the lack of food places where we could both go and enjoy fun, delicious food with a meat-free difference. So… we put our heads together to come up with the idea of a meat-free brand starting with testing the idea at festivals and events. We got in touch with a brand I personally love, Quorn, and asked them if they would like to collaborate with us and they did! The rest is history!

festivals


What do you want to be known for?
k. Creating inspiring, innovative brands and products that have a fundamental and positive reason for existing.

j. Creating a brand that helps to combat climate change, makes people healthier by simply reducing their meat intake in an easy way and finally (a passion of mine) saves millions of animals around the world.

Story

What are you most excited to create?
k. The 1001st Not Dogs location!

j. A difference in the world; a house-hold name that has massively contributed to improving the world and everyone on it.

What are your plans for the future?
k. Not Dogs = Everywhere!

j. We could like to have a Not Dogs presence all over the world… in many fun, exciting, unique ways from restaurants to pop-ups, festivals to merchandise!

branding

Why do you think there has been an explosion of interest in meat-free food?
k. Slowly but surely people are opening their minds and respectable high profile people are sharing their work, research and beliefs around the meat industry, their respect for animals and their concerns around the huge impact that meat production has on climate change. This has resulted in a significant shift in people being more open-minded about going meat-free or in fact just reducing meat for health reasons or becoming more educated with documentaries such as Cowspiracy and movements such as Meat Free Monday. 

Incredible companies such as Quorn have shifted their focus into inspiring and educating people every day on how to incorporate plant-based products into their diets with nutritional benefits so that it’s accessible to the masses, not just to people who have already pledged a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle, but inspiring those to consider trying a meat-reduced diet.

j. I think the shift has been that people are thinking more about their food whether that be for health, environmental or welfare reasons - everyone has they own passion. Maybe we’re all just becoming more thoughtful and thinking, ‘no I don’t want to put unnecessary processed meat in my body every day’ or ‘if I remove meat from my diet for just one day a week, that is my simple contribution to combatting climate change’ or (for me) ‘I no longer look at a chicken nugget, for example, as a food product but I think about what it is made of - an animal and just do not want to inflict suffering on them if I don’t have to’.

Not Dogs

What makes you different?
k. Not Dogs is an all-inclusive brand for everyone, no labels, lots of fun, delicious fast-food and so unbelievably good… you wouldn’t miss the meat. Actively engaging thousands of customers everyday from students to families. Making ‘meat-free’ exciting and creating magic around meat-free food is what we do so well.

j. We created Not Dogs to create great tasting food that we want to eat, that just happens to be meat-free! It’s the food that veggies and vegan miss, and that meat-eaters are starting to think more about the impact of like burgers and hotdogs. Everyone is welcome and our ultimate aim is to create an experience that leaves customers feeling happy and positive.

Not Dogs

What is your favourite item on the menu, and why?
k. The Queen B Burger - it oozes sassiness, it’s irresistible and it was created for our mums!

j. The Kickin’ Katie Nacho Dog - not only is is delicious, but it means so much to me that it’s named after my amazing business partner and I’m so proud when I tell people that.

queen B

Kickin Katie

What has been your proudest achievement to date?
k. One moment I’ll never forget was our appearance on Dragons Den and the sigh of relief once Deborah Meaden and Peter Jones tasted their first Not Dog and loved it… we knew that regardless of how the rest of the pitch went; if all the Dragon’s enjoyed eating Not Dogs then that was a win for us and for all the customers that have supported and believed in Not Dogs.

Little moments of love for Not Dogs from customers every single day fuel us and of course our Not Dogs Crew keep us motivated to keep pushing the boundaries of possibilities - these are the proud moments that keep us ambitious and helps to keep our confidence in what we are creating.

j. Getting through the first year (nearly!) of our first restaurant. It’s taken so much hard work (we can’t even put how much into words) but we’ve done it and seeing all our fantastic customer feedback online makes it all worthwhile. I am so proud to have put something positive into the world that wasn’t there before.

Deborah Meaden

Birmingham

What makes you happiest about what you’re doing?
k. Knowing in our hearts that in creating Not Dogs and striving forward we are giving it the chance to shine a light on fast-food and elevate it to be something that can be kinder to our health, animal welfare and the world we live in. Welcoming thousands through the door each week we know that Not Dogs has the power and potential to drive this change forward across the globe.


j. Making customers happy, improving the lives of animals and showing people that meat-free food can be tastier and more interesting than meaty alternatives. It’s those that aren’t vegetarians or vegans that I personally get excited about… hearing that they choose Not Dogs over say McDonald’s makes me so so happy!

Sausage Selfie

Katie and Jane

Thursday, 5 October 2017

It’s the Bullring Student Sessions & Not Dogs are having a Mini Festival!

We're so excited about the Bullring’s popular ‘Student Sessions’ that Not Dogs are going to throw a mini festival to celebrate!



Between 4 and 10pm on Thursday 12th October, Not Dogs will take a step back in time to festival travels with…

  • 20% off the whole menu for students participating in the Student Sessions (see the Bullring's website to get your wristband!)
  • A festival ‘fancy dress’ station where you can get into the festival spirit with free metallic temporary tattoos and face make-up
  • Live DJ sets throughout the night
  • On-the-spot prizes that can be redeemed straightaway
You an also get a #SausageSelfie with giant Not Dogs and our fantastic Crew who will also be getting into the festival vibe!

See you Thursday 12th October - 4-10pm! Don't forget to RSVP at: https://www.bullring.co.uk/events/autumn-student-sessions-2017 

Sausage Selfie

Eat. Sleep. Not Dogs

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Cameras Ready... it's #SausageSelfie Time!

We can’t believe it’s nearly October already - a new month brings a new #SausageSelfie competition and boy are we excited about this one!

You can win a Not Dogs’ feast for four people of your choosing featuring items from the new menu including…

Not Pots - pots of fluffy white rice topped with all the Not Dogs flavour - just without the dog or bun! Choose from Cha-Cha Chilli, Ticklish Tikka and Hoisin Duck

Not Dogs

The Chris-P Chicken Burger - ‘Chicken’ burger topped with crispy ‘bacon’, lettuce and Not Dogs’ house-made mayonnaise

Not Dogs

What the Duck Dog with crispy shredded ‘duck’, spring onions, cucumber, hoisin sauce and crushed rice crackers

Not Dogs

And wash your feast down with a Not Dogs’ Nice Shake!

Not Dogs

All you need to do is upload your picture tagging in #SausageSelfie on Twitter and/or Instagram in October and you’ll be in with the chance of winning this epic feast - it’s that simple!

Eat. Sleep. Not Dogs



Monday, 18 September 2017

Not Dogs’ New Menu is Here!

After many, many hours of devising new recipes, taste testing and perfecting each item on the Not Dogs menu we’re very happy to say that the new Not Dogs menu has launched in our Birmingham store! Here we’ll give you a little preview of what delights you can now enjoy…

Not Dogs

Our old favourites - the Plain Jane, Kickin’ Katie Nacho Dog, The Original Frank, Hello Houmous, Cha-Cha Chilli and Ticklish Tikka Dog - welcome a new dog to the menu…

What the Duck Dog

8” Not Dog topped with crispy shredded ‘duck’, spring onions, cucumber, hoisin sauce and crushed rice crackers… it’s a ‘quacker’!

What the Duck Dog

Burgers

Never fear, her majesty The Queen B Burger is still available (and now can be made vegan too!)

But there is a major contender for the Queen B Burger’s crown now in Not Dogs town…

The Chris-P ‘Chicken’ Burger

‘Chicken’ burger topped with crispy ‘bacon’, lettuce and Not Dogs’ house-made mayonnaise

Chris-P Chicken Burger

Not Pots

We’ve introduced a new category to the menu… Not Pots - pots of fluffy white rice topped with all the Not Dogs flavour - just without the dog or bun! Choose from:

Cha-Cha Chilli Not Pot
Ticklish Tikka Not Pot
Hoisin Duck Not Pot

Not Pots are ideal when you fancy a lighter option without missing out on all the Not Dogs goodness!

Not Pots

Not Dogs' Nice Shakes

We wanted to introduce our own style of shake to the Not Dogs menu so set about creating all-natural, healthier shakes and we’ve done it! They are all created with creamy rice milk and a little bit of Not Dogs magic. Which’ll be your favourite!?

The Cheeky Choco - an original; chocolate with a cheeky twist of banana
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup - chocolate and peanut butter - the perfect protein pairing!
The Peppermint Patty - one amazing, refreshing shake with a little peppermint essence 
Straight-Up Strawberry - using fresh strawberries, this is an all-natural take on the popular strawberry milkshake
The Raspberry Ripple - hang on… chocolate and fresh raspberries = heaven!

Nice Shakes

What else is new…

As you know our menu is 100% meat-free but if you wish to go vegan, most of the  menu items can be made vegan - yes we have caramelised fried onions (minus the honey) and vegan cheese too - winning!

Meat Free

As usual you can go for our lightly seasoned original Not Dog, bratwurst style or our vegan Not Dog which is lightly smoked… take your pick!

And you can now load up your Waffle Fries with a number of different toppings to create your very own Not Dogs magic!


We love our new menu and we really hope you do too!

Eat. Sleep. Not Dogs


Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Not Dogs Gets a Revamp!

The day has arrived… our lovely little Not Dogs restaurant in the Bullring, Birmingham has had a little update - in fact, our additions are a nod to our festival background complete with bunting and grass! Let’s go on a virtual tour…

Purple and orange bunting plays a big part… along with our trademark zig-zags (of course!)


Additional seating including a fancy bar area so you can watch the world (well LinkStreet!) go by


You can now pick up a menu when you walk past along with offers that will change regularly


Here it is… the grass! Perhaps some orange and purple flowers will go down nicely!


Even the fridge has been updated - ‘stay chill!’


The Wall of Fame has grown… is your #SausageSelfie on there?


We hope you enjoy the updated store - we’ll be blogging about the new, improved menu very soon too!

Eat. Sleep. Not Dogs

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Jamaican-Me-Crazy Not Dog Recipe

This lively Not Dog with jalapeños, crispy lettuce, mango mayonnaise and jerk sauce, will awaken your taste buds and bring a touch of the Jamaican sunshine to any day! 

Ingredients (serves 4)
4 Quorn Hot Dogs
4 hot dog buns
Sliced pickled green jalapeños
Iceberg lettuce leaves, shredded
Mango Mayonnaise:
1/2 ripe mango, flesh finely chopped
1/2 lime, juice and zest
75g mayonnaise
Jerk Sauce*:
2 spring onions, chopped
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1/4 white onion, chopped
1 garlic clove
1 scotch bonnet chilli, deseeded if you’d like less heat!
Pinch dried thyme
1/2 lime, juice
1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp ground allspice
Pinch of salt
* There’s some great pre-made jerk sauces available if you don’t fancy making the sauce at home, but, it’ll be worth it!

Method
  1. Put the mayonnaise, chopped mango and lime juice and zest in a bowl. Mix together vigorously and put in the fridge to chill
  2. Pop all the ingredients for the jerk sauce in a food processor and blend into a paste, adding cold water a tablespoon at a time to create the desired consistency. Put to the side while you prepare the hot dogs
  3. Cook the Quorn Hot Dogs as per the packet instructions. Meanwhile, get all your prepared ingredients (jalapeños, lettuce, mango mayo and jerk sauce) ready for topping
  4. Once the Hot Dogs are cooked, put one into each bun. Now it’s time to assemble your Not Dogs... 
  • First, spoon on the jerk sauce, covering each Hot Dog evenly
  • Sprinkle on the lettuce on each
  • Next, put on the mango mayonnaise (if you have a plastic squeezy bottle use that!)
  • Finally, top each Not Dog with 4 slices of jalapeño 
    Jamaica

    Eat. Sleep. Not Dogs

    Sunday, 13 August 2017

    The Bali Breakfast Dog

    Inspired by our travels to Bali, this Breakfast Dog is truly special in more ways than one!



    The Bali Breakfast Dog, a fresh, zingy and satisfying mini Not Dog, designed to put a little sunshine in your step and set you up for the day!

    Celebrating the amazing avocado, with of course a very subtle kick of mild chilli (for Kickin’ Katie) the Bali Breakfast Dog will be available all day in the Not Dogs restaurant!

    Not Dog topped with our secret smashed avocado recipe, scrambled egg, crumbled feta cheese and a small sprinkle of chilli flakes



    Eat. Sleep. Not Dogs