Everyday Meals

Menu for royal Corgis at Buckingham Palace – ‘like being in a normal family’

Queen's former chef discusses cooking for her corgis in 2020

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Former royal chef, Darren McGrady, revealed the food which is prepared for the royal Corgis every day at Buckingham Palace. Darren worked for the Queen and Princess Diana between 1982 and 1993, and now runs a YouTube channel offering anecdotes and royal recipes from his time working in the Palace. He said in a YouTube video: “I didn’t expect to be cooking for the Queen’s dogs, the royal Corgis when I started working at Buckingham Palace.

“The royal Corgis had their own menu.

“I thought I’d be cooking for Kings and Queens and Presidents – I did eventually, but one of the first jobs I had was cooking for the royal Corgis, making fresh food every day on their own menu.”

Darren continued: “There have been Corgis in the Royal Family now since 1933.

“King George VI, the Queen’s dad, brought a Corgi home called Dookie and that was the start of it.

“For the next 70 plus years, the Corgis have been part of the Royal Family.

“The Queen was given a Corgi for her 18th birthday and called it Susan, and she’s had over 30 Corgis since then.

“When I was at Buckingham Palace the Queen had 12 Corgis, now she doesn’t have any Corgis at all, just two Dorgis.

“Dorgis are a cross between a Corgi and Dachshund (a sausage dog) and the names are Vulcan and Candy.

“While the Queen loves the Corgis, not all the Royal Family do,” Darren explained.

“William said the Corgis bark all the time and Harry said: ‘I’ve spent 33 years having those dogs bark at me’.

“They sleep in little Wicker baskets in the Corgi room, and they are looked after by two footmen, doggy one and doggy too, that’s what we used to call them,” said the royal chef.

He continued: “The royal Corgi menu meant the dogs would have a whole selection of different meats, cabbage and rice.

“The most important part of preparing the meat was that everything had to be cut into a fine dice.

“The reason for that was to be sure that there were no bones at all in the meat.

“Imagine if any of the dogs were to choke on the bones, the chefs would be in real trouble!” said Darren.

“At the smaller houses like Sandringham, the dogs would actually come into the kitchen sometimes.

“I remember being at Sandringham and I was putting a beef Wellington into the oven and I didn’t see one of these little Corgis come running into the kitchen sniffing around for food.

“I stepped back and almost tripped over as I was putting the beef Wellington into the oven and I thought to myself then: ‘Uh oh, it’s a good job I didn’t drop it’.

“In the royal kitchens, it was just like being in a normal family, with dogs running in and out of the kitchen all the time.

“It wasn’t just the Queen’s dog, there was also the Prince of Wales’ dog Tigger, the Jack Russell.

“It wasn’t all bad with the Corgis – I think I had my favourite. Chipper was my favourite, he was a Dorgi.”

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