14.04.2024

Britain’s most calorific sausage rolls revealed… and Gregg’s ISN’T the worst offender

Britain’s most calorific sausage roll is even worse for your waistline than two pints of beer, analysis shows. But the worst offender is not sold at .

Instead, Ginsters’ meat-filled buttery pastry, sold in shops for £1.25, has 480 calories.

This is almost as much as what is found inside a McDonald’s Big Mac (493) or roughly four slices of toast drenched in butter (520).

Options sold at the likes of Sainsbury’s, M&S and Morrisons placed in the top 10.

MailOnline audited dozens of the savoury treats sold in shops across the UK ahead of National Sausage Roll Day. We looked at options at chains such as Greggs, as well as ready-to-eat rolls available at the likes of Tesco and Asda. Ginsters Large Sausage Roll’s calorie count equates to nearly a quarter of a woman’s (2,000) and a fifth of a man’s (2,500) daily recommended intake

MailOnline audited dozens of the savoury treats sold in shops across the UK ahead of National Sausage Roll Day. We looked at options at chains such as Greggs, as well as ready-to-eat rolls available at the likes of Tesco and Asda. Ginsters Large Sausage Roll's calorie count equates to nearly a quarter of a woman's (2,000) and a fifth of a man's (2,500) daily recommended intake

Britain’s most calorific sausage roll is even worse for your waistline than two pints of beer, analysis shows

Britain's most calorific sausage roll is even worse for your waistline than two pints of beer, analysis shows

MailOnline audited dozens of the savoury treats sold in shops across the UK ahead of National Sausage Roll Day.

We looked at options at chains such as Greggs, as well as ready-to-eat rolls available at the likes of Tesco and Asda.

Ginsters Large Sausage Roll’s calorie count equates to nearly a quarter of a woman’s (2,000) and a fifth of a man’s (2,500) daily recommended intake.

It also had 15.3g of saturated fat and 1.4g of salt.

Health chiefs advise women eat no more than 20g of saturated fat a day, while men are told to stick to under 30g. Too much can raise cholesterol and increase the risk of heart disease.

Salt should be capped at 6g per day because excess can cause high blood pressure, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

Sainsbury’s Jumbo Sausage Roll (£1.25) was the next-most calorific (442).

What should a balanced diet look like?

Meals should be based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally wholegrain, according to the NHS

  • Eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day. All fresh, frozen, dried and canned fruit and vegetables count;
  • Base meals on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally wholegrain;
  • 30 grams of fibre a day: This is the same as eating all of the following: 5 portions of fruit and vegetables, 2 whole-wheat cereal biscuits, 2 thick slices of wholemeal bread and large baked potato with the skin on;
  • Have some dairy or dairy alternatives (such as soya drinks) choosing lower fat and lower sugar options;
  • Eat some beans, pulses, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins (including 2 portions of fish every week, one of which should be oily);
  • Choose unsaturated oils and spreads and consuming in small amounts;
  • Drink 6-8 cups/glasses of water a day;
  • Adults should have less than 6g of salt and 20g of saturated fat for women or 30g for men a day.

Pukka Pork Sausage Roll (£1.30, 424 calories), Too Good To Be Gluten Free Sausage Roll (£2.50, 410 calories) and Wall’s Jumbo Sausage Roll (£1.05, 408 calories) rounded out the top five.

However, smaller options can contain a fifth of the calories of jumbo options. Snack-sized servings available at Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and Morrisons can have 100 calories or fewer.

Dr Duane Mellor, one of Britain’s top dietary researchers, told MailOnline it should not be a surprise that sausage rolls are not ‘the healthiest snack option’.

Dr Mellor, a registered dietitian at Aston Medical School in Birmingham, noted that the pastry and sausage filling are often high in fat, saturated fat and salt.

He added: ‘What might surprise people is there is often little difference between the calorie, fat and salt levels in traditional pork sausage rolls and their vegan counterparts.

‘If really want to eat a sausage roll, then it is probably best to have a smaller roll or share a larger one and add salad to it to give your picnic a boat of vitamins, minerals and fibre.’

Professor Gunter Kuhnle, an expert in nutrition and food science at the University of Reading, told MailOnline it is ‘difficult to make a sausage roll into a health food’.

‘The pastry itself usually contains quite a bit of fat, especially home-made versions – but they are rather comfort food,’ he said.

People should be aware that they can be ‘quite calorific with a high fat and saturated fat content’, Professor Kuhnle added.

Nutritionist, Sonia Pombo from Action on Salt, told MailOnline: ‘This highlights just how easy it is for consumers to unknowingly eat large and unnecessary amounts of salt and saturated fat hidden in savoury snacks like sausage rolls.

‘The challenge facing consumers is that most of the salt in our diet is already present in the foods we buy.

‘The government must take control by enforcing mandatory salt reduction targets to ensure the food industry improves the quality of their food for the benefit of our health.

‘Some sausage rolls available on the market are lower in salt, proving it is easily achievable – so what’s stopping them?’

Sausage rolls are therefore not good for Britain’s bulging waist line.

Latest NHS data shows 26 per cent of adults in England are obese and a further 38 per cent are overweight but not obese. One third of Americans are overweight, while four in 10 are obese.

Obesity rates have been on the rise for decades, with experts blaming sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy diets.

They are also soaring in children, with a quarter of children in reception in England now considered overweight, and one in ten obese.

A landmark study earlier this month the obesity epidemic is stripping billions of pounds from the cash-strapped NHS each year, with twice as much spent on obese patients, as on those of a healthy weight.

Costs per patient rise drastically the more people weigh, as they ‘collect obesity-related conditions’ such as type 2 diabetes, cancer and heart disease, according to research involving nearly 2.5million people.

Sausage rolls, which can be traced back to 1800s France, hit headlines last month after Gregg’s won the right to operate its store in Leicester Square, London, until 2am on from Thursday to Saturday.

Last year, the chain had requested to sell its baked goods 24/7. But Westminster City Council, which oversees late-night licenses in the West End, rejected the bid.

That decision came after the Met Police shared fears it would lead to a spike in ‘crime and disorder’.

A Sainsbury’s spokesperson said: ‘We offer a range of sausage rolls, including our Sainsbury’s Sausage Rolls in a pack of nine, which are 94 calories each.

‘We are committed to offering choice, quality and value and clearly label our products with nutritional information to help our customers make informed decisions about the products they choose to buy.’

Britain’s most calorific sausage rolls REVEALED
Sausage roll Calories
Ginsters Large Sausage Roll 480
Sainsbury’s Jumbo Sausage Roll 145g 442
Pukka Pork Sausage Roll 130G 424
Too Good To Be Gluten Free Sausage Roll 110g 410
Wall’s Jumbo Sausages Roll 130G 408
M&S Our Best Ever Sausage Roll 397
Morrisons Individual Sausage Roll 382
Pret’s Sausage Roll 376
Greggs Sausage Roll 329
M&S Collection 2 Pork Sausage Rolls 322
Wenzel’s Sausage Roll 301
M&S Made Without Sausage Rolls 300
No.1 2 Outdoor Bred Pork Sausage Rolls160g 286
Genius Gluten Free Sausage Rolls x2 269
Tesco Sausage Roll 90G 261
M&S 6 Large Sausage Rolls 238
M&S 2 Large Sausage Rolls 238
ASDA 6 Cumberland Sausage Rolls 226
ASDA 6 Pork Sausage Rolls 213
Pukka Pork Sausage Rolls 206
Morrisons 6 Fresh Bake Pork Sausage Rolls 201
Crestwood Ready To Eat Puff Pastry Sausage Rolls 360g/6 Pack 199
JUST ESSENTIALS by ASDA 8 Sausage Rolls 193
Sainsbury’s Sausage Rolls x6 360g 193
Essential 6 Sausage Rolls360g 192
Everyday Essentials Sausage Rolls 480g/8 Pack 189
Morrisons The Best Pork Sausage Rolls 189
Morrisons 2 Fresh Bake Pork Sausage Rolls 148g 185
Tesco 6 Pack Sausage Rolls 360G 182
Eastmans 8 Sausage Rolls 480G 180
Tesco Finest 4 Pork Sausage Rolls 188G 178
ASDA Extra Special British Pork Sausage Rolls 173
Wall’s 10 Hearty Sausage Rolls 550G 169
M&S Collection Hog Roast Sausage Rolls 167
Lidl Deluxe Premium Sausage Rolls 165
Sainsbury’s Hog Roast Rolls, Taste the Difference x4 188g 164
M&S Collection Pulled Pork Sausage Rolls 161
Wall’s 4 Pork & Pickle Sausage Rolls 160
Sainsbury’s Pork Sausage Rolls, Taste the Difference x4 188g 160
M&S 9 Our Best Ever Sausage Rolls 420g 153
Specially Selected Hog Roast Sausage Rolls 188g 150
M&S 12 Sausage Rolls 122
M&S Sausage Rolls 122
ASDA 12 Snack Pork Sausage Rolls 111
Higgidy Great British Pork Sausage Rolls 160g 109
Morrisons Snack Size Pork Sausage Rolls 101
Essential 6 Sausage Rolls180g 95
Sainsbury’s Sausage Rolls x9 270g 94

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