A social media sensation is officially opening a takeaway and restaurant in Bolton, one of many he is launching across the country.

Simon Hannigan – better known as "Dad the dish" on social media and originally from Kirkham – came up with the idea of adding munchie boxes to small businesses menus during lockdown.

Since then, he has gained thousands of followers and millions of likes and views on his Tik Tok and Instagram videos, and he has used his large following to promote small businesses.

The new takeaway and restaurant - Munch Box - does not have an official date but will open later this year, just outside of Bolton town centre.

The Bolton News:

Simon said: “A lot of people are excited about it and have been asking when the Bolton restaurant and takeaway is opening.

“We have narrowed the buildings down to two after viewing 10 buildings for Bolton.

“I have got a great team, and I am excited.

@dadthedish 2023 has seen me go from opening munch box to now having 6 sites going into 2024… watch this space ❤️#ekspresikan2023 #EkspresikanDenganCapCut ♬ original sound - dadthedish

“I want to say that I tried it out and if it works out then that’s great, but it’s okay if it doesn’t.

“I want to make sure that the food is different and if I am going to do it, I want to do it properly.

“I want it to be somewhere that people go where no one else sells it.”

Simon decided to take his business to the next level after detaching his bicep, which meant he had to stop the filming he was doing with ITV and Channel 4.

The Bolton News: Dadthedish with owner of Bombai Bites Shuhel Ali during his visit to the boroughDadthedish with owner of Bombai Bites Shuhel Ali during his visit to the borough (Image: Newsquest)He said: “Everyone kept saying they wanted to try my food, and whilst I was not able to work, I just went for it and when I opened my first takeaway in Blackpool in July last year, it went manic.”

The style of food will include burgers, loaded fries, chicken, grilled sandwiches, and much more all in a box, with plenty of original flavours and recipes.

The food will all be freshly made in each of the takeaways, including garlic mayonnaise.


Corned beef hash! Recipe in caption: 5-6 king edwards potatoes cubed Tin of corned beef cubed Onion roughly chopped 100-150ml beef stock 2-3 tbsp worcestershire sauce 1 tbsp fresh parsley 1 tbsp fresh thyme 3 tbsp butter Salt and pepper Cube your potatoes, corned beef and roughly chop your onion, stick them in the slow cooker Add your finely chopped thyme and parsley, beef stock and worcestershire sauce and give it a stir. Put 3 tbsp of butter on top and switch your slow cooker on either high for 4-5 (I’d recommend 5 minimum) or low for 6-8 hours. Season and stir then leave for 15 minutes before serving Get it tried 💪

♬ original sound - dadthedish

Bolton is also close to his heart after living in the area for a while, and says he feels grateful to be in the position he is in after being homeless, following a successful career in car sales just before starting "Dad the dish".

He said: “It just goes to show that anyone can achieve what they want to achieve.

“I didn’t even know how to do a lot on social media and didn’t have a clue.

The Bolton News: “To hit 30 and feel like I have achieved a lot feels really good.

“It feels good to employ local people and help give them careers in management positions.”

Simon is also set to open another site in Preston in a few weeks, including plans for Burnley, Blackburn, Chorley, Salford, and Southport this year.

He has set himself the ambitious target of opening as many as 30 by the end of the year.

If anyone is interested in a job at the Bolton takeaway and restaurant email Simon at bolton@munchie-box.com.

If you have a story and something you would like to highlight in the community, please email me at jasmine.jackson@newsquest.co.uk or DM me on Twitter @JournoJasmine.