Homemade mince pies are something special at Christmas. Taking it one step further and making your own mincemeat means you can decide what goes in. For me, shop bought mincemeat sometimes feels like it’s missing some of the fruit. Making your own mincemeat is so quick, and I guarantee the flavour will be so much better than the shop bought stuff, and it’s ready to use in just 24 hours so there’s no excuses for not making your own!
I use butter rather than suet in my recipe. I think this gives a much richer flavour, and is also vegetarian friendly. You’ll also see I don’t stop at just fruit. A sneaky carrot also makes it into the mix in my version. This is great for increasing the diversity of plant fibres in this recipe, which we know can be beneficial for your gut microbiota and gut health in general. Why not treat your microbes this Christmas too!
Overall this basic mincemeat recipe uses 6 different plant-based fibre sources, alongside mixed spice. You can substitute different fruit in depending on your taste, for example cherries, apricot or mixed peel.
Makes enough mincemeat for 24 deep filled individual mince pies
- 200g sultanas
- 200g raisins
- 200g currants
- 100g dried cranberries
- 1 large carrot (or 3 small like my allotment carrots!)
- 1 cooking apple
- 350g soft light brown sugar
- 175g fridge cold butter (option to use vegetarian suet to make vegan, or to be a traditionalist and use beef suet)
- 2 tsp ground mixed spice
- 1 organic orange
- 100ml cognac, brandy, whisky or rum
- Coarsely grate the apple, carrot and butter.
- Zest and juice the orange, taking as much of the segment flesh as possible.
- Put all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix together. Set aside covered with a tea towel.
- Stir occasionally for the next 24 hours.
- Fill previously sterilised jars with the mincemeat, ensuring to push out all the air.
- Seal and leave in a cool dark place for up to 6 months to mature.
Per 100g 304kcal/ 9.2g fat/ 5.9g saturated fat/ 49.5g carbohydrates/ 2.8g fibre/ 1.4g protein