Nothing says Christmas more than these festive sweet treats and while they’re certainly not in short supply at this time of year, why not try making them instead as they’re pretty quick and easy.


For the mincemeat: 

225 g vegetarian suet
225 g bramley apples, peeled, cored and chopped
125 g candied peel, chopped
225 g sultanas
225 g raisins
225 g currants
175 g demerara sugar
1 tsp mixed spice
1 orange, zest and juice
60 ml brandy

For the pastry:

375 g plain flour
250 g butter, softened
125 g caster sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
1 medium free-range egg


For the mincemeat:

  1. Mix all the ingredients together and pack into sterilised jars and seal.
  2. This recipe will yield approximately 1800 g, so store in a cool dark place until you want to use it - you'll need around half of it for these mince pies.

For the mince pies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas mark 6.
  2. To make the pastry, rub the flour, butter, sugar and egg together with a splash of cold water until it all comes together.
  3. Wrap the pastry in cling film and chill in the fridge for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Roll out the pastry to a 3mm thickness and with a pastry cutter, cut out discs of pastry. 
  5. Press the pastry into a muffin tin and fill each one with a good helping of the mincemeat mixture.
  6. With a fluted pastry cutter, cut out pastry circles for the lids (slightly bigger than the top of the muffin cups). Place a lid on top of each pie and gently push down and seal.
  7. Sprinkle with caster sugar and bake for 20 minutes.
  8. Allow to cool on a wire rack before finishing with a dusting of icing sugar.

Makes 12 mince pies.