Quick Mincemeat recipe

The word Mincemeat doesn’t quite inspire the same rapture that it does in England, most likely due to the name. Meat isn’t something normally associated with dessert in many places (although I had an interesting chocolate and beef pastry in Sicily), but traditional mincemeat is indeed, a wonderful addition to holiday desserts. To make it, one must get suet from a butcher, which posed a challenge for me the first time I made it in France. When I mentioned I needed beef fat to make a dessert to a boucher in Paris, from the look on his face, he wasn’t exactly sure what I was going to make with it. Or, I guess I should say, he wasn’t exactly convinced I was in my right mind. (Which wouldn’t be the first time that happened to me here.)

Not everyone wants to make traditional mincemeat, which is a bit of a chore, but there’s another way to get the wonderful flavors of candied peel, spices, dried fruit, and brandy, in your desserts, and that’s to make quick mincemeat.

I originally posted this in 2008 and gave it an update, with new pictures and because so few people had shared it on social media. (If you like it, share it! That’s what the internet is for, folks.)

This can be put together in less than 10 minutes and requires nothing more than a little chopping and mixing. I normally make my own candied orange peel*, but when I don’t have any on hand, I use store-bought, which I find at shops that cater to bakers, like G. Detou or Middle Eastern markets, which often have a good selection. You can also find candied orange peel online.

This simple mixture which mimics mincemeat very closely, and is even vegetarian, so everyone can indulge in dessert. The amount is perfect for adding to a bowl of sliced apples or pear destined for a pie or crisp. You can also fold it into just-churned vanilla ice cream, which is a great – and surprising – addition to a holiday dessert menu. The festively-spiced ice cream is even better with warm chocolate sauce ladled over it.

While this almost-instant mincemeat is perfectly fine to use right away, it’s really better if left on its own for a few days, so everything gets a good soaking in the brandy. If you can give the flavors a little time to meld and mellow, that’s best. (Which I know will please the do-ahead folks.) But it’s okay to use the same day as well. Depending on the raisins and candied peel that you use, check the mincemeat after the first day; if it’s soaked up all the brandy, add a little more to the jar to keep things moist.

When it comes time to serve dessert, people are always surprised when I tell them that it’s mincemeat that they’re eating. But even after I tell them what it is, that’s never stopped anyone from cleaning their plate.

Quick Mincemeat recipe
Print Recipe
One cup (250g)
This quantity is enough to mix with enough apples or pears for one pie, crisp, or cobbler. (Using 6 to 8 cups of fruit per recipe. Of course, you can use more, or less of the mincemeat mixture if you wish.) Simply toss the desired amount with your sliced fruit and proceed with the recipe. Because the candied oranges are sweetened and the mixture has brown sugar in it, you can reduce the sugar by 3 tablespoons, or more (because it's so flavorful) in whatever recipe you're using. Dried currants or cranberries can replace the raisins, for a different look or flavor. This will keep for weeks, or even months, before you plan to use it. The taste of the brandy will mellow nicely the longer it sits. In lieu of brandy, try dark rum, whiskey, or orange liqueur, such as Grand Marnier.
2/3 cup (90g) coarsely chopped raisins, dark or golden
1/2 cup (60g) chopped candied orange peel
1/4 cup (60ml) brandy, plus more, if necessary
grated zest of one orange, preferably unsprayed
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon (each) ground cinnamon and nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1. Mix everything together in a bowl, then pack into a jar. Cover.
2. Let the mixture stand for at least one to three days before using. Check after the first day: If the liquor has absorbed quickly, and the mixture appears dry, add another tablespoon or so, just enough so the mixture is thoroughly moistened.
3. Add to an apple or pear-based fruit filling for a pie or crisp prior to baking.

Note: For those avoiding alcohol, substitute apple cider or juice, and a teaspoon of vanilla extract, in place of the brandy. If no liquor is used, refrigerate the quick mincemeat and use it within a week. Candied orange peel is available in well-stocked supermarkets around the holiday season. Look for a brand with no artificial colors and no preservatives. You can also buy it online.

Storage: The Quick Mincemeat, as written, will keep for several months. I keep mine at room temperature if I plan to use it within a week or two. If you want to keep it longer, it can be refrigerated.

Related Links

Traditional Mincemeat

*My candied orange peel recipe can be found in my book, Ready For Dessert.

A delightful flavor to add to an apple pie or apple crisp mixture!

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78 comments

  • Susan
    November 25, 2008 1:54am

    I’ve never tried mincemeat for the very reason you said…the eeewww factor, suet.
    Now that I found out most don’t have the suet, I’m interested in trying it. My experiment this year is to try to make my Mother in law’s fruit soup into a pie. This mincemeat has everything but the chipped prunes. Thanks, David, this recipe gets me off to a better start, actually, because it will be chopped and ready to go!

  • November 25, 2008 2:28am

    Double eeeww to suet!!
    I add grated apple to my mincemeat to make it more instantly moist
    http://cuisinedumonde.com/xmas_tart.html I’ve also folded it through ice cream, mincemeat ice cream cakes are excellent for our warmer Summer Christmases here underneath ;-)

  • November 25, 2008 2:53am

    Awesome! Mincemeat is on the agenda for this holiday season, though I’m going to attempt to do it with suet. My father thinks I’m nuts. He buys his mincemeat already made. (“Who makes their own mincemeat?”)

  • November 25, 2008 4:17am

    Great, I always wanted to be able to make my own mincemeat! Just to be sure, how would you translate candied orange peel in French?
    Thank you,
    Bibil

  • November 25, 2008 4:46am

    This is wonderful to make mid-year David & then stored in a big glass lidded bell jar in a dark pantry to develop fully. Being an Aussie I always add a good slurp of dark Bundaberg rum as well as the brandy – makes all the difference! Then on Christmas Eve, I bake a batch of bite-size very short sweet vanilla pastry shells, spoon the mincemeat into each tartlet & heat in the oven for a further few minutes. Topped with a little fraiche de crème – the perfect way to welcome in the Festivities.

  • November 25, 2008 4:46am

    Hi,

    Me again, in Afrikaans cooking there is something similar to this and it has been in our family since the the late 1700’s. It’s called “Kersfees skil” but I have always been warned that it can, under no circumstances, be used for mince pies.

    1) Can I?
    2) Do I understand you correctly when you say it can be used with chocolate?

    Please please put me out of my misery and help!!!

  • Hazel
    November 25, 2008 5:31am

    As a Brit, I have eaten mincemeat every year at Christmas time for as long as I can remember. It has never been non-vegetarian in my household – veggie suet is pretty easy to get hold of in this country, and is less fattening than the meat version in any case.
    I made mine about 2 weeks ago and it’s sitting on top of a cupboard in jars for another 2 weeks until it has matured enough to be made into pies and eaten with Brandy Butter…yum.

  • November 25, 2008 6:21am

    This is great, David, especially for ice cream, and adding to apples etc. But I’m English enough to think that it wouldn’t work well in a mince pie … the new lighter way with mince this side of the channel is to use grated apple instead of suet.

    I’m definitely going to make this, and use it to make a mincemeat cake, that Xmas Eve cheat’s standby!

    Thanks
    Joanna

  • Christelle
    November 25, 2008 5:44am

    I’ve never been a fan of mincemeat, because it is too sweet, and I don’t fancy using suet indeed.. This one seems easy enough, and I can skip lots of sugar!
    It seems much light too! :)

  • November 25, 2008 6:52am

    Great ! I love mincemeat at Christmas but it’s not easy to find.

  • Lindsey
    November 25, 2008 6:57am

    this sound like it will be fabulous in an apple pie. Since we have to have our dinner this year at my parents new retirement home, where the food will be bland, I am eager to make our own turkey and sides with many flavors over the weekend! Dessert will be this with my pumpkin pie with a ginger streusel topping along with some homemade vanilla ice cream! yum! thanks….

  • Murasaki Shikibu
    November 25, 2008 8:14am

    “I used to joke that I didn’t like to go in there and get it because, “…that place is a meat market!”

  • Emma
    November 25, 2008 9:33am

    Of course, most of us (if not pretty much all of us) Brits who home-make our mincemeat just use suet out of a packet. There’s no grinding the fat up involved in that. The packet stuff doesn’t even resemble meat so I’ve never really thought of it as something that would make people go “ewww” but then I’ve grown up with the stuff, and for me it wouldn’t be the same without those little white flecks (though I’m more than happy to use veggie suet which is just as easy to get hold of). I’m looking forward to cracking my jar of homemade mincemeat open on the 1st and start cracking on the mince-pie-athon that is December.

    • Bronwyn
      December 12, 2019 4:45am

      In New Zealand I can’t find proper suet in a box any more. Just “suet mix” which appears to be mostly flour – you use it half and half with flour to make suet pastry. Don’t think that’s going to do the trick for mincemeat.

  • November 25, 2008 9:39am

    Bibil: You’d say “zeste d’orange confit”; the word confit refers to preserving something, usually by immersion. (Like duck confit, cooked in it’s own fat.)

    Joanna: Yes, there are ways to make it with freshly-grated apples, but since this is intended to be mixed with apples (or pear), I make it without. Give this one a try, and good luck with your traditional version, I’m sure it’ll be great!

    Christelle: You can use any alternative sweetener here, such as honey or agave, or even cut or omit the sugar. It does give it a nice balance, though.

    Emma & Hazel: Thanks for the heads-up about the vegetarian suet. I doubt they have that in France, though. But then again, I haven’t looked ; )

  • mike quear
    November 25, 2008 10:07am

    mincemeat pie always means thanxgiving and christmas in indiana. My grandmother canned mincemeat at the fall butchering season. She never used suet but always a good healthy dose of whiskey. I knew it was mince meat season when the back porch had five galvanized buckets neatly covered with a clean sheet — neatly enesconced in each bucket — was a pigs head. :) She also made a sausage cake (dessert), but that is anoher issue.

  • sam
    November 25, 2008 10:26am

    funnily enough I was looking up mincemeat recipes yesterday, but that was before you published your post. I checked out Delia but she was putting cranberries in hers and that just didn’t seem right to me.

    I am rather fond, myself, of handling suet, but I will probably be lazy this year and buy some of June Taylor’s mincemeat. I don’t even like it but I need it to make for my friends.

    bisous x

  • November 25, 2008 10:38am

    hi sam: I’ve gotten a spate of inquiries about using other dried fruit, and since I was already dangerously straying from “tradition”, I thought I’d keep the flavors as close to the “real” version as possible. (Whatever that is…I’ll leave that for the food historians.)

    But I do believe that food changes and evolves, even the classics, and in times past, since mincemeat was likely a way to preserve and celebrate the bounty, if cranberries were available way-back-when, they likely would have found their way into mincemeat.

    Next time I come, we’ll mix up a batch of the real thing. My traditional recipe makes about 8-pounds, so I’ll put you in charge of grinding up all that suet! x o

  • November 25, 2008 10:53am

    David I love you for posting this recipe! I am a huge mincemeat fan (My Dad is British, so I really don’t have much choice!), and a vegetarian. I’ve tried it successfully with grated apples, but will definitely try yours! I was going to start some holiday baking today, now I’m extra motivated!
    Bisous!

  • sam
    November 25, 2008 11:01am

    David. I’ll be your suet grinder any day. I love handling icky raw meat bits ;)

    And your lateral thinking has just given me an idea. The reason I don’t like mincemeat myself is because I have a untamable version to raisins/saltana/currants. What if I made a batch with *only* cranberries (which I love?) Now we’re talking. Maybe I will give it a try after all.

    • Bronwyn
      December 12, 2019 4:47am

      Plus dried cherries, prunes, apricots etc?

  • sam
    November 25, 2008 11:02am

    untamable Aversion is what I meant to say

  • November 25, 2008 11:22am

    Oh thank you for this recipe. I don’t like when they use suet.
    I am going make this.

  • November 25, 2008 11:51am

    David, your blog is always a cornucopia of amazing foodie goodness; it’s just a bonus that you’re so funny. Mincement is on the menu now, thanks to you. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • David Morton
    November 25, 2008 2:09pm

    I have bought vegetarian suet at several of the “British Shops” here in California.
    It is called ‘Atora’ light, shredded vegetable suet.
    Ingredients: Hydrogenated vegetable oil (47%); wheat flour; sunflower oil (16%); stabiliser pectin: sugar.

    As an, almost, lifelong vegetarian my old Mum was good enough to make mincemeat and Christmas pudding using this stuff (yes it’s been around since Dickens, I think)

    Anyway mince tarts are traditional with Christmas pud and custard as ‘afters’ at Christmas lunch.
    Can also make the other rib sticking puddings with it, such as ‘Spotted Dick’

    Take care,

    David M.

  • Gwen K.
    November 25, 2008 4:04pm

    I didn’t even know what suet WAS before reading this. Then I looked at the Wikipedia page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suet)

  • Joanna
    November 25, 2008 5:28pm

    I never realized how fantastic mincemeat was until I unwittingly ate a mincemeat chocolate from See’s (gotta love the See’s!) a couple of years ago. And See’s is the real thing – suet and allt! Unfortunately, they’re not offering it this year, due, according to the company’s website, “to the unavailability of key ingredients”.
    So… your “less barbaric version” has come at a good time, right when this mincemeat-lover come-lately is feeling the seasonal hankering for canidied suet. (I’m guessing there’s probably some sort of kashrut-related reason that mincemeat doesn’t show up much in Jewish holiday cooking!)
    Thanks!

  • Michelle in NZ
    November 25, 2008 8:51pm

    My mother used to include suet in her mincemeat – and grated apple plus a very generous splosh or three of whiskey. It kept for months!

  • Amy B
    November 25, 2008 9:19pm

    I think your comment about meat market is funny but that could be a vodka/tonic talking. I am not overly fond of mincemeat of any kind but am happy to make this (and smell those frangrant ingredients) as a gift for the mincemeat lovers in my life – without commiting to a whole dessert. I’ll attach your suggestion of serving it over ice cream. It’s a great start to the holiday weekend to read your post and relax. Thanks!

    By the way, a little California news coming your way: NPR just reported that Santa Monica has had to enforce a law preventing the public from using grass medians. People have been using the grass medians to do calisthetics. Those of us in Berkeley just eat pizza on our medians.

  • Kiran
    November 25, 2008 8:49pm

    Thank you for this recipe, just today I was thinking of making my own mince pies and hey presto I have a recipe which is vegetarian friendly :)

    I only recently started eating mince pies ( I did not know you could get vegetarian versions) and enjoy them, so I will give these a go and let you know how they turn out.

    Thanks once again.

  • Krysalia
    November 25, 2008 9:11pm

    May I be the nit-picker of the day :) ?

    Actually confit doesn’t mean “preserved by immersion”, but refers to a way to reduce the water quantity of some ingredient by replacing this water inside it (via the osmotic process) by another product that lasts longer. for the confit de canard (duck confit), some water is replaced by the own fat of the duck, les écorces d’orange confites have some of their inner water replaced by sugar. Dry tomatoes are also called tomates confites, they lost most of their water in the air and it has been replaced partially by salt.
    That’s why confit somewhat means concentrated, more than it refers to the immersion technique.

  • November 26, 2008 12:10am

    Yes, I think I’ll go for the veggie version of the mincemeat after reading your gruesome description of the suet! After perusing this post I consulted my trusty “Good Things in England” by Florence White…a terribly old-fashioned cookbook with all sorts of bizarre and interesting recipes from the 18th and 19th centuries, for versions of mincemeat and found the following riveting comment….’Do not let flour of any kind touch the suet, or the mincemeat will ferment’…so not only do the suet proponents have to deal with the eewwwwww nature of said article but also the possiblity of fermenting mincemeat…oh yum!!!

  • November 26, 2008 2:16am

    Patricia: Actually, I believe there are old recipes for mincemeat, that actually contain pieces of meat.

    But speaking of flour, if folks are using the vegetarian suet, as David pointed out, check to see if it contains wheat flour. If you use it, make sure none of your guests are gluten-intolerant.

    Amy B: Actually, you stir in the mixture into the ice cream, for best results. If using store-bought ice cream, let it sit at room temperature until it’s slightly soft, then beat it in and re-freeze.

    And yes, I heard people in Berkeley are eating pizza on the Shattuck Avenue median. Yuck! I don’t know if I’d be all that happy & relaxed having lunch on a narrow strip of grass while 4 lanes of traffic (mostly Priuses?) whizzed by : )

    • Kathleen
      December 10, 2019 4:09am

      David, as recently as 1967 (the publication date of my tattered, splattered Joy of Cookng), Irma Rombauer and Marion Becker called for 4 lbs. of “lean, chopped beef or ox heart” to make mincemeat filling, enough for 20 pies. Around 1977, when we raised our own beef in Oregon, I greatly reduced the recipe and used beef neck meat. The best mincemeat pie ever!

  • ygardin
    November 26, 2008 3:29am

    Although I didn’t like mincemeat when I first looked at it, after trying it (from Marks and Spencer’s), I liked it. Did you say chocolate? Well, this most definitely calls for chocolate. Merci.

  • November 26, 2008 9:51am

    David: In Montana we have a similar recipe that calls for MOOSE meat – yes, its mincedmoosemeat – try saying that four times fast. As someone who doesn’t really enjoy meat in dessert, I loved the recipe. A little layer at the bottom of an apple tart that I served with caramel brandy sauce was delicious!

    Thanks for your witty and charming blog – it keeps my a little less “home”sick for Paris during the long cold days of winter.

  • November 26, 2008 7:27pm

    Hi David…yes indeed, it seems like the original mincemeat did have meat in it…I just looked in a book called “Christmas Feasts from History” and there are two recipes in there for mincemeat with meat…one with mutton (oh yum) and the other with beef. The mutton one from the 17th century also tells of how pie crusts were then called ‘coffins’ …curiouser and curiouser!
    Thanks for your excellent blog…witty and wise!

  • maggie
    November 29, 2008 1:15pm

    I made a batch of this mincemeat recipe the day it was posted — wanted to sprinkle a few spoonfuls among the apples in a galette I was bringing to T’giving dinner.

    Man-oh-MAN! It was superb! Raves all around for galette.

    So good was it, in fact, that I made a double batch yesterday to have around for Christmas baking. Didn’t have enough candied orange peel on hand for the total, so I used half orange peel and half candied ginger. Didn’t have any more brandy, so used dark Barbancourt rum.

    Just tasted the new batch and y’know, I think it’s even better than the first.

    Bingo, David — very winning recipe.

  • Dawn in CA
    November 30, 2008 5:24pm

    Am I the only silly American giggling that there is a dessert named “Spotted Dick?” Yes? Well, at least I can amuse myself. ;)

  • Carolina
    December 19, 2008 7:29pm

    I’m sure Dawn in CA will probably never see this, but I hope nobody ever tells her about one of the longest-running BBC television programmes in the UK: ‘Blue Peter’.

  • Karen Schaffer
    December 24, 2008 2:16pm

    The instant mix is delicious by itself, but I ended up adding a container of green tomato mincemeat that I had in the freezer to get a more intense mincemeat flavor. (Best use ever for green tomatoes!)

  • January 1, 2009 2:49pm

    David, Thank you for this easy and delicious recipe. I gave it whirl over the Christmas holidays while back home in Florida visiting my parents. I was a little skeptical about making my own candied orange peel, but that ended up being a fun adventure of its own. I was not able to find a decent candied peel in the local supermarket, so I grabbed half a dozen not-quite-ripe blood oranges off the tree in the back yard. These have a rather thin skin, so I worried that it might not work, but the candied peel came out beautifully– a gorgeous, intense flavor and color. The mince itself was bright and clean-tasting (not overly sweet and gloggy like the jarred stuff) and everyone thought the mince tartlettes were the tastiest and most “christmas-y” of all the Christmas desserts. We served them along with aged gouda and port at the end of the meal. Simply perfect.

  • lrm
    November 28, 2009 12:25pm

    my mom always made MM pie (and my great-aunt did turnovers) with just walnuts,raisins and said spices,w/lemon juice. Fantastic. And frankly,the raisins and walnuts give enough texture to make up for no meat. I don’t recall them using apples at all-b/c they always made separate apple pies/turnovers.
    I do think my mom added some mace to her pie-perhaps her secret ingredient. Anyone heard of this before?

  • yemek tarifleri
    November 29, 2010 11:57am

    Hi “My mother used to include suet in her mincemeat – and grated apple plus a very generous splosh or three of whiskey. It kept for months!” thanks.

  • December 12, 2010 2:34pm

    I soaked fruit for my Xmas cake almost like this, with some crystallized ginger and orange peel made from your recipe. It had gotten a bit brittle so in it went too. My fruit is still soaking, and I’ve added some garam masala to it, something my mother has done for years. It adds a deep warm flavour.So happy to know what I made is counted as mincemeat.

  • December 21, 2010 3:12pm
    David Lebovitz

    Sommer J: Yes, you can leave it at room temperature for a few days.

  • Sommer J
    December 21, 2010 2:57pm

    I have a question, David. I made this just now, but i do not have any jars! Is it OK if I allow it to sit at room temp until I use it on Thursday?

  • Chez Lard
    December 26, 2010 8:15pm

    Guys, if you run into one of these weak women who go “ewww” over simple Suet, drop them like a hot potato and run the other direction. First of all, all food comes from various bits of living things, and if you mentally filter out some parts are better or worse than others, you’re simply immature.

    Next, Suet (Beef Fat) is what makes steaks and roasts delicious. The fat holds much of the flavor and a lot of the great texture. Unless you want to eat oatmeal and bean sprouts all your life (not that I don’t enjoy those as well), then you eat suet (ewwww! Not!) all the time!

    Squeamishness over food is just silly and a waste of time/life. Grow up and try all foods.

  • bilbo
    January 26, 2011 9:13am

    I don’t know if anyone else has noticed, but a jar of mincemeat has become very hard to find in grocery stores. My dad had been looking for it for awhile to cure his hunger pangs for a mincemeat pie but wasn’t available anymore except for one obscure store and the price was $3.98 for 8 oz. I used to work in grocery stores and it was always a common item on the shelf. Times change, traditions are lost.

  • bilbo
    January 26, 2011 9:16am

    Chez, I agree with you 100%. I think it’s the words “pie” and “meat” in the same sentence that has such a psychological impact on people even though they’ve probably all eaten quiche or a chicken pot PIE at one time or another. HA!

  • December 9, 2019 3:48pm

    A great alternative to suet for those that can’t or don’t want to use it is grated frozen butter. Stick the equivalent butter in the freezer to harden up and then grate. I use salted butter and it gives a wonderful rich decadence.

    • Gavrielle
      December 10, 2019 3:43am

      Yes, I’ve always just cut butter into small squares as I’m too lazy to source suet. It works fine.

  • Karen
    December 9, 2019 4:20pm

    In another life, I had a mother-in-law in the Midwest US who made mincemeat pie filled with bits of beef. with a pot roast consistency Having grown up with “fruity from a jar mincemeat”, I tried hers once and never again!

  • Tabitha
    December 9, 2019 4:53pm

    I’ll take quality beef suet over cheap nasty soybean oil substitute – it adds a beautiful depth of flavour the likes of which features in our staple Christmas Pudding!

  • Debby
    December 9, 2019 4:58pm

    David, this is such a source of amusement and memories for most of us. I love my mother’s and grandmother’s mincemeat pie. But, when I try to offer to make one for the family I get the “Eewwww”, so I never get my mincemeat pie. My grandmother made her own mincemeat and ground her meat if I remember correctly. But I mostly remember my mother’s recipe shortcut where she used the boxed concentrated mincemeat and added apples, pecans, sugar and maybe raisins. And I loved it with fresh whipped cream. Nutty, fruity desserts have become my favorite in my maturity, but the younger ones, not so much. I love your addition of brandy – or rum – or whisky :)

  • Barbara barclay
    December 9, 2019 6:31pm

    Merci! I won’t have to buy mincemeat for my cookies. Looks yummy.
    Who knows how long this strike will last and I just did beaucoup kilomètres coming home from the dentist.
    Love your posts and your books.
    Barbara

    • December 9, 2019 6:54pm
      David Lebovitz

      Thanks! Yes, we walked about an hour home the other night due to the strike. The upside to it is that we’re all staying (or getting back…) in shape! : )

  • Teuchter
    December 9, 2019 7:32pm

    Has anyone tried Jane Grigson’s mincemeat (using meat) pie?
    I think it was from her ‘English Food’ – great book with a daft title –

    • Marcia
      December 9, 2019 8:44pm

      Thanks so much for this recipe .. love mince pies, and when we spend Christmas with family in England we eat all we can find, I was planning on making some,and got lovely candied orange peel, and other fruits from Nuts.com, very fresh and not too sweet.

  • December 9, 2019 7:42pm

    I don’t know what’s in Marks & Spencer’s mince pies (tarts really) but they were giving them away and it was instant love. I’ll go back and check the ingredients. They probably sell the mince on its own as well.

  • Denise Diaz
    December 9, 2019 7:50pm

    Thank you for this mincemeat recipe. I have memories of my mother using mincemeat in her Thanksgiving stuffing recipe. I’ll definitely try it.

  • Beverly Alton
    December 9, 2019 8:15pm

    My father taught me to make mincemeat, and his great-aunts taught him. Our family’s mincemeat has meat in it, as well as the suet. We would make a large quantity, set some aside for (fairly) quick use, and can the rest to spread out over the year. Judging from the amount of brandy and port that went into it, it was already well-preserved. Husband has been on an anti-sugar campaign so I haven’t made it in years. I miss it so!

    • December 10, 2019 8:05am
      David Lebovitz

      You can make this without the sugar. The dried fruits have natural sugar in them, and the candied fruit has some sugar, but when added to a dessert, it’s not that much per serving. Enjoy!

  • Peggy
    December 9, 2019 8:18pm

    Years ago the SFChronicle had a weekly Wednesday column by Merle Ellis, and one year he published his mother’s recipe for real (meat) mincemeat.

    Hi, I think you meant to add a link here to the SF Chronicle recipe, but it wasn’t posted. If you have a link to the SFGate article, feel free to post it again! – dl

  • Kameela
    December 9, 2019 9:41pm

    Xmas isn’t Xmas without my homemade mince pies. I love them. Used to be called minced pies because of the meat in it. My traditional mincemeat is maturing in my pantry. Mine does not contain sugar but raisins, sultanas, currants are not easy to find in France. (I stock up when I go to the UK on dried ready-to-eat figs, and apricots, lots of spices, and juice and rind of oranges and lemons, apples, chopped almonds for crunch, honey and apple brandy (not easy to find in France) so next time I’m in the UK I’ll be stocking up. It’s great that you’re a fan David. I make dozens of mince pies as gifts for my French friends as they absolutely love them. Perfect morsels with mulled wine when visitors drop by over the Xmas holidays. Yuletide greetings

    • December 10, 2019 8:04am
      David Lebovitz

      Thanks for chiming in. You can get very good apple brandy in France. Calvados from Normandy is terrific! : )

  • nickstraw
    December 9, 2019 11:12pm

    Anyone in France needing dried or glace fruit should take a break down to the Luberon and march into the tasting room of AptUnion just outside, down the road from the Sylla cave.
    Best boulangerie at the bottom of the hill just at the old town entry.

    Restaurants; La Platane or Le Tour de L’Ho. Great market on Saturdays, producer market on Tuesdays.
    Dozens of vineyards all around. Great if you enjoy the Grenache Noir/Syrah hit.

  • Mimi
    December 10, 2019 2:23am

    Try making green tomato mincemeat. Also vegetarian. Delish!

  • witloof
    December 10, 2019 5:36am

    This is completely sacrilegious but I think that your mincemeat would be a fabulous filling for hamentaschen.

  • E E Deere
    December 10, 2019 2:39pm

    David, this looks great.
    I keep thinking that mincemeat will catch on more in the U.S. It falls right along the lines of craft made bitters in my mind.
    I can’t wait to use this for stuffing baked apples. Everyone likes mincemeat pie in my family, I’m lucky.

  • KB
    December 11, 2019 12:36am

    if you are seeing sharing on the internet go down in the numbers don’t be surprised that fewer people are doing it. Those share buttons have a built in issue, they allow the company that has the button such as facebook to bypass the tracking restrictions that browsers have as add ons. If you hit those share buttons you have inadvertently and unknowingly agreed that company can track all of your movements on the internet. So I never use those quick link icons to share anything. If I am going to share I paste in a link to a webpage in an article I might write as a review. As more people become warned about the hidden aspect of agreeing to be tracked when using those buttons you will be seeing shares of your postings rapidly drop off through no fault of your own.

    • December 11, 2019 2:15pm
      David Lebovitz

      Thanks. I usually cut and paste as well but some people do find it easier to use the share buttons. It’s always interesting to me to see which recipes on the blog get pinned the most, or the least. Some get thousands of shares, and others get less.

  • December 12, 2019 2:58pm

    I just posted a really quick and easy method of making Candied Orange Peel at https://wp.me/p2Olvy-4Js. It can be dried and rolled in sanding sugar, coated with chocolate or used plain. A jar in the fridge lasts forever.

  • Helen Haslam
    December 17, 2019 4:54am

    Thanks for your “quick” version – ideal for folding into ice-cream.
    I had to “source” suet directly from an abbatoir this year, as it is no longer available pre-packaged in Quebec or Eastern Ontario.. I prepared some in the usual flakes using the ruffled slicing attachment of my kitchen machine, and rendered the rest, setting it into small-sized loaves, that could be grated. All will be frozen.
    In doing some research I learned that while for mincemeat it is feasible to substitute other fats, suet has a very different melting point, and substitutes will not work in Christmas and other steamed puddings. Not sure about pastry.

  • Lena Wheeling
    January 3, 2020 3:52am

    Suet can be used if needed. Most deli/meat counters will have it if you ask. You may have to ask in advance. They can even process it for you so that it is already ground. I would suggest fine ground. I have made mincemeat with my family for many years and we use venison instead of pork or beef. We also skip adding suet and add more apples instead. Our mix is more dry, but we add in more liquid when baking with it.

    • January 4, 2020 1:28pm
      David Lebovitz

      Yes, I sometimes make suet-based Mincemeat. The butcher was perplexed when I asked for it…especially when I told him it was for making dessert!

  • David
    January 5, 2020 11:54pm

    Nigella Lawson has a recipe for “Cranberry-studded mincemeat” in her book “Nigella Christmas”.

    Dan Lepard has a recipe in “Short & Sweet” for “Tripe and suet mincemeat”. You can substitute tongue for the tripe if you wish! The original of this recipe dates from the early 1700s.