Festive, rich & fruity Vegan Christmas Mincemeat steeped in boozy deliciousness! A Christmas staple that is really easy to make & can be used in all sorts of ways. It’s also perfect for gifting.
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I wasn’t actually planning on making my own Christmas Mincemeat recipe, but when I published my Festive Mincemeat Tart a few weeks ago it became apparent that a lot of people aren’t really sure what it is or how to use it.
As a Brit, I’ve grown up eating mincemeat in Vegan Mince Pies and other baked goods every Christmas and I didn’t realize that it wasn’t as widespread here in Canada or the U.S.
I actually used store bought mincemeat for my tart recipe and I found it pretty easy to find a suet free variety here. Some of you have let me know that you are struggling to get hold of it though, and that is what gave me the idea of making my own.
Like most things, store bought is nice but nothing can beat homemade. I can really testify to that now I have tasted my own!
WHAT IS MINCEMEAT AND WHAT ARE MINCEMEAT INGREDIENTS?
Mincemeat is a combination of dried fruits, citrus fruits, nuts, spices and alcohol. Historically it also contained meat, and although modern day versions don’t contain it anymore, they do often have suet in them.
Suet is made from animal fat, although nowadays there are vegetarian versions of suet available. I prefer not to use suet in my recipe though as I don’t adding fat or oiliness to it adds anything. It’s way better without!
[clickToTweet tweet=”Vegan mincemeat full of fruit, nuts, spices, apple, oranges, lemons, rosemary & lots of port! ” quote=”My Vegan Mincemeat is totally suet and oil-free, and uses a combination of dried fruit, nuts, spices, grated apple, oranges, lemons and then as a little twist, some fresh rosemary.”] The rosemary flavour isn’t too obvious but it adds a lovely little something.
Then as if all that fruity, spicy deliciousness isn’t enough, along comes a very generous glug of port.
If it didn’t say “Christmas” before it certainly does once that’s added!
The alcohol used in traditional mincemeat is usually brandy. I tried it with port and with brandy and preferred the port version. It tasted richer and more festive to me. You can however swap the port out for brandy or use a combination of the two. I didn’t actually try a combination of the two myself but I just know it would be great!
Traditionally mincemeat is not cooked. The ingredients are combined as they are, then left to steep in jars. I decided to hurry this process along a bit by warming my mincemeat in the oven on a very low temperature for a little while. This step intensifies the flavours beautifully and is well worth the extra time. Once it has been warmed through then cooled, the alcohol is added. Doing it this way means it has a really great boozy kick. It is Christmas after all!
HOW TO USE VEGAN MINCEMEAT
Mincemeat is a really versatile addition to your Christmas menu.
Here are some ways to use it:
- The obvious way to use my Vegan Mincemeat is in Vegan Mince Pies.
- You can also use it in my Festive Mincemeat Tart.
- It makes a lovely addition to muffins and other baked goods too.
- Use it as an alternative to jam in thumbprint cookies, or as an alternative to dates in date squares.
- Add a layer to my Baked New York Cheesecake for a festive dessert.
- You can also use it to make a speedy Christmas cake or pudding.
- Stuff baked apples with it
- Add to apple pie or strudel fillings
- Warmed it and use to top pancakes, waffles or vanilla ice-cream
- And make it to gift.
PERFECT FOR GIFTING
For gifting, fill some mason jars:
You can use standard shape and size like those above or use smaller wider mouth mason jars. I like these for gifting:
Then buy some Christmas ribbon to tie around the top:
For more Christmas inspiration, check out Vegan Christmas Dinner Menu, Shopping List and Timeline. I have planned the entire meal for you down to the tiniest detail!
- 300g | 2 slightly heaped cups raisins , (see recipe notes regarding substitutions for the dried fruits listed)
- 160g | 1 slightly rounded cup currants
- 140g | 1 slightly rounded cup dried cranberries
- 100g | ½ cup dried blueberries
- 80g | ½ cup dried cherries
- 80g | ½ cup dried figs , chopped
- 140g | 1 cup slivered almonds , (you can omit to make the recipe nut free)
- 2 lemons zest and juice
- 2 oranges zest and juice
- 1 large apple grated
- 225g | 1½ cup coconut sugar , (any granulated sugar can be subbed)
- 3 teaspoons ground all spice
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons rosemary chopped finely
- 375mls | 1.5 cups port , (for an alcohol free version sub the port for unsweetened apple juice)
- Preheat the oven to 200°F
- Mix all ingredients except the port in a large oven proof bowl or casserole. Cover tightly with tin foil or a lid and place in the oven.
- Leave to warm in the oven for 90 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
- Add the port and stir really well.
- Transfer into clean jars (see recipe notes below)