Store-bought mincemeat contains suet (definitely not veggie) so try my super easy vegetarian/vegan mincemeat recipe to get all the magical flavours of Christmas without the animal products. Oh, and it’s refined sugar-free too!
I love mince pies. I adore the pungent boozy luxury of good mincemeat. It is so easy to make your own, it really does seem like a crime to buy the stuff.
Don’t just think of this as a bog-standard filling for the good old mince pie, oh no dear friends there is so much more you can do with really good homemade mincemeat.
The problem with traditional mincemeat you buy in the stores is that it contains suet, my homemade vegetarian/vegan Christmas mincemeat is suet free!
Once upon a time mincemeat actually did contain meat. Those mince pies we scoff with a cuppa nowadays used to be filled with beef or lamb plus all those festive spices.
Originally our Christmas mince pies were oval shaped like a manger (though they were called mince coffins!) and some even had a baby Jesus on top. Not a nice idea that, hacking into baby Jesus.
Mincemeat didn’t lose the meat until fairly recently. The only hangover to the meat is the suet (meat fat) that is still contained in Christmas mincemeat.
The meat part was replaced with lots of dried fruits and nuts and thankfully we kept those gorgeous spices.
Actually it was the spices that were the important part. The richer you were the more spices you could afford.
Nowadays it is a mixture of all sorts of dried fruits, nuts and booze. Oh and the remaining meaty ingredient is suet. Hang on, there is also a shed load of sugar in there too.
Vegetarian/Vegan Mincemeat = No suet!
My vegetarian mincemeat contains no suet, so all the non-meat eaters are safe to consume as many of my mince pies as they like!
No refined sugar
I have used honey as my sweetener. There isn’t even much of that so this vegetarian mincemeat is totally refined sugar-free.
I have used Maple Syrup as my sweetener of choice. That means that this homemade mincemeat is vegan not just vegetarian.
If you only have honey you can use that instead but then it would be just vegetarian mincemeat and not qualify as vegan mincemeat.
See, I told you I was ticking all the boxes with this one!
Ingredients for vegan Christmas mincemeat
Mixed nuts (your favourites here)
Luxury dried fruit mix (this contains raisins, sultanas, currants, mixed peel, cherries, cranberries) You can use any mixture of dried fruit that you like here
Carrots and apples
Orange and lemon
Ginger and chilli
Whisky, brandy or rum. Whichever hooch you prefer
How to make vegan mincemeat
Oh you are just going to LOVE the simpllicity of this little mincemeat recipe. The only cooking you have to do is toasting the nuts.
Now toasting the nuts is actually important so don’t just skip it. When you toast nuts you release their oils and they taste SO much better.
All you have to do is break them up and toast them in a dry pan over a medium heat. Now this is not the time to answer your phone or nip to the loo as they can catch and burn very easily.
Nuts toast quickly so watch them like a hawk.
You will know when they’re ready when you see them turn a golden colour and they start to emit that gorgeous nutty aroma.
Now tip them out of the hit pan on to a plate right away. If yoou just take the pan off the heat the residual heat in the pan will keep cooking the nuts and they might burn.
Nobody likes burnt nuts!
Now for the easy part – simply toss all your ingredients into a nice big bowl and mix thoroughly.
Cover with a clean tea towel and set the bowl aside in a cool place (not the fridge) for 3 days to let those flavours mingle and dance together .
Now simply spoon the mincemeat into sterilised jars and pop on the lids
How long will this keep?
Your vegetarian/vegan Christmas mincemeat will keep for up to a month due to the natural sugar content, the maple syrup and mostly due to the booze in there.
This is a real treat and is just wonderful served warmed up as an accompaniment for a really good vanilla ice-cream.
Or why not try it stuffed into the core cavity of an apple and baked in the oven and served with cream.
Check out this recipe for my marvelous marvelous mince pies with this, you’ll love them!
Or use youor vegan mincemeat to make my fabulous easy Christmas baclava recipe.
This is just one of my 50 Homemade Pantry Staples you might like to take a wee look at.
Looking for more fun festive recipes to try? Then check these out before you go;
Finally, if you do try this recipe don’t forget to leave a comment/star rating below as I just love to hear from readers. Want more Larder Love? Then follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter and sign up for my newsletter too of course.
Easy Vegetarian/Vegan Christmas Mincemeat
- 65 g roughly chopped mixed nuts
- 750 g luxury dried fruit mix
- 100 g carrots grated
- 150 g apples any eating variety grated
- 1 orange grated rind and juice
- 1 lemon grated rind and juice
- 2 tbsp fresh ginger peeled and grated
- 1 tsp red chili finely chopped
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 1/2 tsp Allspice powder
- 125 ml Brandy/Whisky or Rum plus extra to add to jars
- Toast the chopped nuts in a dry pan for approx 1 minute till they release their gorgeous nutty aroma, remove from pan and allow to cool.
- Put all ingredients in a great big bowl and stir well to combine.
- Cover with a tea towel and leave for 3 days to mature.
- Spoon into sterilised jars and top each with an extra tablespoon of your chosen booze and stir through.
- It is now ready to use and will keep for at least a month due to the high booze content and the maple syrup.