This easy homemade mincemeat recipe is packed full of cooking apples, raisins, sultanas, cranberries, Christmas spice and a generous dose of cider and brandy.
If you’ve never made your own mincemeat before, let me show you just how simple it is!
Nothing makes me feel more festive than making a batch of mince pies. Nothing makes me feel more ravenous either.
The aroma of buttery pastry and hot, boozy mincemeat filling is irresistible to me.
For me, it’s the smell of Christmas.
Yes, you might be able buy pretty decent mincemeat in the shops these days, but it simply doesn’t come close to making your own.
The beauty of making your own mincemeat is you control what goes into it. I’ve never been a fan of mixed peel, so I leave it out.
You can easily substitute one dried fruit for another – for instance if you aren’t keen on dried cranberries, then just add more sultanas, raisins or Currants.
Dried or chopped glacé Cherries would also be a great idea.
How to make homemade mincemeat (suet free)
Making mincemeat couldn’t really get much easier. All you need to do is place all the ingredients apart from the brandy or rum in a saucepan and let it simmer for around 30 minutes on a low heat until it looks like…mincemeat!
Suet free mincemeat
Suet is a traditional ingredient in mincemeat, but you won’t find any in this recipe. Cooking apples replace the suet and ensures the mincemeat stays nice and moist.
How long will homemade mincemeat keep For?
Unopened jars of Mincemeat will keep for a very long time – the alcohol and sugars in the recipe will preserve it beautifully.
I’ve kept this mincemeat for up to 2 years with absolutely no problems.
I have to say though, it is pretty rare for me to have jars of mincemeat sitting in my cupboard for months on end. I make a LOT of mince pies every December!
There is one thing you absolutely must do though – store the mincemeat in sterilised jars.
How do you sterilise Jars for mincemeat?
I usually put the jars and lids in the dishwasher on a hot cycle and dry them in a very low (100C) oven. Just make sure you don’t place your fingers inside the jars and undo all the work you’ve just done!
Alternatively you can give the jars a good scrub in very hot, soapy water before placing them in the oven (see above) to dry.
This mincemeat is adapted from a Nigella Lawson recipe, “Hettie’s suet free mincemeat” from how to be a domestic goddess.
If you love the flavour of apple, it’s definitely the mincemeat recipe for you.
Recipes to use up mincemeat
More Christmas recipes for you to try
Did you make this easy homemade mincemeat?
Let me know what you thought of the recipe by leaving a comment below, and if you would rate the recipe out of 5 by clicking on the stars in the recipe card, I’d really appreciate it. Thank you!
- 250ml (8fl oz/1 cup) Medium (hard) dry Cider
- 250G (1 cup) Soft Dark brown sugar
- 1Kg (8 cups) Cooking apples, peeled, cored and roughly chopped
- 250G (1 3/4 cups) Raisins
- 250G (1 3/4 cups) Sultanas
- 100G (3/4 cup) Dried Cranberries
- 1 teaspoon ground mixed spice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated Nutmeg
- Zest and Juice of half a Lemon
- 100ml (3 1/2 fl oz) Brandy or Dark Rum
- Dissolve the sugar and the cider in a large saucepan over a low heat. Add the chopped apples, raisins, sultanas, cranberries, spices and lemon Zest and Juice. Simmer over a low heat for about 30 minutes until the mixture is pulpy and soft.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the brandy or rum. Spoon into sterilised jars.
Nutrition InformationYield 30 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 127Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 10mgCarbohydrates 31gNet Carbohydrates 0gFiber 2gSugar 26gSugar Alcohols 0gProtein 1g