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RECIPE: Does anyone make their own mincemeat anymore?

21 years ago

Morning everyone,

Just wondering if anyone makes it themselves. When I tell people I do they say why don't I just buy the stuff in the jar from the store. Yuck! The recipe I use has been passed down from my great-gramma to gram, to mum, to me. I will pass it down to my two daughters. I also borrow the tins from my mum to bake the tarts in. They came over with great-gramma from England along with the recipe. Also mincemeat is only to be made for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It's a special treat. So how about it? Anyone still go through the pleasure of making it? NancyLouise

Comments (29)

  • lindac
    21 years ago

    Nope. My grandmother did....but I seem to have married into a family of mince pie haters....but I LOVE it and haven't had any in years!
    Is your recipe a family secret? Or will you share?
    Linda C

  • Tracey_OH
    21 years ago

    I don't even know what's in mincemeat. I know what it is, but I wouldn't have a clue what it's actually made of. I haven't even seen a mincemeat pie in years. I vaguely remember having them as a kid and the taste wasn't anything I'd care to have again. Having said that, I'm curious as to what homemade mincemeat tastes like. I know I saw a jar of mincemeat at the store the other day and it was $7.99, which I think is too much for any type of pie.


  • annie1992
    21 years ago

    I make my own, both the traditional mincemeat and something Grandma called "Green Tomato Mincemeat" made with raisins, apples, spices and green tomatoes.

    Although my family doesn't really care for mincemeat pie, they really like it when I roll sugar cookie dough, cut into squares or rounds, then fold the dough around a tsp or so full of mincemeat, like a tiny cookie turnover.

  • nancylouise5me
    Original Author
    21 years ago

    Sorry I'm late responding back. Computer keeps freezing up and it's very frustrating!
    I too find that most people do not care for mincemeat. I'm not sure if it's because they don't know what's in it so they don't want to try it or it's the taste or the work involved to make it. But I love the sweet taste and it is expected to be one of the desserts at holiday time. Here is our family recipe. We don't add whiskey or bourbon as some recipes call for, but I'm sure you could add it if you choose to.

    12 granny smith apples-peeled and cored
    1 box raisins
    1 box currents
    1/2 lb beef suet-skin removed
    2 tsp cinnomon
    1 tsp nutmeg
    1 tsp cloves
    1 cup sugar

    Grind apples,raisins, and suet through the hand grinder. Stir in currents,spices, and sugar. Mix well. Cover and place in refridgerator for at least two weeks, stirring occasionally to mix flavors.
    Preheat oven to 350. Make your favorite 2 pie crust recipe. Place bottom crust in pie pan add filling,place other crust on top and seal edges. Make one or two steam vents.You can either make whole pies or as our family does make small (3 inch diameter)individual pies. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, cool on wire rack. Dust with powdered sugar if you like. Enjoy, NancyLouise

  • lindac
    21 years ago

    Thanks NancyLouise! How much does it make? Enough for 4 pies? More?
    Linda C

  • nancylouise5me
    Original Author
    21 years ago

    To tell you the truth Linda I can't recall making a regular big pie with the filling. I think it makes 2 regular sized pies(9 inch pie pan) with some left over. We make the small pie-etts and there are well over 30 of those from one batch. Just figurin' it takes 6-7 apples to make a regular apple pie and then there is all the other fruit and suet thrown in. What do you think 3 pies maybe? NancyLouise

  • lindac
    21 years ago

    I usually figure 5 big apples for a pie.....
    So that would be 2 pies, plus 2 apples left over, plus the raisens, currents and suet....certainly 3 plus....but if it sits for 2 weeks it will shrink.....
    Yeah....likely 3 pies!
    Does it freeze well?
    Linda C

  • nancylouise5me
    Original Author
    21 years ago

    Yup, Linda, as long as you don't bake it first. Mum puts left over filling in a freezer bag and tosses it in the freezer. But there have been a couple times when mum forgets what is in the freezer so who knows how long it's been in there! NancyLouise

  • Ilene29
    21 years ago

    This was my mom's recipe and i make it now i it is really good

    Green Tomato mincement
    3 pounds green tom.thinly sliced. (about 2 quarts sliced)
    1/4cup salt
    2 large apples,cored and chopped but unpeeled
    1 large orange,seeded and chopped but unpeeled
    15- ounce package seedles raisins about 2 1/2 cups
    1 cup susar
    1 pint dark corn syrup
    2 tablespoones pumpkin-pie spice

    Sprinkle tom. with salt as you layer themin a bowl; cover
    and let stand at room temperature overnight.Rinse with cold waterand drin well. Chop fine. Into a 4- quart sauce pan turn thetom., apples; orange.raisins,sugar,corn syrup and spice's.Cover and simmer45 min.uncoverand boil gently stirringoccasionally.For 11/4 hours. Store tightly covered
    in the refrigeratoror store in approprite containers in the
    freezer. Makes 21/2 pints-enouth for two 9 inch pies. To make pies stir 1/4 cup light or goldon rum into 21/2 cups green tom. mincement; cover and let stand at room temperture; over night.Turn into a unbaked 9- inch pastry, shell. Cover with vented top crust. Bake in a preheated 425 degree oven 45 to 50 min.

    Pumpkin Pie Spice

    11/2 teaspoon jinger
    11/2 teaspoom cinnamon
    11/2 teaspoonnutmeg
    11/2 teaspoon allspice

    I no this is late but i just notice it maybe you can make it this year if you think that you would like it.

  • amye
    21 years ago

    Thank you so much for this thread! I've tried a couple of times to decipher my grandmother's recipe (hand written) for mincemeat but haven't been able to pull it off - my mother's no help - she's a terrible cook and only can offer vague suggestions about what might be missing -- hopefully this one will get me where I need to go!

  • canarybird01
    21 years ago

    I used to make my own as I was unable to buy it here. It came out very well. Can't imagine Christmas without the scent of mince tarts cooking in the oven and the sight of them arranged on a lace doily-covered silver tray and lightly dusted with icing sugar. Here's the recipe I use :


    1 lb. apples, peeled and cored
    1/2 lb (227 grams) sultanas
    1 lb. (454 grams) seeded dark raisins
    1 lb. " currants
    1 lb beef suet lightly chopped
    1/2 lb (227 grams)sugar - demerara or soft brown
    1 cup (170 grams) mixed peel (purchased candied lemon & orange peel)
    2 TBS mixed spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice)
    1 TBS ground cloves
    1 lemon - grated rind and half the juice
    1 orange - grated rind and half the juice
    1 1/2 cups brandy

    I used the old-fashioned hand cranked mincer - it clamped onto the edge of the table. Put through the mincer: suet, apples, raisins and mixed peel, catching it in a large basin. Add to the basin the currants, sultanas, sugar, spices, cloves, rind and juice of orange and lemon. Mix all well and add brandy - mix again.

    Cover the basin with a cloth - put into a dark, cool and dry place and stir every day for a week. Put into jars and seal down. Tastes best if made a few weeks in advance - the flavour improves with time.

    Recipe adapted from The Margaret Powell Cookery Book
    (C) Margaret Powell and Leigh Crutchley 1970

  • loralee
    21 years ago

    I also make mincemeat and couldn't imagine a Xmas without a mincemeat pie. I use my grandmothers recipe. My mother canned it for ever about 10 years ago or more when she became unable to can any more I took over making the mincemeat for her and of course kept a few jars for me. My mother passed away 2 years ago. Only one of my children and myself like it as it is very sweet and I always have one of my brothers over for Xmas and it brings back lots of memories. I will difinitly try the sugar cookie dough. I make mincemeat cookies with it to these are really very soft cookies. I will post the recipe. Loralee

  • loralee
    21 years ago

    12 pt. chopped apples
    12 pt. chopped green tomatoes
    24 tsp cinnamon
    12 tsp allspice, cloves, salt
    10 cups suet (2#)
    8# raisins
    12 cups sugar
    3 cups apple cider vinegar
    6 lemons
    core and remove seeds from the apples the lemons you can pick out when you grind them up. I use a food grinder to grind all the the apples tomatoes and lemons. Mix all together and simmer until thick and hot. Pack into clean jars and process in boiling water bath for 30 minutes. I don't remember how much this makes but I will be making a smaller amount this fall since I will not be canning any for my mother. She used lots and I mainly use it for the holidays. The recipe can easily be cut down. Loralee

  • Bethintokyo
    20 years ago

    Try this one for an up to date English version. Delia Smith is a very reliable cook!


    Here is a link that might be useful: Mincemeat

  • teddymom
    20 years ago

    Just reading all your posts and didn't think there were many people 'out there' who loved mincemeat as much as I do! Here's my tried & true recipe - I've made double batches most years to share with my family. My dear MIL used to just spoon it over her ice cream!

    2 1/3 cups currants
    2 1/3 cups raisins
    1 1/3 cup chopped beef suet
    7 cups chopped & peeled apples
    2 cups brown sugar
    3/4 tsp. each salt, cinnamon, allspice & nutmeg

    Add juice of 1 lemon and enough orange juice to make mixture juicy. Store in fridge and stir daily for 2 weeks until flavors are blended.

    I have an old crock that I use every year. I also like to add some dark rum - just for extra flavor of course!


  • lerajo
    19 years ago

    I make my own mincemeat and it had real meat in it--either beef or vension. This is the way my grandmother made hers and I love it. The other stuff is just fruit pie.

  • Dicken
    19 years ago

    we made ours with beef + suet; never thought to try venison, i bet it'd be great!

    hmmm...that was a good while ago.


  • mangofox
    19 years ago

    Venison makes the only trus mincemeat. All others I've tried just haven't compared.

  • Sylvia
    19 years ago

    I am sad, or am I glad, to see that Dicken posted to this thread. He died last Thursday. He was a gentle spirit and a wonderful writer. We'll miss him at the Garden Party.

    Here's a recipe I got from Sara the Brit, she frequents the Garden Party. I wish I could say I had made it, but alas, the ease of the Crosswell jar beckoned...

    Dear Sylvia
    Here's the recipe I've been using for the last couple of years. it's fairly variable - you can leave out
    the nuts, add different ones, change the proportions of the fruit, to suit your own tastes. It really
    benefits from at least 2 weeks maturing, so you don't have to make it now if you don't feel like it.
    alternatively, the first year I made far too much, and it kept superbly until the following Christmas!
    (although it depends on how hot your summer is, I suspect).

    half pound, peeled finely chopped apples (I use Granny Smiths)
    4 oz shredded suet or melted butter (I use butter - suet is traditional, but not used in the UK these
    4 oz golden raisins (probably about 2/3 cup?)
    6 oz raisins
    4 oz chopped mixed peel (the lemon and citron stuff is best)
    6 oz soft dark brown sugar (3/4 cup)
    grated rind and juice of 1 orange
    grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
    quarter teaspoon cinnamon
    quarter teaspoon allspice
    quarter teaspoon ground nutmeg
    3 tablespoons brandy

    Mix everything, except the brandy, together and stir well. Leave it covered for 12 hours or overnight.
    To prevent fermentaiton, leave it in a cool oven 225F/120C for 3 hours. Allow to cool completely and add
    the brandy. Spoon into clean dry jars and seal. Don't worry if the butter separates slightly on the top
    - just stir it again before baking it into pastry.

    Makes approx. 3lbs - about 1 large mason jar.

    Happy cooking - and have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    Best wishes

    Sylvia wrote:

    > [This message originated at GardenWeb]
    > > Hi Sara - I would *love* a copy of your mincemeat recipe! And - how far in advance do you prepare it?
    > thanks so much - Sylvia

    Here is a link that might be useful: Dicken

  • ginger_st_thomas
    19 years ago

    Yes, that is indeed a loss. My sympathies to his loved ones & friends.

  • anoid1
    15 years ago

    My mother used to make it. I wish I had her recipe! I know she used venison and beef tongue and if she could get it, bear was considered the best. It went into a stainless pot, was doused with brandy, covered, allowed to "rest", checked from time to time, and re-doused if it got dry. I always helped grind the meat and chop the citron. It sat for months in a cool dark place. It was the best, and the store stuff doesn't even come close! I would sneak a taste from time to time, and one year I got in real trouble when she went to get it to make Thanksgiving pies and found I had eaten half the pail. Mmmm!

    13 years ago

    Ya'll are GREAT!!!!! i am wanting to make mincemeat for the first time as I am just beginning to can. I want the best and easiest recipe to start with, but you are making it hard on me with all these great recipes. Which one do you suggest to start with? I am going to make some mincemeat cookies and muffins and bars, too. I found these recipes in my 94 y/o mother's things. Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Happy Baking!

  • Craftymomma2000_yahoo_com
    13 years ago

    I have my grandmothers recipe for mincemeat but it makes about 20 quarts and it is made with pork. Really good!

  • glelief
    11 years ago

    I have a recipe for 9 quarts of mincemeat. Made with venison. I suppose you could use beef. It was handed down from my husbands mother. She had it given to her by her grandmother. I am making some tomorrow. Each quart makes a 9 inch pie. I have to dig it up. I will post it tomorrow after I make it.

    11 years ago


    I've just joined the forum and love all of these yummy ideas for mincemeat.

    I usually buy the jars and make my own puff pastry mince pies each year but this year I decided to try and make my own mincemeat and here's my dilemma:

    I started with this recipe 6 days ago and the recipe I was using is a throw it all together and use whatever dried fruit you like. So I added bags of dried cranberries,raisins,sultanas, blueberry infused cranberries, dried cherries and a fair amount of brandy and covered it over.

    After 3 days I had a yearning to add blueberries. Don't ask me why, I just did. So without really thinking about what I was doing, I defrosted some wild blueberries then added them to the bowl. Of course as soon as I had emptied them I realized that I had just added 'fresh' fruit to a bowl of dried fruit and thought I'd ruined the whole mix. So I picked off as many blueberries as I could but there may be a few still in there with the juices. I added more brandy and have kept it in the fridge for the last 3 days.

    Now my question is whether I have made the mix unsafe by adding fresh fruit. I don't want it to grow mold or cause illness to anyone eating it. I am thinking about throwing it out and starting again but then again, there's a lot of brandy in there...

    After 7 days, the recipe says to add a jar of applesauce to keep it moist and stir every few days while keeping it in the fridge for several weeks then a week before using it, add spices.

    Is what I have still safe to eat and jar for later use or should I throw it away?

    Thanks so much! I had seen some earlier posts about mincemeat posted on the forum in June and thought this would be a good place to get some help.

  • HU-566917404
    5 years ago

    I cannot find suet in stores anymore. Maple Leaf doesn't make it anymore. What else can you use instead.

  • loralee
    5 years ago

    Just go to the butcher dept in your local grocery store. Ask them to grind the amount of suet that you need. I have never had a butcher turn me down.

  • loralee
    5 years ago

    In a couple of weeks I will be making my annual years supply of green tomato mincemeat.