Unbelievably easy mince pies

Unbelievably easy mince pies

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(325 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins - 40 mins Cook: 20 mins


Makes 18 pies
No rolling required! Press the raw, crumbly pastry directly into your tin for a short, biscuity finish. Our easiest mince pie recipe and great fun to make with kids

Nutrition and extra info

  • Can be frozen uncooked

Nutrition: per pie

  • kcal222
  • fat11g
  • saturates7g
  • carbs30g
  • sugars12g
  • fibre1g
  • protein2g
  • salt0.26g
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  • 225g cold butter, diced



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 350g plain flour



    Flour is a powdery ingredient usually made from grinding wheat, maize, rye, barley or rice. As…

  • 100g golden caster sugar
  • 280g mincemeat
  • 1 small egg



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • icing sugar, to dust


  1. To make the pastry, rub 225g cold, diced butter into 350g plain flour, then mix in 100g golden caster sugar and a pinch of salt. Combine the pastry into a ball – don’t add liquid – and knead it briefly. The dough will be fairly firm, like shortbread dough. You can use the dough immediately, or chill for later.

  2. Preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6/fan 180C. Line 18 holes of two 12-hole patty tins, by pressing small walnut-sized balls of pastry into each hole. Spoon 280g mincemeat into the pies.

  3. Take slightly smaller balls of pastry than before and pat them out between your hands to make round lids, big enough to cover the pies. Top the pies with their lids, pressing the edges gently together to seal – you don’t need to seal them with milk or egg as they will stick on their own. (The pies may now be frozen for up to 1 month).

  4. Beat 1 small egg and brush the tops of the pies. Bake for 20 minutes until golden. Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack. To serve, lightly dust with icing sugar. They will keep for 3 to 4 days in an airtight container.

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Comments (578)

TJ63's picture

If you knead this for long enough it will form a dough. I find it easier to break off small pieces and roll into a ball and press it into the palm of my hand to form the bases and the tops. Best recipe i have ever used. The pies are delicious with sweet crumbly pastry. Better than shop bought.

Orlando Murrin's picture

As the person who created this recipe, over ten years ago, I am delighted it is still proving popular. (I am here today because I am making a batch of mince pies and I needed to refresh my memory.)
As jo.in.sing points out, the whole point of this dough is that it is a rich,biscuit-type mixture, which bakes to a lovely crumbly consistency that works really well with mincemeat. Unlike normal pastry, you can handle it as much as you like - you can throw it against the wall if you wish - and it will not become tough (as normal pastry would).
If you're making a large batch, I have to admit it is a bit fiddly trying to press the pastry out neatly, but the mince pies always turn out looking attractive. (Obviously, the more thinly and evenly you press the dough out, the neater they will look.)
I have never had these mince pies stick, but if there are holes in your pastry and the mincemeat seeps through during baking, it will act like glue and they will. Greasing tins or using non-stick may be a good precaution.
I don't find the pastry too sweet, but then I make my own mincemeat and it is not nearly as sweet as the stuff you buy.
In recent years, I've sprinkled the tops with flaked almonds, which gives even more of a crunch. They don't need toasting first - that happens while they're baking.
Happy Christmas!

CiaranBath's picture

Just made these, I am no baker and have never made mince pies before. Not only is the recipe very easy but the pies are DELICIOUS! I was concerned that the squishing had made the pastry bases too thin but the pies came out very well.

jokelly's picture

I've made these for the last 3 years, it's the only recipe I would use now. I understand the pastry is a bit tricky/messy but I find that if you work it in your hands until it sticks together then roll it between two prices of cling film it's a lot easier, you can then use a cutter. I mix loads of pastry to the end of the first stage then keep it in the fridge until needed.

broadhaven's picture

I have just made these and whilst they looked great in tin when I attempted to take them out of tin (left them in tin till cool) everyone one of them just broke up and crumbled! They still taste good though but unfortunately won't be able to offer them to guest.

Jo.in.sing's picture

PLEASE READ THE INSTRUCTIONS ON THIS RECIPE!!! This is not (repeat NOT) a pastry that you roll out. If you try to do that, you will fail. It is a crumble pastry, not unlike the stuff you put onto apple crumble, and you just have to squash it into the cases. It will look horrible until cooked but just trust it, follow the recipe, and leave the pies in the tins for 10 mins to cool and harden before trying to remove from the tins. Oh and grease the tins first. For the lids, I work it a bit between my palms to create the flat lids but if they go on in several pieces, it doesn't matter. This is the most delicious mince pie recipe you will ever use and it IS easy, but only if you don't try to go all posh with it.....

gipsygirl's picture

This was a total disaster, couldn't get it do form into a "dough" at all, it was just a crumbly mess.

Jo.in.sing's picture

It never does form a dough - but don't worry about it - just go with it and squash into the tins. It really does work, honest!

mincepieclub's picture

Such a simple recipe, why wouldn't you want to make your own mince pies? If you are a fan of Mince Pies why not check out our Mince Pie Club web site here: http://www.mincepieclub.co.uk/

hettyrose's picture

I make my own pastry all the time, and while this is delicious I found it incredibly difficult to work with, there must be something wrong with me!

Jonnym2301's picture

Hi all, Hope someone can shine some light on a problem I've just had. Finished baking this recipe and even though the top and filling taste amazing, I have soggy/raw bottoms.... What I have a done wrong???

Novice baker.


tansygirl's picture

Hi Jonny, try heating up a flat baking tray in the oven while you prepare the pies, then put the patty tin on that, which should help crisp up the bottom. Good luck!

fishez's picture

Forgot to rate.
Taken a star off as pastry is a bit too sweet for my liking so will reduce sugar next time (try half).

fishez's picture

Fantastic! Well worth the effort!

I have just followed this recipe, to the letter. The pastry did seem a little crumbly at first (when I lined the tray) but I pressed it into the tray with my fingers and hoped for the best. For the tops, I pressed it into rough circles onto a board then used a cutter for the circle shape and removed with a small palette knife.

I used two different trays (one old) and didn't grease either. Left the pies for 5 mins to cool before removing and none of them stuck! Yay!

The pastry did seem a bit of a faff at first but well worth it. Fantastic pies!

Just tasted them and do find the pastry a bit too sweet. Will half the sugar to 50g next time. This will probably make the pastry less crumbly too.

kiwiinlux's picture

I used this recipe for the first time today and it worked brilliantly. I made mini mince pies and rolled the pastry then cut out circles for the cases and stars for the tops. Perhaps the one thing I would change after feedback from friends is to reduce the amount of sugar in the pastry slightly, since the filling is also sweet.

Bobbygirl's picture

I've used this recipe for 3 years and all the time I get comments on how good it is! I make the pastry wheat and dairy free and you don't notice the difference! I actually found the pastry a lot easier to use using olive spread than butter I wasn't so crumbly and stuck together more.

bLaZeR666_uk's picture

The whole point of this pastry is that you dont need an egg or water or a rolling pin. Follow the instructions and it will work. If not YOU are doing something wrong. Very very simple method and so easy to prepare and cook.

Best of all this has go to be the most delicious pastry you can eat!

Cally B's picture

These are delicious.. Thank you

clovelly1's picture

Fabulous pastry! I will use this again and again thank you!


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