Who doesn’t love a good family tradition? One of ours is mince pies at Christmas and the New Year, and what decadent treats they are! Traditional mincemeat has beef products in it, so here’s a version that even your vegan cousin Larry can eat!

If you need a recipe for vegan pastry, too, you can check out my easy vegan pie crust recipe!

Vegan mince pie filling (mincemeat)

Makes 2 litres filling (enough for 4 large pies)

1 lb cooking apples, cored and diced (I leave the skins on)
1 cup 100% vegetable shortening
2 cups dark raisins
1½ cups sultana raisins
1½ cups currants
1½ cups mixed candied peel
2 cups golden cane sugar
1 tablespoon blackstrap molasses
½ cup orange juice
¼ cup lemon juice
½ cup chopped almonds
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
¾ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
½ cup brandy or rum

Combine all ingredients except brandy in a large bowl and mix very well. Cover and let stand overnight in a cool place.

Transfer the mixture to an oven-safe dish and bake at 250°F for 3 hours.

Let cool at room temperature, stirring the mixture about every half hour to make sure the oils mix into the pie filling. When at room temperature, stir in the brandy and immediately pack into clean, sterilized mason jars. Seal and store in a cool, dark place. Once canned, the pie filling will keep for over a year.

When making into pies, I add an extra 2 cups diced apples, 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1 cup raisins per jar of filling. Using this method, one large mason jar (1 litre) of pie filling will yield exactly two 9″ pies.

To make into pies, use your favourite pie crust (here’s my vegan pastry recipe) and fill with the mince filling. Bake full-sized pies at 400˚F for about 35-40 minutes or until golden brown. Bake tarts at 425˚F for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool tarts before removing from the pan, or they may break. Serve warm.

I hope you enjoyed this family tradition of mine! What’s your favourite tradition around the winter holidays?

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