Vegan Mince Pies
You don’t have to miss out on a traditional mince pie just because you eat a plant based diet thanks to my Vegan Mince Pie Recipe! Find out more below.
Plant based baking
This year I’ve put a tonne of effort into perfecting vegan versions of my favourite cakes, pies, biscuits and other baked treats! I’ve even produced a huge vegan baking guide to explain how to take a regular recipe and make it plant based.
If you’ve been vegan for a while you’ll probably know that lots of ready made pastry is “accidentally” vegan. The ingredients are usually just flour and vegetable fats derived from palm and rapeseed. The good news is that you can easily replicate your own vegan shortcrust pastry at home!
Vegan butter and lard substitutes
The good news is that there are a lot of non-dairy butter alternatives on the market. For a real “buttery” flavour I love to use Flora which is readily available in British Supermarkets. If you shop at a specialist health food or vegan supermarket, Naturli is another fantastic alternative.
When using non-dairy butter for pastry, it’s important to try and use a block or stick of butter. This is because you need to be able to rub it into the flour to create a breadcrumb like texture. Trex is a great substitute for “shortening” or lard in a recipe. My traditional mince pie pastry uses both butter and lard so I try to replicate this with a mixture of non-dairy butter and Trex.
Making shortcrust pastry from scratch
The method of making shortcrust pastry is not all that different when you are making it with plant based ingredients. It’s still important to use chilled non-dairy butter and vegetable shortening. If you’ve only been able to get soft, spreadable non-dairy butter I recommend freezing it first.
Once you come to bring the dough together be mindful not to overwork it as this is what makes tough, inedible pastry! You want to just bring it into a ball and then wrap it in cling film, place it in the fridge, and let it chill. This will make sure that the non-dairy butter and vegetable shortening firms up again.
Pastry usually gets a glaze before baking: this might be milk or egg. The good news is soy milk works as a good egg wash substitute when making these mince pies.
The easiest way to make sure your mince pie filling is vegan is to make your own mincemeat. If you use vegetarian suet it will be suitable for anyone following a vegan or plant based diet. You can check out my mincemeat recipe here.
If you’re buying store-bought mincemeat do not worry! Most versions are vegetarian (and suitable for vegans). Just make sure you check the ingredients list first.
Put your own twist on this simple mince pie recipe by using a star or snowflake cookie cutter to make the mince pie lids! (It will allow the steam to escape the filling too so no soggy pastry!)
Vegan Mince Pies
- Sieve your flour and caster sugar into a large mixing bowl.
- Cut the non-dairy butter and vegetable shortening into cubes.
- Rub the fat into the flour by pushing the fat and flour through your finger tips.
- Once the mixture resembles fine bread crumbs (and there are no large lumps of fat) add the water and stir until the mix begins to bind.
- To bring it all together, use your hands to form it into a ball. You may need a little more water to get it to bind together properly but don’t worry just go with your instincts!
- Next place the ball of pastry in a bowl cover with clingfilm and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.
- While the pastry is resting, pre-heat your oven to 180C / 350F/ gas mark 4.
- After 15 minutes, dust a work surface with flour and cut the ball into two pieces – one representing one third of the pastry the other two thirds.
- Roll out the larger pastry ball until a quarter of a centimetre thick and using a large round cutter, cut out 12 bases.
- Gather the scraps together and roll out again as and when you need to.
- Do the same with the small ball of pastry using a cutter one size smaller than before. Cut out another 12 pieces, these will be your lids! (Alternatively use a star cutter for more decorative pies.)
- Grease cupcake tins and place the larger circles into the pans.
- Fill with a tablespoon of mincemeat and brush the edges with a little soy milk before placing the lids on top.
- Prick the lids with a fork and brush again with more soy milk.
- Place in the oven for 15 minutes or until golden, turning round halfway through.
- Once they are done pop on a cooling rack and dust with icing sugar.