Special mince pie pastry

mince pies
I love my mince pies – there are few things that I am confident about, but I am quite happy to state that I make some of the best mince pies on the planet…!  I shall be up early tomorrow making some for our Home Ed group Christmas party – can’t wait to try my first mince pies of the season. What makes mine even more gorgeous than any other mince pie (I’m not having any arguments about this!) is this super-rich pastry recipe, which I am sharing with you so that you can try and compete… good luck ;-). Here’s my favourite mincemeat recipe to use with it.

Orange and almond pastry for mince pies

  • Servings: enough for 6-9 mince pies, depending on the pastry thickness and cutters used
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  • 100g plain flour
  • 25g ground almonds
  • 60g butter
  • 25g caster sugar
  • finely grated rind of 1/2 orange
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • a little orange juice (possibly!)


  • Put the flour and almonds in a bowl, add the butter in small pieces and use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs (you can used a food processor or food mixer to do this quickly).
  • Stir in the sugar, orange rind and the salt. Add the egg yolk and bring the mixture together with a knife and then your hands. You may need a little juice from the orange to moisten the dough, but go very slowly when adding it because you don’t want it too sticky.
  • Pop the dough in a poly bag or wrap it in cling film and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes or so. Meanwhile preheat your oven to gas 5/190C and butter a 12 hole mince pie tin. Get your mincemeat, a teaspoon, a rolling pin and your preferred pastry cutters ready – I like to use a star shape for the top of my pies.
  • Flour your worktop and roll out 2/3s of the dough thinly (around 2mm) and cut out 12 circles.
  • Put the circles in the baking tray and fill each circle with 1 heaped teaspoon of your chosen mincemeat. Do not overfill because if the mincemeat overflows during the cooking process then the mince pie will stick to the tin.
  • Now go back to your pastry, roll out whatever you have left and the remaining 1/3 pastry together. Cut out the tops of your pies and place them over the mincemeat. You can now brush the tops of the pies with milk, but to be honest I don’t bother because I like to give them a nice thick sprinkle of snowy icing sugar after they’ve cooked and cooled a bit.
  • Put the tray in the oven and cook for 8-10 minutes until the tops of the pies are golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for a few minutes in the tin then remove to a cooling tray.
  • Delicious with a glass of sherry or a cup of tea, or on their own, or with cream, or with ice cream, or custard….

16 thoughts on “Special mince pie pastry

  1. Sounds delish. I’ll have to wait till next year to try this one out as I just made my mince pies at the weekend. Have you ever frozen them as a matter of interest? I make a big batch, cook them, freeze them and then just take out what I need to reheat each time.

  2. I tried these last last year and they truly are some of the best on the planet. I pulled the recipe out again last night for the first 34 mince pies of the season… only 3 left now though!

  3. I know it’s been a long time since you posted this but I made these last year, they have magic properties and disappear! I used Delia’s mincemeat recipe, yum. Thanks again

  4. Oooh Ali, they sound and look DELICIOUS. Am ashamed to say that I usually just use shop bought pastry to make my mince pies but am definitely going to have a go at your recipe over the weekend – thanks for sharing ! Cath

  5. Oooh, we’ll have to have a pie-off lol I very rarely make pastry – what am I saying?! I only make it once a year, but I tell you, my orange sweet pastry for the family mince pies rock. They have to, my mother, much as I dearly love her and who is otherwise a brilliant cook, makes pastry you could build walls with…

  6. What timing. We’ve been asked to take mince pies to our Urban Family Christmas on Saturday and we’ve never made them before! I’d thought I might try to pimp up the shop bought mincemeat and maybe add some zest to the pastry but this is exactly what I needed Ali. Thank you!

    1. Oh good! Am always very pleased to be helpful – good luck with the baking.

      A funny thing Eilidh – when I posted your parcel the other month I *thought* the street name sounded really familiar, but couldn’t place it. When I was doing my Xmas card list yesterday I realised you live on the same street as one of my oldest friends.. Spooky eh?!

      1. They turned out really well, thank you Ali! I used a clementine instead of an orange and added some stem ginger, an extra apple and clementine juice to the mincemeat. I need to work on my pastry rolling but I’m really pleased and will be using your recipe again and again!

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