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Andrea Bayles Nutritional Therapist
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Healthy Mince Pies

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I really love the flavours of mincemeat in a mince pie, warm with a little low-fat crème fraiche (for a treat), Christmas just isn't Christmas without the aromas of warm mince pies and the spices that give them that festive flavour!

This recipe is the gluten-free version, just replace the GF flour with plain wholemeal flour for a healthy non GF alternative. Plus the agave syrup provides the sweetness instead of sugar.

To make the mincemeat:

Add the following to a large saucepan:

2 finely chopped (gala) apples

200g/7oz raisins

200g/7oz sultanas

50g/2oz finely chopped blanched almonds

50g/2oz finely chopped hazelnuts

1 tbsp vanilla extract

50g/2oz dried apricots

1tbsp linseeds-ground

3 tbsp agave nectar

1-2tsp mixed spice (don't be too afraid to use lots, because the flavour will dull down with time)

1 tsp cinnamon

pinch cloves, ginger and nutmeg

5-10 tbsp water (you may find you need to put more in to keep it at the right consistency)

Cook all of the ingredients for about 30 minutes to 1 hour, until it achieves a pulpy consistency, and the flavours have mixed thoroughly. Leave overnight.

Whilst your healthy mincemeat is simmering, start making the pastry which you can also store in the fridge overnight.

To make the pastry:

150g buckwheat flour

- mix 225g plain flour (i used: 50g buckwheat, 50g wholemeal, 75g gluten free, 50g regular) and 175g butter substitute (Pure, or margarine, etc) and mix until it forms breadcrumbs.

- then add 65g caster/fructose sugar and 1 beaten egg. bring it together into a dough, wrap in clingfilm and leave in the fridge overnight, or for at least 1 hour.

- the following morning, roll out your flour as thinly as you dare. and cut out circles for your bases, and smaller circles for your tops. put the bases in a cake tray, and fill as much as you can with your mincemeat, then top with the smaller circles (or festive shapes) and egg wash.

- put in the oven for 15 minutes, or until golden.


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