Alternative fruity mince pie fillings and filo pastry

11 December 2019

Mince pies are one of our much-loved festive treats but how about giving them a twist this year and trying out some other fillings? From blueberry and cinnamon to chocolatey fruit and nut, we've put together a variety of ideas to switch up your festive baking. 

Nutritional highlights 

Enjoy our lighter twist on a classic that uses filo pastry instead of short crust pasty and a whole range of homemade fillings to try – all full of delicious ingredients that are bound to be a hit!

Raisins and sultanas are packed with fibre and contain antioxidants, which help to protect the body from cell damage and prevent illness. Spices like nutmeg and cinnamon have anti-inflammatory properties, which may also even play a role in blood glucose and cholesterol regulation.

Filo pastry mince pies

(Serves 12)
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 6 sheets of filo pastry
  • 125g mixed, dried fruit 
  • 1/2 lemon (zested and juiced)
  • 20g muscovado sugar
  • 1/2 granny smith apple (grated)
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 egg
  • Icing sugar, to dust

Pre heat the oven to 180 ºC.

Place a baking tray in the oven to heat up, this will help prevent the bases of the mince pies going soggy.

Grease a mini muffin tray using a little olive oil on some tissue paper and place to one side.

Place the mixed dried fruit, lemon (zest and juice), sugar, apple and mixed spices in a saucepan over a medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring frequently.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and place to one side.

Lay the sheets of filo pastry on top of each other and cut in half widthways and then lengthways. Then cut in half widthways again to give four rectangle stacks of sheets.

Line each base in the muffin tin with three single rectangles sheets of filo, laying one at a time and angling slightly different from the previous layer to create a star shape. Be sure to press the pasty into the edges of each muffin hole.

After lining you will have left over filo rectangles. Place to one side as you will need this for decoration later.

Spoon one heaped teaspoon of filling into each filo muffin case.

With the remaining rectangles, take one sheet and scrunch up slightly before placing on top of each pie.

Beat the egg and brush lightly on top of the pies.

Place the muffin tray in the oven on the baking tray and bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden brown.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool before dusting lightly with icing sugar.

Here's some other fruity mince pie filling ideas for something a bit different this year...

Brandy apple spice

(Serves 12)
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 18 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 apples, cored
  • 160g dried fruit (raisins, goji berries, sultanas)
  • 1 orange (zest and half its juice)
  • 1 lemon zest  (zest and half its juice)
  • ½ tsp ground mixed spice
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 ½ tbsp brandy
  • Grated nutmeg – to tast
  • 1.5tbsp coconut oil

Method:

Finely chop the apples so that they’re a similar size to the dried fruit then place all the ingredients into a large saucepan.

Cook in the olive oil over a medium heat with the lid on, stirring regularly, until the apples have softened (around 15 minutes).

For the final few minutes cook with the lid off to allow the extra liquid to evaporate.

Once cooked simply spoon into your chosen pastry shell and bake.

Zesty blueberry and cinnamon

(Serves 6-8)
Preparation Time: 2 minutes
Cooking Time: 3 minutes

Ingredients

  • 60g dried blueberry
  • 60g dried sugar free cranberry
  • 120g sultanas
  • 1 orange (zest and half its juice)
  • 1 lemon zest
  • ¼ tsp grated nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Method

Combine all of the ingredients and put them in the food processor or blender. Pulse until the mixture is a rough consistency.

Spoon into your chosen pastry shell and bake.

Cranberry punch

(Serves 6-8)
Preparation Time: 2 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 120g sultanas
  • 60g raisins
  • 60g dried cranberries
  • 2 apples (chopped into small chunks)
  • 2 fresh oranges (zest and juiced)
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Method

In a small saucepan heat the olive oil and start to cook the apple chunks on a low heat for 5 minutes.

Cut the vanilla pod in half and scrape the seeds into the saucepan.

Simmer for a further 5 minutes then add in all the remaining ingredients, stirring well to combine the flavours. 

Let the mixture simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the apples are nice and soft.

Spoon into your chosen pastry shell and bake.

Festive fruit and nut with chocolate

(Serves 6–8)
Preparation Time: 2 minutes
Cooking Time: 3 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 140g dates
  • 70g dried cherries
  • 20g physalis
  • 45g roasted almonds
  • 40g currants
  • 1 lemon (zest and juice)
  • 1 apple (chopped into small chunks)
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • ½ tsp vanilla essence

Method

Combine all of the fruit ingredients in a medium bowl. For a finer filling you may wish to blend the mixture in a food processor at this point.

Add the spices, cocoa powder, vanilla essence and lemon juice and mix well.  

Spoon into your chosen pastry shell and bake.

Calories:  Fat:  Saturates:  Total Sugar:  Salt: