Chocolate Chilli Berry Mincemeat

Christmas, Preserves | 29th November 2013 | By


Homemade mincemeat is a revelation, once made it’s hard to go back to a commercial product. Even inveterate mincemeat sceptics like CT are happy to partake of this. In fact it was hard to keep his hands off the Chilli and Chocolate Mincemeat Slice I made last year.

Two years ago, I made my first ever chocolate mincemeat, it was a great success. Last year, I improved the recipe by adding chilli and prunes and and made Chilli and Chocolate Mincemeat. This year I did something different again, although I retained those three ingredients as they have now become integral to my recipe. Basically, it’s a question of using up whatever dried fruit I have lying around in my kitchen cupboards. I happened to have a lot of sultanas and also a bag of mixed berries, but no currents and not many raisins. Some marinade and some don’t. I’m in the former category and have mine steeping for five days before placing into jars. Who needs air fresheners when you have a bowl of fruit marinading in alcohol and spices? The house was nicely fragranced for several days.

So in time for Stir-up-Sunday, the last Sunday before Advent, I had all of my ingredients ready for their final stir. This auspicious day is traditionally when the Christmas puddings are made and families gather to have a stir and make a wish. I wasn’t making Christmas puddings, but we gave a good stir and made a wish anyway, then jarred them up. Very fortuitously, I’d been sent a range of jars and bottles in varying sizes from Pattesons Glass, including one of my favourites, a clip top jar. So I had some brand new shiny jars to use for my mincemeat – perfect for gifts. Being a great preserver, I’m looking forward to using the rest of the glassware. Sadly I didn’t manage to make sloe gin this year, but I will find something delicious to put in those lovely clip top bottles. And the sauce bottles are just what I need for my chilli sauce – assuming our chillies ever ripen enough to make any this year. Pattesons sell all sorts of glass jars and bottles including some unusual designs and Le Parfait. Most, however, are only available as a bulk order, so you may need to make some room on those pantry shelves or alternatively share them around with other preservers.

I hate to see waste, so I had to lick the bowl out. This also provided an opportunity for quality control and I can confirm that this chocolate chilli mincemeat is once again delicious.
Chocolate Chilli Berry Mincemeat
Yields 3
A recipe for mincemeat that can easily be adapted to suit varying tastes and what is available in the cupboard. The chilli and chocolate take homemade mincemeat up a level, giving extra depth and spice, without either being easily identifyable.
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Prep Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr
  1. 400g cooking apples (I used unidentified Cornish varieties) - peeled, cored and finely chopped.
  2. 75g vegetarian suet
  3. 500g sultanas
  4. 100g prunes - chopped
  5. 150g mixed dried cherries, cranberries and blueberries
  6. 60g home-made mixed peel - chopped
  7. 25g dried apple - chopped
  8. 100g dark chocolate (90%) - chopped
  9. 150g dark molasses sugar
  10. grated zest and juice of a large organic lemon (unwaxed)
  11. 1 small rocoto chilli - deseeded and chopped finely.
  12. 75g flaked almonds
  13. 6 tbsp cognac
  14. 6 tbsp mint vodka (home-made)
  15. 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  16. 1 tsp allspice
  17. 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  18. a good grating of nutmeg
  19. a small grating of star anise
  1. Place all of the ingredients into a glass bowl and give a good stir.
  2. Cover and leave to marinade for five days, stirring on a daily basis.
  3. Spoon into sterilised jars, cover with waxed paper discs and store in a cool dark place until ready to use or giveaway.
  1. Best made a few weeks before Christmas and if stored well, should easily last a year.
  2. Makes enough to fill 3 half litre jars.
Tin and Thyme

With the predominance of sultanas in this mincemeat, I am submitting it to One Ingredient where the theme is Fruits of the Vine. Hosted by Nazima of Franglais Kitchen and Laura of How to Cook Good Food, this is a monthly challenge.

A jar of this is also winging its way over to Javelin Warrior for his Made with Love Mondays.

Thanks to Pattesons Glass for sending me a fabulous selection of their ware. I was not paid for this post and all opinions are my own.


  1. Leave a Reply

    29th November 2013

    I love mincemeat, just perfect for this period of the year!
    Have a nice Friday

  2. Leave a Reply

    29th November 2013

    This is most definitely getting made now, I love the idea of leaving the fruits to soak in a bowl for 5 days filing the house with lovely Christmas smells. I can’t wait to taste it, sounds incredible! Thanks for entering it into One Ingredient x

  3. Leave a Reply

    Hannah Hearsey
    29th November 2013

    Gorgeous set of ingredients in this one, really like the idea of dried blueberries. I made my Christmas cake on Stir Up Sunday but will be mincemeat-ing at the weekend and will definitely be using this as inspiration.

  4. Leave a Reply

    belleau kitchen
    29th November 2013

    god this looks so good… can’t wait for the mince pies!!!! love the addition of prunes too!

  5. Leave a Reply

    29th November 2013

    You have made the proper stuff. I need a tip or two from you as I have never made my own mincemeat. This is superb though!

  6. Leave a Reply

    Johanna GGG
    30th November 2013

    And here I was wondering if I would make fruit mince this year – I love mince tarts but always have mince over and this year still have a bit of last year’s mince in the fridge – but seeing this does make me want to make some. I was surprised that you don’t cook yours at all, especially with the apple in it. Does it all change texture after sitting for a few weeks or can you use it straight away if you want to?

  7. Leave a Reply

    Charlene F
    30th November 2013

    I’ve never made mincemeat before, I love chocolate so will have to try this recipe 🙂 x

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