Our secrets on how to make the perfect Mince Pie!

This Christmas, the UK is set to eat nearly 800 million mince pies. We are all familiar with the festive snack, but do you ever wonder where the mince meat comes from?

We produce thousands of tonnes of mincemeat for mince pies in our Wigan factory each year.

John Madden, Production Manager for the Wigan site, said: “It’s fair to say that most people will eat a mince pie with mincemeat made by Flemings over the Christmas period - whether they buy from a high street bakery, supermarket or coffee shop.

Over the years we have developed off the shelf quality mincemeats into bespoke products which satisfy the tastes and expectations of inquisitive customers.

We’ve created special blends, such as vegetarian and suet-free mincemeats, and even devised recipes using a range of more exotic ingredients, including gin, rum, chocolate, and caramel.

We don’t mince our words when we say that our mincemeat products are the obvious choice for the discerning baker – and we hope our tips can help people create the perfect mince pie this Christmas!”

Ingredients for the modern mince pie are traceable as far back as the 13th century, when returning European crusaders brought back Middle Eastern recipes containing meats, fruits, and spices.

Early mince pies were filled with meat, usually lamb, as opposed to the dried fruits and spices often find today. They were also generally oblong shaped to resemble a manger and were often topped with a depiction of baby Jesus.

The switch to sweet mince pies from the meatier version, came in the 1700s when currants, apples, suet, and sugar were added.

John Madden, Production Manager for the Wigan site, has worked at the company for 14 years and has shared some tips on how you can make the perfect mince pies.

  • It is all about the mincemeat – The perfect mincemeat will include the perfect blend of chopped dried fruit, distilled spirits, and spices. Originally, mince pies were produced with meat! But today, mince pies are meat free and suitable for vegetarians. The best way to get this right is get creative and do a taste test.


  • Add a little flavour! – There are many spices that can be used to enhance the flavours of the mince pie and mincemeat. My personal favourite is adding cinnamon and a little bit of nutmeg.


  • Make your own pastry – While it can be easier to buy shop brought pastry, making your own will allow more flexibility in shape of the mince pie and also give you more satisfaction of making something from scratch!


  • Get decorative – Remember not all mince pies have to look the same, you could try a different shape, add icing, or if you have any additional pastry you can create some decorative elements.


  • Never stop exploring – At Zeelandia Flemings we never stop exploring with our customers to create mouth-watering recipes – and urge Wigan residents to do the same when creating their perfect festive pies!

Flemings Zeelandia is part of the global baking ingredients manufacturer Royal Zeelandia Group.

Zeelandia UK, which is renowned for providing the highest quality bakery ingredients to the industrial, craft and in-store bakery sectors, acquired Flemings in 2017. It is a leading UK producer of fillings including mincemeat, jams, jellies, and caramel for use in industrial baking.

John added: “As a family-owned business with strong roots in local communities across the globe, Flemings Zeelandia are pleased to support a local children’s hospice by baking cakes and holding raffles to raise money this Christmas”.

Our secrets on how to make the perfect Mince Pie!