These delicious mince pies are a novel treat over the festive season, the combination of rich dark chocolate and orange is a real winner. They also make a wonderful gift that anyone would be happy to receive.


Makes about 20-24 depending on the size of the muffin tins

Preheat oven to 165°c / gas mark 4 ½






For the chocolate pastry:

400g plain flour

275g unsalted butter

75g icing sugar

75g ground almonds

75g ground almonds

50g cocoa powder

2 large egg yolks

2-3 tbsp milk

For the mincemeat:

450g raisins

225g sultanas

225g currants

900g dark brown muscovado sugar

450g vegetarian suet

110g mixed peel

125ml brandy or whiskey

3 tbsp marmalade

2 large cooking apples, grated

Zest of 3 large oranges

100g good quality dark chocolate, coarsely grated

To Make:

The chocolate pastry:

  1. Sift the flour into a bowl and rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the icing sugar, ground almonds and cocoa powder.
  2. Make a well in the centre. Add the egg yolks (and a little milk if necessary) and mix until it comes together in a ball.
  3. Wrap in Clingfilm, refrigerate and leave to rest for 20-30 minutes.

The mincemeat:

  1. In a large bowl combine all the dried fruit, cover the fruit with bowling water and allow to plump up in the liquid for 30 minutes, then drain well.
  2. Transfer the drained fruit into a clean bowl and mix in the remaining ingredients, stirring well.
  3. The mincemeat is better if it is matured for a few days before being used.

To make The Mince Pies:

  1. Grease the mince pie or muffin tins well.
  2. Roll the chocolate pastry out to about 3mm thick and cut out 24 circles, around 2cm larger than the diameter of the holes in your tin. Then line the tins.
  3. For the top of the pies cut out 24 smaller stars, holly leaves or Christmas trees to use as lids.
  4. Generously fill the pastry bases with the chocolate mincemeat, then place a lid on top and gently brush with a little milk.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool slightly in the tin and then remove from the tray to cool fully on a wire rack.
  7. Dust with icing sugar and serve. These keep well in an airtight container for up to a week.

Explore AVOCA’s range of festive food and gifting online at