It’s not Christmas without fruit mince pies. I’ve known all my life, but it’s also something that you told me. When I asked what Christmas recipes you wanted me to make low FODMAP, fruit mince pies were top of the list. And I can’t blame you for asking either. Not only are they one of the most awesome creations ever, but in their normal state, they’re very high in FODMAPs.
So this wasn’t easy. But, I’ve been hard at work and have finally created the most delectable Low FODMAP Fruit Mince Pies. And they’ve got a delightfully crumbly (in a good way) shortbread pastry. They’re honestly one of the best low FODMAP treats I’ve ever made.
Let’s talk FODMAPs
There are two parts to a fruit mince pie… the fruit mince and the pastry. Both of which are high FODMAP under normal circumstances and so needed converting.
So I started with the fruit mince, since that was the pivotal part of this recipe. But since I’ve already shared that recipe and thoroughly discussed the FODMAP issue, I won’t repeat it here. Instead, I’ll direct you to the Low FODMAP Fruit Mince recipe for all the info.
But do be warned… you can’t just make one part of this recipe low FODMAP. Both the fruit mince and the pastry must be converted. Admittedly, you can still eat small amounts of wheat on a low FODMAP diet. Did you know that a serving of one or two regular wheat-based biscuits (depending on size) is low FODMAP?
So in the same vein, you could in theory have a tiny treat with a wheat-based pastry and be okay. But wheat contains fructans, as does dried fruit. And in a fruit mince pie, the fructans from the pastry and the dried fruit would stack upon each other, making a bit of a mess. So in this situation, it isn’t wise to cut corners and make only one component low FODMAP. You really need to do it with both bits. And that means having a pastry made with a low FODMAP gluten-free flour.
Now let’s talk about the pastry and how it could affect IBS
Technically you could use any type of low FODMAP pastry for fruit mince pies. Puff, shortcrust, sweet shortcrust… whatever is easiest for you. But the best fruit mince pies are made with a rich and buttery shortbread pastry. Sort of like a shortbread biscuit that’s been turned into a shell. And that’s what I’ve done here.
Shortbread pastry only works if it’s made with lots of butter. In fact, there’s usually almost as much butter as there is flour – not quite, but almost. It’s what makes shortbread so ‘short’, or biscuit-y and crumbly, as those of us who aren’t pastry chefs would describe it.
The good news is that butter is low FODMAP, so you can still use it. And, you can make this pastry with a dairy-free butter alternative if you prefer, as I have done. The type of margarine you use may affect the flavour, but I found Nuttelex Buttery to be an excellent choice.
The problem here is that butter and dairy-free butter alternatives are exceptionally high in fat. And since they makes up a huge amount of the pastry, that’s a lot of fat. Don’t get me wrong though. I’m not bringing this to your attention because of calories. I mean, fruit mince pies are meant to be a Christmas treat and I have no problem with that, even as a nutritionist. The issue is that fat is a potential gut irritant that can trigger IBS symptoms. So eating buttery pastry can be an IBS trigger, completely separate to FODMAPs.
And then there’s the sugar. Table sugar is made of sucrose, which is comprised of one glucose and one fructose. Because of that, sugar is low FODMAP because fructose is not in excess of glucose. But eating lots of sugar in one go can irritate the gut by putting lots of fructose into the system at once. And when you add dried fruit, even in low FODMAP portions, this could become an issue, fast.
That’s why I’ve made these fruit mince pies bite-sized
Yes, these little beauties were a challenge to make… the FODMAPs, the fat, the sugar. So much to consider when preventing sensitive tummies from having a hissy fit. The solution was to make them small, with only a few small bites per pie.
So with these little pies, you can enjoy the flavour of fruit mince, without going overboard on the bits that upset the tummy. The other advantage of making them smaller than normal is that you can have more than one pie at a time – two in fact. Which I think makes the world of difference because I usually always feel deprived if I have to stop after one.
So I hope you’ll enjoy these little bite-sized Low FODMAP Fruit Mince Pies with Shortbread Pastry. They’re seriously delicious and they remind me of the Mr Kipling fruit mince pies that I grew up with, but not as sickly sweet. Oh, and by the way, the pastry is super easy to make too. No rolling needed. So you don’t need much cooking skill to make these. Just a bit of time. But it’s worth it, I promise.
No more missing out at Christmas. You can now enjoy low FODMAP fruit mince pies, with the most delicious shortbread pastry. Gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan.
- 250g dairy-free margarine (or butter if you can tolerate dairy) – I used Nuttelex Buttery
- 2 tsp vanilla essence
- 1/3 cup (80g) caster sugar
- 235g low FODMAP gluten-free flour
- 95g white rice flour
- 1 and 1/2 tsp guar gum
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 and 1/2 cups of Low FODMAP Fruit Mince
- For decoration: a couple of spoonfuls of pure icing sugar
- In a medium bowl, beat the margarine/butter, vanilla and sugar with an electric beater, continuing until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is fluffy and pale in colour. Transfer to a large bowl.
- In another bowl, combine the flours, guar gum and lemon zest. Whisk together with a balloon whisk. Then add to the large bowl and mix into the buttery mixture, using a spoon, until combined. The pastry mixture will be very, very soft.
- Preheat the oven to 175°C (fan-forced). Prepare 2 mini muffin trays by spraying with oil – you’ll need enough trays to make 36 pies. Note that if you don’t have enough trays to do all of the pies at once, you can prepare them in batches.
- Add 1 level tablespoon (20ml) of mixture to each hole in the tray. Then press the pastry into each hole using your fingers/thumbs to make it like a pastry case with a depression in the middle. Do your best to keep the pastry shell even and avoid any thin areas on the sides or bottom. Add 1 tsp fruit mince to each little pastry case.
- Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes or until the pastry is lightly browned. Remove from the oven and stand in the trays for at least 5 minutes. Then carefully slide a flat-bladed knife down the side of each pie, lift it out of the tin and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Dust with pure icing sugar before serving, if desired.
- This recipe is suitable for a low FODMAP diet, provided that the recommended serving size for this recipe is not exceeded.
- This recipe is naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, nut-free and egg-free. However, if you have an allergy to any of these items, or have coeliac disease, please check the labels on any purchased ingredients to ensure they are safe for your requirements.
- If the gluten-free flour mix you’re using already contains a gum, such as xanthan gum or guar gum, you should only need about 1/2 tsp of gum.
- Make sure that the icing sugar is pure and not an ‘icing mixture’, which has extra additives.
- You can freeze these little pies after they’re baked.
- The shortbread pastry is very rich, so if your IBS is triggered by fatty foods, you’d be best to eat only 1 pie per serve. Based on FODMAPs, up to 3 pies would be a low FODMAP serve – although there will be about 20g of fat in a serve of 3 pies. So go easy, they are a treat!
Low FODMAP Portion
- Serving Size: 2 fruit mince pies (but an absolute maximum of 3 pies)