This easy Microwave Mincemeat Sponge Pudding recipe is a brilliant way to summon all the flavours of the Christmas season in about 12 minutes. So when the cravings hit and all the mince pies have been eaten, this all-in-one “steamed” sponge pudding is the answer!
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This is the dessert for when you want something quick, festive and delicious but a little bit on the lighter side. It’s also delicious to make outside of the festive season or when you have a half empty jar of mincemeat and aren’t quite sure what to do with it!
Whatever the reason, this latest recipe in my ever increasing series of microwave sponge puddings is just as simple and easy to make as the rest. All the ingredients get whisked up together into a tasty batter. Then that’s poured into a heatproof bowl on top of some more mincemeat and microwaved until ready.
With mincemeat in the sponge as well as the topping, and an extra little kick from some ground mixed spice, there is no mistaking the distinctive flavour of this cheat’s twist on a steamed sponge pudding.
Find all of my best Microwave “Steamed” Sponge Pudding recipes in one easy place. From 10 minute everyday sponges to a festive favourite in a fraction of the usual time, the best thing is you’ll never know they weren’t steamed for hours!
How to Serve Mincemeat Sponge Pudding
Hot! This really is a pudding that should be made and served fresh. And ideally with lashings of custards. I most often make Custard Powder Custard but sometimes a hearty serving of double (heavy) cream will do the job quite delightfully too.
If you have canned, fresh or homemade custard then any of those options will be just delish. My Easy Homemade Ginger Custard is just the ticket.
Ice cream is another option – I like to make sure to keep the flavours complementary. Mint choc chip probably isn’t going to work here but a good vanilla will be just perfect.
Festive Microwave Sponge Pudding Ingredients
You can use any mincemeat you like. Mincemeat traditionally contains beef suet but can be made with vegetarian suet, butter and more than likely in cheaper commercial versions, vegetable oil.
There are lots of varieties available to both buy or make so use your favourite. If you are thinking of making your own, here are a few suggested recipes to try:
- Quick Mincemeat – Curly’s Cooking
- Slow Cooker Mincemeat – Farmersgirl Kitchen
- Real Victorian Mincemeat – From The Larder
If for any reason you’ve kept your mincemeat in the fridge, it is a good idea to give it a quick blast in the microwave. Only heat until it is no longer so solid – you’re looking for a thick but stir-able consistency like when you first open the jar.
Mixed spice is a blend of spices – don’t confuse it with allspice which is a specific spice all of its own. It’s a very common baking spice mix here in the UK. Pumpkin or apple pie spice are the closest US equivalents.
As there will already be a good amount of these spices in the mincemeat, we are just adding a little extra oomph rather than creating the actual flavour of the pudding. So if you don’t have mixed spice, you can use a mix of ground ginger and cinnamon instead or just one or the other.
If you leave the extra spice out entirely, it won’t be the end of the world.
I have specified margarine in this recipe rather than butter because I prefer the lighter texture that you get from a margarine or spread. The other benefit is that it is useable straight from the fridge.
By margarine I’m really talking about some kind of light spread. I’m not into “baking” margarines like Stork – they have an odd taste and I don’t really understand why they’re so popular. Just a regular, cheap spread will do nicely.
If you prefer to use butter, please do. My preference is only slight and I certainly wouldn’t not make a sponge if I only had butter and I’d be unlikely to go and buy some specially. You do need to make sure that the butter is soft before you start or the batter won’t mix properly.
I use white caster sugar in my sponges. But for most of my life, granulated was the only sugar on hand and that worked just fine. Caster does combine a little better and gives a little bit of a nicer texture to the sponge. This is more pronounced in an all-in-one cake like this.
You can use an unbleached/golden sugar but please don’t substitute with brown or dark brown sugar. The flavours would work nicely but as the moisture properties of these sugars are a bit different so I couldn’t guarantee the results. Saying this, if you are happy to experiment, go for it!
I mostly use large eggs but if you only have medium, this recipe will work just fine.
Self Raising Flour
If you prefer to use plain flour, you will need to add baking powder – you can use this guide from Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen to work out how much you need to use.
I’ve also made this recipe many times with white spelt flour and you’d never know the difference.
There is lots of extra complimentary flavours you can add into this recipe. I would mostly look to add them to the cake batter but if you wanted to add a little alcohol or citrus zest, this would also be good mixed into the mincemeat used for the topping.
It’s easy to add extra spices if you really want to ramp up the flavour. Ginger, cinnamon and mixed spice are the easiest and most common to use. And then I do love the addition of orange flavourings.
There is already dried fruit and potentially nuts and mixed citrus peel in the mincemeat but again if you want to amplify these, feel free to add more. Don’t go too crazy quantity wise or you might start causing an overflow of the batter when its cooking. I would also avoid adding any kind of fresh fruit as the moisture will affect the bake.
The base recipe for this sponge is based on a classic Victoria Sponge recipe. I also use this as the base of my Fiery Ginger Loaf Cake and Pound Cake. It is infinitely adaptable and a brilliant start for experimenting.
Vegetarian Microwave Mincemeat Sponge
This recipe is most likely suitable for vegetarians but you will need to check the ingredients of the mincemeat you are using carefully.
Traditionally mincemeat is made with beef suet although the vast majority of commercial and even homemade recipes nowadays are made with vegetable suet or even all butter.
Vegan Microwave Mincemeat Sponge
To make a vegan version of this sponge, you will first need to make sure that your mincemeat is vegan. So you need to look for an option that isn’t made with beef/animal suet or butter. This really is the vast majority of them so it shouldn’t be difficult.
You will also need to make sure you use a dairy-free margarine (also not difficult to find) and replace the eggs. If you can use a liquid egg replacer (whole eggs not just egg white), that should be simple swap.
If you cannot get hold of such a product, use 1 tbsp vegetable oil in place of each egg. The texture won’t be quite the same but you’ll end up with a perfectly serviceable vegan pudding.
Make Allergy Friendly Microwave Sponge Pudding
Gluten Free: You can replace the flour in the recipe with a gluten free flour blend. Look for one that suggests a 1:1 replacement for wheat flour.
You should also check that the mincemeat doesn’t contain gluten, especially if it is homemade. Many brands of vegetarian suet contain gluten which is used to keep the small pieces of lard from clumping.
Nut Free: There is a potential for there to be nuts in mincemeat. Not all have nuts so check the ingredients or make one from scratch with no nuts.
Dairy Free: Make sure to use a dairy free margarine. There is no good reason that mincemeat should contain dairy but as always, it is best to double check.
Egg Free: Replace the egg with a liquid egg replacer of vegetable oil as I’ve suggest for the vegan version above.
Please note that this recipe may contain other allergens not referred to above and any variations suggested have not been tested unless otherwise stated. For more information regarding any dietary information provided on this website, please refer to my Nutritional Disclaimer.
Equipment Notes for Mincemeat Microwave Sponge Pudding
This recipe clearly hinges on having a Microwave.
I use the microwave on full power and the times given are for a 700/800w microwave. If you have a more or less powerful microwave, you may need to adjust the cooking times by 30 seconds one way or the other.
Although saying that, providing that you use an oven safe pyrex dish, you could easily cook this in the oven. But it would take about 45 minutes to cook.
I almost always use electrical assistance to make a quick sponge batter. It is much easier to get an all-in-one cake mixture to mix properly this way.
You can mix this by hand using just a spatula or wooden spoon but I would usually mix the butter and sugar together first then add the eggs, lemon juice and zest then mix before folding in the flour. It’s going to take a couple more minutes but this will ensure that everything is properly mixed together and it will cook evenly.
Despite the images in the recipe showing me using a glass pyrex bowl to make this chocolate sponge, I often use a basic thin plastic mixing bowl. I own several of them in various sizes and use them for nearly everything. But they’re not very clear and are not helpful to show you what I’m doing!
You can really use any microwave safe dish you like. Plastic will not absorb as much heat as pyrex glass or ceramic so the cooking time I’ve given is less as the food itself will cook faster. The pryrex bowl that I have used in the recipe process images is 1 litre in size.
What you should avoid using is melamine or bamboo dishes. They absorb all the heat, get far to hot and leave your food uncooked.
A comprehensive list of the equipment used to make this recipe is included in the main recipe card below. Click on any item to see an example. There are no hard and fast rules so many items can be sensibly substituted to achieve the same results.
Like my other microwave sponges, this is best cooked immediately before serving. You could cook it in advance and reheat it but that isn’t actually going to save any time. So I wouldn’t recommend trying to get ahead with the cooking.
You can however make up the batter and get it into the cooking dish all ready to cook. You still don’t want to do this too far in advance as the baking powder will start to activate. It will be fine made up to 4 or 5 hours before you intend to cook it.
Leftover Mincemeat Sponge
Leftovers can be stored in the fridge and reheated again in the microwave. Heat in 30 second bursts because a portion won’t take long at all.
Microwave Sponge Pudding Tips
Because of the sugar and fat in it, mincemeat gets very very hot so please be extra careful when turning out the pudding. If you’re worried, don’t turn it out and simply serve from the bowl.
This recipe is said to serve 6 in the recipe. This is the kind of portion that you’d serve after a decent roast beef dinner. If you want a heartier portion, this recipe will serve 4 as written.
You can always put a microwave on for another 30 seconds but you can’t rewind time. So if you are not sure about the power of your microwave, err on the side of caution.
Don’t try to use a bowl smaller than the one specified. Obviously you can if you have halved or reduced the recipe but you should still make sure that the batter doesn’t come more than halfway up the bowl. During cooking the batter will at least double in size before deflating within 30 second of finishing cooking.
Baking is often said to be a science and this puts the fear of god into people. I often eyeball this recipe and its not failed yet so don’t stress over it. Don’t go too crazy either, I will not be taking responsibility if you use 8 eggs and wonder why you have a kitchen explosion and have to re-paint the kitchen ceiling
Don’t forget to let me know in the comments if you try making this recipe – I want to know what you think and if you made any substitutions, how did it turn out?
Still Have Questions?
Simple! Just contact me and I will do my best to help as quickly as I am able. Head over to my Contact Me page, any of my social media channels or post a comment at the bottom of this page and I’ll see what I can do.
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More Festive Baking Recipes
Microwave Mincemeat Sponge Pudding Recipe
- 175 g Mincemeat
For the Sponge
- 120 g Margarine - plus extra for greasing
- 120 g Caster Sugar (Superfine Sugar)
- 120 g Self Raising Flour (Self-Rising)
- 2 Eggs
- 100 g Mincemeat
- 2 tsp Mixed Spice
- Grease a microwaveable bowl and measure in 175g Mincemeat. Even it out in the bottom of the bowl and push it a little ways up the sides.
- Measure 120g Margarine, 120g Caster Sugar and 120g Self-Raising Flour and 2 Eggs into a medium sized mixing bowl (or stand mixer bowl).
- Add 100g Mincemeat and 2 tsp Mixed Spice.
- Use an electric hand whisk or stand mixer to beat the ingredients together until fully combined.Note – Do not continue mixing past this stage as you could make the sponge tough.Note – Use a spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl to make sure everything is properly mixed in.
- Transfer the sponge batter into the microwaveable bowl on top of the mincemeat layer.
- Roughly smooth out the top.
- Microwave on full power for 7 minutes if using a glass/pyrex bowl and 6 minutes if using a plastic bowl.
- Once cooked the sponge may look a tiny bit wet on the top but don’t be fooled, the sponge will be fully cooked.
- Use a plastic knife or spatula to loosen the edges of the sponge from the side of the bowl.
- Carefully turn the sponge out onto a serving plate or you can simply use a large spoon to serve straight from the bowl.Note – Be very careful as the mincemeat will be piping hot.
- Serve hot with lashings of custard.