Christmas is around the corner which means it’s the perfect time to indulge in festive treats like mince pies.
But with so many to choose from, the question is which supermarkets make the best baked goods?
We tried mince pies from five of the UK’s biggest retailers ranging from creamy all-butter to nutty frangipane flavours.
Some fared better for their pastry while others were championed for their citrus filling, but there was one retailer that stood out for its traditional Christmas goods.
The budget retailer Aldi stole the top spot for its Specially Selected range of pies, and there was a recurring theme with the runner’s up.
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According to the results of our exclusive Express.co.uk taste test, the retailer’s own-brand mince pies were all outranked by their “luxury” counterparts.
Aldis’ Specially Selected All Butter Mini Mince Pies were joined by Tesco Finest, Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference and Co-Op Irresistible in the top four.
The premium own-brand labels come with higher price tags than the standard supermarket-owned products, but the extra pennies seem to pay off in this instance.
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Best supermarket mince pies
Aldi’s Specially Selected All Butter Mini Mince Pies (9 pack, £1.75) earned a generous nine out of 10 rating from Express.co.uk, largely for the well-balanced brandy and cognac-infused mince meat filling.
Despite their miniature size, the creamy pastry, neat star topping and perfectly sweet flavour made up for it.
Each one is made with all butter shortcrust pastry and brandy-soaked mince meat packed with vine and citrus fruits; glace cherries, Bramley apples, and sultanas. The mixture inside was moist, juicy and plump and most importantly, filled the bitesize pastry case right to the top of the lid, unlike other brands which put them a cut above the rest.
Their smaller size makes them morish but they’re definitely rich enough to satisfy sweet cravings in just one or two bites.
In a close second were the Tesco Finest Mince Pies which come in a full-sized pack of six. Filled with French brandy and port-infused mince meat, the pies gained scores of eight and nine all round for their taste, texture, pastry, and filling.
Described as “rich and decadent”, the pies had a more obvious hint of citrus with the added lemon zest and tangerine oil. However, they lost points to Aldi as the pastry lacked the same delicious crumble and creaminess.
Third in the ranking was Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference all butter pastry pies, which gained top marks for their festive filling made from brandy-infused fruit, aromatic peel and warming spices.
They did, however, lack in the pastry department with it being less crumbly and buttery than Aldi or Tesco.
Aldi Specially Selected 9 All Butter Mini Mince Pies £1.99
Rating: 9/10. Buttery pastry with just the right amount of crumble in each bite and a generous, flavoursome filling
Tesco Finest Mince Pies 6 Pack £3
Rating: 8/10. Butter butter-infused pastry lacked some flavour but the zesty filling was enjoyable
Sainsbury’s Mince Pies with All Butter Pastry, Taste the Difference £2.75
Rating: 7/10. The aromatic mince meat filling was tasty but the pastry lacked texture.
Co-op Irresistible Luxury Mince Pies £1.25
Rating: 8/10 Icing sugar-dusted pastry was a nice contrast to the stronger brandy-flavoured mincemeat
The BAKERY at ASDA 6 Mince Pies £1.09
Rating 6/10. Generous amount of filling but it lacked in flavour against the creamy butter pastry.
Co-op Mince Pies 6pk £1.25
Rating: 6/10. Sugar-topped pies lacked in filling but had a good overall flavour.
Tesco Mince Pies 6 Pack £2
Rating: 5/10. Granulated sugar-topped pies had a slightly dry pastry and subtly alcoholic filling.
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