Stir-Up Sunday & a Nut-Free Christmas Pudding

The British tradition of Stir-Up Sunday, falls on the last Sunday before advent and involves getting the family to stir up the ingredients for the annual Christmas pudding. The children too are invited to have a stir and make a wish. The tradition was said to have been introduced by Prince Albert to the Victorians – so it’s a long-standing tradition, which is very much making a comeback with more of us keen to have a go at making our own puddings and cakes. At the same time as making our Christmas pudding, we also buy extra quantities of dried fruits, lemons, oranges and spices to make up a big batch of mincemeat, which can then be stored in sterlized jars ready to give away as gifts or to make mince pies with.

Stir Up SUnday

To find out more, you may like to read my piece on Stir Up Sunday for Jamie Oliver.com.

Nut Free Christmas Pudding

Nut Free Christmas Pudding-2808

 This Nut-Free Christmas Pudding first appeared on the Good Food Channel

Nut Free Christmas Pudding

Ren Behan
This nut-free Christmas pudding is light, fruity and golden, with no nuts making it ideal for allergy sufferers. It's easy to make ahead for Christmas day (ideally, anytime from Stir Up Sunday) 
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 7 hours
Total Time 7 hours 20 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine British


  • 50 g mixed dried fruit
  • 100 ml brandy plus extra for soaking
  • 1 apple peeled, cored and coarsely grated
  • 1 lemon zested and juiced
  • 1 small orange zested
  • 2 tsp butter for greasing
  • 100 g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 100 g fresh breadcrumbs
  • 200 g light soft brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tbsp golden syrup or treacle


  • 1. In a large bowl, add the mixed dried fruit, brandy, grated apple, orange zest, lemon zest and lemon juice. Mix well, cover and set to one side for at least an hour or overnight for best results.
  • 2. Grease a one-litre pudding basin with a little butter and set to one side. If you are adding a silver coin or sixpence, boil the coin in a little water so that it is clean.
  • 3. In another large bowl, mix the flour, spices, breadcrumbs, soft brown sugar, eggs and golden syrup together, along with all the soaked mixed fruits and give everything a very good stir. Add the silver coin if using.
  • 4. Pour the mixture into the greased pudding basin. Cover the pudding basin with a square of greaseproof paper and make a pleat in the middle so that the pudding has a space to rise. Tie with kitchen string. Repeat with a square of tin foil.
  • 5. Find a large lidded pan, big enough to fit the pudding basin in and half fill with water. Place an upturned saucer in the bottom of the pan for your pudding basin to sit on. Bring the water to a gentle boil. Carefully place the Christmas pudding onto the saucer in the pan and cover the pan with a lid. Steam the pudding very gently for 5-6 hours, making sure that there is enough water in the pan but that the water doesn't reach the lip of the basin.
  • 6. Remove the pudding and leave to cool. The pudding can now be stored until Christmas day. To store, place a clean square of greaseproof paper over the top of the pudding and re-tie with kitchen string. You can also make a few holes in the base of the pudding and top it up with brandy every couple of weeks. Store in a cool, dark place.
  • 8. To reheat the pudding on Christmas day, steam it again for 2 hours, then carefully turn the pudding out on a plate and serve.

You may also like:

Nut Free Mince Pies

Nut Free Mince Pies

Nut Free Mince Pies for the Good Food Channel [find the recipe here]

I hope you manage to find the time to try making your own pudding this year – it never fails to put me in the Christmas mood – Michael Bublé tunes optional. If you are looking at making your own Christmas gifts this year – try some of these links –

Christmas Spiced Cranberry and Plum Chutney

Pomegranate and Vanilla Vodka 

Make Your Own Rumtopf

For more delectable Edible Christmas Gifts pop over and read Katie’s post here.

Recipes and photographs for the Good Food Channel and blog posts for JamieOliver.com reflect commissioned content. 

Similar Posts


  1. Can this be microwaved on Christnas day

  2. Nomtha Gray says:

    Is this really only 50g of dried fruit? That seems hardly anything based on the final picture. Appreciate clarification.

  3. This looks lovely, what size pudding basin do you use for this recipe?

  4. I’m a bit late this year – next week for me. Planning to decant some of my boozy sloes and use in the pudding to add to the dried fruit. Yesterday, when I should have been stirring up, we were at least getting very festive – ice skating and visiting Santa’s grotto for my Mum’s birthday (hope I have this sort of birthday when I’m 64!) and there were some very lovely mince pies.

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Lovely. We’ve mentioned Pimms, spice aged rum, whisky, brandy and now boozy sloes! So pleased you had a great time for your mum’s birthday x

    2. Looks like a good pudding recipe. I’m not a regular baker but going to give it a try. How many does it feed and what size basin should I use? Thanks

  5. Love the picture at the top of your post Ren – just stunning. I’m going to have a nice coffee and take my time going through your fab festive recipes and JO post this morning… the puppies are napping in the kitchen and all is right in the land. Thanks for linking to my home made goodies!!!! xxxxx

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Ahh the puppies are so cute. I can just imagine all the mischief they’ll be getting up to over Christmas. Hope they get a little treat under the tree, too!

  6. Gorgeous photos Ren. Wish I had been organised for this, this weekend, but too many other things to catch up on.

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Thanks Jac, there’s always other Sundays! Perhaps next weekend x

  7. Your photographs are stunning, what lovely ideas.
    We’ll be stirring up tomorrow and I’ve just put a third Christmas cake in the oven, the house smells heavenly.

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Thank you Jude, another stirrer! Hope you Christmas cake turned out well. x

  8. How lovely, this Sunday the house will be smelling of spice and I shall be looking at your recipes for new ideas over the weekend 🙂

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Thank you Laura, happy stirring x

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Whisky, brandy, rum – it’s all good!

  9. I just made my puddings – a bit late this year – I don’t usually wait until stir up Sunday. I used spiced aged rum instead of whisky 🙂 Love the look of your mince pies.

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Wonderful – I have some spiced aged rum, too, I’ll add that to my mincemeat x

  10. love stir up sunday… your pud looks ABSOLUTELY perfect!… I am going to be joining in on Sunday using Pimm’s instead of Brandy… can’t wait x

    1. Ren Behan says:

      Thanks Dom -ooh a Pimms pud sounds glorious!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating