Aldi and Booths are the latest retailers to offer a sneak peek at their Christmas bakery ranges.
There are a number of common trends across the retailers’ ranges, including the evolution of caramel, colourful savoury party food and boozy accompaniments to mince pies. Other trends, such as gin flavours, vegan-friendly NPD and woodland themes, proved they had staying power by making their mark on festive bakery for another year.
Aldi is looking to make a statement this Christmas with a selection of standout centrepieces, including a Mulled Morello Cherry Pudding that features a Morello cherry sauce and a gold lustre finish. There is also a Golden Topped Wreath Pudding, Golden Twist Sticky Toffee Pudding (right image, top) and Exquisite Vintage Pudding (right image, bottom), which is made by a family-run supplier on the Isle of Man.
Mince pies have also been spruced up this Christmas in the form of Crumble Mince Pies (main image, left), available in Black Forest and salted caramel variants. Both have flavoured mincemeat and are topped with crumbly biscuit instead of a traditional pastry lid. Sloe Gin Mince Pie Tarts are also available.
Christmas cake has been given a makeover in the form of Exquisite Christmas Cake Selection (main image, right). Made by The Original Cake Company in Lincoln, the three-strong range features Dark Fruit Brandy, Dark Fruit Gin & Clementine and Light Fruit & Butter variants.
When it comes to party food and side dishes, Aldi has stuck to classic flavours in new formats. For example, there are Loaded Yorkshire Puddings, filled with pork, sage & onion stuffing balls, topped with a pig in a blanket (main image, centre). Mini Beef Wellingtons are also on the menu, alongside salmon-topped Blinis. A Vegan Dim Sum Selection is on offer, which includes mushroom bao buns, mock duck rolls and pumpkin dumplings.
For mains, Aldi has gone big on vegan and vegetarian-friendly options with the likes of Vegan Parcels in Firecracker Vegetable and BBQ Jackfruit varieties (right image, centre). The parcels are made with dairy-free pastry that has been flash-fried for a blistered effect and crispier texture. Rounding off the range is a Cauliflower Wellington, topped with turmeric, garlic and ginger.
When it comes to bakery, Booths has gone big on sweet treats, particularly in shareable formats such as bites and bars. First up are Belgian Chocolate Brownie and Blondie Christmas Trees (main image, left) which are decorated with chocolate, biscuit balls and a sprinkling of icing sugar and glitter. They come in packs of eight for £2.25. It also has a five-strong range of bites from Bells of Lazonby, including Marshmallow Milkshake Bites (right image, bottom), Raspberry Cheesecake Bites and Amaretti Tiffin Bites – all of which are sold in nine-packs costing £2.85.
The Cumbria-based bakery has also helped Booths expand its vegan-friendly Christmas range with two new festive slices: Fruity Flapjack Slices, which include cranberries, cherries and sultanas, topped with white chocolate, pistachios and raspberry crumb, and Gingerbread Crumble Slices, which are comprised of slices of gingerbread layered with spiced mincemeat, candied mixed peel and an oaty crumbly topping (£2.85 per four-pack).
Lathams of Broughton is also serving up several pieces of NPD for Booths’ Christmas range, including a Mango & Passionfruit Meringue Roulade (£13), a Festive Rainbow Cake (£15) featuring raspberry jam layered between brightly-coloured sponge cakes and covered with cream cheese frosting, and a Chocolate Fudge Drip Cake (£13; right image, top). The supplier has also pushed the boat out with Lathams Delight Medley Desserts (£16 per nine-pack; main image, centre), which are individually portioned cheesecakes in a variety of flavours, including peanut butter and chocolate, Manchester tart and the slightly controversial liquorice.
There are a host of festive fancies on the savoury side as well, including Cinderhill Wild Boar Sausage Rolls (main image, right)– handmade miniature sausage rolls made using a rare breed of pedigree pork and wild boar from the Forest of Dean, covered in a layer of puff pastry (£12 for six). The Gloucestershire-based farm is also serving up a Yuletide Log (£18 for 850g) and a Festive Wreath, filled with rare breed pedigree pork in a puff pastry (£25 for 1.8kg).
When it comes to party food, Booths has extended its range with two variants of crostini – Sundried Tomato Pesto & Mixed Pepper and Goat’s Cheese and Redcurrant Port, both priced at £6 for 10 pieces.
See what other retailers have planned this Christmas by visiting the pages below:
- Asda, Ocado and Tesco
- Co-op, Fortnum & Mason and Waitrose
- Iceland, Lidl, Marks & Spencer and Morrisons
- Bakery brands including Biscuiteers, Central Foods and Mindful Bites
- Bakery brands including Aryzta, Burton’s Biscuits and McVitie’s
- Food-to-go specialists including Pret A Manger, Costa and Starbucks
- Bakery brands including Paul UK, Maître Choux, Hummingbird Bakery and Paul Rhodes