What can I do with the leftover sloe berries from sloe gin? - Sloe Port and sloe chocolate

Carl Legge
Wednesday, 5th October 2011

When the last sip of sloe gin dribbles out of the bottle, left in the bottom are these lonely round sloes, bursting with alcohol. They are too rich to stomach alone but it would be a shame to let these leftovers go to waste! Carl has whipped up these two recipes so you can keep reusing your sloe berries throughout the year.

Us permaculture types like to get the most from our harvest. Remember in the previous blog post, I told you to save those sloes for next time? Well now you get to make these delicious things out of them too...

Sloe port recipe

In this recipe the sloes are re-macerated with red wine & sugar and then the resultant drink is fortified with a little brandy. The resultant drink will come out at around 15-20% alcohol by volume depending on which wine & brandy you use.

It tastes delicious, like a port with a lovely gentle sloe edge.

You can add sugar to taste. I've included a lower amount than the sloe gin recipe, increase it if you prefer.

You'll need the container you used for the sloe gin to make this in and then bottles in which to store your 'port'.

To make about 1 litre you'll need:

  • About 500g sloes left over from your gin above
  • 750ml (1 standard bottle) of red wine
  • About 100g sugar
  • 200ml brandy
  1. Add the sloes, sugar and wine to your container. Seal and shake daily for 6-8 weeks, keeping it in a cool, dark place.
  2. Taste and adjust sugar if you think necessary.
  3. At the end of this time, drain the sloes off the liquid through a double layer of scalded muslin.
  4. Add the brandy and mix well.
  5. Pour into your clean presentation bottles.

How to make sloe chocolates

This is my interpretation of an idea I saw in Alys Fowler's new book The Thrifty Forager .

  1. Take your sloes from the above recipes and lay them in a single layer on some greaseproof paper in a tray or box with sides.
  2. Sprinkle over some ground cinnamon and some finely grated orange rind.
  3. Melt some good quality fair trade organic dark chocolate in a saucepan or bowl over a pan of simmering water.
  4. Pour the chocolate evenly over the sloes.
  5. Put the tray or box in the freezer until the chocolate is hard.

When you are ready to eat, break into chunks remembering that the sloes still have stones in them. The chocolate goes extremely well with the sloe port you've just made.

Lechyd da!

Further resources

Carl Legge runs his own smallholding on the Llyn Peninsula in Wales. He regularly blogs at and is author of The Permaculture Kitchen. Packed full of recipes for seasonal, local and home-grown food. Available now from our Green Shopping site for just £11.20!

Sloe gin and sloe wine recipes

How to make cordials naturally


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GIS_cas |
Tue, 01/11/2011 - 22:22

What a great idea, gin soaked sloes in chocolate - fab!

Eugen |
Wed, 29/08/2012 - 20:23

Did you ever make sloe wine -I did is perfect after one year old
Try make sloe jam because of the pips have to strainers but if you like sloe in any form it is one of best doing the berry- good for winter plenty of different vitamins in natural form
the best is to extract juice when you make jam ,it is perfect for tee - I have plantation of sloe and it is fun to make all preservatives from the product.It is free growing every where, messy when cooking but man is natural cook

scruffian |
Fri, 05/10/2012 - 17:09

I have made flapjack with gin soaked sloes instead of raisins...

Leo25 |
Fri, 02/08/2013 - 12:32

nice one

Mssjones |
Wed, 11/02/2015 - 23:55

juat bottled the port from sloe leftovers from this recipe ...it is gorgeous. Brilliant recipe. Am doing the chocolate bars next! Thank you.

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Megaricht |
Wed, 13/06/2018 - 18:07

You can also put a little almond essence or liqueur in your sloe wine.

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