Kilvert's Original Lard

Kilvert’s Lard - A History

Nicholas Kilvert founded N Kilvert and Sons Ltd in Manchester in 1821. It might be 1828 (as stated on the pack now) but adverts exist from the early 1900’s stating that the business was founded in 1821. Let’s not fall out about this 7 year discrepancy – it was almost 200 years ago.

The Kilvert’s brand is actually one of the oldest food brands in the UK. For example the Kilverts business predates the founding of Cadbury by 3 years, Foxes biscuits by 32 years and even the venerable Boots business by 28 years!

As such it has a wealth of history to look back on…

There is a classic 1887 Victoriana advert for Kilvert’s held in the British Library which is reproduced is here. Kilvert was also at the forefront of new trends in both consumption and promotion. An advert for Kilvert’s is in Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management published in 1861.

Nicholas Kilvert’s factory was one of the first to be built in Trafford Park and was an imposing building fit for the age. Indeed, at that time the factory was surrounded by fields. Kilverts lard eventually became a genuine household name in Great Britain.

As the what was once enormous demand for lard fell after the second world war, as the country became more affluent, the factory began to scale back in size and was eventually sold to make way for the expansion of Old Trafford football ground.

The two organisations had been close neighbours for a considerable time. Below is a newspaper photograph from 1962 showing Dennis Law playing for Manchester United with a clear view of the Kilverts factory in the background.

Throughout it’s almost 200 year history Kilverts has stood for quality and purity. It is double refined for a higher smoke point and we take as much care with our ingredients now as Nicholas Kilvert did almost 200 years ago.

We hope you enjoy the selection of proper traditional Lancashire dishes on this site using Kilverts Lard which is available from all Booth’s stores.

Mince Pies

This is a perfect classic recipe for pastry, with a 50/50 mix of butter and lard giving the pastry a crisp, light, and flaky texture.  We have added the zest of an orange to flavour the pastry, but this is optional. Once made, they will keep fresh in an airtight container for one week, or they can be frozen. 

Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus 30 minutes resting 
Cooking time: 20 minutes 
Makes: 12 


  • 225g plain flour, plus a little extra for dusting
  • A pinch of salt
  • 50g lard, cut into small cubes 
  • 50g butter, cut into small cubes 
  • 1 orange, zest removed 
  • 6tbsp cold water
  • 240g mincemeat 
  • 1tbsp caster sugar 


  1. Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. 
  2. Add the lard and butter, then rub the fats into the flour using your fingertips only, being as light as possible, until the mixture is crumbly. 
  3. Now add the water. Next, with a knife, start bringing the dough together. Then, with your fingertips bring it together into a ball.
  4. Place the pastry in a polythene bag and leave it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to rest.
  5. To roll, lightly dust the work surface and rolling pin with flour and place the dough onto the work surface. Begin to roll the dough backwards and forwards (don’t be tempted to roll from side to side), gently and evenly. If necessary, re-dust the rolling pin and the surface very lightly with flour, to stop the pastry sticking.
  6. Roll the pastry backwards and forwards, until it’s about 3mm thick. Cut out 12 bases, using a 10cm fluted cutter, then 12 tops, using a 7cm fluted cutter. You may need to gather up the pastry trimmings and re-roll to make the last few tops. 
  7. Line a 12 hole shallow bun tin with the 12 bases. Then place one dessertspoon (20g) of the mincemeat into each base, place on the top disk and gently press at the edges to seal. Place a small hole in the top of pastry lid, and finally sprinkle lightly with the caster sugar. 
  8. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200C, 400F, gas mark 6, for 20 minutes or until golden. 
  9. Leave to cool for a few minutes before serving. 

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Eccles Cakes

Made with a simple butter and lard flaky pastry. The flaky pastry takes a while to make but is worth the effort. 

Preparation time: 30 minutes, 4 x 30 minutes plus chilling times 
Cooking time: 20 minutes 
Makes: 12 

For the pastry

  • 400g plain flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 25g caster sugar
  • 125g cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 100g lard, cut into small cubes
  • 1 medium egg, separated
  • 100ml cold water
  • 75ml cold milk

For the filling

  • 500g currants
  • 2 lemons, zested
  • 50g dark soft brown sugar
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 25ml brandy (optional)
  • Granulated or demerara sugar


  1. Put the flour, salt and sugar in a bowl and add the butter and the lard. 
  2. Whisk the egg yolk with the water and milk, and mix with the flour to a firm dough. 
  3. Wrap and chill for 30-60 minutes.
  4. Then, with a little flour, roll into a 2cm-thick rectangle. Fold in by thirds, then re-roll to the same size and fold again. Wrap and chill for 30-60 minutes. 
  5. Repeat the double roll, fold and chill twice more.
  6. Put the currants in a bowl, cover with boiling water and leave for five minutes. Drain thoroughly, then mix with the lemon, sugar, butter and brandy, and chill.
  7. Roll the pastry to 2cm thick, cut in two and keep one piece chilled while you roll the other into a 3mm-thick rectangle and cut into six squares. 
  8. Place a 50-60g ball of currants in the centre of each one, dampen the edges and bring together to seal. 
  9. Flip it over, round the shape with your fingers, roll out slightly to flatten and place seam down on a baking tray lined with nonstick paper. 
  10. Repeat with the other pastry and filling. 
  11. Brush with beaten egg white, sprinkle with sugar, slash the tops and bake at 200C (180C fan-assisted)/390F/gas mark 6 for about 30 minutes.

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Savoury Mince Cobbler

Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour 
Serves: 4  

Ingredients for Savoury Mince 

  • 25g lard, or vegetable oil
  • 550g minced beef
  • 50g onions, diced 
  • 50g carrot, 1 cm dice 
  • 50g swede, 1cm dice
  • 40g oats
  • 40g flour
  • 450ml beef stock
  • Dash gravy browning (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to Season

Cobbler Dough

  • 150g flour
  • ¼tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 35g lard
  • 100ml milk 


  1. Melt the lard in a large saucepan. Add the minced meat and brown.  
  2. Add the onion and continue to fry for five minutes.
  3. Add the vegetables and sprinkle the flour and the oats, seasoning, and stock to cover the mixture. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a large baking tray or casserole dish.
  5.  Make the cobbler dough by adding the flour, baking powder, and salt to a bowl.  Rub in the lard until you get a light crumble mix.
  6. Add the milk, and stir the mixture to bring it to a dough.  
  7. Divide the dough into four, and with your hands shape each of the four pieces into a round of about 20mm thickness. Place these across the top of the cooked meat. Brush with milk.
  8. Place in a hot oven, 210C, 400-425F, gas 7 for 15-20 minutes to cook the cobbler dough.  

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Bacon Floddies

Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes 
Serves: 4-6


  • 250g raw grated potato
  • 100g flour
  • 1 pinch baking powder
  • 125g raw grated onion
  • 2 egg
  • 450g back bacon
  • 100g lard for frying


  1. Finely chop the back bacon.
  2. Mix this together with the grated potato, onion, baking powder, eggs, and flour.
  3. Heat the lard in a large frying pan, ready to shallow fry the floddies.
  4. Drop a scoop of the mixture into the heated lard, cook about 3-4 at a time.
  5. They will take some time to cook - approximately 10-15 minutes. You can keep them warm in the oven while you cook the rest.
  6. Turn out the cooked floddies onto kitchen paper to remove any excess fat and to cool slightly before serving.

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Kilvert's Original Lard

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Yorkshire, Cheshire and Greater Manchester

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