What is Kendal Mint Cake?

What is Kendal Mint Cake?

Kendal Mint Cake is a high carbohydrate, Glucose based bar infused with Peppermint oil which originated in the town of Kendal in Cumbria, England. Well known for its association with Mountaineering and other outdoor activities. Used for centuries as a source of energy on pioneering adventures such as Chris Bonnington most notably on the ascent of Everest but also in the trans-Antarctic expedition led by Sir Ernest Shackleton, "Everest in reverse" in Papua New Guinea and even included in British Army ration packs.

There are four main Kendal Mint Cake manufacturers today including Kendal Mint Company aka "KMC".

Who makes Kendal Mint Cake? 

Kendal Mint Cake has been manufactured for 100's of years by multiple different families and businesses. A lot of sources tell the story of a Glacier Mint which was accidentally over-boiled but many other sources suggest it's roots can actually be traced back to the Isle of man "Mint Patty". The oldest commercially-made mint patty was made by the Quiggin's family on the Isle of Man (an island located in the middle of the northern Irish Sea). They had been making the cakes since 1840, but in 1880, four of the sons formed the Kendal Mint Cake Company - D. Quiggin & Son Ltd. There's even a "National Peppermint Patty Day" each year on February 11th!

The Kendal Mint Company and Quiggins work in close partnership to produce the modern day KMC NRG BAR. 

How is Kendal Mint Cake made? 

Step 1 - Boiling the mixture.

First of all, the key ingredients are weighed out, Sugar, Water and Glucose Syrup, then added to a copper vat.

The mixture is boiled to 126 degrees Celsius and continuously stirred until it turns clear.

Interesting fact: The temperature required to boil the mixture to clear actually varies day to day and quite dramatically throughout the changing seasons. This is due to the varying temperatures and pressures of the surrounding environment!

Step 2: The Secret Ingredient!

Peppermint Oil. Once the mixture is taken off the boil, fondant and Peppermint Oil are added and stirred in. Say goodbye to any colds or blocked noses at this point because that Peppermint is strong!

At this point, our Informed Sport blend of B Vitamins and Electrolytes are carefully added to the mixture to produce the KMC NRG BAR.

Continuous stirring is required to achieve the opaque, cloudy appearance. Otherwise, the mixture would be clear.

Kendal Mint Company use a secret blend of different Peppermint Oils from around the world to achieve their minty goodness!

Step 3: Precision Pouring

Our favourite and most satisfying part of the process - pouring the mixture.

Once the mixture has turned cloudy, it's carefully poured into the mould by hand. The moulds are set on an iron cooling table to help speed up the process.

Impressive how accurate this process is considering it's still done by hand, right?

Step 4: A Delicate Hand

Once the moulds have been filled, it only takes 20 minutes for the Mint Cake to solidify ready for it to be removed from the mould for storage.

One batch typically takes 20 minutes to pour, so this means once the final moulds have been filled, the first ones have already set and are ready for moving.

A very delicate hand is needed for this process, as the bars are still relatively warm and soft.

Step 5: Cooling

Although it only takes 20 minutes to set, the Mint Cake is not quite ready to be packed as it is still pretty hot and is also releasing some moisture.

If they were packed at this point, they would likely break and moisture would collect on the inside of the wrappers. Nobody wants a soggy Mint Cake!

The bars are carefully staked into containers and covered over, where they cool over night ready for packing the next day.

Step 6: Packing

The next day, the bars are uncovered, and broken into the right sizes. They are then sent along a conveyor belt which wraps them and passes through a metal detector for one final check.

The bars are then carefully packed into their boxes and shrink-wrapped ready to be sent out for delivery.


Read more and watch videos on how kendal mint cake is made


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What is Kendal Mint Cake?