Can Christmas Pudding put you over the drink drive limit?

Christmas Pudding contains a significant amount of alcohol and modern cooking methods may not burn it off.

Christmas pudding drink drive

Research into the traditional Christmas dinner dessert of Christmas Pudding has found that the puds provided by major supermarkets are laced with significant amounts of alcohol, such as brandy, cognac, sherry, rum and cider.

Modern Cooking Methods to Blame

It is thought that the microwave is the culprit that could be to blame for leaving the alcohol in the cake. While boiling or steaming causes the alcohol to evaporate, the microwave does not cook the alcohol as much.

This means that just one portion of Christmas pudding could be enough to send a driver over the drink drive limit, even if they haven’t had a drink already.

Drink Drive Limits

The drink drive limit in England, Wales and Northern Ireland is 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, and the limit in Scotland was almost halved this year as it was reduced to 50 mg of alcohol per 100 ml.

In England, Wales and Northern Ireland it might be enough to put you over the limit, in Scotland almost certainly.

Marks and Spencer’s Pudding is the Booziest

In the research, Mark’s and Spencer’s pudding was the most booze filled, it’s Perfectly Matured Christmas Pudding was made from 7% brandy, 4.5% brandy cherries, 4% ruby port, 4% cognac 3.5% stout, making the puddings overall alcohol content 21 .5%, that means it’s comprised of over a fifth alcohol!

Even if you leave out the brandy butter or drizzling flaming brandy on the pudding a 100g portion of the Marks and Spencer pud could send you over the driving limit! It contains the same amount as alcohol as a single pub measure spirit.

If you were to eat the whole thing, it would be the same as drinking a third of a bottle of brandy.

Steaming/Boiling vs. Microwave

The majority of Christmas Pudding packaging suggests you should microwave for 3 minutes, but researchers say that this will not cook the alcohol off like steaming or boiling it for 2 hours would.

Most Christmas puddings these days recommend microwaving for as little as three minutes, but experts say this will not dilute their alcohol content in the same way as boiling or steaming for up to two hours.

To be safe this year, make sure you cook your pudding thoroughly by steaming or boiling it, otherwise do not drive. It could send you over the limit and cause you to be prosecuted.

If you have a driving conviction, get in touch with Think Insurance. We take a balanced and pragmatic view when insuring people with driving convictions and we won’t charge unnecessary prices. See our driving conviction insurance now.

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