Burns Night is widely renowned as a commemoration of the famous Scottish poet Robert Burns’ birthday. Every year on 25 January, this night is celebrated – and not just in Scotland but in spots around the world – with a feast showcasing the best of traditional Highlands cuisine.
So, whether you’re Scottish or not, get ready to raise a wee dram of whisky and serve up a splendid supper with haggis taking pride of place at the table. We’ve got a great selection of recipes and tips on putting together a Burns Night menu to remember…
Burns Night menu ideas
Get inspired for your Burns Night bash by reading our guide on how to throw a Burns Night supper. Furnish your menu with a cock-a-leekie soup starter, followed by traditional haggis (if you dare) with neeps and tatties. That’s potatoes and swede, usually served separately, but you could also try serving them as clapshot where the roots are mashed together. End the meal with delightfully creamy raspberry cranachan trifles, or a comforting clootie dumpling.
If haggis isn’t your thing, then don’t worry. We’ve got lots of alternatives for a culinary Highland fling like a sort-of Scotch broth, our crispy neeps’n’ tatties cake and for the main event, Highland beef with pickled walnuts & puff pastry tops.
See our Burns Night recipe collection for plenty more Scottish delicacies.
All hail the haggis!
If you’ve never tried haggis, or have a bad memory of eating it, you should give this meat pudding another chance. It is central to a Burns Night celebration and paying a little more for a high-quality product is certainly worth it.
You may wish to carry out the entire customary procedure of playing the bagpipes whilst the haggis is brought in, before addressing it with Burns’ elaborate ode Address to Haggis. But we wouldn’t blame you for just tucking straight in!
Find out how to cook this classic Burns Night centrepiece in our guide that also answers the question: what is haggis?
Following a recital of Address to a Haggis, a whisky toast is traditionally proposed. Wash your banquet down with a glass of Scotch, or if you prefer something less strong, mix drinks from our whisky cocktail collection. This would also be the moment to serve oatcakes with cheese. We especially love seeded oatcakes, although it’s a deviation from the traditional, basic recipe – plus, the nutty flavour goes well with the dram.
Whether you’re going for a night of high-spirited celebrations or a laid-back evening of conversation and poetry, a sip of whisky in-between won’t go amiss. You can also add a splash of this punchy spirit to a variety of sweet and savoury dishes, as demonstrated in our top 10 ways to cook with whisky.
Finally, round off the night with a wholehearted rendition of Auld Lang Syne before handing out homemade shortbread.
Check out all of our Burns Night recipes for more inspiration.
How will you be celebrating Burns Night this year? Leave a comment below…