Full Christmas dinner on a white plate

Traditional Christmas dinner menu

Serve a traditional Christmas dinner menu filled with classic dishes, including smoked salmon starters, roast turkey with all the trimmings and Christmas pudding.

We’re all for breaking with convention and trying something new on special occasions, but sometimes only classic dishes will do on Christmas Day.

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We’ve put together a menu of our favourite traditional festive recipes for inspiration.

This menu serves eight, but we’ve also included alternative options if you’re catering for less or more guests.

For even more inspiration, see our Christmas dinner hub and more Christmas menu ideas.

Christmas morning ideas

Festive Brunch

Bake this Middle Eastern-inspired loaf to serve for a festive brunch. To make things extra-indulgent, spread thick slices with our moreish honey & tahini butter.

See more Christmas breakfast recipes

Christmas dinner ideas

Starters

Perfect pâté, parfait & pickles

Pâté, terrine or parfait are perfect make-ahead starters. Take them out the fridge just before serving and put on a serving platter with toasts or, for even less hassle, oatcakes or crackers. Our homemade fig chutney is also a sweet and sticky accompaniment.

More Christmas pâté recipes

Prawn cocktails


Breathe new life into prawn cocktail, a classic Christmas starter. With the addition of some Cajun spices, it’s a flavour-packed modern twist.

See more prawn cocktail recipes

Smoked salmon

Keep things light before the onslaught of roast dinner with all the trimmings. Stocking smoked salmon in your fridge is a wise choice at Christmas. Make a canapé classic of salmon & herb blinis, which you can rustle up in less than 20 minutes using four ingredients.

See more festive smoked salmon recipes

Christmas soup


Serve a warming bowl of soup for a light yet satisfying Christmas starter. This creamy celeriac and hazelnut soup includes a drizzle of truffle oil for added luxury. Or, capture more seasonal flavours by blitzing chestnuts and parsnips into a silky-smooth blend and topping with crispy bacon pieces.

See more Christmas soup recipes

Traditional turkey ideas

For some, there will never be a centrepiece that can replace turkey. If you want to stay traditional, make our classic roast turkey recipe with a rich red wine gravy. Placing pancetta under the skin will keep the meat beautifully succulent and add a hint of saltiness.

If you’re serving fewer people, a turkey crown can often be more suitable than a whole bird. We’ve added flavour and moistness to our turkey crown with a dry-brining recipe.

If turkey isn’t your thing, roast beef with Yorkshire puddings should fit the bill without straying too far from tradition.

See more turkey recipes

Watch our video on how to carve a turkey:

Side dishes and trimmings

Serve your centrepiece with all the trimmings. It wouldn’t be Christmas without the much-debated Brussels sprouts, but parsnips, carrots and potatoes are all solid choices, along with one of our favourite parts of Christmas: pigs-in-blankets.

See more Christmas sides

Sauces

Elevate bread sauce by adding buttery, crisp onions. It’s an ideal condiment for the Christmas dinner table or to serve with your Sunday roast.

See more Christmas sauces

Christmas dessert ideas

Christmas pudding


Love it or hate it, a fruity basin pudding embodies the spirit of Christmas. Serve with rich and luxurious brandy butter.

See more Christmas pudding recipes

Christmas trifles

Take trifle to the next level for the festive season. Make the jelly with raspberries and enrich the custard with clotted cream for ultra indulgence.

See more Christmas trifle recipes.

Christmas drink ideas

A bottle of fizz will serve a crowd if you add some juice or fresh fruit to the glass. Alternatively, get your spices melding and stir up some fragrant mulled wine. We also have a mocktail version for non-drinkers.

See more Christmas drink recipes

Want a plan that takes all the stress out of Christmas dinner? Try our easiest evernext level or budget menu plans, complete with time plan, shopping list (to print out or use for online shopping) and all the recipes you’ll need for the big day.

If you’re still stuck for inspiration, visit our Christmas dinner page or browse more Christmas menus…

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Complete Christmas menu: vegetarian
Vegan Christmas menu
Gluten-free Christmas menu
Complete Christmas menu: quick
2 hour Christmas menu
Complete Christmas menu: for a crowd
Complete Christmas menu: for two
All our Christmas menus