Easy family recipes for the Christmas holidays
Christmas is a feeding frenzy but we like to pare back and keep it simple when there are children in the mix. Check out these no-fuss recipes to feed your family during the festive season.
There's so much more to the festive season than just one big lunch. We've got recipe collections a-plenty for the food-centred celebrations on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year's Eve – but what to do in between?
Amid friends and family dropping in and routines going off course, children still need their three meals a day – and you need time to entertain them.
Help is at hand! We've put together 10 simple recipes that'll keep your family on track with make-ahead dishes, batch and slow cook time-savers, plus a crafty kitchen activity to keep kids entertained while you crack on.
A two-step recipe that feeds up to eight, this pork joint couldn't be easier if you're catering for a crowd, and the simple flavours will be popular with kids and adults alike. Slow cooking the meat makes it succulently tender. Try serving with warm new potatoes tossed in mayo, a green salad and fresh rolls. Tuck into more family slow cooker recipes.
Get dinner on the table quickly with this flavourful rice dish that takes less than 30 minutes to make from start to finish. Everyone will love the stir-fried juicy prawns with citrus and fresh parsley. If you have some leftover rice already, this dish is even faster to prepare.
Now try more fried rice recipes.
Heading out for a winter walk with your family? Get this chicken curry on the go so you have a meal to greet you on your return. There are instructions for the hob or oven, too, and it's freezable as well. This flexible dish tastes just as good if you go easy on the spice.Try more slow cooker curry recipes.
In the days following Christmas, a little simplicity is all we crave – lighter food, less washing up and some way of getting through all the leftovers. Turkey minestrone can be adapted to use up the veg you have (or the veg you know your little ones will eat!). Add beans and orzo pasta to ensure it's filling enough for a complete meal for six expectant mouths. Clever ways to use up Christmas leftovers.
Don't let the name fool you – we love this scrumptious one-pan winter warmer when we're cooking for eight to 10 people. Chorizo, chipolatas, beans and eggs make for a comforting brunch, lunch or supper that works for all ages. Bring it to the table in the pan, serve with a stack of plates and chunks of crusty bread and let the family dig in. Avoid the washing up with these one-pan recipes.
There's a halfway house between takeaway pizza and making your own dough, which may be exactly what you need when you've got a house full of children and not much time to spare. Have shop-bought pizza bases at the ready, get out a selection of toppings (you can raid the fridge for ham, peppers and anything else the family might like), then let the kids top their pizzas. That's dinner taken care of. More recipes kids can help with.
An easy vegan option for all the family. Marinate tofu in umami-rich teriyaki sauce, then fry until golden and mix with broccoli and noodles or rice, plus sliced spring onions to garnish. Simple, easy and delicious. Discover our favourite ways with tofu.
Christmas can topple even the most committed of carnivores, making this vegetarian curry a welcome respite for your stomach. Choosing meat-free meals with filling ingredients like lentils can save the pennies at an expensive time of year. Swap Madras for mild curry powder to please delicate palates. The recipe is easily doubled and it's freezable, too. Find more family-friendly vegetarian recipes.
This savoury crumble is as comforting as it is easy to prepare. Your family will love the savoury squash filling with a crunchy parmesan, cheddar and walnut topping. Still room for something sweet? Now try our most popular sweet crumbles.
Meatballs will go down a storm with kids and adults alike. These pork mince and grated apple meatballs can even be made ahead and frozen for up to three months. For more inspiration, take a look at our Christmas for kids recipe collection.
Love these recipes? Try other family meal ideas:
What are your favourite family recipes at Christmas? Leave a comment below.