Traditional Christmas Eve dinner ideas and recipes

by John Griffith

Is Christmas your favorite holiday? It is definitely ours. Especially with everything that is going on around the world, we need some holiday cheer. And what better way to get ourselves in a festive mood than to start preparing for Christmas. If you already have your decorations up and have started getting presents for everyone, the only thing you have left to do is get ready for the dinner party portion of the holiday. Planning a menu, however, is not easy, even if it just for a few people. So, we are here to help you with delicious recipes and Christmas Eve dinner ideas so you can wow your guests and let them enjoy the special dishes you have prepared.

Let’s start with a must have on Christmas – eggnog

two glasses with chocolate on the rim alternative christmas dinner ideas filled with eggnog decorated with rosemary branches

Christmas dinner party ideas


  • 7 egg yolks
  • 100gr muscovado sugar
  • 400ml coconut milk
  • 150ml coconut cream
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • melted chocolate, pink powdered sugar and rosemary branches for decoration

These are the ingredients you are going to need for this non traditional eggnog recipe

alternative christmas dinner ideas eggnog ingredients arranged on black surface milk eggs brown sugar

Use a hand mixer to beat the egg yolks with the muscovado sugar

eggs brown sugar being beaten with a hand mixer in large glass bowl alternative christmas dinner ideas

In a pot whisk together the coconut milk, cream, vanilla extract, cinnamon sticks and nutmeg but don’t let it boil

milk with cinnamon sticks brown sugar cooking on stove top alternative christmas dinner ideas bowl of egg mixture on the side

Temper by pouring some of the milk mixture into the beaten egg yolks

temper milk with egg mixture in glass bowl alternative christmas dinner ideas two mixtures whisked together

Then pour the entire egg mixture into the pot

christmas dinner 2020 milk and egg mixture being mixed together coooking on stove top placed on black surface

Pour into glasses and decorate with melted chocolate, pink powdered sugar and rosemary branches

eggnog being poured into glass with chocolate on the rim from glass jug christmas dinner 2020

Source: Archzine Studio

Healthy Yule Log recipe

yule log christmas dessert placed on black and white marble board easy christmas dinner ideas decorated with rosemary and cranberries

Christmas dessert recipes


  • 4 eggs
  • 70gr muscovado sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 30ml almond milk
  • 50 gr erythritol
  • 135gr gluten-free flour mix
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • hazelnut cream
  • dried cranberries
  • melted dark chocolate
  • powdered sugar

Yule Log recipe with just a few ingredients

ingredients for yule log recipe easy christmas dinner ideas sugar flour eggs arranged on white surface

Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites and beat them with the sugar, vanilla and milk

egg yolks being beaten with brown sugar in ceramic bowl christmas dinner party ideas egg whites in another bowl

Add the flour, cocoa and baking powder and mix until fully incorporated

mixture for the cake batter being stirred with a spoon in green ceramic bowl christmas dinner party ideas

Whisk the egg whites until foam is achieved, adding the erythritol

egg whites and powdered sugar being bitten together with a hand mixer christmas dinner party ideas in gray ceramic bowl

Mix both mixtures until fully incorporated

egg whites and egg yolks mixtures being mixed together in ceramic bowl christmas dinner party ideas silicon spatula

Spread the mixture evenly onto a paper lined baking sheet and bake at 180° for 15-18 minutes

christmas party food ideas buffet cake batter being spread out evenly onto baking sheet cranberries on the side

Transfer onto a towel covered with powdered sugar and remove the paper

baked cake batter placed on towel covered with powdered sugar christmas party food ideas buffet baking paper removed

Dust with powdered sugar and roll up using the towel while it’s still warm and let cool

rolling up the cake batter with the towel christmas party food ideas buffet covered with powdered sugar

Roll out and spread hazelnut cream and dries cranberries on top

putting hazelnut spread and dried cranberries on batter christmas party food ideas buffet covered with powdered sugar

Roll up again and decorate with melted dark chocolate and cranberries

yule log dessert rolled up christmas party food ideas buffet melted chocolate being poured on it from small metal jug

Delicious and healthy Christmas dessert

christmas dinner party ideas yule log dessert with a piece cut off decorated with chocolate cranberries rosemary branches

Source: Archzine Studio

Easy and simple cranberry sauce recipe

small ceramic bowl filled with cranberry sauce garnished with lemon zest christmas ham dinner spoon on the side

Christmas Eve dinner ideas


  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 3/4 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 12-oz bag of fresh or frozen cranberries
  • orange zest
  • a pinch of salt

Create this amazing sauce with just a few ingredients

glass bowl with cranberries two lemons sugar christmas ham dinner cranberry sauce ingredients arranged on marble countertop


  1. Over high heat in a sauce pan bring the water, sugar and orange juice to a boil.
  2. Add the cranberries, salt and orange zest and return to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for about 12 minutes.

All set!

cranberry sauce cooking in metal pot on stove top christmas ham dinner being stirred with wooden spoon

Source: Once Upon a Chef

Christmas apple salad recipe

apple salad with kale pine nuts dried cranberries christmas food ideas white bowl placed on marble surface

Christmas dinner ideas


For the salad:

  • 1 large Granny Smith apple
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 5 cups mixed green salad
  • 1/4 cup pepitas
  • 1/3 cup goat cheese

For the vinaigrette:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustar
  • black pepper

christmas food ideas side by side photos how to make apple salad and dressing bowls placed on marble surface


  1. Toast the pepitas in a skillet over medium heat and set aside.
  2. In a bowl mix the ingredients for the vinaigrette.
  3. Chop the apples in this small bites.
  4. In a large bowl, top the greens with the apple, cranberries and pepitas. Crumble goat cheese on top and drizzle with the vinaigrette. Toss and serve.

green salad spinach and apples salad christmas food ideas with pine nuts and dried cranberries

Source: Cookie and Kate

Bacon wrapped green beans

white plate filled with bacon wrapped green beans christmas food ideas garnished with silvered almonds

Christmas appetizers


  • 8 pork bacon rashers
  • 1lb green beans
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • salt to taste

You can also make this recipe in an Instant Pot

easy christmas dinner menu photo collage of step by step diy tutorial for bacon wrapped green beans cooked in instant pot


  1. Blanch the green beans by adding them to boiling water for about 5 minutes and transfer them to an ice bath.
  2. Gather eight beans together and roll them in one bacon rasher tightly.
  3. Preheat a skillet and add the bacon wrapped beans to it with the crease down. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side.
  4. Sprinkle with salt and sliced almonds.

bacon wrapped green beans served on white plate with silvered almonds christmas food ideas placed on wooden surface

Source: Green Healthy Cooking

The best baked macaroni and cheese recipe

baked mac and cheese recipe easy christmas dinner menu panko crumbs on top garnished with chopped parsley

Christmas side dishes


  • 1lb macaroni
  • 5 tbsp butter
  • 6 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 5 cups milk
  • 8 oz shredded monterey jack cheese
  • 8 oz shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

black skillet filled with baked mac and cheese easy christmas dinner menu with panko crumbs garnished with chopped parsley


  1. Cook macaroni according to package instructions.
  2. In a pot melt the butter and add the flour, salt and nutmeg. Don’t stop whisking for about 2 minutes.
  3. Gradually add the milk and bring to boil while stirring. Reduce heat and simmer for about 7 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and gradually add the cheeses until the melt. Add the pasta and cook over medium-low heat for about 6 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a skillet and sprinkle with bread crumbs. Broil in a preheated oven for about 5 minutes.

spoonful of baked mac and cheese with panko crumbs and chopped parsley easy christmas dinner menu cooked in black skillet

Source: Jessica Gavin

Pull apart cheesy garlic bread recipe

christmas ham dinner two large slices of bread covered with cheese baked on baking sheet garnished with parsley

Christmas food ideas


  • 1 loaf of bread
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup salted butter
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup shredded Colby jack cheese
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • chopped parsley

photo collage of step by step diy tutorial for cheesy garlic bread recipe christmas ham dinner


  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Cut the bread lengthwise.
  3. In a bowl mix the softened butter, minced garlic, Italian seasoning and garlic powder. Spread onto each side of the bread evenly. Sprinkle the shredded cheeses on top.
  4. Bake for about 15 minutes and garnish with chopped parsley.

Cut it into bites and serve

cheesy garlic bread bites baked in baking sheet easy christmas dinner menu garnished with chopped parsley

Source: The Recipe Critic

Honey glazed ham recipe

christmas ham sliced placed on golden tray christmas dinner 2020 two plates with potatoes and brussels sprouts on the sides

Christmas ham dinner


  • 1 spiral ham
  • 3/4 cups water
  • 2 whole star anise
  • 12 whole cloves
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp dijon
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Worcestershire

ingredients for ham glaze in small white bowls christmas dinner 2020 star anise placed on white surface


  1. Preheat oven to 325°.
  2. Fit a roasting pan with a wire rack. Pour the water in the pan with the star anise and cloves. Put the ham on the wire rack and bake for 20 minutes.
  3. In a bowl, mix the brown sugar, dijon, honey, vinegar, Worcestershire and black pepper together until fully combined.
  4. Brush the ham with the glaze every 20 minutes while baking. Cook until the center is 130° or for about 2 hours.
  5. Use a kitchen torch to caramelize the glaze.

white plate with slices of ham brussels sprouts potatoes placed on white surface christmas dinner 2020 knife rosemary branches cinnamon sticks snowflake cookies on the side

Source: Tradadalan

Traditional roast turkey recipe

roasted christmas turkey placed on white tray easy christmas dinner ideas decorated with green herbs cranberries lemon slices

Christmas Eve dinner ideas


  • 12lb turkey, fully thawed
  • 2 tsp lemon zest
  • 3/4 cup softened butter
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 yellow onion, quartered
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 bunch chopped parsley

raw turkey butter salt black pepper onion garlic herbs easy christmas dinner ideas ingredients for roasted turkey


  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Remove the giblets and neck from the turkey and pat dry. Tuck wings under and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Mix the lemon zest, butter, rosemary and thyme in a bowl.
  4. Carefully separate the skin from the turkey and tuck 1/2 of the butter mixture inside. Rub the rest on the whole turkey skin and season with salt and pepper.
  5. Transfer to baking rack. Stuff with onion, parsley and garlic and tie the legs together.
  6. Bake covered with foil until the thickest part of the turkey is at 170°. The total baking time is about 2 hours and a half to 3 hours and a half.

easy christmas dinner ideas turkey sliced into pieces arranged on white tray placed on white surface

Source: Cooking Classy

Here’s some more Christmas Eve Dinner ideas

casserole dishes with different meals bowls and plates arranged on wooden table christmas eve dinner christmas eve dinner four people sitting around table with gray table cloth lots of dishes on it in bowls and trays christmas eve dinner ideas table with red table cloth different dishes on the table in black trays and plates baked ham on wooden cutting board

Fill your table with delicious meals

different dishes in white bowl and trays christmas eve dinner arranged on green table runner on wooden table fireplace next to christmas tree christmas eve dinner ideas table with red table cloth lots of different dishes on the table

There is nothing better than gingerbread cookies in the whole wide world

gingerbread cookies in the shape of house snowflakes gingerbread men christmas tree christmas eve dinner ideas greenery table runner on white table cloth christmas eve dinner white trays and plates with different dishes mini stuffed bited on wooden cutting board christmas eve dinner pinecones cranberries grapes around it

wooden table with red table runner christmas eve dinner ideas eight people sitting around it white plates and different dishes

John Griffith

John Griffith is a young, passionate journalist. Writing has been John’s hobby ever since he was a boy. He has worked in some of the UK’s most successful news portals over the course of his professional career but found his forever home at Archzine.