Classic Recipes for a Festive Christmas Dinner Menu

Tried, True, and Delicious

Roast goose recipe

The Spruce Eats / Anfisa Strizh

What could be more comforting during the holidays than a traditional Christmas dinner shared with family and close friends? While food blogs at this time of year often offer us "new and creative" Christmas recipes, sometimes we just crave the classic, tried-and-true Christmas recipes that we grew up with. That's what we've collected here for you in our holiday round-up of the best traditional Christmas recipes for appetizers, main courses, side dishes, and desserts. Just pick and choose among these menu options, and enjoy a classic holiday dinner this year.

  • 01 of 33

    Coquito: Puerto Rican No-Egg Eggnog With Rum

    Coquito recipe

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

    Coquito is a traditional coconut punch served at Christmas and New Year's celebrations in Puerto Rico. The creamy, sweet drink is similar to eggnog with rum but with the tropical element of coconut. Since this recipe does not call for raw eggs, you can whip it up in a blender and skip all of the heating and stirring.

  • 02 of 33

    Sugar Cookie Martini

    Sugar Cookie Martini

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

    Sweet, delicious, and far quicker to make than actual cookies, the sugar cookie martini is sure to become a new favorite. It's the perfect dessert cocktail for the holidays and other celebrations, but it's also easy enough to enjoy on a weeknight when you have an insatiable sweet tooth.

  • 03 of 33

    Bourbon Eggnog

    Bourbon eggnog for a holiday party

    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel

    Eggnog is great around the holidays, but homemade eggnog is even better. Despite common misconceptions, made-from-scratch eggnog is not difficult or time-consuming. This eggnog with bourbon recipe will show you just how easy and delicious eggnog can be, and you can use it to keep the holiday tradition alive.

  • 04 of 33

    Wassail Recipe


    The Spruce Eats / Teena Agnel

    Wassail is a traditional and warming holiday punch that has been served for centuries. In Victorian Britain, families would serve the hot spiced beverage to carollers and other visitors during the Christmas season (the tradition of going house to house was known as wassailing). Our old-fashioned recipe includes a generous amount of dry sherry, a little brandy, some eggs, and an aromatic medley of cozy holiday spices.

    Continue to 5 of 33 below.
  • 05 of 33

    Crab-Stuffed Mushrooms

    Crab-Stuffed Mushrooms With Parmesan Cheese

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

    Crabmeat and breadcrumbs make up a simple and very tasty stuffing for mushrooms. The crab stuffing is loaded with texture and buttery flavor. Some finely minced red bell pepper and green onions add festive color to the stuffing. These mushrooms are versatile as well with many variations on the recipe.

  • 06 of 33

    Classic Deviled Eggs Recipe

    Classic Deviled Eggs

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    Deviled eggs are a classic appetizer that are welcome at any celebration. Add a pinch of baking soda to the boiling water for eggs, and you'll find they peel neatly after cooking. For a Christmas celebration, sprinkle some paprika over the finished product—along with optional flecks of snipped fresh dill—to give them a Christmasy appearance.

  • 07 of 33

    Cranberry Brie Bites

    Cranberry Brie Bites

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

    The combination of brie cheese with cranberry is classic for the holidays, but don't let that stop you making these bite-sized appetizers any time of year. The recipe can be adapted quickly with your favorite cheeses and fillings, making these the perfect party food for holidays and beyond.

  • 08 of 33

    Southern Style Butter Yeast Rolls Recipe

    Southern Style Butter Yeast Rolls

    The Spruce Eats / Ana Zelic

    Homemade bread takes any dinner party to the next level. Guests will appreciate the time you took to make these Southern style butter yeast rolls. They also freeze well, so you can bake them ahead of time, then reheat when guests are on their way.

    Continue to 9 of 33 below.
  • 09 of 33

    Unbelievably Easy, Fluffy, and Creamy Mashed Potatoes Recipe

    Fluffy and creamy mashed potatoes recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga

    Make the ultimate mashed potatoes as a tasty side dish for your Christmas dinner. A ricer is the perfect tool for fluffy, creamy mashed potatoes that aren't gluey. Plus, when you use a ricer you don't have to peel the potatoes before you boil them. A dose of butter and half-and-half or milk add lots of flavor.

  • 10 of 33

    Air Fryer Bacon-Wrapped Asparagus

    Bacon Wrapped Asparagus

    Kristina Vanni

    Bacon-wrapped asparagus spears are a delightful appetizer or side dish made even easier with the help of an air fryer. When air frying bacon-wrapped asparagus, you don't need to pre-cook the bacon wrap. The air fryer produces crispy, evenly browned bacon by circulating hot air around the food. This eliminates the need for any additional oil and makes cleanup a snap.

  • 11 of 33

    Italian Carpaccio

    Delicious Italian Carpaccio

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

    Carpaccio is an Italian version of steak tartare made of raw beef dressed with lemony mayonnaise. It takes little preparation, but adds a dash of sophistication to the table.

  • 12 of 33

    Yorkshire Pudding Recipe

    Yorkshire pudding recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Abbey Littlejohn

    Yorkshire pudding is an absolute classic at the English Christmas table and a welcome accompaniment to any holiday meal. Golden and delicious, they're a match made in heaven for roast beef and other holiday meats, and taste wonderful with gravy poured on top. Once you've tried this proven recipe, you'll never buy ready-made varieties ever again.

    Continue to 13 of 33 below.
  • 13 of 33

    Brussels Sprouts Dill Salad

    Brussels Sprouts Dill Salad

    The Spruce / Stephanie Goldfinger

    This shaved Brussels sprouts salad is a bit off the common path as dill is usually associated with spring and early summer cookery, but we love the brightness it adds to a traditionally rich table of food. Crunchy Brussels sprouts are topped with bits of finely chopped roasted almonds and a shower of salty aged pecorino cheese with the option to throw in more veggies, herbs, or toppings, if desired.

  • 14 of 33

    Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Butternut Squash, and Cranberries Recipe

    Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Butternut Squash, and Cranberries

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    Roasted vegetables are a traditional accompaniment for holiday turkey, ham, or beef. Your guests will love the delicious combination of cubed butternut squash, halved Brussels sprouts, and chunks of tangy onion roasted simply with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper. Garnish the cooked veggies with dried cranberries and pecans for a festive touch.

  • 15 of 33

    Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

    Balsamic Roasted Vegetables

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

    The tangy, deep flavor of aged balsamic vinegar is a wonderful way to enhance a simple side dish like roasted vegetables. The vinegar helps caramelize the potatoes, carrots, and red onions, creating a subtle sweetness and dark-colored exterior, and green beans add a bright finish to the dish. Feel free to swap out or add other favorite vegetables like cauliflower, broccoli, or Brussels sprouts.

  • 16 of 33

    Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce

    Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce

    The Spruce / Julia Estrada

    Instant Pot cranberry sauce makes an essential holiday side dish a breeze to prepare and cook. The pressure cooker makes preparation nearly effortless and it leaves the oven and stovetop free for other dishes. Simply add the ingredients, pressure cook for two minutes, and then use the sauté function to thicken it up. It'll keep thickening as it cools.

    Continue to 17 of 33 below.
  • 17 of 33

    Scalloped Corn Casserole

    Scalloped Corn Casserole

    The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

    This easy scalloped corn casserole is made with fresh, frozen, or canned corn. A simple white sauce and an egg act as the binder for this corn bake, while chopped green bell pepper adds color and flavor. The dish takes just minutes to prepare and makes a fabulous side dish for a family meal or holiday dinner.

  • 18 of 33

    Green Bean Casserole With Bacon and Cheddar Recipe

    Green Bean Casserole With Bacon and Cheddar

    The Spruce Eats / Diana Rattray

    For many families, it wouldn't be Christmas without an old-fashioned green bean casserole on the table. Our scrumptious version includes plenty of cheddar cheese, plus fried bacon for extra smoky, savory flavor. Add in a creamy, garlicky mushroom sauce, tender green beans, and crispy fried onions on top, and the combination of flavors and textures simply can't be beat.

  • 19 of 33

    Chestnut Stuffing Recipe

    Chestnut stuffing recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

    This fabulous Christmas stuffing makes a very delicious and rich side dish. It's perfect stuffed into a turkey or baked in a casserole dish to serve alongside roast chicken, pork, or beef. Chestnuts add a beautiful nutty flavor and a wonderful texture to the easy chestnut stuffing recipe.

  • 20 of 33

    Easy Stovetop Pot Roast With Vegetables

    Easy Stovetop Pot Roast With Vegetables

    The Spruce / Andrew Bui

    This easy pot roast is simmered to perfection on the stovetop, a cooking method referred to as braising. The recipe includes carrots and potatoes, making it a hearty and complete meal, and the condensed cream of mushroom soup adds body and, along with the onion soup mix, rich flavor to the broth.

    Continue to 21 of 33 below.
  • 21 of 33

    Christmas Goose Recipe

    Roast goose recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Anfisa Strizh

    Dine on the same meal that Scrooge and the Cratchit family enjoyed in the Charles Dickens classic "A Christmas Carol." Bring a wonderful old-fashioned Christmas tradition to life when you serve a whole roasted Christmas goose. This modern take on a Victorian recipe has you brining the bird overnight to ensure flavorful and moist meat. Filling the cavity with fruit gives the roasted goose an incredible flavor and scent and makes your kitchen smell divine.

  • 22 of 33

    Balsamic and Honey Glazed Roast Turkey

    Balsalmic and honey glazed roast turkey recipe

    ​The Spruce / Cara Cormack

    This recipe for roast turkey is simple to make and very delicious. The glaze—consisting of balsamic vinegar, orange juice, thyme, and honey—is gorgeous on the bird and adds a wonderful flavor. The turkey can be stuffed with any stuffing you'd like. Make sure the turkey is completely thawed before you start this recipe.

  • 23 of 33

    Easy Classic Beef Wellington Recipe

    Classic Beef Wellington Recipe

    The Spruce Eats

    Make it an extra-elegant celebration when you serve Beef Wellington as your holiday entree. Named for the Duke of Wellington, this gourmet dish is a traditional favorite in England come Christmastime. While you may be intimidated by the idea of cooking such a fancy, restaurant-style dish, our tried-and-tested recipe provides everything you need to pull it off in style. It's an incredible treat for your guests, especially when served alongside Yorkshire pudding.

  • 24 of 33

    Prime Rib Roast: The Closed-Oven Method

    Closed oven prime rib recipe

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

    Pheasant is a game bird that is traditionally enjoyed at Christmas time. Fancy to serve, but simple to make, this crock pot recipe combines farm-raised or wild pheasant (or use split Cornish hens) with white wine, mushrooms, condensed soups, and herbs. It bubbles away hands-free all day while you open presents, mingle with family and friends, and do everything else on your Christmas Day agenda.

    Continue to 25 of 33 below.
  • 25 of 33

    Glazed Spiral Sliced Ham Recipe

    Glazed Spiral Sliced Ham

    The Spruce Eats / Loren Runion

    Come "ham" for the holidays with our gorgeously glazed Christmas ham. We use a conveniently pre-sliced spiral ham to make it easier for you to serve. You simply can't beat this classic baked ham recipe with a sweet and sticky brown sugar and honey glaze, with a little tangy flavor from mustard and a hint of garlic.

  • 26 of 33

    Honey Butter Ham

    honey ham hero shot

    The Spruce / Maxwell Cozzi

    Honey butter ham is a delicious and simple way to turn a plain cooked ham into something special for Christmas. It starts with a store-bought, fully-cooked ham and ends with a sticky-sweet showstopper. You can add more ingredients to this simple glaze if you'd like. Some sautéed onions or crushed garlic would be good or use herbs such as thyme or marjoram in place of the whole cloves.

  • 27 of 33

    Prime Rib Roast of Beef Au Jus Recipe

    Prime Rib Roast of Beef Au Jus

    The Spruce Eats / Chosen Posture

    A prime rib served with au jus (the French term for a light gravy) made from the meat's drippings is a classic and special Christmas entree. Essentially the king of beef cuts, prime rib is incredibly succulent and tender, and boasts fantastic flavor, especially when cooked to a perfectly pink medium-rare. Our straightforward recipe needs few ingredients, and produces a roast beef to remember.

  • 28 of 33

    Baked Trout With Lemon and Dill Recipe

    Baked whole trout recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    Seafood is the traditional Christmas dinner of choice for some families and this baked trout with lemon and dill is a great way to celebrate together. Putting a whole trout on the table looks super impressive, but it's incredibly easy to make for even novice chefs; even better, it's ready in an hour, start to finish.

    Continue to 29 of 33 below.
  • 29 of 33

    Best Christmas Pudding Recipe

    British Christmas Pudding on a plate

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

    No traditional British Christmas could be complete without a pudding. Made well in advance of Christmas dinner, "resting" this pudding allows its flavors to blend and mature, so it slowly transforms into the must-have Christmas pudding that so many families know and love. Just reheat this best Christmas pudding on Christmas Day, serving it with traditional brandy or rum sauce or English custard.

  • 30 of 33

    Homemade Sugarplums Recipe

    Sugarplums recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Ulyana Verbytska

    Sugarplums are a classic holiday treat popularized in poems and the Nutcracker Ballet. You can be the Sugarplum Fairy herself when you serve up a batch of these homemade sugarplums! Dried plums or prunes are mixed with cinnamon, cloves, nuts, and other fruits, formed into balls and rolled in sugar, for a very special Christmas candy. We won't tell anyone you put them together in just 30 minutes.

  • 31 of 33

    Traditional English Trifle Recipe

    English trifle

    The Spruce Eats / Elaine Lemm

    A traditional English trifle is a dessert that has graced British tables for centuries. In this classic Christmas recipe, sponge cake fingers are soaked in boozy sherry and layered with creamy custard and whipped cream. It's heaven in a bowl.

  • 32 of 33

    Very Special Christmas Strudel Recipe

    Very Christmas strudel recipe

    The Spruce Eats / Ulyana Verbytska

    Strudel is always welcome at the Christmas holiday table, and this very special Christmas strudel is a wonderful way to enjoy the traditional German and Austrian dessert. The strudel filling in this recipe has a lovely, warm Christmas feel to it, with mincemeat, warm spices, sharp apple, almonds, and marzipan all wrapped in dough and dusted with snow-like powdered sugar. It's basically Christmas in pastry.

    Continue to 33 of 33 below.
  • 33 of 33

    Classic Yule Log

    Classic Yule Log on a platter

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

    A yule log, or bûche de Noëlis a traditional cake served throughout the holiday season in France. This recipe is a classic version using a chocolate sponge roulade, or rolled cake, and Italian buttercream. It can be made using any sponge cake flavor and filled with ice cream, whipped cream, mousses, ganaches, fruit, and more. No matter the variation, the technique is the same: a soft sponge cake spread with a thin layer of filling, gently rolled into a tantalizing swirl, and covered in decadent buttercream.