Hosting company this Christmas? Don’t worry about what food to serve. Use these 8 different meal ideas to make for guests at Christmas!
Bringing people together at Christmas is so fun. It’s a great time of year to step back from everyday routines and celebrate with the ones we love.
Sometimes Christmas parties can feel like obligations (unless you actually look forward to your husband’s annual office Christmas party) – and other times you look forward to them.
Regardless of how you feel about gathering with people, most Christmas parties have one thing in common – food.
If you’re in charge of planning a Christmas party, the menu’s been on your radar.
So you don’t have to start your plans from scratch, I’m sharing eight different Christmas party meal options that have worked really well for me in the past.
You’ll have to judge the personality and preferences of your guests, as well as the location and time of your event.
But instead of hosting a hodge podge Christmas smorgasbord, add a little structure to your menu plans. Your guests will thank you.
Traditional Christmas Feast
If feasting is your style and you can’t wait to host a big sit-down affair, you’ll love this meal plan!
Depending on your preferences, serve standing rib roast, lamb, or a big, juicy ham.
If poultry’s more your style, go for a big turkey, goose …or splurge with a Turducken. If you’re serving poultry, you’ll also want to remember the dressing and gravy.
For side dishes, serve potatoes (either mashed, baked, roasted, or twice-baked) and sautéed, roasted, or baked vegetables.
Also serve a basket of rolls or bread, and you’ll have a feast to remember.
Surf and Turf
While not necessarily Christmasy, it’s fun to have a culinary splurge of steak and shrimp. Or crab legs. Or lobster!)
Since this is such a rich tasting meal, serve it with steamed vegetables or tossed salads.
Since red and green are traditional Christmas colors, mirror them with your meal – serve lasagna and tossed salad, then wrap up your meal with a big loaf of crusty garlic bread.
Or, for a really simple spread, serve spaghetti or ravioli with a choice of marinara and alfredo sauces.
Not everyone loves big, sit-down Christmas dinners. And sometimes, you just don’t have the space to host a huge meal. A simple and tasty option is to serve sandwiches.
You could either assemble the sandwiches before the meal (or buy them from a local restaurant, making your party really easy!), or serve meat and cheese trays and let your guests build their own sandwiches.
Finger foods like potato chips and veggie trays round out this kind of meal – but if you’d like another side dish option, serve salads or soups.
If you’re having a party in the middle of the day, brunch is a fantastic meal to serve because it’s both tasty and easy to prepare.
Simply serve breakfast casseroles or crustless quiches, some sort of bread (French toast, waffles, muffins, or pastries), and fresh fruit.
Sometimes, you and your guests don’t care about a meal. You might get together at the last minute, or be so exhausted and stuffed from other parties that you just want time together.
If this is the case, plan on serving snacks.
Stick to cheese and crackers, veggies and dip, and other kinds of appetizers. If you want to get fancy, try some cheese fondue with bread and vegetables for dipping.
Depending on the time of day (or night!), having a big dessert buffet may be a perfect party plan.
Or, you can host a cookie exchange where every guest brings a tray of Christmas cookies to share.
You also could serve cakes, pies, and cheesecakes. Don’t forget including flavors like gingerbread, peppermint … and, of course, chocolate.
If baked goods aren’t your favorite thing, make a big ice cream sundae buffet! It’s may not be traditional, but it sure will be tasty!
For more Christmas meal ideas, check out my friend Jessica’s favorite recipes for Christmas!
Depending on how close you and your guests live to each other, hosting a Progressive Dinner is a really fun plan for a Christmas party.
Starting at one house, you progress to the other homes – and you enjoy a different course of food at each home.
If a lot of people are involved, you can have stops for: Appetizers, Soups, Salads, Main Dish, and Desserts. Or, if you have just a few families involved, you could divide it to an appetizer stop, main dish stop, and desserts stop.
Progressive dinners are pretty fantastic for a few reasons:
- You share the hosting responsibility.
- You share the cooking responsibility.
- You can see everyone’s Christmas decorations.
- You spend a lot of time with each other.
- Creating a caravan to travel from place to place – together – is fun.
- Seeing Christmas decorations in different neighborhoods during your travel time also is fun.
- Because you might spend an hour (or two at the most) at each home, the party doesn’t drag on and on and on. The time goes by pretty quickly.
One of the few downsides is that you need to plan ahead so your food can be ready once the party reaches your home.
Whatever kind of Christmas party meal you choose to serve your guests, remember that parties are so much more than the food served or the decorations. Make connections and conversations with at least one other person during the party, and you’ll have a Christmas to remember.
What are your favorite kinds of meals to serve at a Christmas party?
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