The holiday season is full of decadent, delicious meals, and Christmas Eve is no exception. While many families follow a set tradition for Christmas dinner, the night before is the perfect time to put your own spin on a holiday meal.
I asked The Everymom team to share their favorite Christmas Eve recipes and traditions and quickly learned that everyone’s celebration is unique. It’s a time when families and friends get creative in the kitchen and bring personality into their traditions.
Our former Senior Content Editor, Ojus Patel, and her kids whip up “Christmas Eve Lasagna” every year (make sure to add lots of basil for a Christmas look!). It takes all day, and that’s part of the fun. While the lasagna is in progress, they play and watch holiday movies. The hearty dish became a comforting tradition for Ojus and her family as they celebrated the holidays far from extended family.
Not every holiday season will be picture-perfect, but good can come out of the tough times. Assistant Managing Editor Kathy Sisson found the silver lining of a particularly tough Christmas Eve when her baby had to spend Christmas in the hospital with RSV. They finally made it to their friend’s house at 10 p.m. for Christmas Eve dinner, and they had waited to share the meal together. What was a trying time turned into a beautiful tradition. Now, every year the families get together, and the adults dine on surf and turf, and the kids chow down on mac and cheese.
Chief of Sales and Marketing Ally Pagar-Wolf’s family keeps it real cozy as they dress up in their new holiday pajamas and gather around a big pot of fondue (does it get cozier than a giant pot of cheese? Definitely not).
And some families head out of the house, like Senior Social Media Editor Keely Geist’s family. They skip the cooking and make it a yearly affair to visit the same Chinese restaurant on Christmas Eve. If you want to give Chinese food a homemade twist, we’ve got you covered below.
Christmas Eve dinner can be as simple or as complex as you’d like. Don’t let holiday stress creep into your plans, keep it low-key, lighthearted, and fun. Remember the evening is about togetherness and not how fancy your table looks.
Many comforting meals can be whipped up in 30 minutes or less (thank you Instant Pot!), or perhaps it’s your time to flex your kitchen skills and try a new and challenging recipe. Either way, these dishes will bring the cozy Christmas vibes to your table this year—check out 15 of our favorite Christmas Eve recipes below!