While there’s a lot to be said for Christmas dinner, sometimes you do want something a bit different; this might mean trying out some more unusual ingredients, or even just taking a more relaxed attitude to how the healthy dinner is served on the day.
Moreover, you might want to try a vegetarian friendly dish, or cut out the process of cooking altogether and enjoy a takeaway or pizza (with some Christmas trimmings, naturally). With this in mind, some great alternatives you can try if you want an alternative to Christmas dinner include:
1 – Carrot and Cashew Fan
This recipe involves using carrots and cashew nuts to make a juicy and rich meal; served with breadcrumbs, onions, lentils, and garlics, this fan is also made using vegetable oil, and is cut into wedges. The full recipe can be found here.
2 – Buffets
Rather than having a big sit down meal, Christmas dinner can be spread out into a buffet; this can be added to during the day, and can include cooking a turkey crown or beef joints, which can be added to steamed vegetables, and a platter of meats like turkey, pork, and lamb. Ideal for larger parties, or if everyone can’t make it for one time on Christmas Day.
3 – An Indian Takeaway
Although it might seem a bit unusual, having an Indian takeaway, or going to an Indian restaurant on Christmas Day has been a popular option for many years. As well as saving you the cooking and washing up, you can enjoy a delicious meal in restaurants – most Indian restaurants open on Christmas Day, but need to be booked in advance to guarantee a table.
4 – Steak Christmas Dinner
If you want an alternative to turkey and goose, then a steak Christmas dinner can make for a more distinctive meal. You can serve steak as filet mignon, or with a casserole – the usual vegetables and trimmings can be maintained, with the steak served with cherry sauce and butter.
5 – Pizza
Depending on whether you want to make your own pizza, or have one prepared, a pizza dinner can be an idea if you’d like to keep things simple, or if you want to vary a buffet. Home cooked pizzas topped with turkey slices can also be a good way of preparing a more unusual Christmas dinner for children.
6 – Root Vegetable Terrine
Another vegetarian option, and one that doesn’t involve familiar choices like nut roast, a root vegetable terrine can be made with thyme and nutmeg flavourings, as well as with red cabbage and sweet potato. The healthy mixture, which can be served in layers after baking, can be a filling alternative to other Christmas dishes; more information on this recipe is available here.
7 – Short Ribs with Pear and Celery Salad
Christmas dinner can be made less formal by cooking dishes using short ribs and a mixture of different vegetables. Short ribs can be served with celery, butter, and mushrooms, and can be prepared in a slow cooker during the day, or on Christmas Eve; find out more about short ribs here.
8 – Roast Sea Bass
For something a bit more unusual on Christmas Day, try this seafood recipe. Sea bass can be made with puff pastry and spinach leaves, as well as with egg and herb crepes. Parsley and mousseline sauce can also be added to create a rich, roasted dish.
Luke James writes about food and staying healthy, although he feels Christmas dinner can be an exception. He highly recommends rapeseed oil as a great alternative to regular cooking oil due to its healthier properties. In his spare time he enjoys cycling, socialising and learning how to cook.