Christmas meal planning tips

You may have heard horror stories about hosting a Christms meal but by staying organised, a Christmas menu can actually be enjoyed by the person who has cooked it. The food will be ready on time and the cook won’t have to be overwhelmed by the sheer volume of food or tied to the kitchen missing out on all the festivities.

Here are some tips that we’ve learned over time.

Start with a menu you can enjoy

If you want a relaxing Christmas, use recipes that you’re confident pulling off without too much stress.- Christmas is not the time to decide you are secretly Nigella Lawson or Jamie Oliver and want to embrace your inner Master Chef.

Simple, traditional Christmas recipes work for just about everyone. If you aren’t a traditional kind of girl, you can check out some of our favourite recipes for brunch or Christmas day in general.

Don’t make Christmas harder than it needs to be

Buy frozen croissants and serve fresh fruit for breakfast, have a cold lunch which can be prepared the day before and make up your salads in the morning. Make your Christmas cake or Chocolate pavlova or even Christmas pudding icecream in advance. Delegate! Share the load. Sit down, relax, enjoy your Christmas – a bit of forward planning, your lists and printables and a few Christmas cocktails will see you right!

What to eat?

When doing your menu planning, think about the following:

  • Will you be eating at home? How many will you be catering for?
  • Or will you be travelling, with food?
  • What’s the weather usually like? Hot or cool?

christmas eating

How to juggle fridge space at Christmas

The week leading up to Christmas puts your family on a mission: eat everything out of the fridge and freezer that’s not being consumed AT Christmas, thus freeing up fridge space. This saves you both space AND money, you aren’t throwing anything away!

  • If you’re entertaining many people, hire an extra fridge over the Christmas break, they can be quite inexpensive, or if you’re lucky see if any of your friends or family have a spare one!
  • Frugal tip: Delegate some dishes to guests to bring that can be served on their arrival!
  • Don’t discount the trusty esky; transfer all drinks to the esky and buy some ice late on Christmas Eve. You can also clean out the recycling bin or toy tubs to make for extra drink storage space.

Money saving tip

Buy pantry items like soft drinks, sweets, nibbles when on special in advance, stash away in your laundry or linen cupboard, out of sight and out of mind. It will save money shopping down the track because all those prices tend to hike up just before Christmas.

What is your favourite thing to eat over Christmas? Mine is pavlova. All of it.

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her world billieWritten by Billie Turei

An environmental goddess who loves to spend her weekends drinking wine and perfecting her Master Chef skills, this little foodie can callback any 90’s hip-hop jam and obscure pop-culture references. You’ll usually find Billie eating Thai food and heading off for impromptu road-trips with her squad.

Favourite food to cure a hangover: Hash browns. All of them.



  1. felicity beets December 30, 2017 at 5:56 pm

    I love Christmas brunch and much easier to organise as well. Also any leftovers can be eaten over the rest of the day.

  2. Gabriella Monaghan December 30, 2017 at 11:09 am

    In our family we just do, everyone brings a plate which definitely makes it easier but it just isn’t the same. Growing up it was awesome. At my dad’s house, we would always host Christmas and the family would come to us. We would cook a big roast lamb, pork and chicken. Have all the trimmings and side dishes (some of those would be brought by family, but it was mostly us) and all the classic Christmas deserts and we would all sit at the big table (or 3 tables joined together).
    With my mum it was similar although we would rotate who’s house it was at and the menu varried depending on who was hosting. Now days though every one is sort of spread out, families have expanded and are often split between multiple events. On my dad’s side every one is all over the place doing things with their new wee families so this year it was just my wee family, my little brother and my dad, and we just had filled rolls and salads.
    At my mum’s, it was another small affair with the basics and it just wasn’t the same.
    It makes me sad that my kids won’t experience the Christmas I remember.

  3. Amanda Carr December 11, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    We sat down last night to sort out our Christmas menu as it is at our house this year. Fridge space is one I’m a bit worried about but will try do as this article says so hopefully will have more room.

  4. Kym Moore December 9, 2017 at 10:31 am

    I’m about to start planning my Christmas menu. I love these tips. As much as I’d like to go all out and have all these fab treats keeping it simple is a brilliant idea. I usually do a lot of the prep in the day or so ahead of time. So peel the veges I want to roast and leave in water in the fridge. And make up most of the desserts early too.

  5. Shontelle Fahey December 7, 2017 at 2:47 pm

    Sounds great. I quite like doing a finger food spread for the littlies for Christmas so that they eat unless they just end up eating lollies and chocolate all day if it’s only roasts on the table because most children are fussy lol. So I do a few plates of savouries pizza and fairy bread then I know the kids are fed also

  6. Vikki Sainsbury December 7, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    I remember fridge space being an issue when I was younger! So much food and nowhere to put it all!! Nowadays with us not such an issue – we have a fairly small Christmas Day food wise, keeping it simple with either a BBQ with a variety of meats, salads, desserts. Good old bangers never go astray and have to have the obligatory pav! Sitting around and eating is more relaxed rather than at a table 🙂

  7. Hollie Laird December 6, 2017 at 8:32 pm

    Great tips galore! For the past few years we have been buying a few bits and bobs here and there to stash away (our secret stash is the hot water cylinder cupboard!). Delegating sounds good too, I always seem to end up making majority of the spread for dining at home.

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