Preparation: the key to an easy Christmas Day meal

Being nominated to make Christmas dinner can be stressful for some people. Cooking for lots of people is a lot of pressure on an average day, the pressure during Christmas is even more extreme. After all, Christmas dinner is an important part of the day. Though a disaster would lead to a family story, it won’t be funny at the time! The key to ensuring your dinner goes well is preparation. Make sure you know exactly what you need, and when you need it. That way, you’re less likely to get caught out on the day. Here are a few things you can do to help yourself.

Christmas Dinner

Stock up on cookware

You don’t want to find out, on Christmas day, that you don’t have anything to carve the turkey with! Prepare for every eventuality by stocking up on Christmas cookware. Make a list of everything you’re likely to need, and make sure you’ve got it! Not stocking up will lead to panic and a potential disaster on the day. Give yourself plenty of time to get everything you need. That way, you’re more likely to have everything come the time! Last year I got loads of new baking tins as the year before that I didn’t seem to have enough.

Work out your menu

Working out what you’re cooking is key to ensuring everything runs smoothly. You can’t work out how to get it all right if you don’t know what you’re doing. Working out your menu will also allow you to start buying. Don’t leave your food shop until the last minute, and find the shop has sold out! You won’t be able to buy some things until the last minute, but you can keep a lot of what you need in the cupboard. Other than your turkey, you should be able to buy most things beforehand. Don’t leave your turkey buying too late, either! Christmas dinner without the turkey won’t go down well. Make sure, too that you check to see if there’s a vegetarian among your guests. You’ll need to prepare an alternative menu for them!


Practice your timings

The trick to a good Christmas dinner is getting the timing right. It can be hard to ensure everything is ready at the same time. The reason this meal is so fiddly is that there are many factors. Planning your timings beforehand will help you get everything ready on time. Work out what time each item needs to start cooking. Make traditional roasts beforehand to devise a timeline that works. Having a sheet of paper with all your timings on will allow you to rest easy on the day, alternatively, set reminders on your smartphone beforehand. You’ll be cool as a cucumber, and the family will wonder what’s going on!


Throughout your cooking trauma, remember that there will be a light at the end of the tunnel. Once everyone’s eaten, you can pour yourself a drink and focus on enjoying the rest of your day! Calm yourself after cooking by cracking out some family puzzles and enjoying the company of the people you love. Remember, even a Christmas dinner disaster isn’t the end of the world!  

Once you’ve done is a few times it will be as easy as a Sunday roast…but with crackers!

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