Traditional English Recipes
Christmas Food

Christmas is always a feast as well as a celebration and there are many traditional English recipes you'll dig out only once a year.

That's not an ideal situation for a cook, because how do you mean to remember from one year to the next how many raisins produced the best pudding mix or how much salt you really added to the sauce?

So in this section I'm trying to collect some tried and tested traditional English Christmas recipes - as a useful lookup come the time.

But I'm also keen to try some of the more unusual ones I've found on my trawls.

And if your family has an unusual take on a Christmas recipe, I'd be very interested to hear of it!

So here's my selection of traditional English recipes for Christmas in alphabetical order:

Bread Sauce

Bread Sauce is traditionally served alongside the turkey at the Christmas dinner. But it also makes a fine accompaniment to roast chicken at any other time of year.

Chestnut Soup

Chestnut Soup is a true English classic. Once a preserve of the country house kitchen, it makes a delicious Christmas treat.

Chocolate Yule Log

A Chocolate Yule Log is a tasty reminder of the old tradition of bringing a log indoors to burn in the hearth throughout the Christmas celebrations and bring good luck. It's also a delicious cake beloved of children and an alternative to Christmas pudding.

Christmas Pudding

Christmas Pudding is a grand English tradition. And while rich, fruit-studded, steamed puddings were once commonly served all year round, this one is now firmly linked to the Christmas festivities. Make it in late autumn to give it time to mature.

Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry Sauce is traditionally served with roast turkey, but it's also an excellent accompaniment to cold meats. And I do prefer the home-made version.

Cumberland Sauce

Cumberland Sauce is a very old-fashioned concoction. It should be a kitchen-essential for anyone who loves cured ham. And it makes a mean - if very untraditional - bacon sarnie!


Mincemeat goes back to the Middle Ages and, in its modern meat-free incarnation, is a useful pudding standby to have in the kitchen. And - of course - it's needed to make that old Christmas staple: Mince Pies.

Mince Pies

Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without Mince Pies, along with mulled wine and carols, that is. You either love them or hate them, but during the festive season you simply cannot ignore them.

Mulled Wine

Mulled Wine has to be one of my favourite drinks - and not just at Christmas time. It's just soooo warming and soothing. And when you've been out doing the Christmas shopping a bit of soothing is just what's needed.

So there you have it. Traditional English recipes that are either firm Christmas favourites, or blend wonderfully with everything going on at that time of year.

I hope you give some of them a try!

For cheats and treats and other ideas to make Christmas run smoothly...
Return from traditional English recipes to the Christmas in England section.