Wouldn’t it be great if someone just put together a time plan for Christmas Dinner and maybe a shopping list too… Well you are in luck because that’s just the sort of thing I love to do! Here is my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan and a Shopping List for all the ingredients you will need.
What’s Christmas day like for you?
Are you calm and serene, sipping Champagne and opening presents with your family in the living room, or a worn-out, bad tempered frazzle, stuck in the kitchen while everyone else is having fun together?
The truth is, the actual making of each element of the Christmas dinner isn’t hard (even the turkey, if you have a good stress-free roast turkey recipe!). The tricky part is THE TIMINGS – trying to juggle all those different elements, while simultaneously trying to make sure each one turns out perfectly and at the same times as everything else can be A NIGHTMARE!
Unless of course you have my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan!
Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Menu
I have created my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan to help you create a full roast turkey dinner and all the trimmings without the stress! It features recipes from Easy Peasy Foodie (you can find all the links below) and well as a few bought in short cuts. These are all tried and trusted Easy Peasy Foodie favourites, which I have been making for years and which never fail me.
So the menu is…
- Easy Peasy Roast Turkey
- Easy Peasy Roast Potatoes
- Easy Peasy Roast Parsnips and Carrots with Honey Mustard Glaze
- Braised Red Cabbage
- Steamed Sprouts (I use Tesco Prepared Baby Sprouts)
- Easy Peasy Turkey Gravy
- Easy Sage and Onion Stuffing balls
- Shop bought mini sausages wrapped in bacon (I use Tesco Finest Pigs in Blankets)
- Shop bought bread sauce (I use M&S Classic Bread Sauce Mix 70g)
- Shop bought cranberry sauce (I use M&S Cranberry and Port Sauce 300g)
- Shop bought Christmas pudding (I use Tesco Finest Christmas Pudding 454g)
- Shop bought brandy cream (I use Tesco Finest Really Thick Brandy Cream 250ml)
You can find the individual recipes by following the links above, but most of the explanation is in the time plan below.
Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan
This Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan assumes you are cooking lunch for 6-8 and serving your Christmas dinner at 2pm. But if you’re party is larger or smaller, you will need to make a few adjustments. Ditto if you want to serve your Christmas dinner earlier or later.
I suggest you adjust the timings based on when you want to serve lunch first and then make adjustments for increased quantities if necessary.
If you are cooking for a bigger crowd, really the main difference will be that you will have a bigger turkey that will need to go on earlier.
See the notes below for further details on adjustments and other important information.
Click here for a printable version of my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan
24th December or before
- If your turkey is frozen make sure you defrost it thoroughly – remember a large turkey could take more than 48 hours to defrost – you have been warned!
- Make the red cabbage. I like to make this on Christmas Eve and then use some of it hot and put the rest in an airtight container in the fridge to be reheated on Christmas Day.
- Make the stuffing balls. Put the uncooked stuffing balls in a plastic box in the fridge over night.
- Make the honey mustard glaze for the roast parsnips and carrots. Store in a jam jar in the fridge.
- Make the turkey stock (or defrost the turkey stock in the fridge overnight, if you have made it already).
10:30: Get your turkey out of the fridge.
11.15: Turn your oven on to 180C / 160C fan/ gas mark 4 / 350F.
Rub olive oil, salt and pepper all over the turkey.
Place the turkey in a large roasting tin and cover with foil.
11.30: Put the turkey in the oven.
12.15: Remove the turkey from the oven and baste.
Put the turkey back in the oven uncovered.
12.30: Drizzle a large baking tray with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put the tray in the oven to heat up.
Peel and chop potatoes. Par boil potatoes for 12 minutes.
Drain and allow potatoes to steam dry.
13.00: Turn the oven up to 220C / 200C fan / gas mark 7 / 425F.
Remove the turkey and baste. Put the turkey back in the oven
Put potatoes into preheated baking tray. Coat in the oil. Put in the oven.
Peel and chop carrots and parsnips.
Peel and chop 1 red onion and bash 8 cloves of garlic. Get rosemary ready.
13.15: Put carrots and parsnips in a roasting tray. Drizzle with oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put in the oven.
Baste the roast potatoes. Return to the oven.
13.25: Take the stuffing balls out of fridge. Put in a greased tin. Put in the oven.
Put the bacon wrapped chipolatas in the oven.
Add the red onion, garlic cloves and rosemary to the roast potatoes and baste. Return to the oven.
13.30: Remove the turkey from the oven. Check it is fully cooked.
Transfer the turkey to a different tin. Cover loosely with foil.
Put the turkey roasting tray on the hob. Sprinkle with flour. Stir. Add turkey stock.
Transfer the gravy into a saucepan and simmer on a low heat.
13:45: Remove the vegetables from the oven. Drizzle with the honey mustard glaze and turn. Return to the oven.
Put the bread sauce mix in a saucepan. Add milk. Stir and simmer. Turn off when ready.
Put the precooked red cabbage in a saucepan. Add 100ml water. Cook until hot.
Steam the sprouts for 10 minutes.
13.55: Put the Christmas pudding on to steam.
14.00: Serve food. Sit down and eat.
15.00: Eat Christmas pudding with brandy cream.
15.30: Make someone else do the washing up.
- I have assumed you are having lunch at 2pm, but if you are having lunch at a different time, just adjust the timings earlier or later.
- I have assumed you are cooking a 3kg whole turkey which takes 2 hours in the oven, plus 15 minutes preparation time (mostly just waiting for the oven to heat up) and 30 minutes resting time, so you will need to adjust this if you are doing something different.
- I’ve assumed you are cooking a 454g Christmas pudding which takes 1 hour to steam. I start steaming the pudding just before we sit down to lunch – I find this means the pudding is ready just about when we want to eat it – any earlier and we are all too full! A 454g Christmas pudding is usually marked on the box as serves 4 but I find this will work perfectly for 6 as usually no-one has room for more than a taste of christmas pudding after a big lunch! Obviously, if your pudding is smaller or larger, you will need to adjust the timings.
- I’ve assumed you are cooking for 6, so if you are cooking for more or fewer people, you may need to make some adjustments.
And if all this is just too much hassle, then why don’t you try my Easy Peasy Christmas Turkey Traybake? All the flavours of a traditional Christmas dinner in one tray!
Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Shopping List
To go with my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan, I have created my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Shopping List which lists out all the ingredients you need to buy to make all the recipes on my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Menu.
The quantities on my shopping list are for 6-8 people. If you are catering for a different number, just divide my quantities by 6 and times by the number you are catering for.
Bear in mind that you will need approximately 500g turkey per person if you are cooking a whole turkey, 325g turkey per person if you are cooking a turkey crown and 250g per person if you are cooking a turkey breast joint.
I’ve separated out the additional ingredients you will need for the red cabbage, turkey stock and stuffing balls as you may decide you don’t want to make these or would rather buy the ready-made versions.
Click here for a printable version of my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Shopping List
Main Shopping List:
1 large red onion (or two smaller ones)
1 bulb of garlic
3 sprigs of rosemary
500g ready prepared sprouts
400g pigs in blankets
500ml turkey stock (or make your own turkey stock)
300ml brandy cream
1 x jar cranberry sauce
1 x bread sauce packet mix
Salt and pepper
454g Christmas pudding
500g red cabbage
2 small red onions
1 large Bramley apple
Red or white wine vinegar
1 bag turkey giblets (or 1 chicken carcass)
Rosemary and/or thyme
1 red or white onion
200g white breadcrumbs
Dried mixed herbs
Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan and Shopping List Printables
Click the links below to get printable versions of my Easy Peasy Christmas Dinner Time Plan and Shopping List
FREE 4 Week Easy Dinners Meal Plan
Have you got your hands on a copy of my meal plan yet? If not CLICK HERE to download a copy of my FREE 4 Week Easy Dinners Meal Plan today!
Thats the best Christmas Dinner Plan I’ve heard of for years!!! And a beautiful pic too, as always!
Eb Gargano says
Thank you so much for your kind comments, Laura! I am a big fan of planning, as you can probably tell! 🙂 Eb x
Barbara Windermere says
OMGosh! I’m so glad I found this article. Been wanting to par things back a lot this Christmas. Trying to cook too much and too complicated a Christmas dinner always left me super stressed out. I just thought, being this stressed shouldn’t be what Christmas is about.
Using your shopping lists and recipes I might actually ENJOY cooking Christmas dinner this year. Only other thing I’d found was this basic shopping list (https://listonic.com/christmas-food-shopping-list/), but it’s a bit too basic, whilst yours is so much more comprehensive! Although, I do like some of the tips in the article. Do you have any opinions on them?
Eb Gargano says
Hi Barbara, I’m so pleased you found my post helpful. I totally find that having a good plan and a foolproof shopping list means less Christmas stress and a whole lot more fun! Eb x
Monika Dabrowski says
Your organisation skills really impress me. Is your Christmas dinner always planned to the last detail? I am guessing it is. That’s why it looks so fabulous. Great recipes, Eb. Thanks for bringing them to #CookBlogShare
Eb Gargano says
Haha – yes! There’s so many things to do and only one of me to do it. If it’s all planned out I can just work down my list and I don’t get stressed or have any sudden last panics!! Eb x
Wow!! Good work, I like a list and that’s one amazing list. Merry Christmas. Best part of Christmas is making the dinner for the family.
Eb Gargano says
Thanks Christopher – merry Christmas to you too!
Thank you SOOOOOO much. I somehow got roped into making a full on Christmas dinner for my Spanish family for New Years Eve. I am not good in the kitchen at all, but thanks to your plan not only did everything go smoothly, but it came out tasting amazing and perfectly on schedule! Really I can’t thanks your plan enough! The only problem is that now they already told me I will have to repeat it next year!
Eb Gargano says
Aw, yay! Thank you for this lovely comment. I am so happy that my time plan and recipes worked so well for you 😀 And what a compliment that they want you to do it all again next year! Eb 🙂
Just wanted to say thank you 😊 It was mine and my partners first Christmas together with it being just the two of us, and with neither of us having cooked a Christmas dinner before this was a lifesaver. It turned out absolutely delicious and I will be wanting to keep this timeplan forever!
Eb Gargano says
Aw, I am so happy to hear that my time plan helped you so much… and especially that it all turned out so well for you! And well done you for cooking your first Christmas dinner 😀