Holiday Food and Drinks: Ideas for Planning Your Holiday Menu!

Scalloped potatoes. Photo credit: The Food Channel.

Planning a holiday dinner party for the first time? We’re here to help with scrumptious Holiday Food and Drinks ideas that cover all the bases—from the main entree to salad and sides, plus a beverage checklist to choose from. If you plan early, you can have a festive holiday menu that’s sure to impress! This post is Part 2 of our Holiday Party Guide for first-time hosts! See Part 1 of the guide, here.

Think Practical and Tasty Holiday Menu

As a first-time holiday host, don’t feel you need to take on the entire menu yourself. Rather, thank your lucky Christmas stars that there are tried-and-tested main dishes that you can pre-order all ready to serve!

Take the famous HoneyBaked Ham shown below. It comes in whole, half and quarter sizes to suit your expected guest list; and is completely prepared and ‘spiral sliced’ for super easy serving. Or, you may also want to consider a hearty holiday roast!

Christmas dinner food and sides

Consider Side Dishes that are Sure Winners!

Scrumptious side dishes that are sure winners would be a Green (and Red) Holiday Salad with honey vinaigrette dressing, Green Beans with Bacon, creamy Fontina Scalloped Potatoes, and Honey-roasted Cauliflower with Pine Nuts and Crispy Sage. Accompany all these with freshly-baked Potato Dinner Rolls to complete your tummy-filling meal!

Appetizers that Everyone Will Love

Sides and appetizers

Just in case you’re still putting finishing touches on your entree and sides when guests arrive, treat them to some flavorful appetizers. Consider this Party Cheese Ball coated with chopped pecans, Baked Buffalo Wings with a cheese-yoghurt dip, and Saucy Asian Meatballs served on skewers (below).

Buffalo wings and meatballs skewers

Holiday Beverage Checklist!

To get everyone into the yuletide spirit, why not mix your own Christmas cocktails using these recipes:

  1. Hazelnut Eggnog
  2. Mulled Wine
  3. Berry Christmas Punch

For the teetotalers present, you’ll love these non-alcoholic drinks from Eating Well:

  1. ‘Sleigh Driver’ Punch
  2. Sparkling Cran Razzy
  3. Raspberry Spritzer
  4. Kahluaccino

As for dinner and dessert wines, you may want to find a combination of reds and whites that guests will enjoy. Talk with your local wine shop and they should be able to provide you with some great ideas! Lastly, we do hope you stay tune for our next post featuring holiday desserts!

5 Comments

  1. Lyuba@willcookforsmiles  /  12/16/2013, 9:49 pm Reply

    Such a great menu! Thank you for including my dinner rolls! (Sorry to comment so late :) )

  2. nadia  /  12/09/2013, 6:07 pm Reply

    Great website with lots of great ideas.Thanks for including my wings.

    • Melanie  /  12/09/2013, 8:51 pm Reply

      We’re glad to have featured your idea! Love those wings! Yummy!

  3. Miranda j.  /  12/07/2013, 6:19 pm Reply

    Any recomms for wines? Newbie here hosting party for first time. Yikes!

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