> Features

Christmas dinner and food timings planner

Step-by-step Christmas planner

by Great British Chefs 30 November 2016

Cooking the biggest and most important roast dinner of the year can be stressful. Get your timings, preparation and ingredients all in order with our handy guide.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews.

While it might feel like overkill before the big event, once you’re rushing around surrounded by resting meat, red hot potatoes and rapidly cooling stuffing, a detailed checklist of what to do when can make all the difference between the perfect Christmas and a cold roast dinner made by a very stressed cook.

Of course, everyone’s Christmas menu is different, so the timings below for the actual day might need to be adapted and expanded upon. We’ve put together a checklist for a dinner served at 2pm with a 5kg stuffed turkey, but always check your meat is cooked with a thermometer for proper peace of mind.

Throughout December

One week before

Christmas Eve

 

Christmas Day

8am – take your turkey and stuffing out of the fridge to come to room temperature.

9.30am – preheat the oven and rub the turkey with butter or oil and season. Fill with the stuffing.

10am – place the turkey in the oven, remembering to baste regularly throughout the cooking time and to cover in foil if needed.

11am – set the table. Do any remaining prep, such as peeling or chopping.

12pm – put your Christmas pudding on to steam, which should take three hours.

1pm – remove the turkey from the oven and make sure it’s cooked through. Cover tightly and leave to rest, then drain and deglaze the juices to make gravy. Turn up the heat and put roasting trays full of oil or goose fat in the oven to warm up.

1.15pm – place the potatoes in the hot oil or fat and make sure they’re completely covered, then return to the oven. Do the same with any other roast vegetables, depending on size.

1.30pm – place the pigs in blankets in the oven, then keep warm if they cook through in less than 30 minutes. Boil the water for the vegetables.

1.40pm – begin boiling and stir frying the remaining vegetables, keeping an eye on what’s in the oven. Make sure your gravy is ready and keep warm. Begin heating through any other sauces.

1.50pm – start sautéing the Brussels sprouts with chestnuts and bacon. Warm plates and serving bowls ready for the table. Open the wine.

2pm – grab anyone you can to help carry food through to the Christmas dinner table. Eat, drink and be merry.

3pm – remove the Christmas pudding from the heat and serve with lots of brandy butter.

3.30pm – serve the cheese, if there is any, or retire to a comfortable sofa and have a well-deserved rest.

Merry Christmas from everybody at Great British Chefs.

 
 
 

Want our most popular features delivered to your inbox?

Sign up to our newsletter now and we'll send you a hand-picked round-up of the best features and recipes from across Great British Chefs each week.

Thanks for subscribing

We'll only contact you around once per week with our best features and seasonal recipes. You can unsubscribe at any time.

 

Comments ()

Step-by-step Christmas planner

 
Order by
...   ...

(Editing)

>

This comment was edited

Please enter text

Comments must be less than characters

This comment has been deleted

Report this comment

Please state your report in the space below

Please enter text

Reports must be less than 750 characters

loading

>

Please enter text

Comments must be less than characters

(Editing)

>

This comment was edited

Please enter text

Comments must be less than characters

This comment has been deleted

Report this comment

Please state your report in the space below

Please enter text

Reports must be less than 750 characters

loading

>

Please enter text

Comments must be less than characters

Be the first to leave a comment on this page...
...   ...