31 Scrumptious Christmas Dinner Recipes

This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

Roast beef tenderloin, potatoes au gratin, New York-style cheesecake, gingerbread and more: this year, make all your Christmas dinner dreams come true.

This show-stopping beef tenderloin with a deeply flavored red wine sauce is delicious and deceptively simple. The sauce can be prepared mostly ahead of time so there’s very little fussing at the last minute. GET THE RECIPE

This dish involves layering thinly sliced potatoes with heavy cream and grated cheese, and then baking until the cream reduces and blankets the potatoes in a rich, creamy sauce. Definitely special occasion-worthy! GET THE RECIPE

This make-ahead gratin is perfect for the holidays. Unlike most vegetable gratins, which are made with a Béchamel sauce, this one is made more simply (and decadently) with heavy cream. GET THE RECIPE

Rich and buttery with a fluffy interior and golden crust, these biscuits can be made ahead of time and frozen so all that’s left to do on Christmas day is pop them in the oven. GET THE RECIPE.

Cheesecakes can be tricky to make, but with the right recipe and a few pointers, a tall and creamy NY-style Cheesecake is totally doable, even for beginners. GET THE RECIPE

For an elegant holiday starter, try this velvety pumpkin-leek soup spiced with cumin and cayenne pepper. GET THE RECIPE

In this festive dish, chicken is immersed in a honey, citrus and chili-infused marinade, and then roasted with carrots and dates. Herbs, scallions and pistachios are added for freshness, color and crunch. GET THE RECIPE

This cauliflower purée is creamy and comforting, and just happens to taste remarkably like mashed potatoes. But don’t make it just for that reason — it’s delicious in its own right. GET THE RECIPE

This simple yet delicious side dish involves slowly cooking shallots in olive oil to coax out their natural sweetness, and then simmering the beans until perfectly tender. To save time, use bagged French string beans that are pre-trimmed. GET THE RECIPE

What’s the secret to a perfect apple pie? Blind baking the crust and boiling down the juices before filling the pie. These steps add a bit of extra time but ensure a crisp and flaky crust and a syrupy, cider-flavored filling. GET THE RECIPE

Brimming with fresh seafood in a tomato and wine broth that tastes like the sea, Cioppino is an Italian-American fish stew. Serve it with garlic bread or focaccia for sopping up the broth. GET THE RECIPE

Focaccia is a flavorful and easy-to-make Italian flat bread that feeds a crowd. This classic version is topped with coarse salt and fresh rosemary but other toppings can be added, such as thinly sliced tomatoes, olives or grated cheese. GET THE RECIPE

Break out the Baileys! This fun twist on tiramisu, from one of my all-time favorite cookbooks, Nigella Express by Nigella Lawson, is a dinner party regular at my house. GET THE RECIPE

This elegant salad showcases earthy jewel-toned roasted beets, tangy goat cheese, and toasted walnuts in a delicious honey dijon vinaigrette. GET THE RECIPE

This is my favorite brisket recipe, and it’s surprisingly simple to make. There’s no wine, stock or bottled sauces added — instead, the brisket is cooked on top of a massive heap of onions, which slowly caramelize, making a flavorful French onion soup-like braising liquid all their own. GET THE RECIPE

You can’t have a holiday dinner without mashed potatoes. Problem is, most recipes require last minute preparation. These can be made two days ahead and reheated in the microwave — a huge bonus when oven and burner space is at a premium. GET THE RECIPE

Adapted from Maida Heatter’s Cakes, this is my all-time favorite flourless chocolate cake. It’s made with ground almonds and a decadent chocolate ganache, which make it elegant and surprisingly light. GET THE RECIPE

Inspired by the flavors of Egypt, this barley salad contains crunchy pistachios, tangy pomegranate molasses, and cilantro, all balanced by warm, earthy spices and sweet golden raisins. Chunks of feta, scallions, and pomegranate seeds adorn the top, making a gorgeous composed salad with lively flavors and textures. GET THE RECIPE

This rolled turkey breast with sausage stuffing beats a basic roast turkey any day of the year. Not only does it cook in just 1-1/4 hours, it can be made entirely ahead of time and is a cinch to carve. GET THE RECIPE

Fresh cranberry sauce is a cinch to make! This version is flavored with orange juice and orange zest, and can be made several days before the feast. GET THE RECIPE

Flavored with smoky, spicy chipotle peppers and sharp cheddar cheese, these sweet potatoes are more savory than sweet — a welcome change from most holiday sweet potato dishes. GET THE RECIPE

Made with dark brown sugar, golden syrup, brown butter, and a shot of bourbon, the pie is richer with a more complex praline flavor — and also less cloyingly sweet — than your typical pecan pie. GET THE RECIPE

This creamy potato leek soup makes an elegant starter. It’s wonderful as is, but feel free to top your bowl with fresh herbs, bacon, or leftover vegetables to make it your own. GET THE RECIPE

Inspired by Laurie David’s The Family Dinner cookbook, this juicy roast chicken with herb butter and crispy skin is one of my favorite cozy family meals. GET THE RECIPE

Always a favorite, these carrots are roasted in a high temperature oven until caramelized and tender-crisp — a cooking method that intensifies their flavor and brings out their natural sweetness. Make them ahead of time and reheat in the oven when ready to serve. GET THE RECIPE

Bake your stuffing separate from the bird so that you can make it ahead of time and ensure that it gets nice and crispy on top. This version, loaded with an earthy mix of onions and vegetables, is easy to make and pairs beautifully with simple roast chicken or turkey. GET THE RECIPE

This old-fashioned dessert of warm baked apples and tart cranberries with a crunchy oat streusel topping is from Rustic Fruit Desserts by Cory Schreiber and Julie Richardson. It’s perfect for the holidays! GET THE RECIPE

In this cold weather classic, otherwise known as Beef Bourguignon, chuck roast is slowly braised in a wine-based broth, becoming meltingly tender and enveloped in a rich, deeply flavored sauce. GET THE RECIPE

Sweetened with honey and gently spiced, these earthy pumpkin cornbread muffins are best served warm out of the oven. As a bonus, the addition of pumpkin makes them healthier and lower in fat than your typical cornbread. GET THE RECIPE

Old-fashioned gingerbread is the perfect treat to keep on hand during the holidays. This recipe is gingery enough to please serious gingerbread aficionados yet also mild enough for young children, who gobble it up! GET THE RECIPE

If you’ve ever had the famous Duncan Hines Rum Cake — an incredibly rich butter and rum soaked pound cake — you’ll love this from-scratch version. Set it out on a buffet table and watch people swoon! GET THE RECIPE

Popular in the Community