Top 10 Interesting Christmas Dinners In the World

Find out about ten of the most interesting Christmas dinners in the world in today’s guide. They range from goat to ham with mustard and even fish and stew!

Read on to learn more.

Even though in the West we are used to having roast Turkey as the classic Christmas dinner, that’s not how it is for the rest of the world. But that’s not all, in some places they don’t have meat at all for Christmas! 

That said, it does not mean that the other Christmas dinners are not nice, because they are. On top of that, some of them are really, really interesting.

Keep reading to learn about some of the most interesting Christmas dinners from around the world.

Learn about 10 of the most interesting Christmas dinners in the world
Learn about 10 of the most interesting Christmas dinners in the world

Organised alphabetically, here are ten of the most interesting Christmas dinners in the world!

1

Curry goat

Curry goat
Jamaicans have Curry goat for Christmas!

Where: Jamaica

Curry goat is the main Christmas dinner in Jamaica. Jamaica’s year-round hot weather means that Christmas with snow and ice is certainly not on the menu, and their Christmas food is very different from what you might be used to.

Even though curry goat is usually the main dish in Jamaica, Christmas dinners also often include other meat items like Christmas ham, roast beef or fried chicken.   

2

Ham and mustard!

Tried Ham with mustard?
Tried Ham with mustard?

Where: Finland

Have you ever tried Christmas ham with mustard? Well, if you haven’t then you might want to because that’s how the Finnish enjoy their Christmas ham, so they might know something we don’t!

That’s not the only interesting Christmas dinner item on their menu by the way, there are others like pickled herring, carrot casseroles, rutabaga, lutefisk in butter and white sauce, etc.

A Finnish Christmas dinner is certainly interesting, and delish!

3

KFC fried chicken!

KFC fried chicken for Christmas?
KFC fried chicken for Christmas?

Where: Japan

When you think of Christmas dinners it is nearly always about having it at home, either yours or your family (or friends). But that’s not the case in Japan. Over there the traditional Christmas dinner is all about having fried chicken at KFC!

This is a thanks to a massively successful marketing campaign KFC ran in the seventies, and as a result of the buzz that created now it has become the thing to do for families to visit their local KFC on Christmas to have fried chicken.

The practice has become so popular, in fact, that people have to book their Christmas fried chicken days in advance! 

4

Lasagna

Lasagne for Christmas dinner?
Italians have lasagne for Christmas dinner!

Where: Italy

When you think of Christmas dinners you probably don’t think of lasagna, do you?

Well, turns out Italians do!

One of the main Christmas dinners in Italy is lasagna, but with a twist because the lasagna served there on Christmas is not your run-of-the-mill lasagna. No, what’s served for Christmas is a luxurious lasagna (special lasagna for a special day, obviously): it’s a decadent lasagna called Lasagne alla Bolognese.

Find more details about it (as well as how to make it) here.

5

Meat fondue

The Swiss have a meat fondue for Christmas!
The Swiss have a meat fondue for Christmas!

Where: Switzerland

Christmas dinner in Switzerland is certainly interesting. There the tradition is for families to gather around a table to have a meat fondue! Fondue Chinoise (which is what the meat fondue is called) involves dipping thin slices of meat into a boiling broth.

This is a classic meal in Switzerland not just for Christmas dinner but for New Year’s Eve dinner as well.  

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6

Roast reindeer

Iceland's Christmas menu includes roast reindeer!
Iceland’s Christmas menu includes roast reindeer!

Where: Iceland

Even though meats like turkey and ham a are normal part of Christmas dinners in Iceland, one of the most traditional Christmas dinner items there is roast reindeer!

Roast reindeer is certainly interesting, but they have other interesting Christmas dinner items on their menu too, including smoked lamb (hangikjöt), and roast duck. 

7

Sauerkraut soup

Slovak Sauerkraut soup
Sauerkraut soup for Christmas dinner!

Where: Slovakia

I don’t know about you but I am a massive fan of sauerkraut. They taste great, and they’re really good for you (thanks to all the probiotics and nutrients in them). Turns out sauerkraut features as a classic Christmas dinner dish in Slovakia, where it is prepared as a soup, often with mushrooms and pork.

If you fancy trying it yourself, check out this recipe for the Slovak Christmas soup. 

8

Salt cod fritters

Brazil's Christmas dinner includes salted cod
Brazil’s Christmas dinner includes salted cod

Where: Brazil

Fish, namely salted cod fritters (called bacalhau) is the main classic Christmas dinner food in Brazil.

This is often paired with a dish called farofa (a toasted cassava or corn flour mixture), and other food items like colorful rice, fresh vegetables, fruits and Brazil nuts.

9

Stew and bread

Christmas menu in Ethiopia includes stew and bread
Christmas menu in Ethiopia includes stew and bread

Where: Ethiopia

Christmas dinner in Ethiopia is very different from what you might usually think about when you think about Christmas dinners. Their Christmas means don’t really involve any roast meat. Instead, a meat and vegetable stew (called Doro Wat) is the main dish, which is paired with a spongy bread (Injera).

Here’s another interesting fact about Christmas in Ethiopia – they don’t celebrate it on the 25th or 26th of December. They don’t celebrate Christmas in December at all! They celebrate Christmas on the 7th of January.

Why is that you wonder?

That is because of the Orthodox Christian traditions followed in Ethiopia. 

10

Tamales

Tamales are the main Christmas meal in Guatemala
Tamales are the main Christmas meal in Guatemala

Where: Guatemala

Last but not least, here’s yet another interesting Christmas dinner dish that you might not be used to – having Tamales for Christmas! That is what is traditionally the main Christmas dinner food in Guatemala.

They traditionally come in two colours – red (colorado) and black (negro).

The process of making the tamales is quite elaborate, and can take up to two days! But it is a fun process where the whole family gets involved, and these festive tamales are then enjoyed until New Year’s Eve.

Guatemalans clearly make a lot of Tamales!

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Christmas dinners around the world certainly come in many varieties!
Christmas dinners around the world certainly come in many varieties!

Closing thoughts

Christmas is one of the most joyous and festive times in the year, and the food we have on Christmas is a big part of that festivity. But what we are used to having for Christmas dinner is certainly not how the rest of the world celebrates Christmas, as these teen interesting Christmas dinners just demonstrated. They certainly are interesting, and might even inspire you to create a Christmas dinner with a twist this year! 

Oh and if you enjoy Christmas (I mean, who doesn’t, right?), then these guides can also be worth checking out:

Which of these ten interesting Christmas dinners did you find most interesting? Are there any other interesting Christmas dinners you know of that you think we (and our readers) should know about?

Share your thoughts about interesting Christmas dinners in the comments section below. 

Have a great Friday, and weekend!

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