Christmas Dinner on a Budget: How To

As wonderful as Christmas day often is, it can also be costly. There are presents to buy and office party outfits to splash out on – and that’s before you consider all the mouths you’ve said you’ll feed on December 25 itself.

And with the big day around the corner, we wanted to let you know how you can cut back on the festive meal. So, here are some tip tips you’ll love this Christmas. Read on…

Opt for a Simple Starter

Turkey and all the trimmings can add up, so why not cut back cost-wise by opting for simple – and cheaper – starter? Think about whipping up an easy and quick soup with some of the leftovers from the week running up to December 25. It’s a good way to make use of veg or meat you might otherwise have thrown away, and it means much less stress for you. Why? Soup is so easy to prepare; you can even chuck all the ingredients in your slow cooker.

Don’t Buy Too Big a Turkey or Duck

Sure, you’ve a lot of people to feed, but when their plates are crammed with veg, stuffing and oodles of gravy, they really won’t need piles and piles of turkey. More often than not, the turkey only makes up a third of the plate, if that. Buy wisely – shopping local and stocking up on plenty of veg – and you won’t have to over-order when it comes to your turkey, duck or chicken.

Ask People to Bring a Dish

If you’ve opted to throw a less ‘traditional’ Christmas day gathering – for instance, a buffet – it’s even easier to ask people to chip in and bring something along.

So, why not consider making it a Jacob’s Join-type affair, where everyone brings one dish? It works well if it’s mainly family who are coming along, as they’ll understand you won’t want to be burdened with all the cooking, too. Avoid buying pre-packed veggies from the supermarket, too. Select your own and bag them up yourself, as you’ll find they’re much cheaper.

Keep Table Decorations Simple

As tempting as it may be to dash out and spend a small fortune on a new festive-themed tablecloth and crockery, resist the urge. Instead, take a look around your house and see what you can find that’ll create the same ambience.

Have any tealights in your kitchen drawer? Light them for a warm and relaxed atmosphere. Christmas decorations like baubles can be placed on tableware for a simple but elegant impression, and foliage or flowers from your garden can be added to festive teacups, for example. Why not add a selection of baubles to a large, transparent vase and use as your table centre? You could also create your own place settings to give your dinner table a personal touch, and you could also print out a menu to pop on the table. It’s the simple things that make a huge difference.

Will you be giving any of these tips a go? Let us know over on our Facebook page. Or leave your comments below for a stress-free and budget-friendly Christmas day.

Until next time…

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