With every day that passes, Christmas gets a little closer! Some thrive on the merriment while others can run in terror as the list piles up to the tip of the Christmas tree. In this food preparation guide we help make your Christmas planning easier & Christmas Day more enjoyable! Think of it as your Noel Leeming Christmas checklist… for food!
First things first, you need to determine what meals you will be making. This can sometimes be seen as the biggest challenge in the Christmas food preparation planning because you are expected to dodge allergies, intolerances and dislikes for food within your guest list.
An easy way to guide your meal planning:
- Run a quick Google search for Christmas recipes! This will bring up a multitude of delicious ideas that can be filtered to exclude gluten, lactose, and more. You’ll soon have a bunch of inspired Christmas Day food ideas!
- When designing your menu, choose one or two parts of the meal which cannot be made in advance. Plan the rest of your menu around these. If you choose roast chicken and roast salmon - then all of your other items will need to be pre-made to reduce the craziness on the day!
- Write up your Christmas Day food shopping list and shop online for Click & Collect. You can collect when it suits you and you don’t need to get caught up in the supermarket crowds.
- Pre-make the majority of your menu so you can just serve it up on the day without any additional prep needed. Opt for cold salads and pre-cooked roast veggies to accompany your main feast. As New Zealand’s we are lucky to be blessed with warm weather during the festive season meaning you can get away with a cold lunch on Christmas Day!
- Another idea is to prepare foods that can be frozen giving you even longer to get the Christmas meal mastered!
Still stuck for ideas? Check out our Christmas recipes hub.
Another way to make Christmas easier and more relaxed is to invest in some helpful Christmas cooking gadgets. Small appliances like mixers, food processors, and blenders can ease the busy nature of Christmas preparation.
Here’s our top tips for making cooking easy this Christmas:
- Make all sauces & dips using the NutriBullet RX. Not only will it blend your pesto in seconds but it’s also great for making hot sauces like gravy - the soup function heats sauces while blending.
- Use the Veggie Bullet to prep your Christmas veggies and salad ingredients. With the 3-in-1 functionality - the Veggie Bullet can slice, shred, or spiralize depending on what you need. Plus the attachments and accessories are all dishwasher safe, making cleanup even easier!
- Make the freshest Christmas punch with a juicer - and get creative with your recipes using a range of seasonal fruit and veggies! Tip: Add a peeled lemon into the mix to prevent juice from browning.
- Prepare your Christmas cake or desserts using a mixer. Don’t overwork yourself - a mixer takes all of the hard work out of creaming, beating, and mixing.
- Roasting a chicken or turkey? Stuffing is the key to the success of a Christmas roast! Make yours using a food processor, plus, this small appliance will come in handy throughout the entire year.
- Keep prepped veggies fresher for longer with a Foodsaver. Extends the freshness of your food up to 5 times longer by removing air & oxygen. Vacuum packaging also compacts your foods, making it ideal for storage.
A plan of action to prepare your Christmas meal in advance of the big day is a great way to reduce stress, but it can take up a lot of room that you need for your day-to-day storage needs.
You might want to consider a larger fridge or freezer so you don’t end up playing a game of fridge Tetris every time someone needs to put a drink or sandwich in the fridge.
Store food your way:
- A double door fridge/freezer will give you access to all of your food and drink without having to leave the kitchen. Ideal for storing the Christmas day feast and all day-to-day essentials. If it’s time to upgrade your kitchen whiteware, this could be a great excuse!
- If you don’t have room in your kitchen to replace your fridge/freezer with a larger one - you might want to consider adding a bar fridge or chest freezer in your garage. That way you can store all non-essential food and drink out of the kitchen and bring it in only as necessary.
- If your budget won’t allow for the addition of extra refrigerated storage organisation is key! Clean out your fridge and get rid of any non-essential items to make room for the Christmas day meal. Use a Foodsaver to further organise your food and keep it all fresher for longer.