Tis’ the season to dine out: OpenTable reveals the nation’s Christmas dining habits this year

  • New OpenTable research unveils that those who are dining out on Christmas day this year will be looking to spend approx. £73 per person* 
  • Over a third of the UK has revealed that the main reason they’ll be dining out on Christmas Day is to make the most out of the restrictions being lifted 
  • Roast potatoes are crowned the Christmas food favourite (60%), followed by pigs in blankets (44%), turkey (40%) and stuffing (29%) 


UK, December 2021: With festivities just around the corner, OpenTable, the world’s leading provider of online restaurant reservations, unveils the state of the nation when it comes to the UK’s Christmas dining habits in 2021.   


With around 15% of Brits saying they will dine out on Christmas Day this year – of which over a third are doing so for the first time ever – those that do will be looking to spend approx. £73 on their Christmas meal, per person. Londoners are looking to splash the most (£92), with Northern Ireland residents the least (£51), on average. 


The top reason for eating out on Christmas Day is because it feels more special than having to cook at home (44%), followed closely by it being less stressful (43%) and having better quality food (43%). Over a third of the nation has also unveiled that a key reason to dine out this year is to make the most out of the restrictions being lifted. 


Whether people are choosing to dine in or out this year, 80% of the nation agree that food is always at the heart of their festive celebrations, although only half (51%) will be eating turkey. Around a fifth (19%) of our nation’s plates will feature chicken, beef or lamb this year as people feel less pressured to follow age-old traditions.


When it comes to what people actually enjoy from their Christmas dinner, data shows that the majority will be diving straight into the roasties, which were ranked the most popular festive food, with 60% reporting to love roast potatoes, followed by firm favourite pigs in blankets (44%), traditional turkey (40%) and stuffing (29%), with classic mince pies taking the fifth spot (24%).


On the other hand, Brussel sprouts (28%) and a nut roast (28%) were the two Christmas foods that people reported to dislike the most, despite a nut roast being a popular Christmas meal centrepiece for those who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet. The new research also reveals that the traditional Christmas pudding (21%) is no longer a winner, with it being the third most disliked festive food.   


The UK’s most liked Christmas food

  1. Roast potatoes (60%) 
  2. Pig in blankets (44%) 
  3. Turkey (40%) 
  4. Stuffing (29%) 
  5. Mince pies (24%)  


The UK’s least liked Christmas food 

  1. Brussel sprouts (28%) 
  2. Nut roast (28%) 
  3. Christmas pudding (21%) 
  4. Cranberry sauce (20%) 
  5. =Stollen (18%)
    =Mince pies (18%)


David Hamilton, District Director, EMEA, OpenTable commented: “Last year was tough for many across the UK, as they were not able to see their friends, family and loved ones over the Christmas period. The new data suggests that Brits are looking to make Christmas bigger and better this year, to make up for lost time. 


“We have a huge range of restaurants available on OpenTable. Whether you are looking for somewhere local or new to try, there is something for every diner to make this festive season extra special.” 


Visit to explore a variety of restaurants for Christmas Day dining. 




For more information or to talk to an OpenTable spokesperson please contact:


Notes to Editors 


*Data taken from a OnePoll survey of 2,000 people, representative of the UK adult population age split and who celebrate Christmas. The survey was carried out in the UK between 15/11/2021 and 17/11/2021.


About OpenTable

OpenTable, part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), powers reservations for the hospitality industry. OpenTable’s software seats more than 1 billion people per year and helps more than 60,000 restaurants, bars, wineries and other venues attract guests, manage capacity, improve operations and maximize revenue.