Turkey crowned king of Christmas

By Rebecca Weller

- Last updated on GMT

Christmas dinner: 68% of the nation want turkey this year (Credit: Getty/Ross Woodhall)
Christmas dinner: 68% of the nation want turkey this year (Credit: Getty/Ross Woodhall)

Related tags Christmas dinner Wine Pub food Christmas Tesco

Turkey crowned king of Christmas despite a growing desire for new traditions this year, a study conducted by supermarket chain Tesco has revealed.

Almost a fifth (19%) of the 2,000 UK 18 to 34-year-olds surveyed by Opinium for Tesco, would replace the traditional Christmas lunch or dinner with a festive brunch this year while a quarter would opt for a not so merry Christmas and indulge in low or no alcohol beverages.

Tesco Chief customer officer, Alessandra Bellini, said: “In our fourth annual Tesco Christmas Report​, we’ve lifted the lid on what the seasonal comeback will look like – from reviving family traditions to finding new food occasions and being sustainably savvy throughout celebrations.”

Tradition wins

When it comes to what the British public want to see on their plate, according to the survey, it would appear tradition has won.

Turkey reigned supreme for those surveyed with 68% planning to serve it on the big day and, though somewhat divisive, Brussels sprouts came second on the list.

However, the classic roast potato was named the most essential vegetable for 87% of people, replacing carrots, which took the top spot last year but have fallen to third place this year. 

Pigs in blankets also remained popular, 63% said this was their favourite trimming, a 24% increase on last year, and 24% of 25 to 34-year-olds plan to eat more than 10 over Christmas.

Despite the clear desire for turkey and pigs in blankets, publicans planning to serve Christmas dinners need to ensure plant-based alternatives are readily available as a quarter of UK adults plan to cater for or consume vegan options this year. 

Although, 26% of vegans or vegetarians are planning to pause their diet to enjoy some meat and dairy dishes over Christmas.

Merry Cheesemas 

More than 71% of the nation will tuck into a cheese board on Christmas Day, with Cheddar (52%), Brie (36%) and Stilton (24%) set to be the top cheeses chosen overall, however, 18 to 34-year-olds were four times more likely to opt for adventurous cheese like Halloumi (12%) compared to the over 60s (3%). 

For the three quarters of the nation planning to enjoy a Christmas tipple, red wine was the most popular choice with 29% of adults opting for red over white wine (27%) and 19% of the population drinking champagne during the festivities. 

The hospitality sector can expect to enjoy the holiday season early with 12% of families starting festivities as early as November this year and 33% of the nation planning to socialise more.

Bellini added: “As we enjoy the freedom to extend the dinner table and make wonderful memories, it’s perhaps no surprise that 86% of the nation say nothing will stop them from having a joyful Christmas in 2021.”

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