/ Food & Drink, Shopping

How much will you spend on your Christmas dinner this year?

Christmas food shop

According to research, you could well be serving up your cheapest ever Christmas dinner this year – that’s if you’re willing to shop around for it. So do you know what the cost of your Christmas dinner is likely to be?

I can picture it now. Me, in say, 30 years’ time. It’s Christmas Day, and I’m sitting round the dinner table ready to tuck into my Christmas lunch, probably in some sort of tacky interactive Christmas jumper, imparting my wisdom to younger relatives/anyone who’ll listen.

‘Back in 2016, you could feed a family of eight for under £20 on Christmas Day and still have change for a small bag of sweets,’ I’d tell them, sagely.

Christmas on the cheap

‘Pah! £20? For Christmas dinner?’, I hear you collectively scoff. But, according to a Good Housekeeping, it really can cost that.

In a compiled index that tracks seasonal food, if you shopped around for the 11 traditional ingredients of a Christmas dinner (turkey, potatoes, stuffing, Brussels, carrots, parsnips, cranberry sauce, Christmas pudding, brandy butter, mince pies and Christmas cake) in the supermarkets where they were cheapest, you could do it for £19.82 or £2.48 per head.

The index also suggests that the expense of entertaining on the big day has dropped more than 10% since the magazine began tracking the cost in 2009.

And with grocery prices expected to increase due to the rising cost of importing food and the declining value of sterling, 2016 could see you tucking in to your cheapest Christmas dinner ever.

Interestingly, separate research, compiled by interiors firm Hillarys, found a Christmas dinner for four in 1975 cost nearly £55, after adjusting figures for inflation.

Shopping around

But if, like me, you’d rather not traipse around and just buy all your Christmas food from one place, then according to the index you’d best head to Aldi, where you can get all 11 items on the list for £22.03 – 11% less cheaper than last year’s cheapest, Iceland.

Of course, on the drinks front, Which? taste test results for this Christmas awarded Aldi a Best Buy Taste Test for its Aldi Veuve Monsigny Champagne Brut and Aldi Exquisite Collection Argentinian Malbec.

For those of you willing to splash out this year, the index has priced your bill at the check-outs in M&S closer to £50.

Bargain hunting

Have you spotted any amazing Christmas bargains in supermarkets? Would you be willing to shop around to make your Christmas dinner as cheap as possible?

Comments
Profile photo of John Ward
Member

Doesn’t counting the cost of Christmas rather spoil the occasion?

One thing I have always been curious about is what constitutes “all the trimmings” that usually appears in a Christmas menu. Apart from a dud Christmas cracker and possibly a thing that goes “whoouueeerr . . . err . . . err. . . uhh” when you blow into it I cannot imagine what else is included.

Profile photo of malcolm r
Member

Rather than buy a cheap traditional Christmas dinner (can a turkey producer really give you anything worthwhile in that budget?), if that was all I could afford to pay I’d far rather produce a different dinner that had decent ingredients. Perhaps a meat and potato pie followed by baked apples, leaving room for some nice “trimmings”.

I am not a fan of turkey – often dry, not particularly tasty, even when following the ever-more complicated cooking methods and additives that appear in magazines around Christmas. Xmas pud is not to my taste – too sweet usually. I’d rather have a decent beef joint or a sirloin steak One year we’ll have goose again; see if you can get that in the sub £20 budget.

Bah hum………

Profile photo of duncan lucas
Member

Even cheaper -for the homeless and very poor – your local supermarket skip but watch out men+women have been prosecuted for “dumpster diving ” – stealing rotten food to live cant have that at Christmas –sorry Xmas they should just go into a hidden corner and will themselves out of existence – we waste one third of the worlds food while one Billion people go hungry , stop press – Tiny Tim found dead in skip hadn’t the strength to climb out -Tristram Stuart author of Waste : Uncovering The Global Scandal -founder- Feeding the 5000-sorry no URL,s -blocked.

Profile photo of DerekP
Member

Duncan – you’re right – this is a reality of life for many poor folk in the UK. “Dumpster diving” sounds horribly American though – “skipping” seems to be the more usual English term.

Profile photo of duncan lucas
Member

Derek ,while you are right its an “Americanism ” two very well known British newspapers were using exactly that term in their front page articles in the past few years , if I was allowed to post URL,s I could direct you to them . On one American website I visit an Englishman brought up that very subject about the “take-over ” of REAL English by =English (US) he was quite indignant that the home of colloquial and written English should be downgraded for American ********* . They tried to “shoot him down in flames ” by referring to a WIKI on that very subject saying –its officially recognised , he still wasnt happy about it. Sorry no URL,s allowed .

Profile photo of DerekP
Member

Thanks Duncan,

So for added “media hype” – use “dumpster diving” not “skipping”…

Profile photo of Melanie Train
Member

Interestingly, the BBC’s England data unit, using figures provided by mySupermarket, have a contrasting view on this subject. Its findings suggest that a basket of Christmas food has increased 14% on last year with the cost of many items from non-discount supermarkets rising above inflation.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-38051644

Profile photo of malcolm r
Member

Perhaps Which? could have their staff two Christmas dinners – giving them one <£20 for 6, and the second based on the mySupermarket current price of £65 for 6. They could then report back.

Profile photo of Melanie Train
Member

Good idea, Malcolm. 😉 It would be interesting to know, post Christmas Day, how much lunch cost our community members in reality.

Profile photo of John Ward
Member

I am not quite sure why it would be interesting to know that given that, however much is spent, for many people Christmas dinner is one of the lesser expenses of the festive season.

Profile photo of wavechange
Member

I stay with friends and family over Christmas and New Year. I have not paid a penny for a Christmas meal but visiting people over Christmas can be rather expensive in other ways.

My hosts are very good at taking advantage of substantial reductions on food just before Christmas and after the shops reopen.

Profile photo of malcolm r
Member

I expect you help with the washing up, though, wavechange. 🙂

Profile photo of wavechange
Member

My help is not wanted, Malcolm. The teenage kids are paid to do the chores. 🙂

Profile photo of malcolm r
Member

Sound idyllic, wavechange 😀

Profile photo of Patrick Steen
Member

I’m looking forward to my two Christmas dinners @malcolm-r! Are you going to handle that @mtrain? 😀

Profile photo of Melanie Train
Member

I’d be happy to cook it, as long as someone else does the shopping and the washing up! :]

Profile photo of malcolm r
Member

I don’t know why Patrick S got a thumbs down – was it because he wants two Christmas Dinners? Anyway, as it is the season of goodwill, I’ve marked him up. 🙂

Perhaps you could let us know the time and place for the up-market Christmas dinner and I’ll help with the washing up (assuming you have a best buy wishdosher).

Profile photo of Patrick Steen
Member

Thanks Malcolm!

Profile photo of Ian
Member

You’re back from a sojourn in the Antipodes? Had a thought, Patrick: you can never sign notes with just your initials, can you? People will be thinking they’ve missed something (you have to think about it)…

Profile photo of Patrick Steen
Member

Haha, that’s true Ian!

PS