Christmas Food Facts: Why Do We Eat Gingerbread, Candy Canes And More?

Joan Agie
Feb 29, 2024 By Joan Agie
Originally Published on Dec 03, 2021
Christmas food facts are enjoyed by everyone across the world.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.3 Min

Amusing and intriguing Christmas food facts are remnants of folklore that have withstood the test of time.

Here are some Christmas food facts to serve on the Christmas table. Everyone will certainly enjoy these food facts while enjoying a Christmas meal with their friends and family.

As you all know, Christmas is celebrated by wishing each other a merry Christmas and decorating a beautiful Christmas tree. It is a Christmas tradition to decorate Christmas trees, among other Christmas traditions. There are various different delicacies that you can enjoy for Christmas lunch or Christmas dinner. Every single thing we eat and drink over the holidays has a tale to tell, be it the blue color of Stilton cheese, sugar plums, sugar sticks, or other sweet treats. You'll be surprised to know that candy canes, animal crackers, fruit cake, and mince pie were designed to keep young children quiet.

If you enjoyed reading about our Christmas Food facts, you must also check out our fun articles on Christmas in Germany and Christmas in Italy facts here at Kidadl.

Food To Cook For Christmas

The holiday season brings cheery music, lovely décor, exciting gifts, and a variety of traditional Christmas meals. Every family has its own holiday dinner traditions, but we are going to concentrate on the classic, greatest Christmas meals available during the holiday season.

The food to cook for Christmas includes fruitcake, candy canes, eggnog, ham, gingerbread man cookies, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, plum pudding, brussels sprouts, and mince pie.

Did you know? It is considered good luck to eat a mince pie on each of the 12 days of Christmas.

Traditional Christmas Dinners

Christmas dinner is one of the most important traditions of the holidays. This meal is enjoyed with families and friends on Christmas Eve. Though it is known as Christmas dinner, it can be organized any time of the day!

Unlike other regular meals, Christmas dinners are more of a feast to celebrate the occasion. So, do not be surprised to see extravagance during the event. Christmas dinner holds great significance amongst Christians all over the world.

While the tradition of Christmas dinner is universal, the menu may differ across regions to reflect the local traditions and cuisines across the world. Generally, Christmas dinner has a reflection of British culture where Christmas pudding is prepared with various nuts and fruits, roasted meats, an assortment of veggies, and bread are served with wine or other beverages.

In places where there is no long-standing Christian tradition, popular culture has a greater effect on the Christmas supper. A good example is Japan, where KFC is traditionally consumed as part of the dinner, or the US, where Jews eat Chinese food on Christmas as the two communities live close together. Mexicans eat traditional foods like bacalao navideo and pozole for Christmas.

Traditional Christmas Sweets

The following are some of the traditional Christmas sweets:

Traditional English Trifle: Trifle is a rich, decadent, and alcoholic British dessert that has long been a holiday staple. Dried fruit, custard, jelly, nuts, and whipped cream are stacked between slices of cake soaked in sherry.

Baked Alaska: Baked Alaska is a fantastic holiday dish. What's not to like about cake, ice cream, and a light meringue topping? This dish may be used to make a single giant cake or numerous tiny, individual treats.

The Ultimate Sticky Toffee Pudding: In the United Kingdom, sticky toffee pudding is a must-bake Christmas dessert. Also, it's one of Harry Potter's favorites in the novels!

Candy Cane Significance

The overwhelmingly powerful Christmas candy cane is a reminder of Christianity's humble beginnings.

The candy is shaped like a shepherd's crook, symbolizing the lowly shepherds who were among the first to honor the baby Jesus. Although the candy cane has almost entirely American origins, legend has it that in the 1600s, the choirmaster of Cologne Cathedral in Germany distributed sugar sticks and sugar plums to his young singers to keep them quiet during the lengthy Living Creche Ceremony.

According to legend, a Midwestern candy manufacturer sought to create a holiday confection for children that would serve as a remembrance of Christ and a symbol of his birth, ministry, and death around the turn of the century.

The candy canes have a peppermint flavor that is akin to hyssop. Hyssop was an old member of the mint family, used for cleansing and sacrifice in the Old Testament. Making candy canes was a time-consuming procedure that began around the turn of the century. The candy could only be created on a small scale since the tugging, twisting, cutting, and bending had to be done by hand.

Much later, when mechanized candy cane manufacture was devised, the packaging improvements allowed the fragile candy to be transported on a regional and national scale. Candy canes are available in a variety of colors and flavors now, but the classic peppermint flavor and staff or crook form remain the most popular.

Amusing and intriguing Christmas food facts

Gingerbread's Significance

Apart from candy canes and hot chocolate, there's one dish that raises some eyebrows throughout the holiday season. A common question that pops into people's minds is why do people eat gingerbread on Christmas and not on other occasions.

Gingerbread comes in a variety of shapes and sizes and is eaten by all. If you're not constructing it around the holidays, you could be creating gingerbread men or gingersnaps.

Ginger was used for therapeutic purposes back then, just as it is now. When you're sick, have you ever wondered why you're supposed to drink ginger ale? It's because ginger has a relaxing effect.

Gingerbread homes have been popular in Germany for many years, and some believe that Hansel and Gretel are to blame for their rise in popularity.

Decorating houses has quickly become an integral element of the Christmas season, which is exciting. It's especially wonderful during the winter holidays because it's an involved family activity.

Many people believe that these well-known and delicious males trace their roots back to Elizabeth I of England. Elizabeth I of England had them baked to look like some of the visitors she expected, and it seems like she came up with the most creative party treat to eat ever.

Christmas Food Around The World

Christmas dinner in English-speaking Canada is comparable to that in the United Kingdom. Stuffed turkey with veggies and mashed potatoes has been eaten as the main dish with wine as part of a traditional Christmas supper since medieval times.

Roast beef, as well as ham, can be utilized for this Christmas dinner as well. Pumpkin pie and Christmas pudding are popular Christmas desserts, along with raisin pudding and fruit cakes. Around the holidays, eggnog, a milk-based punch that is frequently flavored with alcohol, is also popular. Other typical Christmas treats include Christmas cookies, butter tarts, and shortbread, which are cooked ahead of time and presented to guests during Christmas and New Year gatherings, as well as on Christmas Day.

Christmas Eve dinner in English-speaking Canada is comparable to that in the United Kingdom. A turkey with stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, and vegetables are all part of a traditional Christmas supper and are usually had along with wine. Bread, animal crackers, fruits, and Christmas crackers are also eaten widely on Christmas day.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Christmas food facts then why not take a look at Christmas traditions for kids, or Christmas symbols for kids.

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Written by Joan Agie

Bachelor of Science specializing in Human Anatomy

Joan Agie picture

Joan AgieBachelor of Science specializing in Human Anatomy

With 3+ years of research and content writing experience across several niches, especially on education, technology, and business topics. Joan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Anatomy from the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria, and has worked as a researcher and writer for organizations across Nigeria, the US, the UK, and Germany. Joan enjoys meditation, watching movies, and learning new languages in her free time.

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