Kidadl.com is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Read our Terms & Conditions for further information.
If you've decided to start a new tradition for Christmas Eve we've got some great ideas for Christmas Eve box contents.
All you need is a festive box to fit everything in and then a selection of small gifts to spread a little magic on Christmas Eve. It's thought the idea of the Christmas Eve box originated from the German tradition of opening presents on Christmas Eve rather than waiting for the big day itself.
There are all kinds of fun and unique Christmas Eve traditions that are celebrated around the globe: over in Denmark, families pull their Christmas trees into the centre of the room and dance around them while singing carols, while in El Salvador the highlight of December 24 is a vibrant firework display. Food features heavily in Christmas Eve celebrations in Poland, where families share unleavened religious wafers known as oplatek, while the Fins have the right idea; friends and families gather the day before Christmas and leap in the sauna! Here in the West, the idea of the Christmas Eve box is becoming more popular, with many parents painstakingly making up surprise boxes for their children.
But, why stop there? Why not make up Christmas Eve boxes for the adults too – after all enjoying the contents of the box sure beats hastily wrapping presents, preparing the turkey or indulging in one too many chocolates from the Christmas stash. But, what to put in a Christmas Eve box? We think the best approach is to keep it cheap and cheerful with the contents and try to find items that they will genuinely use that evening and beyond. Try to get some items that can go in all of the adults' Christmas Eve boxes, such as hot chocolate, snacks and something to drink. Then for the women think along the lines of pampering treats, while men may enjoy novelty socks and a quiz. While films are usually a popular option if you're making Christmas Eve boxes for the family, why not buy just one Christmas family film for everyone to watch together, rather than individual movies.
Of course, men tend to be harder to buy for naturally so if you need some help we've got some great Christmas gift ideas for dads, and more general inspiration with our guide to Christmas gifts for under £10.
Our Top Choice
Elf Family Christmas Pyjamas - Live It Style It
It's a no-brainer that your night before Christmas box needs to contain a pair of festive pyjamas, and we're particularly loving these Elf Christmas pyjamas. The two piece set features a cool elf-themed design on the front of the long sleeve t-shirt, while the long bottoms have a fetching stripy red and white print in true Christmas style. Elasticated waists and cuffed pants make them super cosy to wear. They come in adult sizes small up to 2X large, while kids sizes start at three years. We particularly love the cute writing details on the top with options for Mummy Elf, Daddy Elf and Little Elf or Cheeky Elf for a little one who likes the naughty list! These pyjamas are certainly fit for Santa's helpers.
- Price: £22.99 - 24.99
- Machine washable
- 100% cotton
- Matching sets for kids and adults
Best For Her
Make A Wish Charm Bracelet - Jiacuo
This Christmas Eve box idea is perfect for the women in your life. The simple cord bracelet has a tiny star charm on it and legend says that you should make a wish before you put it on and when the cord breaks your wish will come true. What better time to spread good wishes than Christmas. It comes simply displayed on a piece of card with room to write your own message and is a great price so won't break the bank. We say buy one for the Christmas Eve box and one for yourself!
- Price: £6.27
- Star charm
- One size fits all
Best For Warming People Up
Milk Chocolate Spoon With Mini Marshmallows - Whittard
You'll want to gift people something hot and sweet to enjoy come Christmas Eve so hot chocolate is the ideal filler for your Christmas Eve box. But not just any hot chocolate, try Whittard's decadent milk chocolate spoon to stir and melt into hot milk. The milk chocolate spoon contains 38% cocoa, and there are Caramel Vanilla and Latte Macchiato flavour options too. For extra indulgence, the spoons come with mini marshmallows too. Perfect for cosying up in the cold weather and enjoying the festive spirit, and at £3.50 each, they're a perfect little treat. This is just what your Christmas Eve boxes have been crying out for.
- Price: £3.50
- From the artisan collection of chocolate spoons
- Comes with micro marshmallows
Best For Relaxation
Self Heating Eye Mask - Spacemasks
Christmas can be something of an endurance race so you'll want everyone fighting fit and feeling their best. Which is why you'll do well to pop these relaxing eye masks in your adult Christmas Eve box. It's not only the kids who'll need plenty of rest before the big day, but grown-ups will also relish some extra shut-eye. These individual eye marks are self-heating: just unwrap them, loop the straps over your ears, close your eyes and relax. Thanks to the gentle, soothing heat they can help ease eye strain and tension. Why not include two in each adults' Christmas Eve box so they have one for Boxing Day too?
- Price: £3.50
- Single use eye mask
Best For Self Care
Cranberry & Orange Bath Marbles - Oliver Bonas
Give the grown-ups a real treat for Christmas Eve by slipping one of these fun bath bombs in their Christmas Eve box. If you have a houseful for Christmas Day they'll be lining up for their turn in the tub for a Christmas Eve bath. These vegan-friendly little bath marbles are a lovely added touch to your bath, softening and scenting the water with the refreshing aroma of orange and cranberry. There's also an option of Winter Pine which is equally festive. It's a great muscle soother if you're feeling worn out from Christmas preparations.
- Price: £3.95
- Festive starburst pattern packaging
- Vegan friendly products
Best For Midnight Feasts
Marshmallow Toasting Kit - The Naked Marshmallow Co.
Christmas Eve box ideas for adults means sourcing some grown up treats - and these yummy marshmallows will certainly deliver. This toasting kit makes for a truly unique and special gooey indulgence. These gourmet marshmallows are perfect for a Christmas Eve treat and there are five flavours to whet your appetite: Vanilla Bean, Salted Caramel, Candy Floss, Choc Orange & Strawberry Cream. The kit comes with two marshmallow flavours, a marshmallow toaster, 8 bamboo sticks for roasting and is all neatly packaged in a box. The toaster is super easy to use - just light it and it can burn for two hours. It's not a problem if you want to spread out the treats too as you can place the lid back on to put out the flame and keep it until you next want your treat.It's non-toxic, odourless and smokeless too, bonus. These will be a most welcome addition to any Christmas Eve boxes you're creating.
- Price: £22.95
- Award-winning marshmallows
- Includes 2 marshmallows, toaster, 8 bamboo sticks and instructions
Best For Families
Christmas Quiz - EDigital Creations
Forget flopping in front of the TV – that's what tomorrow is for – and instead try new Christmas Eve box ideas in the form of a quiz. With this one, you'll get 12 quiz sheets, two sets of festive questions, the answers, tie breakers for if it's a close call and even winners' certificates. This Christmas Eve box filler will encourage the family to gather closer for a night of entertainment and may even spark a Christmas Eve tradition of your own for the adults to enjoy after hours.
- Price: £4.95
- Everything you need for a Christmas Eve quiz
- Family entertainment
Best For Him
Christmas Novelty Socks - UK Socks
When it comes to men, Christmas Eve ideas for adults can be trickier, but you can't go far wrong with the humble sock. Keep the men in your life's feet warm with some novelty socks just right for the occasion. These ones have a cheery Santa pattern on them and are ideal for stashing in the Christmas Eve boxes. Socks have something of a boring reputation however let's face it: we all need them, and we all seem to lose socks to either the washing machine or to a dreaded hole that never gets darned.
- Price: £3.99
- Sizes 6-11
- Machine washable
Best For A Soothing Atmosphere
Christmas Spice Tin Candle - Next
When the wrapping's done, the stockings are hung and the kids are in bed there's nothing like lighting a festive candle and relaxing in its glow while the scent fills your room with the very essence of Christmas. Fill your Christmas Eve boxes with one of these scented candles. The fragrance is a warming blend of citrus fruits with warm, spicy cloves and cinnamon and it comes packaged in a cute tin with penguin pattern. Plus, as it will burn for up to 35 hours you can bring it out again on Christmas Day! To ensure they can be used straight away you may like to include a box of matches in your Christmas Eve boxes too.
- Price: £5
- 35-hour burn tin
- Festive tin
Best For Unwinding
Pre-Mixed Cocktails - Cantails
Christmas Eve box filler ideas should always include a little tipple to help the grown-ups unwind before Christmas itself. These drinks use natural ingredients and include four classic cocktails as well as three of the company's own serves in 250ml size. Buy a mixed box and split them between the adults, choosing from a mojito, elderflower collins, passionfruit martini, espresso martini, berry mule, gin paloma and a Hawaiian spritz. We also love the fact they come in handy cans, so you won't even have to worry about doing the washing up before you go to bed. Include them in your Christmas Eve boxes but give them a chance to chill in the fridge before you drink them.
Kidadl Best Buys selects the top products for families of all ages. If you enjoyed our suggestions for the best Christmas Eve box ideas then take a look at our favourite ideas for Christmas Eve boxes for toddlers and kids and these great choices for Christmas Eve box fillers for little ones.
- Price: £15 for a mixed box of 5
- Suitable for vegans
- Alcohol volume 5.5%
Cora Lydon is a freelance journalist living in Suffolk with her husband and two children. She’s also a children’s book author who loves finding activities and place to inspire her children. Her dining table bears the scars of many craft activities attempts (many unsuccessful).