Christmas creep up on you this year? With only 11 days to go, Jessica’s got the insider tips on how to stay stress free! Her step-by-step count-down planner will guide you through all you need to do to get ready to feed the family this Christmas.


2 Weeks to Go:

Food Shopping

  • Order your meat from the Meat Department or buy a frozen turkey. If you’re planning on buying a large turkey, don’t forget to check that it will fit in your oven and that you have a big enough roasting tin!
  • Buy your leg ham now – don’t forget to grab whole cloves as well!
  • Order or buy all the drinks you will need over the Christmas period, such as sherry or port. Don’t forget the non-alcoholic drinks and juices. Keep your eye out for any catalogue specials!
  • Double check your shopping list and finish buying all your non-perishable items

Advance Christmas Baking

  • Christmas puddings are best made a couple of months in advance and stores in a dark cupboard until Christmas. If you’ve left it until later, a couple of weeks is fine – otherwise, buy a pudding and store in a dark cupboard.
  • Christmas cakes can also be done several weeks in advance. Feed cakes gradually with brandy.
  • While you still have some time, make & freeze your mince pies.

1 Week to Go:


  • Try to make any side dishes that you can cook and freeze in advance, such as stuffing or cranberry sauce
  • Make any salad dressings ahead of time
  • Buy your fresh produce such as fruit and vegetables 2-3 days before Christmas. Store in the fridge
  • Depending on the size of your turkey, you may need to start defrosting it in the fridge a couple days ahead

1 Day to Go:

  • Take out any other meats that need to be defrosted
  • Work out a time plan for Christmas Day. Don’t forget to build in time for yourself to get dressed and ready, join in the opening of the presents or even to have a cup of tea or wine
  • Set the table ready for Christmas dinner
  • Sort out all the cooking pans, roasting tins, serving dishes, glasses, silverware and napkins for dinner
  • Take out any of the pre-prepared frozen side dishes, stuffing and sauces to thaw
  • Chop up as many ingredients as you can ahead of time and store in the fridge tightly covered in cling wrap.