15 Irresistible Filipino Christmas Food Must-Haves in 2023

Filipino Christmas food is a colorful and flavorful representation of the festive season. They also represent an integral part of Filipino Christmas traditions. Filipino cuisine always brings out tantalizing flavors and festive spirit during this time of year.

This article will provide a summary of the significance of Christmas food in the Philippines. It focuses on traditional dishes that grace Filipino tables. We will also explore easy holiday ideas to make your Filipino Christmas feast special. Let’s unwrap the flavors of tradition and indulge in Filipino Christmas cuisine.


Top 15 Filipino Christmas Foods: Easy and Delicious

The Filipino Christmas season has culinary traditions such as the grand feast of Noche Buena. A vast array of dishes, desserts, and drinks characterizes this occasion. Here are the 15 best Filipino Christmas Foods that reflect the country’s rich cultural heritage.

Lechon Manok

Lechon Manok - Christmas Food

Lechon Manok, or roasted chicken, is a beloved Filipino dish that takes center stage during Christmas celebrations. This delectable entire chicken is expertly grilled and marinated in a tasty concoction of herbs and spices. The result is a juicy and tender chicken with a beautifully crispy skin.

The aroma that fills the air as the chicken cooks is a cherished part of the Filipino Christmas tradition. It is enjoyed as the main course or as part of a festive feast. Lechon Manok is a must-have dish for a memorable Christmas celebration.

Filipino-style Pasta Carbonara

Filipino-style Pasta Carbonara

Filipino-style Pasta Carbonara is a unique twist on the classic Italian dish. This Filipino Christmas food version features a creamy and cheesy sauce with ham and bacon bits. The pasta is cooked al dente before being tossed in the rich carbonara sauce.

It has a velvety texture because it includes evaporated milk, and the melting cheese adds a decadent covering. Served with a sprinkle of black pepper, this Filipino-style Pasta Carbonara is an indulgent addition to any Christmas table.

Filipino-style Fried Chicken

Filipino-style Fried Chicken

Filipino-style Fried Chicken is another chicken dish that often graces Filipino Christmas dinner tables. The distinct marinade, usually made with a combination of Pinoy and various seasonings, sets this fried chicken apart. The chicken is marinated for a few hours or overnight to infuse it with flavor and tenderize the meat.

Then, it is coated in a crispy batter and deep-fried to golden perfection. The result is a succulent and tasty fried chicken to satisfy cravings during the festive season. This dish is a crowd-pleasing favorite, especially for children.

Lechon Kawali

Lechon Kawali

Lechon Kawali is a traditional Filipino dish that showcases crispy and flavorful fried pork belly. The pork belly is boiled until tender, then deep-fried to achieve a golden-brown and crackling skin. The meat remains juicy and succulent while the skin turns irresistibly crunchy.

It is often served with a tangy liver sauce or a vinegar dip to complement the rich and savory flavors. Lechon Kawali is a festive indulgence that brings a delightful combination of crispiness and juiciness. At the Christmas table party, it is a true Filipino Christmas food favorite.

Crispy Pata

Crispy Pata

Crispy Pata is a mouthwatering Pinoy Christmas food favorite that boasts tender and flavorful pork knuckles or hocks. This delectable dish simmers the pork in a flavorful broth until it becomes tender.

It is then deep-fried until the skin turns incredibly crispy, resulting in a perfect balance of textures. Ultimately, it is served with a dipping sauce made from soy sauce, vinegar, and chili. Crispy Pata is a show-stopping dish that will leave everyone eagerly reaching for seconds.

Lechon Cebu

Lechon Cebu

Lechon Cebu is a star of Filipino Christmas feasts. This iconic dish features a whole roasted pig marinated in a special blend of spices and herbs. Then, it is roasted over an open fire. The result is a succulent and flavorful meat with a crispy golden skin.

With a smoky aroma and a tender interior, Lechon Cebu is a centerpiece that will impress guests. That is often considered the epitome of Filipino festive dining.


Pairing Bibingka for Filipino Christmas Party

Bibingka is a beloved Filipino Christmas food enjoyed throughout the holiday season. This coconut rice cake is made with rice flour, coconut milk, sugar, and eggs. It feels silky and just a little bit sticky, which makes you unable to stop eating. It is the perfect comfort food for Christmas.

Traditionally, it is cooked in clay pots lined with banana leaves. It is often topped with slices of salted duck egg, cheese, or butter and then baked in a hot oven or over charcoal. Therefore creating a warm and fragrant cake with a slightly sweet and nutty flavor.

Macaroni Fruit Salad

Macaroni Fruit Salad

Macaroni Fruit Salad is a deliciously sweet and creamy dessert staple at Filipino Christmas gatherings. It combines macaroni pasta, tropical fruits, condensed milk, and cream-based ingredients. This vibrant salad offers fruity flavors and a creamy texture that melts in your mouth.

Often garnished with grated cheese or sprinkles, Macaroni Fruit Salad brings a festive touch to the Christmas dessert spread. This dish is loved for its refreshing taste and unique blend of ingredients.

Buko Pandan Salad

Buko Pandan Salad

Buko Pandan Salad is a refreshing and creamy dessert popular during Filipino Christmas celebrations. This vibrant green dessert is made with strips of young coconut mixed with gelatin and other ingredients. Finally, it is topped with a drizzle of sweetened cream and sprinkled with toasted coconut.

It brings a tropical twist to the holiday feast with the combination of chewy jelly, crunchy coconut, and creamy dressing. This delightful treat perfectly balances textures and flavors to finish a meal.

Check out the “Filipino Christmas Dessert” post for more information about mouthwatering desserts.


Lumpia is one of Filipino Food for Christmas

Lumpia is a popular appetizer that regularly appears on Filipino Christmas tables. These crunchy spring rolls have a filling of ground meat, minced veggies, and seasonings. The mixture is then tightly wrapped in thin spring roll wrappers before deep-fried until golden and crispy.

Lumpia is typically served with a sweet and tangy dipping sauce. Its irresistible combination of crunchy exteriors and flavorful fillings makes it an addictive snack. All ages enjoy it during the festive season.


Morcon for Filipino Christmas Feast

Filipino Christmas is a feasting season, and traditional dishes play a significant role in the festivities. Morcon is a savory Filipino beef roll filled with a mixture of vegetables, bacon, cheese, and raisins. The meat is then slowly roasted until juicy and tender. The result is a hearty and flavorful dish perfect for celebrating the holidays.

Queso De Bola

Queso De Bola

Queso de Bola is a popular Filipino Christmas food that holds a special place in holiday celebrations. Also known as Edam cheese, it is a ball-shaped cheese wrapped in red wax. This aged cheese has a slightly sweet and nutty flavor with a distinctly creamy texture.

It is commonly sliced and served as an appetizer or dessert. It is often paired with crackers or sweet fruit jams, making it ubiquitous. This cheese has become synonymous with Filipino Christmas.

Pancit Malabon

Pancit Malabon

Pancit Malabon is a festive noodle dish originating from the city of Malabon. The dish traditionally includes rice noodles with seafood sauce, boiled eggs, and vegetables. The ingredients are stir-fried in a rich and savory sauce. Finally, we will have a flavorful feast of textures and flavors with Filipino Stir-Fried Noodles.

Pork Hamonado

Pork Hamonado

Pork Hamonado is a succulent and sweet pork dish often served during Filipino Christmas. It is often enjoyed alongside festive dishes like Pancit, Lechon, and Filipino-style spaghetti. Soy sauce and other seasonings marinate the pork before being slow-cooked until tender.

The resulting dish is sticky-sweet with a caramelized coating that gives the pork a beautiful golden-brown color. This dish is perfect for Filipino Christmas food, imparting an aromatic and festive feel to the festivities.

Camaron Rebosado

Filipino Christmas Food Camaron Rebosado

Camaron Rebosado is a delectable Filipino dish with popular ingredients. It features succulent shrimps coated with a batter of eggs, flour, and breadcrumbs. The mixture is then deep-fried to perfection, creating a delightful combination of crispy batter and juicy shrimp.

Camaron Rebosado is served with a sweet and sour dipping sauce, a much-loved Filipino Christmas food. It satisfies cravings for a crispy seafood indulgence and is a must-have for the holiday season.


Tips and Tricks for a Successful Filipino Christmas Feast

To have a successful Christmas party, take your time to prepare these Pinoy Christmas foods meticulously. Don’t hesitate to ask for help from family members or friends. Here are some tips to help you successfully prepare for the Filipino Christmas Feast.

Planning the Menu and Gathering Ingredients

Start by planning your menu to ensure a smooth and organized feast. Consider the traditional Filipino Christmas foods mentioned above and other favorites. Make a shopping list and gather all the necessary ingredients ahead of time to avoid any last-minute stress. Visit Filipino markets or specialty stores to find authentic ingredients that may be required.

Presentation and Serving Suggestions

Elevate the festive atmosphere by paying attention to the presentation. Use vibrant and festive colors, such as red and green, in your table setting. Use banana leaves as a decorative element or a base for serving dishes.

Arrange your dishes in an appealing and appetizing manner, garnishing them with fresh herbs or other visually appealing elements. Filipino cuisine is renowned for its rich flavors. Use traditional Filipino serving dishes or other decorative plates to enhance the overall aesthetic.

Pairing Filipino Christmas Food with Festive Drinks

Tips for a Successful Christmas Feast

Complete your Filipino Christmas feast with the right drinks. Consider serving traditional Filipino beverages like Tsokolate (hot chocolate) or Salabat (ginger tea) to warm guests during the cool holiday season. For adults, consider offering festive cocktails or mocktails that incorporate Filipino flavors.

In addition, you can use local spirits like Lambanog or rum. Pairing a fruity sangria or sparkling wine with vibrant and flavorful Filipino dishes can also be a delightful combination. Ensure a variety of non-alcoholic options are available for guests who prefer them.

Take the time to savor each dish and appreciate the flavors with your loved ones. Remember, thoughtful planning and attention to detail are the keys to a successful Filipino Christmas feast. Make an appealing and pleasant environment that honors Filipino customs and cuisine.


Final Thoughts

Filipino Christmas food is undeniably rich and unique, making it something to look forward to every year. From savory and hearty mains to sweet and refreshing treats, these dishes burst with flavors and vibrant textures. They are also a distinctive Filipino tradition.

Combining various recipes and local ingredients showcases Filipino cuisine’s diversity and creativity. We encourage you to try these recipes and create memorable holiday moments with your loved ones. That celebrates the essence of Filipino traditions and flavors on Christmas Eve.



Karyn is an IIN Health Coach certified by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition since 2021, with a passion for cooking and exercise, especially yoga. She brings her expertise in Nutrition and Fitness to Hometoppicks, leading both the Kitchen and Home Gym sections to provide credible product recommendations. Karyn is committed to guiding readers on their healthy living journey with her expert tips and trusted product suggestions. You can find more about her here.

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