These are the 15 WORST kitchen disasters when cooking Christmas dinner

Christmas Dinner

by Emma Dodds |
Published on

Research has discovered the top 15 things that Brits consider to be the worst cooking disasters to happen when making Christmas dinner.

It's everyone's worst nightmare - to be completely in charge of making Christmas dinner and then for something to go HORRIFICALLY wrong.

If you mess up on literally any other day of the year, it doesn't matter all that much - you can just shrug your shoulders and say: "Oh well, I can do better tomorrow."

But if you mess up Christmas dinner... It'll go down in your family history.

No pressure.

GALLERY: Delicious recipes to make using your Christmas leftovers


XX recipes to make with your Christmas leftovers (slider)

Christmas dinner1 of 20
CREDIT: Getty Images

Looking for some inspiration for Christmas leftover recipes?

Take a scroll through our gallery - we're sure you'll find something that catches your eye...

Waitrose2 of 20

Mulligatawny soup

**Preparation time: 15 minutesCooking time: 30 minutesTotal time: 45 minutesServes: 4Ingredients:1 tbsp olive oil1 onion, finely diced1 celery stalk, finely diced2 garlic cloves, crushed30g fresh root ginger, finely grated1½ tsp hot curry powderpinch cayenne pepper100g red split lentils, well-rinsed1 eating apple, peeled, cored and finely diced500ml chicken stock60g basmati rice3 tbsp double cream or coconut milk½ lemon, juice100g-200g leftover turkey, shredded4 tsp Greek yogurtsmall handful chopped coriander leavesMethod:**1 - Heat the oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and celery and sweat for 10 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic, ginger and spices and cook for 2 minutes more. Tip in the lentils and apple, cook for 1 minute, then add the stock and 400ml water. Bring to the boil, then turn down to simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the lentils are soft.2 - Meanwhile, in a separate pan, cook the rice according to pack instructions; set aside on a plate to cool. Once the lentils are cooked, blitz ¾ of the soup with the cream or coconut milk in a blender. Return to the pan, stir in the lemon juice and rice; sprinkle over the turkey and season.3 - Divide the soup into 4 bowls. Garnish with a teaspoon of yogurt, the coriander leaves, and a pinch more cayenne, if liked.

Waitrose3 of 20

Gammon & roast potato hash browns

**Preparation time: 10 minutes + cooling and chillingCooking time: 20 minutesTotal time: 30 + cooling and chillingServes: 2Ingredients:**300g cooked roast potatoes150g cooked gammon2 tbsp flour3 medium British Blacktail Free Range Eggs1½ tbsp goose fat (or vegetable oil)**Method:**1 - Cut the potatoes and gammon into small pieces (just under 1cm) and add to a bowl. Season, toss with the flour and mix in 1 beaten egg. Scrunch everything together and press firmly into 4 patties (about 8cm across and 2cm deep). Chill for at least 15 minutes, or for up to 12 hours.2 - Heat the goose fat (or oil) in a heavy-based, non-stick frying pan. Add the hash brown patties and cook on the lowest heat for 10 minutes, until a crust has formed. Flip over and repeat on the other side, until golden and piping hot in the centre. Remove from the pan and keep warm.3 - Return the pan to a high heat. Add the eggs to the fat in the pan. Fry for 1-2 minutes, spooning the excess fat over the yolks, until cooked to your liking. Season and serve on top of the hash browns. Delicious with wilted spinach and ketchup or brown sauce.

Waitrose4 of 20

Turkey, gammon & sprout pot pie

**Preparation time: 30 minutes + coolingCooking time: 50 minutesTotal time: 1 hour 20 minutes + coolingServes: 8Ingredients:2 tbsp unsalted butter300g cooked gammon (preferably smoked), cut into 1.5cm pieces500g cooked turkey, shredded into bitesize pieces3 small trimmed leeks (about 300g), washed and cut into 2cm rounds3 tbsp plain flour, plus extra for dusting500ml fresh chicken stock2 tbsp essential Wholegrain Mustard200ml tub crème fraîche½ x 20g pack tarragon, leaves only, roughly chopped200g cooked Brussels sprouts, sliced500g block Jus-Rol Puff Pastry1 medium British Blacktail Free Range Egg, beatenMethod:**1 - Heat the butter in a large heavy-based casserole or saucepan. Add the gammon and turkey, cooking over a medium heat for 5-6 minutes, until evenly browned. Add the leeks, cover and cook for 3 minutes. Uncover, stir in the flour and cook for about 1 minute. Pour in the stock and bring to a brisk simmer, stirring and scraping the base of the pan, for about 4-6 minutes, until the mixture thickens.2 - Set aside to cool for 30 minutes before stirring in the mustard and crème fraîche. Mix in the tarragon and sprouts and transfer to a large pie dish (at least 1.5 litres in size). Leave to cool.3 - Preheat the oven to 220˚C, gas mark 7. Roll the pastry on a floured work surface so that it's large enough to cover the pie dish with plenty overhanging. Cut 1.5cm strips from the outside of the pastry. Brush the rim of your dish with egg, place the strips on top and brush these with more egg. Cut a couple of slits in the pastry sheet to let steam escape (or for a pie funnel) and lay on top of the pie. Crimp the edges, brush with more egg and decorate if you wish using the pastry trimmings. Bake for 5 minutes and then reduce the oven temperature to 200˚C, gas mark 6. Cook for a further 30-35 minutes, until golden and piping hot.

Waitrose5 of 20

Christmas leftover veg tart (vegetarian)

**Preparation time: 20 minutes + cooling and chillingCooking time: 1 hour 5 minutesTotal time: 1 hour 25 minutes + cooling and chillingServes: 6 - 8Ingredients:500g block Jus-Rol Shortcrust PastryPlain flour, for dusting350g mixed cooked vegetables (carrots, parsnips, sprouts etc), roughly chopped100g mature Cheddar cheese, coarsely grated3 medium British Blacktail Free Range Eggs225ml single cream150ml whole milk¼ x 20g pack thyme, leaves onlyMethod:**1 - Preheat the oven to 180˚C, gas mark 4. Roll the pastry on a floured surface to the thickness of a £1 coin. Place a 23cm x 4cm loose-bottomed tart tin on a baking sheet and line with the pastry, pressing it right into the corners. Leave the edges overhanging, prick the base and chill for 20 minutes.2 - Line the rested pastry case with parchment and baking beans. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the edges are golden brown. Remove the baking beans and cook for a further 10 minutes or until the base is a light golden colour. Cool for a few minutes then use a serrated knife to trim off the overhanging pastry.3 - Fill the pastry case with the leftover veggies and most of the cheese. Whisk the eggs, cream, milk and thyme leaves together until smooth, season well and pour in the tart case. Scatter over the remaining cheese and bake for a final 30-35 minutes, or until just set in the middle. Cool for 5 minutes, remove from the tin and then transfer to a cooling rack. Serve at room temperature or chilled with some mixed leaves.

Waitrose6 of 20

Turkey & pumpkin korma

**Preparation time: 15 minutesCooking time: 40 minutesTotal time: 55 minutesServes: 4 - 6Ingredients:2 tbsp virgin cold pressed coconut oil, melted1 tsp garam masala1 butternut squash, peeled & chopped (about 1.3kg)2 onions, sliced600g cooked turkey meat (or chicken) shredded200g jar Cooks' Ingredients Korma Curry Paste200g fine green beans, halved400ml can coconut milk28g fresh coriander, chopped50g flaked almonds, toastedMethod:**1 - Preheat the oven to 200°C, gas mark 6. Add 1 tbsp of the melted coconut oil to a large bowl, add the garam masala, toss in the squash and stir to coat. Tip into a non-stick baking tray.2 - Roast in the preheated oven for 25 minutes until tender. Add the remaining coconut oil to a large pan and sauté the onions until soft and golden. Stir in the turkey meat, followed by the korma paste, green beans and coconut milk. Cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes.3 - Stir in the roast squash and coriander. Scatter with toasted almonds and serve with poppadoms and hot pickles.

Waitrose7 of 20

Cheeseboard mac & cheese

**Preparation time: 15 minutesCooking time: 20 minutesTotal time: 35 minutesServes: 6Ingredients:500g macaroni50g butter50g plain flour650ml milk2 tbsp Dijon mustard350g mixed cheeseboard cheese (Cheddar, Stilton, Brie etc), grated/thinly sliced3 tbsp Cooks' Ingredients Garlic & Rosemary Crust2 tbsp olive oilMethod:**1 - Preheat the grill to hot. Bring a large pan of water to a rolling boil and cook the macaroni according to pack instructions. Drain and set aside.2 - Melt the butter in a large saucepan, add the flour and cook for 1 minute. Gradually, add the milk a splash at a time, stirring continuously to avoid lumps until a smooth sauce has formed. Stir in the mustard and ¾ of the cheese. Then add the cooked macaroni and stir until coated.3 - Tip into a 2-litre ovenproof dish. Scatter with the remaining cheese followed by the garlic & rosemary crust, drizzle with olive oil and pop under the grill for 5 minutes until golden, bubbly and crisp on top. Serve with dressed salad leaves.

Waitrose8 of 20

Twice-baked blue cheese soufflés

**Preparation time: 30 minutes + coolingCooking time: 30 minutesTotal time: 1 hour + coolingServes: 6Ingredients:50g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing½ x 80g pack Finely Grated Parmigiano Reggiano3 tbsp plain flour250ml whole milk250g blue cheese (like Stilton), crumbled3 medium British Blacktail Free Range Eggs, separated½ x whole nutmeg, freshly grated½ x 25g pack chives, finely chopped, plus extra to serve½ tsp white wine vinegar50ml double creamMethod:**1 - Preheat the oven to 200˚C, gas mark 6. Grease 6 x 200ml ramekins with butter, brushing it up the sides. Coat each with Parmigiano Reggiano and tap out the excess (reserve this for the soufflé mix).2 - Melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat until foaming and then add the flour. Cook for 1-2 minutes until golden, then remove from the heat and very gradually stir in the milk. Simmer over a medium heat, stirring constantly, for a further 2-3 minutes until thick and smooth then season.3 - Transfer to a large bowl and stir in 175g blue cheese (plus the excess Parmigiano Reggiano), the egg yolks, nutmeg and chives, until evenly mixed. In a clean bowl, whisk the egg whites and vinegar to form stiff peaks. Gently fold the whites into the cheese mixture until just combined.

White Christmas Rocky Road9 of 20
CREDIT: The Craft Company

White christmas rocky road

**Preparation time: 15 minutesCooking time: 3-4 hoursTotal time: 3-4 hours and 15 minutesServes: 4 - 6Ingredients:Good quality white chocolateLeftover crumbled cake complete with marzipan.CranberriesPistachiosChestnutsMarshmallowsGlace cherriesApricotsShortbread biscuitsMalteasers****Method:**1 - Melt the chocolate and simply add in the crumbled cake and marzipan. Add in any of the other ingredients if you wish. Stir into chocolate.2 - Line a suitable tin / tray with cling film and pour in the mixture. Press well down. Ensure all ingredients are coated in chocolate and place in the fridge for few hours to set.3 - Cut into squares or oblong bars, pile onto a plate and sprinkle with edible glitter dust and icing sugar.

bubble and squeak10 of 20

Ultimate Boxing Day bubble & squeak

**Preparation time: 15 minutesCooking time: 30 minutesTotal time: 45 minutesServes: 4Ingredients:400g leftover roast potatoes400g leftover veg: carrots, peas, parsnips etc8 rashers smoked streaky bacon, diced100g watercress, half roughly chopped4 medium eggsExtra virgin olive oilSalt and pepperMethod:**1 -Preheat oven to 180°C. In a non-stick frying pan, heat 1 tbsp of oil, then add the bacon and fry until the fat has browned nicely. Add in the leftover potatoes, vegetables and chopped watercress and mash everything together, continuing to fry for about 15 minutes or until the veg has begun to crisp. Add salt and pepper to taste2 -Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper. Remove the potato mix from the pan then shape into four flat rounds. Made an indentation in each one, big enough to contain a cracked egg, then use a fish slice to carefully transfer the rounds onto your baking tray.3 - Carefully crack the eggs onto the centre of the rounds, then place in the oven and bake for about 10 minutes. Serve with a sprinkling of sea salt and black pepper on top and some fresh watercress on the side.

Turkey club sandwiches11 of 20

Turkey club sandwiches

**Preparation time: 10 minutesCooking time: 10 minutesTotal time: 20 minutesServes: 2Ingredients:4 rashers smoked streaky bacon6 slices bread2 tablespoons reduced fat mayonnaise2 tablespoons blackberry & apple chutney100 g (4 oz) cold thinly sliced turkeyHandful salad leaves75g (3 oz) stilton, sliced thinlyMethod:**1 - Grill the bacon until crisp and golden. Lightly toast the bread on both sides then spread one side of each piece of toast lightly with mayonnaise. 2 - Spread the chutney over two slices of toast then top with the turkey and bacon. Add a second layer of toast to each stack, mayo side uppermost. Add salad and crumbled Stilton then add last two slices of toast, mayo side downwards. ~3 - Press sandwiches together then cut into triangles, secure with cocktail sticks and transfer to serving plates. Serve immediately.

Cartwright and Butler12 of 20
CREDIT: Cartwright and Butler

Shortbread cream towers

**Preparation time: 30 minutesCooking time: 0 minutesTotal time: 30 minutesServes: 4Ingredients:**300ml double cream2 - 3 tbsp Irish cream liqueur16 shortbread biscuitsBlack cherry preserve (or your favourite jam!)**Method:**1 - Pour the cream into a large jug along with the liqueur. Using a hand whisk, whip the cream just until it holds, then spoon into a piping bag.2 - Pipe the cream around the edge of one of the biscuits before spooning some cherry preserve in the centre. 3 - Top with another biscuit and repeat the process until all biscuits have been used.

Sainsbury's13 of 20
CREDIT: Sainsbury's

Irish Cream & Hazelnut Espresso Martini

**Preparation time: 10 minutesCooking time: 0 minutesTotal time: 10 minutesServes: 1Ingredients:50ml espresso50ml vodka50ml Irish Cream Liqueur 1⁄2 tbsp hazelnut syrupCoffee beans and cocoa powder to garnishMethod:**1 - Shake all ingredients over ice in cocktail shaker2 - Serve in martini glass and garnish with sprinkle of cocoa powder and whole coffee beans

Sainsbury's14 of 20
CREDIT: Sainsbury's

Spiced Salmon Fish Cakes

**Preparation time: 10 minutesCooking time: 0 minutesTotal time: 10 minutesServes: 2Ingredients:2 tsps of your preferred ground spices e.g. cumin, coriander, mild curry powder 600g potatoes1 red chilli1 egg, beaten100g left-over salmon, flaked or choppedPlain flour, dustingButterPomegranate seeds and chopped coriander to garnishMethod:**1 - Boil the potatoes. Meanwhile, dry fry the blend of spices for a couple of seconds in a large non-stick frying pan. When soft, drain the potatoes and return to the saucepan. Add the spices and chilli with plenty of seasoning, then mash well. When cooled a little, beat in 2 tablespoons of the egg, then carefully stir through the salmon2 - Shape into 4 rough cakes, then coat in plain flour.3 - In the frying pan, melt the butter with the oil. Fry the cakes for about 2 minutes each side until golden. Garnish with pomegranate seeds and chopped coriander. Serve with plain yoghurt or spicy tomato dipping sauce along with salad leaves

Sainsbury's15 of 20
CREDIT: Sainsbury's

Christmas Pudding Apple Crumble

Preparation time: 30 minutesCooking time: 20-30 minutesTotal time: 50-60 minutesServes: 4Ingredients:_Christmas Pudding Crumble_120g butter270g plain flour 350g Christmas pudding_Apple Filling_450g Bramley apples, cut into 1cm cubes 1 tbsp caster sugar1 tsp cinnamon (optional)**Method:**1 - Puree the Christmas pudding in a food blender until completely smooth (N.B pureeing is important as if you just crumble it, it may burn)2 - Cube the butter and add to the flour, followed by the smooth Christmas pudding; rub the butter and Christmas pudding into the flour to create a light breadcrumb texture3 - Place the apples into a bowl and mix in the cinnamon and caster sugar, place in the microwave for approx. 3mins until the apple just begins to soften slightly4 - Transfer into an oven-proof dish and top with the crumble5 - Bake in the oven which has been preheated to 180C for 20-30mins

nachos16 of 20

Branston Turkey nachos

**Preparation time: 5 minutesCooking time: 10 minutesTotal time: 15 minutesServes: 6Ingredients:300g plain corn tortilla chips450g leftover turkey, shredded150g Branston pickle200g cheddar cheese, grated6 spring onions, finely sliced1 red chilli, finely choppedSmall handful of coriander, to serveLime wedges, to serveGuacamole, to serveMethod:**1 - Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/Gas mark 62 - Spread half the tortilla chips over a large oven proof dish, then scatter over half the turkey, spring onions and chilli3 - Dot with half the Branston pickle and scatter over half of the quantity of cheese4 - Repeat with the remaining ingredients then bake in the oven for 8-10 min5 - Garnish with coriander and serve with the lime wedges and guacamole

ChicP17 of 20

Roast caramelised carrot and parsnip hummus

**Preparation time: 15 minutesCooking time: 0 minutesTotal time: 15 minutesServes: 2Ingredients:**100g chickpeas100g veg that you're putting in (a little extra is fine!)2 tbsp Olive oil2 tbsp tahini2 tbsp lemon juice2 tbsp water1/2 clove garlicSalt & pepper to taste **Method:**1 - Warm up the left over vegetables and once it's soft, let it cool, then blend2 - Add all the cooked chickpeas, followed by the rest of the ingredients 3 - Add a little more lemon juice, olive oil or water if the hummus is too thick and you want a lighter consistency

Love Food Hate Waste18 of 20
CREDIT: Love Food Hate Waste

Christmas leftover pizza

**Preparation time: 30 minutesCooking time: 15 minutesTotal time: 45 minutesServes: 4Ingredients:1 packet pre-made puff pastry8 tbsp tomato passata6 tbsp cranberry sauce1 ball fresh Mozzarella - or your leftover Christmas cheese!Turkey, sausages, stuffing, veg – any leftover Christmas dinner you fancy2 tbsp fresh basil leaves, tornA drizzle of olive oilSalt and pepperMethod:**1 - Remove the pastry from the fridge about 10 minutes before you plan to use it, then roll it out onto a floured surface to about a 1cm thick rectangle. If you're using a pre-rolled pack, you can leave it on its parchment paper and place directly on the oven tray2 - Spread the cranberry sauce onto the pastry, then top with shredded turkey, roasted veg, chunks of stuffing or any other leftovers3 - Tear up the ball of mozzarella OR your leftover Christmas cheese and place pieces evenly across the top of the pizza4 - Drizzle the pizza with olive oil and bake at 180C/160C fan for around 12-15 minutes, or until the pastry has turned golden brown5 - Remove from the oven, drizzle again with olive oil and add torn basil leaves, and salt and pepper to taste

Love Food Hate Waste19 of 20
CREDIT: Love Food Hate Waste

Chocolate, orange and mince pie brownies

**Preparation time: 35 minutesCooking time: 25 minutesTotal time: 60 minutesServes: 12Ingredients:70g milk chocolate, roughly chopped70g dark chocolate, roughly chopped120g unsalted butter100g plain flour5 eggs½ tsp vanilla essence255g soft brown sugar6 or so leftover mince piesZest and juice of ½ a clementine, satsuma or tangerineMethod:**1 - Preheat the oven to 190C/170C fan. Melt half of the milk and dark chocolate together with the butter in a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water2 - In a separate bowl, beat together the eggs and vanilla, then add the sugar. Add the melted chocolate and butter to the egg mixture, then sift in the flour and fold gently until just combined3 - Roughly chop your mince pies, reserving a few pieces for decoration. Add the pieces to the brownie mix, along with the clementine zest and juice, and the rest of the chocolate4 - Pour the brownie mix into the baking tray and top with the remaining mince pie pieces. Bake for 25 minutes or until the centre is just set5 - Cool completely in the tray before turning out and slicing into squares. Dust with icing sugar for some extra festive flair!

Weber20 of 20

Baked Alaska

**Preparation time: 15 minutesCooking time: 10 minutesTotal time: 25 minutesServes: 3Ingredients:400g Christmas pudding2 tbsp brandy500ml vanilla ice cream2 egg whites75g caster sugarMethod:**1 - In a bowl, crumble the Christmas pudding. Add the Brandy and ice cream. Mix thoroughly2 - Divide the mixture between three ramekin dishes, cover and place in the freezer for at least 2 hours3 - Whisk the egg whites until firm. Gradually add the sugar until the mixture forms stiff peaks4 - Divide the whisked egg whites between the three ramekin dishes, and finish by using the back of the spoon to create peaks5 - Pre-heat the barbecue to a medium, in-direct heat. Add the Christmas Pudding Alaska's and bake for 10 minutes, or until peaks are golden brown. Serve immediately

But research commissioned by Aunt Bessie's has found that despite the average Brit rating their Christmas dinner-making skills a seven out of 10, most of us will normally get SOMETHING wrong on the big day.

Remember, everyone - we're only human!

One in 10 people end up cremating their roast potatoes, and one in 10 ALWAYS forget the gravy.

WATCH: Phil Vickery reveals the secret to making the PERFECT Christmas turkey on This Morning

Some forgetful people admitted to leaving giblets inside the turkey - and even forgetting to put the oven on!

Shockingly, 3% of those surveyed have even had to call the fire brigade after their Christmas pudding went up in flames.

But surprisingly, more people are worried about burning the roasties than ruining arguably the best bit of any Christmas meal - the pigs in blankets.

These are the top 15 WORST kitchen disasters that could happen when cooking Christmas dinner


The 15 WORST kitchen disasters to happen when cooking Christmas dinner

gravy1 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

1 - Lumpy gravy

carrots2 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

2 - Over-boiling the carrots

drop3 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

3 - Dropping food on the floor while serving up

sprouts4 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

4 - Under-boiling the sprouts

gravy5 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

5 - Forgetting to serve gravy

potatoes6 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

6 - Cremating the roast potatoes while waiting for the turkey to cook

potatoes7 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

7 - Roast potatoes ending up all soggy

pigs blankets8 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

8 - Burning the pigs in blankets

pigs blankets9 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

9 - Failing to put the pigs in blankets in the oven

turkey10 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

10 - Accidentally leaving the giblets inside the turkey

turkey11 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

11 - Realising the turkey won’t actually fit inside the oven

oven12 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

12 - Forgetting to put the oven on altogether

turkey13 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

13 - Carving the turkey to find out it is still raw

oven14 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

14 - Oven stopped working halfway through cooking

pudding15 of 15
CREDIT: Shutterstock

15 - Turning the Christmas pudding into a fireball when trying to light it

**Have you ever made any of these grave errors when cooking Christmas dinner? Let us know over on **Facebook and Twitter.


Christmas DIY: 25 gorgeous Christmas decorations you can make yourself

50 CRACKING Christmas baby names and their meanings

Here's how to make the PERFECT Christmas Eve box

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us