The 10 Most Stomach-Churning Traditional Christmas Foods

The 10 Most Stomach-Churning Traditional Christmas Foods

Listen, we know that every family has its Christmas traditions. And we're not going to criticize your mom for serving the same Christmas dishes that she grew up eating. But as some point you need to take a step back and look at some traditional Christmas foods out of context. You'll probably realize that they just aren't very good. 


The term "ambrosia" is loosely defined as "the food of the gods." We have a feeling that the gods would be very disappointed by its terrestrial manifestation, which is basically canned oranges and pineapple mixed with marshmallows and coconut, all bound together with something creamy, like whipped cream, sour cream, cream cheese, or cottage cheese. We have so many questions. 

Carrot Salad

If the primary component of a side dish is grated carrots, it's time to go back to the drawing board. And most recipes include several cups of mayonnaise, which cancels out any nutritious qualities. 

Christmas Pudding

We know that this is a very common traditional dessert in the UK, but in our opinion it has a few things going against it. One, it's so dense that it can be used as a doorstop. Two, it's so loaded with mushy raisins that if you were to actually try to pick the raisins out of it there would be barely anything left. Three, it's insanely, unbearably sweet. Four, it's traditionally made with a whole lot of beef fat, making it a greasy mess. 


Here's a challenge: This Christmas, drink an entire 12-ounce glass of eggnog. Not the stuff in the carton, but real eggnog made with egg yolks, sugar, milk, and heavy cream. Wait a few minutes, and let me know how you feel. The answer will probably be "ill," because thick, sludgy eggnog is the unhealthiest beverage on earth, if you can even call it a beverage. It's like drinking four servings of crème brûlée. We'll just have some bourbon, thanks. 


One of the culinary world's most infamous laughingstocks, fruitcake is one of those foods that very few people actually enjoy. A super-dense loaf of dried fruits and spices, the tart, sickly sweet "cake" is in reality more like a brick. We'll pass.

Gingerbread Houses

We're not talking about actual gingerbread here, which is plenty tasty, or even gingerbread cookies, which everyone thinks is what gingerbread is even though they're wrong. We're talking about gingerbread houses, assembled by children with dirty hands and left sitting out on the kitchen counter for a week. Once you turn something into a house, it's no longer food. 

Green Bean Casserole

Canned green beans mixed with canned cream of mushroom soup, topped with packaged fried potatoes? Unless you're celebrating Christmas in a fallout shelter, find a tastier side dish.

Jell-O Molds

If there's a dish that involves Jell-O in any form on your Christmas table, we highly suggest you reconsider. A holdover from the 1950s when molds were in vogue, today they're just bizarrely jiggly, artificially flavored vessels for other foods that nobody would eat.


A traditional Nordic Christmas dish, lutefisk is made by taking dried and salted whitefish and rehydrating it in lye water, resulting in a very gelatinous finished product. There's plenty of fresh fish at the grocery store; just serve that instead!

Mince Pies

The "mince" in the name of this British pie is short for "mincemeat," because original recipes called for dried fruit, brandy, spices, chopped up beef or venison, and plenty of suet (fat found around the kidneys). Over the years, the meat was mercifully removed from the majority of recipes, but the remaining filling, very similar to Christmas pudding, is still what you might call an acquired taste.