One of the lesser celebrated aspects of Christmas is the array of flavors that abound in meals, desserts, and delicacies around the holiday. Delight your palate by embracing Christmas flavors, either by themselves or in trendy new Christmas recipes.
Here are the best flavors for Christmas and some of the best ways to enjoy them.
The Top Christmas Spices
The top four Christmas flavors are spices that create memorable sweet or savory Christmas dishes. A dash of Christmas spice turns classic sweets into festive holiday desserts. These spices can also inject a bit of Christmas spirit into your traditional Christmas dinner.
The icy mint delight tantalizes your tastebuds with a titillating tingle. The red and white stripes embrace traditional Christmas colors, making the flavor a treat for multiple senses.
Enjoy peppermint in tasty candy canes, or add it to your favorite guilty pleasures. Peppermint mochas are big hits at coffee shops this time of year, and peppermint ice cream is sure to be a crowd-pleasing dessert.
The ferocious fire of cinnamon sizzles on its own in candies like red hots and hot tamales. Though the heat is too intense for a fabulous Christmas flavor, adding subtle hints of the searing spice creates succulent desserts. Make snickerdoodle cookies or add a dash of spice to your hot cocoa for the best use of the alluring herb.
Don’t discount cinnamon in your savory dishes. Add a dash to your Christmas ham, pork chops, or sweet potatoes for a mouthwatering meal everyone will love.
Nutmeg gives pumpkin pie that little extra something making it so yummy. The Christmas spice also flavors mulled wines and egg nogs, injecting these iconic drinks with a splash of holiday spirit.
Sprinkle nutmeg atop coffee and hot chocolate for a magical treat, or use it in savory dishes like potatoes and squash. Many eastern cultures use nutmeg yearlong in curries, stews, and soups, so consider borrowing those recipes for a fantastic Christmas feast.
Clove is typical in Christmas spice blends for pies, drinks, and cookies. The aromatic herb has a spicy, woodsy scent and suggests images of cozy winter cabins. Clove and nutmeg often work together to create the perfect spicy-sweet Christmas treat.
Pair clove with lemon or orange for delightful Christmas cookies, or use it to spice up your Christmas ham.
Christmas Flavors to Embrace this Holiday Season
There’s more to Christmas flavor than spice. These four traditional Christmas treats are flavors to savor this holiday season.
Eggnog makes its appearance around Thanksgiving and is prevalent through the Christmas holiday. The iconic holiday treat is a savory blend of milk, cream, and eggs, and available pre-made at most grocery stores.
Add a little cinnamon to your nog for a bit of spice, or mix it with rum for a delicious Christmas spirit.
Nothing says Christmas like Gingerbread cookies. The delightful treat combines spicy and sweet for an irresistible flavor combination.
Make gingerbread cookies as part of your Christmas bake-off, or opt for a pre-made gingerbread house kit that provides everything you need for the perfect edible Christmas decoration. Gingerbread also makes for a great pie crust, and many coffee shops embrace the flavor in their holiday coffee offerings.
For a genuinely nostalgic Christmas flavor, consider harkening back to the days of yore with sugar plums. These delicious Christmas candies are simple sugar balls, often containing a splash of spice.
Traditional sugar plums didn’t contain any fruit. They were hard candies made mostly of sugar. However, over the ages, the name has shifted to include a variety of confectionaries, often made with chocolate, fruit, nuts, spices, and sugar.
White chocolate is a decadent treat all year, but the flavor explodes in popularity around Christmas. The smooth confection pairs well with peppermint creating the perfect mocha or the delightful pleasure of peppermint bark.
Consider rolling your white chocolate-covered pretzels in smashed candy canes for the perfect salty-sweet combination.
Cranberry sauce is a fixture at many Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. The tart fruit adds a tangy kick to roasted meats and pairs well with chicken or turkey.
Cranberry is also a perfect fruit for Christmas punches and holiday cocktails.
How to Embrace Christmas Flavors
Want to make the most of seasonal flavors this Christmas? Here are some ideas on using these flavors to enhance your holiday season.
Make Christmas Cookies
You can use any Christmas spices to enhance your Christmas cookies. Opt for Snickerdoodle, orange clove, or white chocolate chip cookies this year to explore Christmas flavors with various baked desserts.
Eggnog with rum is a go-to Christmas cocktail. Embrace some of the other quintessential Christmas flavors with a peppermint martini, mulled wine, or hot buttered rum.
Add cinnamon and nutmeg to your cocktails made with cream or a dash of clove to your Christmas punches to add a bit of spice. Use cranberry in your mixed drinks to give your cocktails a bright red Christmas color and balance the sweetness.
You can quickly transform coffees, teas, and hot chocolates into magical Christmas drinks. Add a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg to hot chocolate, blend white chocolate and peppermint for the perfect mocha, and inject a pinch of clove into your black tea.
Many coffee shops embrace holiday flavors with eggnog lattes and gingerbread mochas, so if you don’t want to make your own, head to your favorite café for an injection of Christmas flavor into your morning drink.
Thrill your senses this year by adding Christmas scents to your holiday décor. Although using the Christmas flavors in recipes is the top way to make your house smell like Christmas, you can also opt for scented candles, incense, and plug-ins.
Choose scents you can’t cook, like evergreen, woody forest, and burning fireplace, to complement the aromas of your flavors.
More Christmas Candies
Christmas is the time to savor delicious candies. Here are some other fantastic sweets to indulge in this holiday season:
- Cordial cherries
- Chocolate Truffles
- Christmas Gum Drops
- Peppermint Bark
- Peppermint hard candies
- Lifesavers Gummy Wreaths
- M&Ms Holiday Candies
- York Peppermint Patties
- Andies Thin Mints
- Fannie May Mint Meltaways
Delight Your Tastebuds this Christmas!
There are numerous ways to delight your tastebuds and indulge in the fantastic flavors of Christmas. Embrace the tastes and smells of Christmas to give you and yours a magical holiday season.
Melanie Allen is an American journalist and happiness expert. She has bylines on MSN, the AP News Wire, Wealth of Geeks, Media Decision, and numerous media outlets across the nation. She covers a wide range of topics centered around self-actualization and the quest for a fulfilling life.