Come Christmas, turkey has had its day. (Or week, depending on how many leftovers remain post-Thanksgiving!) So give a red meat roast a moment in the spotlight this holiday. It's the perfect centerpiece for a meal that starts with a soul-warming whiskey cocktail and is rounded out by cheesy, hearty sides.
Be sure to invite a crowd to dig in to this hearty menu. Or don't—you won't mind keeping the leftovers to yourself this time!
Before you start cooking, read our four-step method for perfectly-roasted beef.
Entree: Tomato-Herb Pot Roast
Tomato sauce and paste, plus a glug of red wine, plenty of herbs, and aromatic veggies, make up the uber-flavorful braising sauce for this moist and tender pot roast.
Sauteed beans act as the Italian-inspired bed for the roast to rest on come dinnertime. Top with fresh parsley and shredded Parm and prepare to dig into a comfort food masterpiece.
Get the recipe: Tomato-Herb Pot Roast
Salad: Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Green Onion Vinaigrette
The top three reasons why you should make this Brussels sprout salad for a light side as part of your Roast beef Christmas menu:
- The zesty vinaigrette comes together easily in your blender.
- Shredded sprouts recipes are a cinch since it's now possible to find them in your supermarket's refrigerated produce section (yes, already cleaned and sliced).
- The completed salad can chill out in the refrigerator for up to four hours before your dinner.
Ingredient Swap: If you don't have—or don't like—Brussels sprouts, try shredded napa cabbage as this salad's base instead.
Get the recipe: Shaved Brussels Sprouts with Green Onion Vinaigrette
Celebrate sprouts season! Learn how to roast, saute, and broil Brussels sprouts for a delicious and nutritious side.
Stuffing: Garlic Rosemary Dressing
Studded with red (cranberries) and green (celery, rosemary, sage) ingredients, this dressing will fit right in on any Christmas dinner menu. We like it paired with roast beef because the garlic and onions mimic the flavors in the entree. Plus, the toasted bread cubes can be used to soak up every last drop of the tomato braising sauce.
Get the recipe: Garlic Rosemary Dressing
Vegetable Side Dish: Roasted Cauliflower with Jalapeno Creamed Spinach
While you could serve this as a vegetarian entree on a weeknight, you can also add it to your roast beef Christmas menu as a filling vegetable side. Sear cauliflower "steaks" in a cast-iron pan, then roast in the oven while you prepare the spicy creamed spinach. If your crew doesn't like things too spicy, remove the seeds from the jalapenos before adding them.
Get the recipe: Roasted Cauliflower with Jalapeno Creamed Spinach
Don't damage that family heirloom. Discover the proper way to clean a cast-iron skillet.
Potato Side Dish: Parmesan Potato Gratin
Bacon, Parmesan, whipping cream, and more; this serves-a-crowd side features layers of rich ingredients to give you the cozy holiday vibe. To achieve a perfectly golden-brown crust, crank up the oven temperature from 325 to 400 for the final 15 to 20 minutes of baking time.
Get the recipe: Parmesan Potato Gratin
Dessert: Cran-Marnier Truffles
Chocolate, red meat, red wine...certain strong flavors just beg to be paired together on one holiday menu. Grand Marnier, dried cranberries, and plenty of chocolate gives these truffles their name.
Make-Ahead Tip: Store truffles, minus the cocoa powder topping, in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or in the freezer for up to one month prior to the holiday. On the day of the event, allow to defrost 30 minutes, dust with cocoa powder, and serve.
Get the recipe: Cran-Marnier Truffles
Drink: Blushing Maple Cocktail
Put your mixology skills to good use and muddle up kumquat-cranberry cocktails for your guests as they arrive. Since it comes with a rosemary sprig garnish, this red and green drink is particularly fitting for Christmas!
Big Batch Upgrade: Muddle the 16 kumquats, 32 fresh cranberries, 4 rosemary sprigs, and 4 ounces of lemon juice in a pitcher. Add bourbon, syrup, and ice. Stir thoroughly and strain through a colander into a new pitcher. Toss a few more pieces of fresh fruit and allow guests to serve themselves in ice-filled glasses.
Get the recipe: Blushing Maple Cocktail
Wine Pairing Tips
If you'd rather serve your roast beef dinner with wine than a cocktail, try one of these varieties that can stand up to the strong flavors of the red meat entree:
Bordeaux - This red blend, most commonly dominated by cabernet grapes, is lightly fruity and full of earthy qualities that pair nicely with red meat.
Shiraz - The spicy, peppery components are strong enough so this wine doesn't get lost amidst the roast's rich flavors.
Merlot - With a nice balance of ripe berries and warm spices, merlot is a crowd-pleasing option for many beef entrees.