A Jamaican Christmas

A Jamaican Christmas Many people are entrenched in their ways when it comes to Christmas. They have traditions that run back generations, and they swear that they would never change. One of those likely scenarios involves the Christmas meal. Some people say that they would never change the meal that they have on Christmas. However, we feel that after you learn about this Jamaican Christmas dinner menu, you may be more inclined to change your mind and try something new this year!     A Typical Jamaican Christmas Meal Whereas some cultures enjoy a large meal on Christmas Eve, Jamaicans choose to feast on Christmas Day. Typically the meal occurs sometime in the mid-afternoon or early evening. The meal is a feast fit for kings, as there tends to be a lot of people at these gatherings. Each guest is responsible for bringing their favorite dish to the meal, making a small contribution to the holiday table.     Although side dishes can vary, one of the things that you can expect to see a lot of is Gungo Peas and Rice. This is a Christmas variation on a traditional Jamaican dish. The dish is often made of rice and red kidney beans that are lightly seasoned. However, come Christmas time, Jamaicans replace the red kidney beans with pigeon peas or green gungo peas.

The standard meat for a Jamaican Christmas meal is either cured goat or ham. Those who live in the countryside typically eat goat for their meal. The meat is usually cured for a few days with salt before it is boiled and roasted. Ham is also quite popular during Christmas time as well, but mainly amongst upper-class Jamaicans.

A shared dessert for a Jamaican Christmas is Christmas Pudding. This is a cake that is baked specially for the holidays. The cake is loaded with fruits that have been soaked in either rum or wine. Not only does this taste great, but it makes for a sweet treat at the end of a night, especially when it is paired with the traditional Jamaican drink


Sorrel Sorrel is a holiday drink that is quite popular among Jamaicans. They take a sorrel flower, which is rich in vitamin C and copper, and infuse it with ginger. Then, they add sugar for taste and spike the mixture with white rum. The result is a sweet, delicious drink that is worth looking forward to with the upcoming holiday. Without the sugar, the drink would taste tangy and would likely be undrinkable.


One of the primary reasons why sorrel became so popular around Christmas is because the flower is harvested in December. What likely originated as convenience grew into a tradition. Many Jamaicans have the sorrel plant in their backyard, where they can pick it fresh daily.

Try Something New This Holiday

One of the best parts about the holidays is becoming one with others. One of the best ways to do that is by accepting other’s Christmas traditions. This year, why not try something new and treat yourself to a Jamaican Christmas meal?