Top 10 Foods to Buy for Christmas in Rome

The Roman Christmas dishes are so delicious and unique. From the natural softness of the traditional panettone to  the authentic deliciousness of pasta and the sugary pleasure of nougat,  the Roman Christmas is rich in food and flavors.

What are the top 10 Meals You should buy for Christmas in Rome?

Every Roman family has their own traditions when it comes to the long-awaited Christmas meal. Some people prefer a meat-based Christmas dinner, while others focus on traditional Roman ingredients, including pasta dishes with authentic sauces.

1.  Panettone

Image by Schor

The Panettone is a typical Roman dessert that has also become a global Christmas favorite. A Christmas is not complete without a panettone at the table. With origins in Milan, this sweet baked dolce features a soft texture, chocolate chips or dried fruity pieces inside. The panettone has a cupola shape and a cylindrical base.

Where to buy freshly baked panettone?

Biscottificio Innocenti Via della Luce 21 Tel 065803926
Roscioli Via dei Giubbonari 21 Tel 066875287

2. Meat.

One of the most frequent entrée dishes for Christmas in Rome is meat. What’s your favorite protein? We recommended sausages or roasted veal to add to your Christmas table.

Meat at the table is a must for a celebratory Christmas in Rome, though in the past, a Christmas dinner in the Eternal City was much lighter.

3. Artisan cheeses.

Image by Big Apple Nosh

Hand-made local cheeses will be the perfect additions to your Christmas table. For your ultimate dining pleasure, add some cured meats such as prosciutto or salami to your plate, and combine it all with local marmalades and fresh, locally-grown fruits.

For your Roman-inspired Christmas table, you can buy cheeses from various Italian regions, such as Florence or Palermo. You can bring out their extra flavor with an accompanying glass of Pinot Noir.  If you want to bring more antipasti to your table, the Roman Christmas ideas call for some olives and artichoke at the table.

5. Pasta.

Image by Italian Food Forever

An iconic Italian meal, pasta is the ‘’go-to’’ choice even on the Christmas day. If you want to celebrate your Christmas with traditional Italian vibes, stock your kitchen with original or stuffed pasta, such as Raviolli.

We recommend that you cook Sardinia, home-style Raviolli stuffed with saffron, nutmeg, and sheep cheese.

6. Grilled Eel:

For your Christmas in Rome, we advise that you stock your fridge with some eel. Grilled eel is an excellent way to make your Christmas in Rome truly authentic. We recommend grilling the fish for smoother digestion. Grilling also removes extra fat from the meal, as eel is excessively fatty. The grilled eel is a high-priced food option in Japan, and is  known for its unique flavor and stamina-providing ‘’superpowers.’’

In Rome, various types of grilled fish are the preferred Christmas dish for many Roman families who frequently opt for fish dishes to mark the holiday time.

7. Torrone.

Torrone, Image by Tastemade

And here comes the yummy dessert in the form of torrone (nougat candy).

Roasted pistachios and almonds make up for an original nougat candy. You can buy it or make it home.

Put it in a fancy box and bring it to the Christmas table to introduce some creative delish to your Christmas meal. Or you can just give it as a gift to someone who enjoys Italian dolcetti in a Christmas box.

The nougat candy has authentic Italian dolci taste and is associated with a true Roman Christmas experience.

Pasticceria Valzani Via del Moro 37 Tel 065803792

8. Cotechino e Lenticchie

Sausage and pork with spices and lentils is what this dish is made of. You can buy it ready or prepare at home. This dish is consumed in the period between Christmas and New Years to bring joy and luck for the next year.

Volpetti in Testaccio is the place to purchase lentils and cotechino.

Volpetti Via Marmorata 47 Tel 065742352
Monday-Saturday, 8:00-2:00 pm, 5:00-8:15 pm

9.  Pangiallo

Image by Agrodolci

What is a Christmas in Rome without its authentic sweet fantasy Pangiallo,a mix of dried fruit, orange peels and honey.  The Pangiallo can be served with your favorite Italian espresso after your Christmas dinner or lunch.

With roots in the imperial age, this dessert is a paradise mix of sweet and spice flavors. And it matches a Christmas extravaganza well with its appealing look.

Via del Moro, 37a/b, 00153 Roma RM, Italy – Pasticceria Valzani

10. Salted Cod – Baccala

Bacalla has been a Christmas dish for many years now, and appeals to those willing to dine on the lighter side. It is also the preferred choice for Christmas tables in Spain and Portugal, and numerous other countries. Now it has been one of the most popular Christmas favorites up to date.

The salted cod is suitable to be served as both an appetizer as it’s a main dish.

Christmas in Rome is a particularly exciting experience. Featuring a generous table with meats, fish, oysters, salads, and eel, a Christmas in Rome can a truly spectacular.

Do not forget that one of he things that make a Roman Christmas special is the exchange of gifts, the various Christmas trees and the overall festive spirit. Also do not forget the dolci at the table – from the panettone, to the nougat and the artisan Roman chocolate.

Add some pandoro and biscotti with a cup of aromatic strong espresso and your Christmas in Rome is complete now. Also, we recommend red or sparkling champagne as the beverage of choice or an apperol spritz or a martini.