The ‘ber months have officially started, and so has one of the longest Christmas celebrations in the world! You know what they say, Christmas in the Philippines starts in September. So before we dive into this delicious feast of a Noche Buena food list, indulge us a tune and sing, “Pasko na naman, o kay sarap ng handaan!”
As far as Christmas handaans go, the most important to Pinoys is the Noche Buena. Traditionally, Noche Buena is the overflowing feast families and friends partake of after hearing midnight mass on Christmas day. Fret not if you’ve never hosted your own Noche Buena yet — our go-to Filipino Noche Buena food ideas are guaranteed friendly to cooks and chefs of all levels. All you have to do is follow step-by-step. So, start practicing these easy Noche Buena Filipino Christmas food recipes at home! The earlier you start, the more chances of perfecting them, and maybe even tweaking them to suit the yuletide party theme you have in mind.
Now you know, this Christmas, Noche Buena food won’t be a problem. In fact, it might be why your loved ones insist that you helm the kitchen every Pasko season.
1. Sweet and salty Classic Embutido
It makes sense that Embutido is a Noche Buena food staple because Christmas spreads all over the globe come prepared with festive sausages or meatloafs. For Pinoys, the equivalent would be generously packed Embutido, characterized by savory ground pork made sweet with every bite thanks to raisins. Try this no-fail classic Embutido recipe that’s stuffed with hard-boiled eggs and seasoned to perfection with Knorr Liquid Seasoning. Here’s a chicken embutido alternative in case you’re avoiding pork overload during the holidays.
2. Beginner-friendly Lechon Manok
If you’re no stranger to Pinoy parties, then you’re no stranger to inihaw delights like Lechon Manok. But it’s Christmas, you’re having guests over, and you can’t be bothered to man the grill as well — unless somebody will do that for you. You can marinate your chicken overnight in a mixture of Knorr Liquid Seasoning, calamansi juice, brown sugar, lemon lime soda, and ground pepper, then just pop it in the oven, turbo broiler, or ever-trusty air fryer to cook. Easy peasy like our Lechon Manok recipe.
3. Manamis-namis na Christmas Ham
What makes Christmas ham distinctly Pinoy? When it’s salty, sweet, and fragrant of course! We have the perfect Pinoy Christmas Ham recipe that will give you exactly that, thanks to pink salt, bay leaves, sugar, and good ol’ Knorr Pork Cube. Most people shy away from making their own ham because they think that curing meat is reserved for the more experienced chefs. That’s far from the truth! This beginner-friendly Christmas ham recipe is easy to follow, but keep in mind you’ll need at least 4 days to cure it and let the flavor seep into the pork.
4. Relyenong Bangus para kay Lolo at Lola
Okay, that heading was a little presumptive. Relyenong Bangus isn’t only a treat for your elderly guests, although we won’t deny that they might make a beeline for this healthy Noche Buena option! It’s a great pick for pescatarians and generally, people who would prefer a lighter protein fix to go with their Christmas salad. Learn how to prepare this Relyenong Bangus recipe in two hours or less.
5. Pancit Canton na Bagay sa Pasko
What’s a Pinoy party without pancit?! For it to be a Noche Buena hit, though, you have to make sure it’s oozing with flavors that keep Filipino foodies coming back for seconds. This Pancit Canton recipe that’s perfect for your Pasko feast combines the seasoning powers of Knorr Pork Cube and Knorr Liquid Seasoning, for a guaranteed party on the palate! Try it out yourself.
6. Pinoy-Style Salad para healthy
It has been all protein-packed dishes so far — something that meat lovers and keto dieters will rejoice in. But of course, we need our fair share of fiber and greens, too. Sure, Noche Buena calls for a gastronomic celebration, but let’s not leave out other food groups. You’ll want to cover go, grow, and glow food! For the latter, we’ve got just the thing: a Pinoy-Style Salad that will make health buffs happy. What’s great about this recipe is that it’s so versatile. You can make any salad more Filipino in so many ways: top it with queso de bola, add some local greens like alugbati or pako, make Pinoy dressing with bagoong or tuyo — the possibilities are endless! But our Pinoy-Style Caesar Salad gives you somewhere to start.
7. Malasang Morcon na Hinahanap-hanap Mo
Another Christmas Noche Buena food staple is Morcon. And why not? What’s not to love about a hearty beef dish that’s stuffed with hotdogs, pickles, and carrots for starters. Morcon tends to be flexible, so feel free to customize your stuffing, too. We recommend experimenting months ahead if you want to do this. Perfect our basic Morcon recipe first then feel free to improvise once you get the hang of it, so you know exactly how to prepare your Morcon on Christmas Eve.
8. Maligayang Crispy Tadyang
Make your Noche Buena food list even more special with a crispy beef dish that goes well with holiday tipple! No need to feel guilty about your Christmas Eve feast; it only happens once a year! If you really wish to, you can make fat-laden beef less sinful by tenderizing the meat by boiling it and removing the fatty residue that appears on top of the water. Check out our Christmas Crispy Tadyang recipe for a step-by-step tenderizing guide.
9. Lechon but make it Sinigang
Among the popular Noche Buena food ideas on this list, lechon needs absolutely no introduction. It’s the go-to dish for Pinoys, when they want to celebrate a milestone or occasion. It belongs on any Noche Buena spread. Dare we say it’s often the culinary centerpiece in any party. But why not make your Noche Buena unique by preparing this year’s lechon with a twist? This Sinigang na Lechon recipe powered by Knorr Sinigang sa Sampalok Mix Original is a soupy take on lechon — perfect for keeping warm during December’s colder days.
10. Meaty Spaghetree para sa mga bagets
Here’s a spaghetti recipe that will delight both adults and children! When we say Meaty Spaghetree, it looks exactly like it sounds: Pinoy Spaghetti (yes, sweet and salty!) twirled into the perfect serving per person, made to resemble a Christmas tree! You can even top your Spaghetrees with some Christmas decor. It doesn’t have to be complicated; feel free to spruce up some toothpicks and poke that through your pasta trees.
11. Fruity Macaroni Salad na paborito ng lahat
Last but not least, dessert! Of course, ours is the winning entry: macaroni na, dessert pa! Only in the Philippines is macaroni sweet by default, especially during the yuletide season. This creamy dessert salad is essentially a fruit salad, only with macaroni. Here’s how you make generous servings of Creamy Sweet Macaroni Salad with fruit cocktail and Lady’s Choice Mayonnaise. If you need backup, Buko Pandan desserts are always a crowd favorite over the ber holidays. Take your pick from these options.
We’ve covered just about everything except for the best finger food for Noche Buena. Don’t worry, this Pinoy appetizer guide will walk you through pica-pica food ideas that are as affordable as they are yummy and easy to make. Are you ready for your pinakamasarap na Pasko yet? We are, and we hope we’re invited to the party!