For many of us it seems home won't be where the heart is for Christmas dinner this year, it's restaurants all the way

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Image: The perfect family Christmas: in a restaurant

Via: Eastenders / BBC /

EastEnder Bianca puts the 'grrr' into gravy

If the idea of Christmas approaching fills you with dread then you might be one of the thousands of Brits who’ve decided to pack in the home-cooked meal and just eat out this year.


In the interests of not clouting their nosy mother-in-law over the head with a Christmas cracker many have caved and shifted the burden of entertaining onto the shoulders of their local eateries. Many pubs and restuarants are reporting they’re already booked up to the nines with Christmas Day customers this year. have reported a whopping 150% increase since 2011 in punters booking on Christmas day. Chief exec Joe Steele told the Telegraph: "Boxing Day used to be a more popular choice for consumers to eat out on during the festive season because Christmas Day has traditionally been about sharing a meal with friends and family at home."


But generation microwave don’t fancy the faff, he says. “We have seen a significant shift in consumer habits as people are now becoming more open to eating out on Christmas Day itself to avoid the stress and expense of cooking at home."


For families keen to avoid dry turkey and fraught games of charades, restaurants are increasingly staying open on Christmas Day and serving up less than traditional dinners.


While the roast is still (obvs) the most popular option, Joe from Bookatable says other cuisines are creeping in. Apparently American-style "steaks and grills" now make up 14% of their bookings, while French nosh makes up another 7%.


If the idea of having frogs' legs and snails for Christmas fills you with horror then why not try having a stab at these mouthwatering Christmas bakes?