Cooking Christmas Lunch Aboard

In the run-up to the big day, try and do your advance shopping whilst your boat is moored within an easy trolley run of the shops, or a suitable drop-off point for an online shopping service. Tinned food and drinks, bottled water (for your fussy guests who won’t drink from the water tank), root vegetables, and anything alcoholic is always much heavier than you think, especially after a walk along the pontoon on a freezing cold day.

Buy the perishable goods as late as you can, it saves on fridge space which can be used to pre-chill drinks. When you need the fridge space, stash these chilled drinks in the coolest part of your boat (the bilges are always a great option) as with any luck they will stay cold, especially if insulated in newspaper or similar. If the weather is cold you don’t need to worry so much as you can use the free “outdoor” fridge but be mindful of security. There are some Grinches out there who will spoil your Christmas given half a chance.

Go boating

Stocked up, with water tanks full, it’s time to take advantage of the festive bubble period and go boating!  Whatever you are roasting, whether it’s the traditional turkey or something else, it will do well as a very slow roast. Grab some hot drinks (we always love hot chocolate and mince pies and cruise somewhere lovely for Christmas Day).

The coast is a perfect place to relax and over the holiday season you’ll find passing boaters are even friendlier than usual.  Life and Christmas dinner is always better by water.

Christmas Dinner

What can be better than sitting down to a full roast dinner, but on a boat we are little bit short on space – take a look at a few tips and suggestions of how to make a perfect roast even in the tiniest of spaces.


It can sometimes be a bit of a chore, but you have to get organized and get your timings right, trying to peel carrots, whilst making gravy, taking the roast out of the oven and putting in the Yorkshires could lead to a bit of a muddle – let’s talk timing…


For this example we will roast a Chicken, make some roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings, gravy, carrots and broccoli (if you’re feeling bold or bored or just want to impress or make the meat go further then you can also make Bread sauce from scratch!).

Let’s get cooking…

If you have a fridge on board great, this will save a lot of time. Prepare you vegetables the night before and place in the fridge, the same with the Yorkshire pudding mix. Time for a quick cup of tea or a tipple…

Now onto the…

If its been in the fridge all night, take it out before cooking to allow it to get up to room temperature.  Let us know the dimensions of your bird and we can check the size of the oven on board!

But what about the potatoes and possibly only one shelf in your oven…  Well they all go in together.


For great roast potatoes you will need to boil them for about 5 minutes before putting them in the oven.


What vegetables you have with your roast is really up to you, brightly coloured vegetables look good on the plate.  In a small galley, with minimal cooking space think about combinations that can be cooked together – thinly sliced carrots will take the same time to cook as broccoli, this is a great time to use a pressure cooker or bring a steamer that goes on top of a pan. You can of course also pop veg around your bird in the oven too

So, the chicken and veg and potatoes are now in the oven, the rest of the veg is prepared and the Yorkshire pudding mix is ready – now what?  Well you can go away and do something else for a while (washing up or a game with the family), as so far it’s only taken you about 20 minutes!

Now is the perfect opportunity to make some bread sauce.

Don’t forget to baste your chicken, and turn your potatoes….  if you’ve made pigs in blankets, turn them as well.

Once you take the chicken and potatoes out of the oven ramp up the heat HOT HOT HOT…  put your Yorkshire pudding tray in, take it out when it is hot and dribble a bit of oil into it, put it back in the oven to get the oil HOT.  Carefully remove it, stir your mix, add to pan and return to oven, about 25 minutes. 

See it wasn’t all that difficult…  Time in total about 1¹/²hours.