Looking for the perfect show stopping dish to please your holiday guests?

Stop scouring the recipe books for the perfect main course and check out these creative big plates that will feed a hungry holiday crowd. We've got you covered with a variety of dishes for meat lovers and a few for the vegetarians.  

From tried and true favorites like prime rib and roast chicken to an updated take on chicken pot pie, these 16 savory dishes will leave everyone around the Christmas table happy.  

1. Applewood Smoked Bacon Wrapped Pork Tenderloin


(Soby's New South Cuisine)

What could be better than pork wrapped pork? This succulent pork tenderloin makes a show-stopping Christmas dish. Finish with a spicy butter sauce to pump up the heat.

Recipe: Applewood Smoked Bacon Wrapped Pork Tenderloin

2. Roasted 12-lb turkey


(Reluctant Entertainer)

Don't let your fear of drying out a turkey stop you from making this delicious bird for your guests, courtesy of the Reluctant Entertainer.

Recipe: Roasted 12-lb turkey

3. Forager's Wild Mushroom Pie


(Matthew Kenney’s Plant Food + Wine)

Matthew Kenney’s Plant Food + Wine (LA’s latest and greatest plant-based restaurant) presents a rich, veggie-focused menu offerering guests a sustainable, cruelty-free and delicious alternative, celebrating food, family and tradition.

Recipe: Forager's Wild Mushroom Pie

4. Roast Prime Rib of Beef


(Canal House Cooking)

We favor roasting large cuts of meat at a low temperature; the gentle heat cooks them evenly throughout (which means beautifully rosy pink slices of beef).

Recipe: Roast Prime Rib of Beef

5. Super-Crusty Grilled Steaks


(Lynn Clark)

The best steaks are salty, sizzling, and almost singed on the outside and juicy, red, and almost buttery within. It’s the contrast that makes for perfect steak. Steakhouses achieve formidable crust with industrial-strength grills and broilers (some push temperatures into quadruple digits!) that instantly evaporate surface moisture on the meat, leaving a dry surface upon which to build a substantial caramelized crust.

Related: 20 holiday cocktails

Home rigs can’t get that hot (500 degrees is all you can ask for), so you can kiss good crust goodbye. So how do you get that perfectly grilled steak with the amazing flavorful crust? Follow these directions to the T and you will have a crowds praising your culinary skills.

Recipe: Super-Crusty Grilled Steaks

6. Coffee-Spiced Prime Rib Roast


(Jeremy Ball)

The coffee and chili powder add a nice earthly aspect that compliments and enhances the bold, beef flavor of the rib roast. Have your butcher prepare the prime rib with the fat cap still attached. Have him cut under the fat cap as though it were going to be removed but leave it attached on one side.

Recipe: Coffee-Spiced Prime Rib Roast

7. Crispy Roasted Duck Breast



This duck dish served aboard Lumiere’s on the Disney Magic and Triton’s on the Disney Wonder and would make the perfect main dish for Christmas.

Recipe: Crispy Roasted Duck Breast

8. Rainier Cherry & Maple Glazed Bandera Quail



Bandera quail is from Bandera, Tex. which is known among world-class chefs and the public, not for beef but for its exceptionally high quality and affordable quail meat.

The addition of the sweet and slightly tart cherries adds a unique flavor to this winning dish. 

Recipe: Rainier Cherry & Maple Glazed Bandera Quail

9. Shrimp Bouillabaisse



Traditional bouillabaisse is a marvelous dish that requires many kinds of seafood and a lot of time to make. This quicker version delivers all the thrills of the original but uses only shrimp, plus fennel and edamame. Yogurt adds a sense of the characteristic creaminess, and buttery garlic bread completes the meal.

Recipe: Shrimp Bouillabaisse

10. Black Cod with Miso



This sweet and silky fish dish from Nobu New York has been cloned at restaurants all over the country. It's fairly straightforward to make. The fish marinates overnight in just enough sake and miso to coat. Quickly searing the cod, then finishing it in the oven, creates a beautifully burnished crust.

Recipe: Black Cod with Miso

11. Chicken Breast Stuffed with Goat Cheese wrapped in Prosciutto


(Kris Schoels)

Looking for a fast way to jazz up your same old boring chicken? This goat cheese and spinach stuffed chicken breast wrapped in a layer of prosciutto will impress your guests. It takes little time prepare, but tastes and looks delicious.

Recipe: Chicken Breast Stuffed with Goat Cheese wrapped in Prosciutto

12. Moroccan Lamb with Cucumber Yogurt from The Lazy Goat


Food photography for The Lazy Goat Greenville, SC 9/26/07 (The Lazy Goat)

This Moroccan inspired lamb recipe brings traditional Middle Eastern flavors to your holiday table. The savory spice mix is complemented by a refreshing yogurt sauce.

Recipe: Moroccan Lamb with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

13. Mustard Crusted Tofu With Strawberries


(The Pink Apron)

For your vegetarian guests: pressed tofu is marinated with Dijon mustard, strawberries and honey, then breaded with flakey Panko breadcrumbs and cashews before being baked crisp in the oven. Strawberries are reduced with honey and balsamic vinegar to balance the sweet and savory in this playful dinner. This recipe comes to us from Kelly of The Pink Apron.

14. Chicken with Mushrooms and Thyme


(Jason Houston)

Take chicken breasts to the next level with this decadent savory sauce.

Recipe: Chicken with Mushrooms and Thyme

15. Cajun Deep-Fried Whole Turkey



Developed decades ago by Louisiana Cajun chefs, deep-fried turkey has taken America by storm and adds a whole new dimension to the art of Southern frying. The result should be a turkey that is crunchy crisp on the outside with a succulent moist interior.

Related: 11 must-try Christmas cookies

Is the fried turkey really as glorious as they say? You bet it is.

Recipe: Cajun Deep-Fried Whole Turkey

16. Chicken Pot Pie with Puffy Pastry


(Soby's New Southern Cuisine)

Creamy chicken pot pie in a succulent gravy meets a crispy puff pastry crust in this updated take on a tried and true comforting winter staple.

Recipe: Chicken Pot Pie with Puff Pastry