You hosted Thanksgiving dinner, baked sugar cookies and even made cute hors d’oeuvres for your friend’s Christmas party. Yep, you’ve spent quite enough time in the kitchen this holiday season, and so you’ve decided it’s time to treat yourself to a day off...preferably on Christmas Day or Christmas Eve. Fear not: This well-deserved act of defiance doesn’t mean you have to go hungry. Whether you’re seeking basic takeout or a cozy spot for dining in with a group, our round up of restaurants open on Christmas 2023 will do you right—provided you call your local chain to confirm days/hours before hanging up your apron, that is.
1. Village Inn
Swing by any Village Inn location on Christmas Eve for a casual dining experience, or perhaps just to scoop up one of their famous pies. (You know, in case you fell short of star baker status this year.)
Treat yourself to a short stack on Christmas morning at this popular breakfast chain, which is open both on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, albeit with limited hours at certain locations.
You can’t count on all the restaurants in this franchise to be open on Christmas, but a good number of them are. To be safe, check the holiday hours of your local Mickey D’s before you hit up the drive-thru for your fast-food fix.
Your local Applebee’s will most likely be happy to take Christmas Eve cooking duties off your plate. Yep, all branches will be open and serving their typical family-friendly fare on the holiday, though some will have reduced hours.. As for Christmas Day, call before you go as many locations will be closed.
OK, it’s not the most festive choice, but if your fridge is totally cleaned out the week leading up to Christmas, Buffalo Wild Wings has your back. All locations will be open on Christmas Eve, and a quick glance at the store locator will tell you the specific holiday hours of the restaurant near you.
If you want to mix things up with some nontraditional holiday fare, you can always head to Benihana on either Christmas Eve or Christmas Day to gorge yourself on sushi.
Del Frisco’s Grille has locations all over the country, all of which are open from 1 to 8 p.m. for those in search of fancy fare (think: filet mignon and lobster) and an upscale atmosphere on Christmas Day.
Here’s another fast-food joint that’s always open on Christmas Eve and typically stays open on Christmas, too. Still, you’ll want to check the holiday hours of the franchise near you before heading out for burgers and fries at Sonic.
9. Ruth’s Chris
If you’re craving a juicy piece of steak served on a platter of sizzling butter this Christmas, you’re in luck. Ruth’s Chris will be open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day—just be sure to call before you go, as hours vary by location.
This year, hang up the apron strings and head out to Morton’s Steakhouse on either Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. From seasonal cocktails (try the Blackberry Mojito) to signature steaks, you’re in for a very merry meal (and you’re off the hook for the dishes).
11. Panda Express
Historically, Panda Express tends to be open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It’s worth noting, though, that all the franchise locations set their own holiday hours, and some may choose not to open at all, so definitely call before you go.
12. Waffle House
You were up until the wee hours wrapping presents and cooking Christmas Day brunch for your fam feels like a big ask. We get it. Fortunately, Waffle house is open 24/7 on Christmas Day (and every day) so you can score some comfort food for your brood the easy way.
That’s right, you can count on Denny’s to serve up your favorite diner food all day, every day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day included.
Get in on the premium steaks, fresh seafood and killer wine list at any Smith & Wollensky location across the country on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day (and pretty much every other major holiday, too).
15. Chart House
Enjoy breathtaking views and seriously delicious seafood at Chart House, an upscale restaurant chain with 24 waterfront locations across the country—all of which are open on Christmas Day.
If you live out West, Marie Callender’s could save you a load of cooking and clean up. Call up your local chain and confirm its hours, but many are open for take out (not dine in) the week leading up to Christmas. Bonus: If you order in advance, you can even score a ready-made feast or pie to take home for the holiday.
17. Boston Market
Why roast a bird when you can buy one? Boston Market will be open with reduced hours on Christmas Eve to serve its signature rotisserie meals, both in the restaurant and as take-home heat-and-eat feasts.
18. Legal Sea Foods
Sadly, this top-notch chain won’t be open on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day for 2023, but don’t let that stop you from treating yourself and all you holiday guests to an amazing seafood spread. Legal Sea Foods has introduced an array of holiday seafood specials for pre-holiday, local pick up. Best of all, the catering platters also ship nationwide, with the goods—generous lobster roll kits, shrimp cocktail, crab cakes and more—arriving frozen, along with all the sauces and fixings, plus easy-to-follow cooking and assembly instructions.
19. Domino’s Pizza
You’ve worked hard this holiday season, which is why it’s perfectly acceptable to phone in a Domino’s delivery order for your Christmas Day dinner. You can even gussy it up with an easy homemade side or two. Do check with your local branch before you go this route, though, as only some locations will be open for business on the 25th.
Fleming’s is another excellent option if you want to keep it classy (but don’t feel like cooking) over the holiday. All locations of this acclaimed steakhouse chain will be open on Christmas Eve.
21. Buca di Beppo
So your extended family is visiting for the holidays and the thought of cooking for them all is overwhelming. No biggie—just reserve a table at Buca di Beppo on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day for a family-style Italian dinner that will leave everyone satiated. A note for Christmas Day, though—only Buca’s Excalibur (Vegas) and Universal City (Universal Studios) will be open.
22. Olive Garden
Alas, this family favorite will be closed on the 25th, so if you’re in the mood for large portions of pasta on Christmas Day, Buca di Beppo is a better bet. However, Olive Garden will be open and serving unlimited breadsticks on Christmas Eve, so you can conceivably bring home enough carbs to feed a whole family until the New Year.
23. Cracker Barrel
Cracker Barrel will be closed on Christmas Day, but don’t let that stop you from feasting on your favorite country-style comfort food—just pre-order one of their heat-and-serve holiday meals and you’re good to go. (Note: You can also dine in at any location before 2 p.m. on Christmas Eve.)
24. Dunkin' Donuts
Take a trip to Dunkin’ Donuts on Christmas morning and jolt yourself awake with a one-two punch of caffeine and sugar. Most, if not all, locations will be open, but store hours vary so pick up the phone before you head out for a fresh dozen.
25. Dave & Busters
Don’t just go to some snoozy restaurant over the holidays. Instead, make a day (or night) of it at Dave & Busters. Stop by this popular chain for drinks, games and good eats on Christmas Eve (but not Christmas Day).
The holidays can really sap your energy, so it’s only natural to crave an extra hit of caffeine to get by. Luckily, Starbucks will have their doors open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to provide this very service—just keep in mind that holiday hours vary by location.
27. Del Taco
Attention Tex-Mex fiends: Del Taco (not Taco Bell) will be answering your prayers with open doors this Christmas Eve. Skip the Feast of the Seven Fishes (because do you really want to prepare seven courses?) and hit up this fast-food joint if you’re feeling famished—you won’t even have to pick a team in the great tacos vs. burgers debate.
28. Shake Shack
We’ll take three frozen custards to go, please. Though not open on Christmas Day, Shake Shack is still flipping burgers on Christmas Eve, so you might as well head out for a Christmas Cookie Shake before ‘tis no longer the season.
Christmas Eve dinner is served at your local Carrabba’s Italian Grill. What better refuge from the chilly winter wind than a towering plate of pasta? The Short Rib Marsala and Cannoli Cake aren’t too bad, either.
30. Bonefish Grill
Start your Christmas Eve with an apple martini and don’t look back. It will make all that last minute wrapping more fun.
Hours vary by location, but many are open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to give your local Perkins Restaurant and Bakery a call, especially when one of their decadent desserts is up for grabs.
No one said turkey and stuffing were the rules of Christmas Day, so why not spice things up with a generous plate of fajitas, nachos and enchiladas? Oh, and don’t forget a Cranberry Cadillac Margarita. Thank us later.
Macaroni Grill has you covered on Christmas Day (open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.) and Christmas Eve (11 a.m. to 10 p.m). Their full menu will be available, so load up on all the pasta—but don’t forget dessert.
34. Joe’s Crab Shack
‘Tis the season for peace, love…and crab. You may not live near the beach, but Joe’s Crab Shack can bring you decently close on Christmas Eve between the hours of 11am and 9pm, or Christmas day from 1 to 9 p.m.
35. Black Bear Diner
Tuck into a three-course Christmas dinner at Black Bear Diner with a choice of turkey, ham and prime rib. You can also order to-go and have a ready Christmas meal at your own table.
There is literally never a bad time for onion rings and French fries. Pop on in for your fix on Christmas Eve, and don’t forget a burger while you’re at it.
It’s all gravy, baby. At least that’s what they say at Luby’s. The Texas cafeteria chain has locations throughout the state dishing up Christmas specials and will be open on Christmas Eve.
38. Hard Rock Cafe
Hard Rock Cafe
Swap the Christmas carols for some rock and roll; the iconic restaurant chain Hard Rock Cafe will be open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Order from their customizable, three-course “Remix you Holiday” menu or check out their recent collaboration with soccer superstar Lionel Messi, which has yielded a seriously delicious chicken sandwich and an excellent kids menu to boot. Then, wash it all down with a glass of “Sleighride Sangria” and enjoy the family-friendly atmosphere and decidedly refreshing soundtrack.