We have combined some of our favourite festive flavours into this lower sugar Christmas Chutney, along with some hidden vegetables too. The perfect chutney to go with a Christmas cheeseboard. Ginger, cinnamon and a hint of chilli add tonnes of flavour to this tomato based chutney, to give it a festive twist.
Some kind of chutney is a must at Christmas. Once that jar gets opened, you can have it on a leftovers sandwich, stirred in to Greek yogurt to make a dip, use it as a salad dressing, put it in a burger, or have it with your cheeseboard. The options are almost endless.
There are so many different chutneys out there, but this festive Christmas chutney is a firm favourite in our house. We have used cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger to give it a festive flavour, but also added a little bit of chilli so there is a kick of spice in there too. We have used cranberries to bulk it out, add a vitamin boost and some more colour.
Looking for some other homemade sauce recipes to try? Why not try our Fruit Dip, Marie Rose Sauce (Perfect with a festive prawn cocktail), Cheddar Cheese Sauce, Easy Pizza Sauce or Healthy Teriyaki Sauce?
Why you will love it
- Easy - Homemade chutney is much easier to make than you might think. You just leave everything to cook in a pan.
- Livens up a cheese board - Add loads of flavour to a festive cheese board with this vibrant Christmas chutney.
- A must on any boxing day buffet table - Not just for a cheeseboard, put it out with all the leftovers on boxing day, as it is epic in a sandwich.
- It has hidden vegetables - We added some aubergine and bell pepper for some hidden vegetables and they add a lovely chunky texture to the chutney.
- Tomatoes - Use a good quality can of tomatoes, as the cheaper ones tend to be really watery and you want a thick chutney. We recommend Mutti Tomatoes.
- Aubergine (eggplant) - This adds a nice chunkiness to the Christmas chutney. You could swap it for courgette (zucchini) if you prefer.
- Onion - We used a small brown onion, but you could swap it for shallots which would be sweeter.
- Red bell pepper - Any colour bell pepper works, but red peppers are sweeter.
- Garlic - Freshly crushed garlic is best, but you could use a jar of crushed garlic to save time.
- Cranberries - This is what gives it a real Christmas feel. You can use frozen cranberries if that it all you have.
- Honey - This is how we sweetened the Christmas chutney. You can use maple syrup if you want to keep it vegan.
- Vinegar - This isn't just for flavour, but it helps to preserve the chutney.
- Spices - Ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg give it a real Christmas flavour.
- Salt and pepper - Generously season.
A full ingredients list with measurements is in the recipe card below.
How to make Christmas Chutney - Step by step
One: Put the tomatoes, red pepper, aubergine (eggplant), onion and garlic into a pan.
Two: Smash the tomatoes with a back of a spoon. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Add a little bit of water every 10 minutes if it gets too dry.
Three: Add the rest of the ingredients to the pan, stir well and bring to the boil again.
Four: Simmer for a further 10 minutes.
Five: Leave to cool and pour in to a jar to store.
Delicious chutney usually falls into three categories - onion based, fruit based or tomato based. We went with a tomato based chutney so the bulk of it was fairly mild, and the Christmas flavours could shine through. But you could vary it depending on your tastes.
We kept things simple and just used a tin of chopped tomatoes (the best quality you can find will give the best flavour), but you could chop up fresh tomatoes and use those instead with a little extra liquid. You could also make the base mainly thinly sliced onions.
Not only is there lots of festive flavour in this chutney, but some added vegetables too. Red pepper and aubergine make this tomato chutney recipe nice and chunky, with some extra vitamins too. You could add other chunky vegetables like courgette (zucchini) too.
What to serve Christmas Chutney with
The obvious way to serve this is on a cheese board, which is our favourite. However it has so many other uses. We love it in a Christmas leftovers sandwich or dolloped on a burger. We even make a dip out of it by mixing it into some Greek yogurt.
A cheese board is a must at Christmas time and deciding what cheese to have on that board is one of the hardest decisions you will have to make during the festive season, if not the hardest decision of the entire year! Yes, we take cheese that seriously! Here are some of our cheese board tips.
A mature cheddar is a must, it's a classic. I would say that goat's cheese has to be on there too, and for us a cheese board wouldn't be complete without some Stilton. Whilst we may not totally agree on the essential cheeses to go on the board, which is probably why we end up with about 10 different cheeses on there, we do agree that chutney is a must.
Another tip when it comes to a cheese board is add lots of fruit too. Not only does it balance out the heaviness of all the cheese, but the sweet and creamy really compliments each other and fruit will add a lot of colour to the cheese board too. We went with grapes, figs, apple and pomegranate. Try to go with a few different crackers, breads and breadsticks too.
Why not try adding this festive chutney to our Grazing Platter, Vegetarian Charcuterie Board or Anitpasto Platter?
Frequently asked questions
This chutney will last in the fridge for about 5 days, but it honestly doesn't last that long with us at Christmas! If you are having guests over, you might want to make a bigger batch to share it around. If you are going the homemade Christmas present route this year, then these would make lovely gifts. Put it in a nice jar and put a bow round it and ta-da! Give it with a cheese board bursting with cheese too and you would be my best friend for life!
We wouldn't recommend freezing this as the chunky vegetables aren't great once defrosted. So, try to only make as much as you could eat in 5 days so that none of it goes to waste.
This recipe isn't gluten free because we have used malt vinegar. You could swap it for apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar - it would change the taste though.
No, this recipe isn't vegan because it uses honey. However, you could swap it for maple syrup to keep this recipe vegan.
• The cayenne pepper is added for taste, so adjust it depending on how spicy you like things.
• This chutney will keep in the fridge for 5 days. But leftovers are great in sandwiches and burgers.
• You can swap the tinned tomatoes for fresh tomatoes, just add a bit more liquid.
• Make this a vegan chutney by swapping the honey for maple syrup.
More Christmas recipes
If you’ve tried this Christmas Chutney recipe, let us know how you got on in the comments below.
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- 400 g (14 oz) Plum tomatoes - canned
- 1 Red bell pepper - diced
- 4 Garlic cloves - crushed
- 1 Onion - diced
- 1 Aubergine (eggplant) - small; diced
- 20 Fresh cranberries
- 120 ml (0.5 cups) Malt vinegar
- 3 tablespoon Honey
- 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper
- 1 teaspoon Paprika
- 1 teaspoon Ground coriander
- 0.5 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 0.5 teaspoon Ground ginger
- 0.5 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 0.5 teaspoon Ground nutmeg
- Put 400 g Plum tomatoes, 1 Red bell pepper, 1 Aubergine (eggplant), 1 Onion and 4 Garlic cloves into a pan.
- Smash the tomatoes with a back of a spoon. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Add a little bit of water every 10 minutes if it gets too dry.
- Add 20 Fresh cranberries, 120 ml Malt vinegar, 3 tablespoon Honey, 1 pinch Sea salt and black pepper, 1 teaspoon Paprika, 1 teaspoon Ground coriander, 0.5 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 0.5 teaspoon Ground ginger, 0.5 teaspoon Cinnamon and 0.5 teaspoon Ground nutmeg to the pan, stir well and bring to the boil again.
- Simmer for a further 10 minutes.
- Leave to cool and pour into a jar to store.
- The cayenne pepper is added for taste, so adjust it depending on how spicy you like things.
- This chutney will keep in the fridge for 5 days. But leftovers are great in sandwiches and burgers.
- You can swap the tinned tomatoes for fresh tomatoes, just add a bit more liquid.
- Make this a vegan chutney by swapping the honey for maple syrup.
I love this combination, i still have peppers & tomaroes in the garden. You say it only lasts 5 days, is this once opened or in total, as im thinking of making it in advance for gifts,
What a delicious sounding chutney, my husband loves his chutneys so I’ll share this with him.
I love a cheese board and this chutney sounds absolutely gorgeous, I shall definitely be making it over the festive season x
How spicy is the chutney?
It is fairly mild.
Jessy @ The Life Jolie
I'm loving this fantastic flavor combo- the colors are all really festive too! This would be a perfect holiday appetizer!
Silvia @ Garden in the Kitchen
I think I just found the perfect addition to my cheese platter for the Holidays. Thank you!
Chutneys are so perfect for this time of the year and a cheese platter is my favorite. I need to try this recipe.
I've said it before and I must say it again. Chutneys are under used here in the US! Thank you so much for this
recipe. Eggplant and cranberry... cool combo.