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Where to Get Takeout or Dine-in Christmas Dinner in San Diego 2023

Celebrate the season with these 25 restaurants offering holiday specials, prix-fixe menus, and more
Christmas dinner in San Diego
Courtesy of A. R. Valentien

Sometimes the best Christmas dinner is one you don’t have to cook. Whoever you’re celebrating with this year, a prix-fixe meal or a fleet of takeout containers can save you from hours in front of the stove, leaving more time to fête the season with the people you love most. 

From classic festive fare (prime rib! candied yams!) to your new favorite tradition (hi, crab corn doughnuts), local eateries offer plenty of delicious bites for revelers on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Let’s sleigh the holiday season and savor Christmas specials, prix-fixe menus, holiday cocktails, and takeout feasts from some of San Diego’s finest restaurants.  

Where to Get Takeout or Dine-In for Christmas

Adelaide

Head to the luxurious L’Auberge Del Mar for a Christmas Day buffet at Adelaide. The feast is fit for Santa himself, featuring a raw bar, prime rib, lamb, roasted chicken breast with porcini mushroom gravy, and crème fraîche mashed potatoes. After indulging, settle into a post-feast nap under a poolside cabana, treat yourself to a lemongrass spa session at Spa L’Auberge, or swing by the hotel’s family movie night, complete with a side of hot cocoa and sugar cookies.   

Price: $170 per adult | $40 per child
When: Dec. 25, 1–3 p.m.
Where: 1540 Camino Del Mar, Del Mar

Christmas Dinner at Mister A's
Courtesy of Mister A’s

Mister A’s 

Elevate your holiday dinner with arguably the best view in San Diego. On Christmas Eve and Christmas day, Mister A’s in Bankers Hill offers an elegant, three-course, prix-fixe menu from its rooftop vantage point. The menu includes butternut squash soup, roasted rack of lamb, crispy Brussel sprouts, and gingerbread sticky toffee pudding. While you eat, sway to the soothing melodies of Spanish guitarist David Maldonado. 

Price: Christmas Eve – $105 per adult | $35 per child; Christmas Day – $97.50 per adult | $35 per child
When: Dec. 24, 4:30–9 p.m. | Dec. 25, 12–7 p.m
Where: 2550 Fifth Avenue, 12th Floor, Banker’s Hill

Matsu 

Ring in Christmas Eve with Matsu’s Karaage Night—an extravaganza of traditional Japanese fried chicken and strawberry shortcake. The six-course meal features a variety of fried chicken cuts infused with flavors like tenkasu, miso, caviar, and jalapeño. Sip selections from Matsu’s extensive sake list before a sweet holiday nightcap. Reserve your table here

Price: $125 per person
When: Dec. 24, 4–9 p.m.
Where: 626 South Tremont Street, Oceanside

Hotel Del Coronado 

Embrace the spirit of the season with a family dinner at the iconic Hotel Del Coronado, which transforms each year into a winter wonderland. Gather in the hotel’s Southpointe Ballroom for a festive Christmas Eve dinner or Christmas day brunch packed with holiday favorites, sweet treats, and a photo op with Santa. The Del also offers holiday packages like their Fire & Ice experience, which includes overnight accommodation, ice skating by the sea, a private fire pit with s’mores, and even your own personal holiday concierge.  

Price: Dinner – $175 per adult | $100 per child ages 4–10 | free for children 3 and under; Brunch – $165 per adult | $100 per child ages 4–10 | free for children 3 and under 
When: Dinner – Dec. 24, 2–8 p.m. | Brunch – Dec. 25, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Where: 1500 Orange Avenue, Coronado

Covewood 

Savor a Christmas feast at Mission Bay Resort’s Covewood. Nibble your way through executive chef Roy Hendrickson’s Christmas day prix-fixe menu from the comfort of the restaurant’s heated patio overlooking the bay. Feast on dishes like lobster bisque, pear salad, rack of lamb, wild sea bass, caramelized brussel sprouts, Dutch apple pie tartlets, and a chocolate yule log made with spiked eggnog ice cream and toffee brittle. 

Price: $113.67 per person
When: Dec. 25, 7 a.m.–9 p.m. 
Where: 1775 East Mission Bay Drive, Mission Beach

RustiCucina 

RustiCucina, one of Hillcrest’s chicest dining spots, is decking the halls with lavish Italian dishes and holiday cheer this Christmas. Dine on Dec. 24 or 25 with a Sicilian pre-fixe menu. Entrées include parmesan-stuffed roasted chicken, lobster ravioli, red wine–braised beef, and grilled salmon. You can also go big and order a wheel of cheese to share with family and add extra flavor to filet mignon pasta. 

Price: $55 per person
When: Dec. 24 & 25, 4–10 p.m. 
Where: 3797 Park Boulevard, Hillcrest

Provisional Kitchen 

Celebrate Christmas in style at Provisional Kitchen in the Gaslamp. The pre-fixe brunch will feature carving and dessert stations (complete with a chocolate fountain) and be set to the tune of live music to help make spirits bright. If you prefer an evening affair, stop by for a three-course dinner featuring hearty entrées including prime filet mignon and ravioli doppio. 

Price: Brunch – $85 per adult | $30 per child; Dinner – $105 per adult | $40 per child
When: Brunch – Dec. 25, 9 a.m.–1 p.m. | Dinner – Dec. 25, 4–9 p.m.
Where: 425 Fifth Avenue, Gaslamp Quarter

Christmas dinner at The Marine Room San Diego
Photo Credit: John Dole

The Marine Room

Experience a picturesque sunset Christmas dinner on the sandy beaches of La Jolla at The Marine Room. Order their seasonal dinner specials like the Spindrift Trilogy, which includes lobster tail, diver scallops, and wild prawn. Or get the Norwegian halibut or lamb osso buco. On Christmas Day, the oceanfront restaurant is offering festive blackberry cider, brined turkey, elk medallions, and roasted branzino sure to bring you waves of joy. 

Price: $150 per person
When: Dec. 24, 5–9 p.m. | Dec. 25, 12–7 p.m.
Where: 2000 Spindrift Drive, La Jolla

Arlo

Join Arlo this Christmas Eve for a tantalizing three-course prix-fixe dinner, or enjoy a bountiful Christmas Day buffet with loads of locally sourced dishes. The Mission Valley eatery’s offerings include salt-crusted prime rib, pan-roasted duck breast, and brown butter sage gnocchi that you can enjoy on the restaurant’s heated, outdoor patio. The Christmas Day buffet includes performances from local musicians. Jason Mann takes the stage from 1 to 4 p.m., followed by Natalie Aley from 4:30 to 8 p.m. 

Price: Christmas Eve Dinner – $80 per person; Christmas Day Buffet – $85 per adult | $35 per child ages 6–12 | free for children 5 and under
When: Dinner – Dec. 24, 5–10 p.m. | Buffet – Dec. 25, 1–8 p.m. 
Where: 500 Hotel Circle North, Mission Valley

Quixote 

The LaFayette Hotel’s Oaxacan enclave, Quixote, is moonlighting as the ultimate spot to celebrate Christmas with friends and family this year. Chow down on fusion Mexican cuisine like crab corn doughnuts, fried chicken tacos, and golden snapper ceviche in North Park—plus plenty of mezcal-based cocktails to rock your stockings. Can you say “Feliz Navidad” again?

When: Dec. 25, 12 p.m–12 a.m. 
Where: 2223 El Cajon Boulevard, North Park

Coasterra

Journey to Coasterra on Shelter Island for their annual Christmas Day buffet. The bayfront Mexican restaurant presents an array of charcuterie cheeses and meats and a carving station packed with roasted turkey, ham, and New York strip loin. Pair your cuts with classic Christmas sides like cornbread stuffing, candied yams, and roasted rosemary carrots. Cap off the feast with an assortment of pies, cakes, cookies, and tarts.

Price: $89.95 per adult | $19.95 per child
When: Dec. 25, 12–7 p.m. 
Where: 880 Harbor Island Drive, Shelter Island

Nine-Ten  

Savor the holiday spirit at the elegant Nine-Ten restaurant in La Jolla, offering a three-course, prix-fixe Christmas Eve dinner, complemented by an amuse-bouche appetizer and a decadent dessert selection. On Christmas Day, stop by for brunch delights, including pitaya bowls, pastries, avocado toast, and huevos rancheros. Secure your spot through Open Table.

Price: Christmas Eve Dinner – $105 per person
When: Dinner – Dec. 24, 5–9 p.m. | Brunch – Dec. 25, 7 a.m.–2 p.m.
Where: 910 Prospect Street, La Jolla

Et Voilà!

Say “joyeux noël” at French bistro Et Voilà! in North Park. This adorable spot offers special three-course menus on Dec. 24 and 25. Feast on smoked salmon, braised beef short ribs, and strawberry shortbread. Voilà, a holiday celebration to remember!

Price: $75 per adult | $28 per child 
When: Dec. 24, 4:30–9:30 p.m. | Dec. 25, 12–7 p.m.
Where: 3015 Adams Avenue, North Park

Christmas dinner at Callie San Diego
Courtesy of Callie

Callie

Prepare for a sleigh ride of flavors as chef Travis Swikard creates a five-course holiday feast at Callie. This Michelin-recognized restaurant offers a prix-fixe menu with Mediterranean-inspired dishes on Christmas Eve. Secure your spot online at Tock.

Price: $95 per person
When: Dec. 24, 5–9 p.m.
Where: 1195 Island Avenue, East Village

Fort Oak

Fort Oak chef Brad Wise concocted a December menu based on his personal festive favorites. While the Mission Hills restaurant is closed on Christmas Day, Fort Oak is expanding its hours to serve holiday lunches ahead of the big day. Try Fort Oak’s on-theme cocktails, including their Wish List Spritz, made with kumquat aperitif, prosecco, soda, and star anise. The Home for the Holidays is a mixture of hot apple cider, bourbon, and warming spice. 

When: Dec. 14–16 & 21–23, 11 a.m.–1:30 p.m.
Where: 1011 Fort Stockton Drive, Mission Hills

A.R. Valentien

Got a fresh set of clubs for Christmas? Head to the Lodge at Torrey Pines for a round of golf before sitting down for a holiday dinner at A.R. Valentien afterwards. The luxurious restaurant, which overlooks the links, offers an extravagant prix-fixe menu curated by executive chef Kelli Crosson. Though Santa can’t gift you a better short game, at least you can dine like a pro. 

Price: $165 per adult | $90 per child
When: Dec. 25, 4–8:30 p.m.
Where: 11480 North Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla

Costa Brava 

If tapas are on your Christmas wishlist this year, head to Costa Brava, a family-owned Spanish restaurant in Pacific Beach. Enjoy Christmas Eve dinner on their charming garden patio and relish in bacon-wrapped dates, lamb skewers, and patatas a la brava.

When:  Dec. 24, 11 a.m.–10 p.m.
Where: 1653 Garnet Avenue, Pacific Beach

Christmas dinner at Ciccia Osteria in San Diego
Courtesy of Ciccia Osteria

Ciccia Osteria

For a cozy, pasta-packed Christmas dinner, venture to Michelin-recognized restaurant Ciccia Osteria in Barrio Logan. Alongside their classic Italian menu, chefs Francesca Penoncelli and Mario Casineri are cooking up Christmas specials like beef Wellington and osso buco with saffron risotto, paired perfectly with a smoked old fashioned. 

When: Dec. 24, 12–2pm & 4:30–9:15 p.m. | December 25 4:30–9:15 p.m.
Where: 2233 Logan Avenue, Barrio Logan

JRDN

Celebrate Christmas with a sunset feast at JRDN, the oceanfront rooftop restaurant offering stunning views of Pacific Beach and Crystal Pier. Indulge in a three-course Christmas meal featuring appetizers like seafood chowder; entrées such as prime rib, scallops, and roasted mushroom risotto; and desserts that will make your taste buds jingle with joy.

Price: $69–89 per adult
When: Dec. 25, 2–7 p.m.
Where: 723 Felspar Street, Pacific Beach

Antica Trattoria

Treat yourself to a Sicilian dinner at this La Mesa hotspot known for its delectable pastas and seafood. Order a round of appetizers for the table (the bruschetta is great) and try entrées like gnocchi and lasagna. Pair it all with a bottle from the restaurant’s vast wine collection.

When: Dec. 24, 4:30–10 p.m. | Dec. 25, 4:30–9:30 p.m.
Where: 5654 Lake Murray Boulevard, La Mesa

The Pony Room

Head to The Pony Room at Rancho Valencia and revel in a Christmas Day buffet accompanied by live music and delightful activities for the whole family. Horse-drawn carriage rides, arts and crafts, and cookie decorating will add an extra sprinkle of joy to your festivities.

Price: $195 per adult | $55 per child aged 4–11 | free for children under 3
When: Dec. 25th, 10 a.m.–3:30 p.m.
Where: 5921 Valencia Circle, Rancho Santa Fe

Grand Ole BBQ

Oversized roasted meats are synonymous with Christmas Eve dinner. Visit this Texas BBQ spot for smoked brisket, beef short ribs, pork chili, mac n’ cheese, and other savory bites. Come with a red jumpsuit, a large belt, and an appetite. Leave with the ultimate Santa cosplay. 

When: Dec. 24, 12–9 p.m.
Where: 15505 Olde Highway 80, El Cajon & 3302 32nd Street, North Park

Christmas Dinner Take-Out 

The Plot 

Dine on a plant-based, zero-waste Christmas dinner from The Plot this year from the comfort of your home. Savor smoky maple-butter roasted parsnips; a squash, wild rice, and lentil roast; gluten-free cornbread stuffing; and more. All the holiday goodness, none of the climate guilt.

Price: $40 per person 
When: Pre-order by December 22 & pick up on December 24 
Where: 1733 South Coast Highway, Oceanside

Christmas Dinner in San Diego at Ranch 45
Courtesy of Ranch 45

Ranch 45

Ranch 45 in Solana Beach has your Christmas feast covered! Order some of San Diego’s finest meats and treats—including herb-crusted prime rib, smoked turkey legs, aged ribeye, pecan pie, and apple crisp—à la carte by Sunday, December 17.

When: Order by December 17 at 4 p.m. | Pickup on December 24 between 10 a.m and 4 p.m.
Where: 512 Via De La Valle, Suite 102, Solana Beach

Golden Mandarin

Invite the whole squad over for a family-sized Chinese takeout dinner from Chula Vista’s Golden Mandarin this Christmas. Dive into sweet-and-sour pork, shrimp fried rice, and the restaurant’s coveted salt-and-pepper chicken wings.

When: December 24 & 25, 11 a.m.–10 p.m.
Where: 45 Broadway, Chula Vista

By Cole Novak

With years of experience developing digital strategies for agencies and companies, he loves helping local businesses and local non-profits bring their digital content to life. A lifelong San Diegan, he’s passionate about storytelling, photography, surfing, food, music, filmmaking, technology, and the great outdoors.

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