Feast of the Seven Fishes, An Italian Christmas Eve

Christmas is a pretty big deal in Italy. After all, it is a primarily catholic country that puts a huge emphasis on both family and eating. So naturally the holiday overflows into a delicious feast! But is the Feast of the Italian Fishes actually an Italian holiday? And what do you even eat? We discuss that and more in this post.

Feast of the Seven Fishes

What is the Feast of the Seven Fishes?

The Feast of the Seven Fishes is an Italian-American tradition celebrated by serving a dinner featuring seafood on Christmas Eve. In Italy it's typical and often expected to eat seafood on Christmas Eve and meat on Christmas Day. It's believed that this tradition was brought to the US by Italian immigrants and given a formal name of The Feast of the Seven Fishes. But in Italy it doesn't have a formal name.

How Do You Celebrate?

Well as the name insinuates you feast on fish. Some family make 4 different seafood dishes while others make 12. There's no exact number of dishes you are required to make. But the theme of the meal should be seafood.

Menu for the Feast of the Seven Fishes

Since we absolutely adore seafood and always share photos and videos of us making it on social we thought it would be fun to put together a Feast of the Seven Fishes seafood menu for Christmas Eve! So what's on the menu?

Several of these recipes call for frying with olive oil, while others require steaming and baking. Whether you're new to making seafood or an expert we hope you'll make some of these delicious recipes and tell us what you think!!

Shop our collection of high quality Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oils!

Hey, we wrote a cookbook and guide called The Olive Oil Enthusiast, have you ordered it yet?

If you make this recipe please let a comment and let us know! We love to hear from you. If you’re on InstagramFacebook, or TikTok don’t forget to tag us and use #EXAUoliveoil so we can repost!

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.

Shop our olive oil

Explore high-quality Italian olive oil with well-balanced flavor profiles guaranteed to enhance any dish. EXAU oils are exclusively produced in Calabria, Italy with fruit grown along the Ionian coast on family-owned properties.

  • Grilled Eggplant

    Grilled Eggplant

    This grilled eggplant recipe is more of an anti recipe because it's so simple and you can add or remove ingredients as you wish! This dish is also great because...

    Grilled Eggplant

    This grilled eggplant recipe is more of an anti recipe because it's so simple and you can add or remove ingredients as you wish! This dish is also great because...

  • Feast of the Seven Fishes, An Italian Christmas Eve

    Feast of the Seven Fishes, An Italian Christmas...

    Christmas is a pretty big deal in Italy. After all, it is a primarily catholic country that puts a huge emphasis on both family and eating. So naturally the holiday...

    Feast of the Seven Fishes, An Italian Christmas...

    Christmas is a pretty big deal in Italy. After all, it is a primarily catholic country that puts a huge emphasis on both family and eating. So naturally the holiday...

  • Steamed Mussels (‘Mpepata di Cozze)

    Steamed Mussels (‘Mpepata di Cozze)

    These Steamed Mussels (‘Mpepata di Cozze) are a staple in southern Italy and so easy to make. We often find that folks are intimidated by seafood, especially shellfish, but there's no...

    Steamed Mussels (‘Mpepata di Cozze)

    These Steamed Mussels (‘Mpepata di Cozze) are a staple in southern Italy and so easy to make. We often find that folks are intimidated by seafood, especially shellfish, but there's no...

1 of 3