December 14, 2022

Christmas Movie Munchies

— Americans want the iconic Roast Beast from How the Grinch Stole Christmas as their holiday meal this year.

We all know the feeling… When the festive film fever begins, there’s no denying the holiday season has officially begun! From the Die-Hard classics, Elf, and the Home Alone franchise; to the iconic rom-com, Love Actually and Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas, each of these films features iconic Christmas-inspired dishes and treats that make many holiday-spirited humans salivate at our screens.

We polled over 1,000 respondents across the country to find out which festive food from classic holiday films is the most iconic Christmas dinner.

Festive film foodVotesStates where top pick
1How the Grinch Stole Christmas’:Roast beast13.9%FL, ME, MD, OK, PA, OR, SC, WV, VT
2Home Alone’:Cheese pizza13.4%AL, GA, IA, MI, MT, ND, NY, NC, TN
3The Muppet Christmas Carol’:Turkey10.4%DE, KY, UT, SD
4National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation’:Eggnog and roast turkey10.3%CA, AZ, HI, MA, MO, NV, WA
5Die Hard’:Twinkies9.6%KS, MN, NH, NJ, TX, VA
6The Nightmare Before Christmas’:Worm's Wort Soup9.5%CO, LA, WI
7A Christmas Story’:Chinese Turkey (Peking duck)9.4%AR, AK, CT, IN, MS, NM, OH, RI
8Little Women’:Christmas breakfast8.7%DC, IL
9Elf’:Spaghetti with maple syrup, chocolate syrup, M&Ms, marshmallows and a chocolate fudge Pop Tart8.7%ID, NE, WY
10Love Actually’:Chocolate biscuits6.1%

Overall, the results revealed that the most popular festive flick food preference was the iconic Roast Beast from How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000). Although the Roast Beast remains an unidentified protein type, it’s safe to assume that this dish was the centerpiece of the Who’s holiday table spread, in a similar fashion to a roast turkey or chicken. Dr. Seuss writes of the vengeful Grinch stealing the Who’s whole festive feast while on a mission to sabotage Christmas: “He took the Who’s feast, he took the Who pudding, he took the Roast Beast. He cleaned out that ice box as quick as a flash. Why, the Grinch even took their last can of Who hash.” (Seuss, 1957)

In 2nd place was a freshly-delivered, “lovely Cheese Pizza” from Little Nero’s Pizza in the classic comedy, Home Alone (1990). Kevin McCallister enjoys an incredibly impressive array of other food throughout the film, including a Kraft mac ‘n cheese dinner; an ice cream sundae with marshmallows, chocolate sauce and whipped cream; and a bag of Crunch Tators - a spicy snack that was available around the late 80s and early '90s, but was discontinued thereafter.

The classic family film, The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992) closes with a fabulous festive feast, which was voted into 3rd place by festive film lovers. The feast features a traditional stuffed turkey dinner, as well as all the sides, from carrots to cranberry jelly.


The boam research team analyzed multiple sources to compile a list of the most popular festive films in America. For each film, it was determined if there was a feature of an iconic dish or food, thus, filtering the list based on this factor. Of these films, we selected ten of the most notable which mentioned well-known meals or treats and surveyed more than 1,000 people across the country to find out which famous festive film foods were the most popular in each state. (Pollfish, December 2022)

Film accreditation:

Chechik, J. (Director). (1989). National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation [Film]. Hughes Entertainment.
Clark, B. (Director). (1983). A Christmas Story [Film]. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.
Columbus, C. (Director). (1990). Home Alone [Film]. Hughes Entertainment.
Curtis, R. (Director). (2003). Love Actually [Film]. StudioCanal; Working Title Films; DNA Films.
Favreau, J. (Director). (2003). Elf [Film]. New Line Cinema; Guy Walks Into a Bar.
Gerwig, G. (Director). (2019). Little Women [Film]. Columbia Pictures; Regency Enterprises; Pascal Pictures.
Henson, B. (Director). (1992). The Muppet Christmas Carol [Film]. Walt Disney Pictures; Jim Henson Productions.
Howard, R. (Director). (2000). How the Grinch Stole Christmas [Film]. Imagine Entertainment.
McTiernan, J. (Director). (1988.) Die Hard [Film]. Gordon Company; Silver Pictures.
Selick, H. (Director). (1993). The Nightmare Before Christmas [Film]. Touchstone Pictures; Skellington Productions.