Updated for 2020.
A number of restaurants serve a special Christmas Day menu — either a buffet or a fixed-price menu.
Other restaurants are open and serving their regular menu — like many of Atlanta’s Asian restaurants.
Among the venues serving a special Christmas Day holiday menu, few are really “cheap.” The Sun Dial, for example, is hosting a five-course holiday menu priced at $105 per person, before tax and automatic 18% gratuity.
But we’ll leave you to decide on your own budget for the big day.
Please be safe this holiday season!
The CDC has issued guidelines on how to have safer holiday celebrations during the 2020 season.
You can read them here.
A better bet this year, in terms of your health and your budget, might be to order a heat-and-serve feast from one of the many eateries offering special take-out options.
You may also be interested in:
- Where to get Christmas dinner to go
- Day-by-day list of holiday events
- Best places to see holiday lights in neighborhoods and at attractions
- Holiday markets around metro Atlanta
- 6 Christmas tree farms where you can choose or cut your own tree
- Free photos with Santa for pets and people
Restaurants open on Christmas Day
A reservation is a good idea. Many restaurants are operating at half-capacity these days. These are among the most affordable Christmas options we found — most are very pricey.
Another idea: Head to Buford Hwy, where many of the ethnic eateries in Chamblee and Doraville will be doing business as usual.
Benihana will open its locations in Alpharetta and Atlanta on Christmas. Reserve online.
Buca di Beppo serves Italian dishes family style at , and you can make your reservations for Christmas online. There is a location in Alpharetta.
Hard Rock Cafe will be open, if you want to head downtown. Reserve online.
Nan Thai offers a fine dining experience in Vietnamese cuisine. It’s open on both Christmas Eve and Christmas day, offering the standard menu plus festive specials. Book online.
Fogo de Chao is celebrating with a special feast for Christmas Eve, Christmas day, New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day. The menu will include seasonal items. Book online for the Dunwoody location OR the Buckhead location.
South City Kitchen (Avalon location) is serving an early breakfast from 7 to 10 a.m., then re-opening at 11 a.m. and serving a fixed menu until 7:00 p.m. Credit card required to secure a reservation. Book online.
Do your own restaurant search at Open Table
Open Table is a website that let’s you browse a comprehensive listing of local restaurants with Christmas Day specials. Each one shows you the time slots available for reservations, and lets you reserve for your group right there. This list includes locations from downtown Atlanta to suburbs like Alpharetta and Kennesaw. It covers cuisines from Asian to a traditional American holiday dinner.
Want to see a wide variety of options in your chosen price range? Follow these steps:
- Visit OpenTable.com
- On the top menu bar, enter the number of people in your party, the date (Dec. 25th), and a general time that you’d like to eat — then click the button to start the search
- If you’re looking for options in a suburb, enter that in the top search bar as well — for example, Alpharetta or Milton
- When your results come up, look at the left column, where you can filter them by price range — for example, the icon $$ means $30 or under and $$$ means $31-50
- You can also filter by location and type of cuisine, if you’d like to narrow down the options
Remember, Open Table will only show you restaurants that take reservations through its booking service — so this is not a complete list of everything that’s open.
Don’t forget about cheaper chain restaurants
If you’re not looking for caviar and champagne, don’t overlook the everyday chains that may offer just what you need. Bonus: Most of these places don’t require (or take) reservations.
REMEMBER, though, that even 24/7 chains may have special holiday hours, and the hours may vary by location, so call ahead!
IHOP is open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, keeping its usual 24/7 hours. Bonus: at some locations, a child under age 10 eats for free when you order an adult entree. Ask about this offer before you order!
Waffle House never closes — not even for Christmas. You can find locations all over town, 24/7.
Denny’s locations are open 24 hours, 7 days a week and they stick with that schedule on Christmas Day. The website mentions a special turkey-and-dressing entree for the holidays. There’s a location in Norcross.
Shoney’s has locations that are open for Christmas, but the Lawrenceville restaurant has been doing take-out only since March.
You may also be interested in:
- NEW for 2020: World of Illumination drive-thru light show
- NEW! Festival of Lights drive-thru light show at Atlantic Station
- FREE: Prism Winter Lights display at Woodruff Park in downtown Atlanta
- Lights of Life drive-thru holiday attraction in Marietta
- Discounts for Fantasy in Lights at Callaway Gardens
- Discounts for Stone Mountain Christmas
- Garden Lights, Holiday Nights at the Atlanta Botanical Garden
More food and drink deals around Atlanta:
Thursday, February 25, 2021
Friday, February 26, 2021
Saturday, February 27, 2021