Best Christmas Pudding 2017
By Hannah Walsh
We reveal the best Christmas puddings – we’ve tested traditional puddings from supermarkets and major retailers so you can wow your guests this Christmas.
Covered in flaming brandy, a rich, fruity Christmas pudding is the finale to your traditional Christmas feast – so make sure you pick a good one from our results below. Our experts tasted their way through 10 premium Christmas puddings to bring you the top picks for 2017.
There was one Best Buy Christmas pudding this year, which made one of our expert panel exclaim ‘yum!’. It’s packed with fruit and plenty of spice. It is boozy though, so is probably one for the adults.
That pudding is the Lidl Deluxe 24-month matured Christmas pudding (£11.99, 907g).
Our panel of Christmas pudding experts has decades of experience between them, in baking, food-writing, patisserie and production. Meet them below the table.
The best Christmas puddings balance ‘booze, sweetness, richness and bitterness’, according to our expert panel. The texture should be ‘not too cakey’ and ‘firm enough to cut but gives way when you eat it’. Our experts were also looking for a variety of fruit and spice to lift the pudding.
Members can log in to see our full results, and tasting notes.
Not a member? Sign up for a Which? trial to unlock the table below.
Table notes: Prices are correct as of November 2017. All puddings are suitable for vegetarians and contain alcohol
Which? Christmas pudding tasting
Our four experts rated the 10 Christmas puddings for taste, texture, aroma and appearance. We heated each pudding in the microwave (because 64% of you who heat your Christmas pudding prefer to microwave it) according to pack instructions before our panel blind-tasted them. As taste is the most important thing about Christmas pudding, this makes up half the overall test score.
- 50% taste
- 20% aroma
- 20% texture
- 10% appearance
Dan Lepard is an award-winning baker, and food writer for The Guardian, BBC Good Food and Australian titles. He was also a judge on the Great Australian Bake-Off.
Patrick Moore is an award-winning artisan bread maker and founder of More? artisan bakery and cafe in Cumbria.
Suzy Pelta is a bakery author and broadcaster, and ITV1’s Lorraine Cake Club Winner
Ryan Simpson is the chef proprietor of acclaimed restaurant Orwells in Henley-on-Thames. He also features in BBC One’s Yes Chef.
How to bling up your Christmas pudding
Our experts tasted Morrisons The Best Pedro Ximenez sherry and pear Christmas pudding this year which was a Christmas pudding covered in gold. Members can login to find out how this pudding fared in our taste tests, but if you fancy going for gold with your pudding this year, watch our video below to see how easy it is to add a bit of bling.
Christmas pudding serving suggestions
Brandy butter or rum sauce? Custard or cream? What do you like to eat with your Christmas pudding?
Your favourites are the simplest - cream or custard - according to our survey of 723 Which? members who like Christmas pudding.
But if you want to wow your guests this Christmas, why not try our experts’ different take on these traditional serving suggestions? Brandy stirred into whipped cream runs elegantly down the pudding. Or contract hot and cold by serving steaming hot pudding with cold custard or ice cream.
In 2017, we asked whether you set light to your Christmas pudding before serving it and, according to our survey, 39% of you do but 45% don't.
Drink with Asti or Muscat to complement the sweetness of the pudding, our wine experts recommend.
Christmas pud packaging vs reality
Don't be fooled by the impressive-looking pud picture on the packaging. During our taste testing, we noticed quite a difference between the glamorous gleaming globes on the pack, and the finished heated pudding. Our experts also commented on the lack of variation in the shape of the puddings this year - the majority had a rounded top, rather than a flat top.
We cooked up seven puddings and compared them with the images on the pack. Watch our video below to see how they matched up.