Pre-prepared roast potatoes, frozen Yorkshire puddings and packaged stuffing are all likely to be on the cheat sheet for Brits this Christmas.
A poll of 2,000 adults found only five per cent of Christmas chefs now make the most indulgent meal of the year without using pre-prepared ingredients.
Frozen Yorkshire puddings, frozen roast potatoes, and cranberry sauce top the list of most popular Christmas dinner time-savers for Brits, allowing cooks to cut 30 extra minutes from their time in the kitchen.
One in six go for pre-prepared roast potatoes to save them the trouble of peeling, parboiling, and basting to create the perfect golden roastie.
And more than one in ten also took shortcuts with gravy and stuffing.
One in five happily take the credit for their pre-made purchases, claiming they’ve made it all from scratch, and a third even accept compliments on it, knowing it’s not homemade.
Mark Hodge marketing director at McCain, which commissioned the study, said: “For many, Christmas time isn’t about spending hours slaving away in the kitchen; it’s about spending those free hours with loved ones.”
Four in 10 respondents use pre-prepared food as a timesaver on Christmas morning, whilst nearly one in five also say they ease the pressure of the notorious festive frenzy.
According to the research, the average festive get-together leaves the nominated cook slaving away in the kitchen for an average of four hours.
In fact, over two-fifths of Christmas cooks are now resigned to the fact that it takes too long these days to make a wholly-homemade Christmas dinner.
And half of chefs despair that cooking responsibilities lead them to missing out on festive fun and spending time with friends and family.
For the 95 per cent of Brits who don’t cook their Christmas dinner from scratch, one in 10 cooks have told their dinner guests they made the entire feast without any pre-prepared ingredients.
And a further tenth have fibbed about doing all the hard work in the kitchen all by themselves with no help.
With the time saved by using pre-bought ingredients, 35 per cent spend it with friends or family enjoying the festivities.
And a quarter use the saved time to indulge in some classic Christmas telly.
One in five Brits have tried at some point to get away with passing off pre-prepared foods as something they’d made from scratch.
Two thirds of people admit they don’t think they would be able to tell if they were served pre-prepared foods as part of their Christmas dinner, according to the OnePoll study.
The nation’s go-to pre-prepared foods for the festive season:
Frozen Yorkshire puddings
Frozen roast potatoes
Pre-cut fresh or frozen Brussels sprouts
Pre-cut fresh or frozen parsnips
Pre-cut fresh or frozen carrots
Packaged / chilled roast pot