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New Years Lucky Foods Menu Ideas

By Sue Lobo - Sunday, October 13, 2013

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New Years Lucky Foods IdeasSo you’ve read our New Year’s Lucky Foods post, and are planning your menu.  Here are some lucky food ideas to help you get started.

New Years Appetizers:

No chicken wings or mini meatballs on this menu!  Remember that chickens scratch backwards and cows stay still, so avoid both New Year’s Eve or New Year’s day.  Plan appetizers with eggs, bacon, ham, pork, fish, shrimp or cheese.  Figs, grapes and pomegranate are also good options. 

So just think of your favorite appetizers that include at least one of these lucky foods. 

Here are some popular appetizer options that include 1 or more lucky foods:

  • pigs in a blanket
  • hummus
  • deviled eggs
  • sushi
  • quiche
  • fish dip
  • stuffed mushrooms
  • sausage, peppers & onions
  • baked brie
  • cheese dip
  • shrimp cocktail
  • spinach and artichoke dip
  • bacon wrapped dates
  • asparagus wrapped with proscuitto
  • spanakopita
  • fish tacos
  • texas caviar
  • antipasto platter with prosciutto, capicola, salami, cheeses, roasted peppers and olives (again things that are round are good luck, as well as pork.) 
  • Shrimp dumplings

Vegetarian appetizer options include:

  • bean dips
  • cheeseballs
  • baked brie
  • guacamole
  • stuffed cherry tomatoes
  • kale chips
  • stuffed dates
  • bruschetta
  • stuffed portobello mushrooms, peppers or cabbage

For a main dish:

In our house you typically get a bowl of white rice with black eyed peas (made with both ham and pork,) along with a side of greens and corn bread.  Remember anything made with corn meal is believed to represent good fortune because of it's golden color.

Hoppin’ John is a popular choice because you can mix in rice, pork, greens and beans – all on the approved lucky foods list. In a Spanish household, another dish would be Congri which is white rice, black beans and pork.  If you don't like black eyed peas, lentils are also popular due to their green color.  Any rice, including risotto are all good options as well.

Don't forget about noodles.  There are tons of recipes that call for noodles - just don't cut the noodles - boil and serve them whole which represents long life. 

Fish...all fish are a good main course except for catfish since they are bottom dwellers. Remember that the fish scales represent silver and fish swim forward good symbols for the new year.  If you are only cooking for 1 or 2 people, fish tacos are quick and easy.  Remember no turkey, chicken, steak, lamb, lobster or crab.

So to recap, here are some New Years lucky foods dinner and side dish ideas:

  • Pork Tenderloin with sauerkraut
  • Honey baked ham
  • Shrimp stir fry (with long noodles such as soba)
  • Fish tacos with slaw
  • Shrimp lettuce wraps
  • Soy and ginger glazed slamon
  • Black eyed peas with collard greens
  • Lentil and rice salad
  • Hoppin John
  • Texas Caviar
  • Black beans
  • 15 bean soup
  • Kielbasa with sauerkraut
  • Roast pig
  • Corn bread
  • Southern style collard greens
  • Shrimp and grits
  • Portobello mushrooms stuffed with kale and rice
  • Pork chops with onions, apples and cabbage
  • Oven roasted whole red snapper
  • Lentil soup

Soups:  In the mood for soup? Make a fish stew or minestrone soup with lots of beans and veggies in it. You can also include Italian or Andouille sausage. Perhaps a meatless chili with several types of beans.

Want to order out? For Chinese order a pork fried rice or pork lo mein.  BBQ - have ribs or pulled pork.  Italian - have pasta with sausage, cheese lasagna or a pepperoni and sausage pizza.  Of course cheese pizza works too, I just try to keep sneaking that pig in there, since so many cultures believe it brings good luck both because it roots forward, which we all want to progress in the New Year, and also because their fatty meat is said to be symbolic for a fat wallet.


Round cakes, cookies, donuts and pies all work. If you want to impress, make some chocolate truffles.


If you didn't eat enough at the stroke of midnight and are in the mood for breakfast, stay away from omelets and go for round shaped items like donuts, pancakes or bagels. (round representing coins again.) Of course smoked salmon or white fish on your bagels combines the good luck from fish along with your round bagel.

We hope you enjoy these fun ideas, and wish you good fortune in the new year!

Other New Year's posts that may interest you:

New Years Traditions and Superstitions

New Years Lucky Foods

New Years Eve Around the World - It's 12 O'clock Somewhere

New Years Lucky Food Recipes
(on Pinterest)