For a time meant to be full of joy, Christmas can sure be stressful. You’re expected to decorate, host and also throw together an extravagant meal — I’m exhausted just thinking about it.
Make it easier on yourself by letting one of the many restaurants open during the holidays take care of dinner, so you can focus on giving your loved ones some quality time. Scroll through this list, make a reservation and look forward to a stress-free evening filled with delicious food.
Beatrix will serve brunch with such items as lemon pancakes, avocado toast and spicy chicken tinga. 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Christmas Eve, multiple locations, 312-284-1377, beatrixrestaurants.com.
Booth One will serve classic dishes, like beef Wellington and Dover sole, and modern takes, like a Japanese snapper ceviche on Christmas Day. The night before, dine on roast chicken frites, dry-aged New York sirloin and other chef specials. 4-9 p.m. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, 1301 N. State Parkway, 312-649-0535, boothone.com.
Reel Club will serve its seafood brunch buffet, with assorted sushi rolls, smoked fish, carved prime rib, and an omelet station. Brunch is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and dinner from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Christmas Eve, 272 Oakbrook Center, Oak Brook, 630-368-9400, reel-club.com.
Shaw’s Crab House will serve a special brunch menu on Christmas Eve, with roasted leg of lamb, honey ham, holiday pies and cookies. Brunch is $75/adults and $20/kids 12 and under. 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Christmas Eve. 21 E. Hubbard St., 312-527-2722, shawscrabhouse.com.
Stella Barra Pizzeria is hosting a brunch buffet with $5 bloody marys, mimosas and bellinis, and also dinner, where you can eat pizzas, like a spicy salumi and burrata, or a butternut squash. Brunch is $19.95/person. Brunch is 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and dinner is 2-10 p.m. on Christmas Eve. At 1954 N. Halsted St., 772-634-4101, stellabarra.com.
Summer House Santa Monica has your brunch, lunch and dinner planned, with cinnamon roll bread pudding, wood-grilled prime burger, ancho-marinated chicken tacos and more. Brunch, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.; lunch, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; dinner, 4-10 p.m. Christmas Eve; 1954 N. Halsted St., 773-634-4100, summerhousesm.com/chicago.
Wildfire will serve an all-day dinner menu that includes pizza, salads, prime burgers and sandwiches. Daily specials will also be available. 11:15 a.m. to 9 p.m. Christmas Day, 3-9 p.m. Christmas Eve, 235 Parkway Drive, Lincolnshire, 847-279-7900, wildfirerestaurant.com.