At the festive feasting table the humble Christmas cracker takes centre stage. Providing more than merely entertainment, with jokes and mini toys, crackers help to add a decorative touch the dining table. Choosing crackers comes down to two things, what they can add visually to enhance your table settings and also what little treasures are hiding inside.
If you’re looking to add a touch of bling you can’t go far wrong with plain gold or silver, just enough to inject some seasonal sparkle. If you have little ones around the table then choosing a festive character will command their attention.
This year we have seen the introduction of crackers that bring the family together more, whether that be the generous sharing sized design or the gifts inside that help to unite everyone – such as the xylophone crackers.
Generally speaking all crackers come with paper hats and jokes as standard, with gifts varying from place to place. We’ve picked a real mixed bag of crackers this year to suit all tastes and budgets.
Best Christmas crackers 2019
1. Amazon Whitley Neill Gin Crackers – best alcohol Christmas crackers
Cheers to get the party started. Pulling a Christmas cracker is not just a pastime to be enjoyed by children! These gin crackers are sure to delight the adults around the table, when they undercover what’s inside.
Each cracker contains a 5cl bottle of either Whitley Neill Parma Violet Gin, Whitley Neill Raspberry Gin, Whitley Neill Pink Grapefruit Gin, Whitley Neill Original Handcrafted Dry Gin, Whitley Neill Rhubarb & Ginger Gin and Whitley Neill Blood Orange Gin.
Perfectly dressed in purple, red, pink, black, violet and orange these brightly coloured crackers are just the thing to add the festive cheer to the dinner table.
Coming soon: Whitley Neill Gin Crackers, £25 box of 6, Amazon (Available Saturday 16th November)
2. Hobbycraft Fillable Crackers– best make your own Christmas crackers
Make your Christmas all the more fun by making your own crackers – a great family activity to get everyone into the spirit. Craft emporium Hobbycraft have everything you need to make your own in style. From the cardboard tubes to the jingle bells to add decoration, they have it all. If you’re looking to make your own, but keep it simple try the Decorate Your Own Kraft Brown Fillable Cracker set. It’s all there already, you just need to assemble, decorate and fill.
Making your own means you can write your own jokes and select the gifts, to ensure everyone is happy.
In stores only: Decorate Your Own Kraft Brown Fillable Crackers, £5, Hobbycraft
3. Sainsbury’s Kraft Crackers – best eco Christmas crackers
Beautiful both visually and ethically! These stunning decorative crackers feature packaging and products which are 100 per cent recyclable and 100 per cent plastic free.
The cracker barrels, card content and packaging are all made from recycled material.
Each of the six crackers contains a party hat, joke and game cards – including Charades, What am I?, Trivia.
4. Habitat Mini Metallic Crackers – best mini Christmas crackers
Add some glitz and glam to the table with the help of these handmade beauties. The mini cracker set features eight multi-coloured metallic crackers. The colourful mix of pink, gold and silver tones trimmed with ribbon and glitter. Small but mighty each petite design contains a traditional joke and hat, together with a surprise gift.
5. Hotel Chocolat Large Cracker – best chocolate Christmas cracker
Surely too tempting to leave until after dinner? This unapologetically huge centrepiece includes that classic cracker ‘snap’ so your Christmas can go off with a bang! The alternative giant Christmas Cracker contains 40 chocolates and 12 paper hats. So although only two get the joy of pulling the cracker, there’s more than enough filler for all your friends and family to enjoy.
6. Cox & Cox Golden Leopard Crackers – best luxury Christmas crackers
Come bearing the gift of gold with this box of 6 luxury Christmas crackers. The decorative wonders feature an edgy golden leopard wrap, with chic black ribbon trims. Each cracker features a hat, snap, joke and a luxury mini gift. It’s lucky dip but each contains one of the following: Harmonica; Chip fork; Silver bullet pen; Champagne stopper; Rose gold tankard and a Heart keychain.
7. Paperchase Unicorn Crackers – best alternative Christmas crackers
Jazz things up this year by choosing an unusual cracker design. This set of unicorn shaped crackers makes a fabulous alternative to traditional shaped crackers, you simply hold the base and pull at the top to open. Inside you’ll find a hat, classic jokes to entertain and cute mini unicorn erasers.
8. Dunelm Novelty Crackers – best family Christmas crackers
Woodland creatures and Christmas characters are captured with these beautifully illustrated crackers. These fun and festive character origami crackers are too cute and 100 per cent recyclable. Each cracker contains a motto, hat and snap, along with coloured paper and instructions to created an Origami character – fun for all the family.
More for your table: Christmas table decoration ideas that will set the scene for your festive feast
Make Christmas go off with a bang with any one of these cracking designs.