Restaurants Open on Christmas Day: Cracker Barrel, Golden Corral, Denny’s, IHOP

Restaurants Open on Christmas Day: Cracker Barrel, Golden Corral, Denny’s, IHOP
(Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Christmas 2016 is just a mere few days away, and with that comes Christmas Day morning and all the mess that comes with it for most households. Wrapping paper tossed about every which way, bows, ribbons, presents in every corner: it’s a big mess, and who wants to deal with it right then? Nobody. It’s a holiday! And that means maybe not cooking a huge breakfast for everyone because, again, it’s a day off. So say, “To heck with it!” and go out to eat. You deserve it! And luckily for you this decision is backed by the fact that there will actually be a few restaurants open.

But if you had plans to head to Cracker Barrel for some home-cooked yumminess then you will have to pack up your disappointment and place it under the tree because they aren’t open. Go on December 26 if you have to fill that craving. Even if the restaurant chain you plan on visiting Christmas morning says they are open on its web site, do yourself a favor and phone ahead just to make sure.

Almost everything is closed on December 25, so chances of scoring Christmas food are slim, but there are a few spots open to those who want to get out and not cook for themselves. Some are even open for lunch and dinner but those places won’t amount to too many; however, some research and phoning will reveal a handful of places. Make reservations where allowed because there are so few places open that spots could potentially fill up fast. And imagine how cranky you will be if you didn’t plan a breakfast at home and then get shut out from breakfast out.

Restaurant Options for Christmas Day

The following restaurants are open 24 hours a day during the holidays. Can’t beat that schedule! So, if you didn’t like Christmas dinner at Aunt May’s, fear not because you can get something you like from one of these places once you leave.

Make sure to tip really well because it is Christmas Day and these folks are working, and possibly doing so while being apart from family. Spread some cheer.


Almost every Denny’s is open 24 hours a day regardless of the day of the week, including Christmas Day. A huge breakfast is a quick drive away if you want it.


Pancakes and waffles—yum! All IHOP restaurants are open on Christmas Day, there is no change in their 27/7 schedule.

Waffle House

Open Christmas Day, and there’s no change to the regular schedule.

Other places open Christmas day include Starbucks, Perkins, Dunkin Donuts, and Golden Corral, but hours may vary, so it is best to call the location nearest you to see what hours they will be keeping.

Getting coffee out Christmas morning is possible after all, but you might need to drive around your city a bit to find a location open, but if someone you love really wants a decadent coffee drink that day you can make it happen with a little leg work and gas.


P, Cheryl, “Cracker Barrel, Golden Corral Christmas Hours: Looking For a Cheap Holiday meal? 10 Restaurants Open Christmas Day,” Annapolis Patch, December 18, 2016;, last accessed December 22, 2016. 

Fisher, S., “Which Restaurants Are Open on Christmas Day?,” The Balance, December 20, 2016;, last accessed December 22, 2016.