7 New Years Day Food Traditions

Cultures all over the world have traditional foods they eat on New Year’s day to promote happiness, health, prosperity and wealth in the New Year.  Start the new year off right by eating the right foods.

7 New Years Day food traditions from around the world


7 New Years Day Food Traditions for Health, Wealth, and Prosperity in the New Year.

From Italian pork with white risotto to the American South’s Hoppin’ John.

There are lots of customs for ushering the New Year, but few are as ingrained in world cultures as the food thought to attract prosperity.

Superstitious or not, food traditions are fun and another excuse to get together with friends and family  And why tempt the fates when you can serve easy Slow Cooker Italian Roast Pork for yummy sandwiches as the crew recovers from the New Years Eve party or watches football.

Who knows, it just might help you start the year off right and attract abundance and prosperity for the coming year.


7 New Years Day Food Traditions
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1. Italian Pork or Pork Sausage

Pork is for progress and prosperity. It is served because pigs forage moving forward and you want to advance prosperity in the New Year. But don’t serve chicken – chickens scratch backward – not the direction you want to go in the New Year. Many cultures around the world eat pork on New Year’s Day to symbolize progress for the coming year.

Easy Slow Cooker Italian Roast Pork recipe

Slow cooker Italian Roast Pork
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2. Sicilian Style Pizza

In Sicily, the tradition is to eat, thick-crust, rectangular pizza made with onions, breadcrumbs, and caciocavallo cheese, the ancestor of what is known as “Sicilian-style pizza” in the United States.

Sfincione (Sicilian New Years Pizza with Bread Crumbs, Onions, and Caciocavallo) Recipe

Sicilian Pizza
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3. White Truffle Rissoto or Lentils

Rice or Lentil represent coins, and while cooking, rice grows in the pot the way that you’d like your wealth to multiply in the new year.

White Truffle Risotto

White Risotto
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4 . Hoppin’ John

This classic American South dish is a one-pot meal of black-eyed peas, thick cut bacon, and rice, and is believed to ensure wealth and good luck in the upcoming year.  The peas symbolize coins, pork is for “living high off the hog” and rice grows when cooked, representing abundance.  Served with a side of greens (for financial health) and cornbread ( the color of gold).

Southern Living: Hoppin' John
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5.  Grapes

In Spain, Mexico, and other countries they celebrate the coming of the new year by eating 12 grapes at midnight on New Year’s Eve.  Give it a try – eat one grape for each stroke of midnight to bring luck for the 12 months ahead. (It’s not as easy as it sounds.)

Grapes - a new years day food tradition
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6.  Pomegranates

Seeds are associated with fertility and fertility with abundant life. In Greece, they hurl whole pomegranates to the floor to release a flood of seeds that symbolize life and abundance.

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7.  Fish

Ever heard the expression there are “plenty of fish in the sea”.  Fish has symbolized abundance in many cultures for centuries.  You may not eat the scales but it is said that the silvery scales of the fish symbolize silver coins, and eating fish on New Years will bring financial prosperity.

Try Cioppino or Crab Stuffed Halibut with Pears & Brie.


Cioppino - Italian Fisherman's Stew
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Crab Stuffed Halibut with Pears & Brie

Crab Stuffed Halibut with Pears & Brie
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Crab Stuffed Halibut with Pears & Brie


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1 Comment

  1. Angelo
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    I am from Philly and remember my Italian grandmother always serving roast pork on New Years Day for good luck. I’m going to try this today!


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