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Bowls of Yum Cha at The Eight
Photograph: Daniel Boud

Where to eat yum cha on Christmas Day 2022

Sick of ham, turkey and the regs seafood spread? Swap peeling prawns for proper har gow

Written by
Divya Venkataraman
Contributor
Alice Ellis
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Don't celebrate Christmas? Or maybe you do celebrate it, but you don't want to deal with all the dishwashing. What about yum cha?

Some of Sydney's best Chinese restaurants will be dishing up all the trolley-delivered dumplings your heart could possibly desire this Christmas Day.

If you're into a more traditional festive spread, check out our list of the best (conventional) Christmas Day restaurant lunches and dinners.

Yum cha restaurants open on Christmas Day

  • Restaurants
  • Chinese
  • Sydney

By night it’s Cantonese à la carte, but by day it’s yum cha carts ahoy at this Chinese restaurant hidden in Piccadilly Tower. Palace churns out all the classics, bustled about by enthusiastic cart pushers who’ll happily lift every bamboo steamer for you to inspect its contents. On Christmas Day, you can head in from 10.30am.

  • Restaurants
  • Haymarket

Order the chunky hunks of barbecue pork knuckle that our waiter says is “better than belly”. Don't eat meat? Go for sweet braised tofu and spinach dumplings filled with toasted pine nuts. Their dumplings are soft and cloud-like – see for yourself with a serve of the prawn and pork, and follow them with the rolled-then-fried rice rolls. They'll be open from 10am.

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  • Restaurants
  • Haymarket
  • price 1 of 4

This traditional Chinatown restaurant has buzz – not least because the yum cha servers can end up in trolley gridlock. Our favourites include the sweet barbecue pork buns, the sweet tacky prawn dumplings, and the duck pancakes that do not skimp on crisp, bronze skin. Also save room for extra-plump mango pancakes. On Christmas Day, yum cha is served from 10am-3pm.

  • Restaurants
  • Haymarket

This bustling, open-plan dining room is a very fine place to indulge in salt-and-pepper delights, roasted meats and pretty much anything they throw your way. The dumplings are fluffy and fine-skinned, and an order of their special fried rice with fish roe is a necessity. They'll be getting an early start, swinging the doors open from 9am.

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  • Restaurants
  • Belmore

At Canterbury League Club's Chinese restaurant, Dynasty, you can get a Christmas Day banquet menu from $88 per head (with a minimum of four people). Sweet, glossy, baked barbecue pork buns and impressive 12-fold prawn dumplings await. But if a banquet feast is more your style, you can get a Christmas Day shared set menu from $88 per head (including Singapore chilli crab!). They're open from 10am on December 25.

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