Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face, Great chieftain o the puddin’-race! Haggis, whisky and poetry are the three essentials of a Burns Night Supper. In this round-up we’ve gathered together 38 of the finest Scots inspired Burns Night recipe ideas to help create your show-stopping menu.
Who was Robert Burns?
Born on 25 January 1759 in Alloway in Ayrshire, Robert Burns penned his first poem at the age of 15.
Over the years he dedicated hundreds of lines of verse during his short life to women. Despite his fame, Burns never forgot his humble roots; his love for farming stayed with him throughout his life and his writing often dealt with issues affecting the poorer classes, notably highlighting the need for greater social equality.
When he died at the age of 37 he left a huge catalogue of poetry and songs which have been enjoyed and recited for over 200 years.
The first Burns supper was held in July 1801 when nine of Burns’ close friends got together to mark the fifth anniversary of their friend’s death.
The night included a tasty meal (with haggis!), performances of Burns’ work and a speech in honour of the great Bard.
The night was such a success they decided to hold it again, but this time in honour of Rabbie’s Burns’ birthday, beginning the tradition we continue to enjoy to this day.
How do you throw an official Burns Night Supper?
- To start: Everyone gathers, dressed in their most Scottish-themed attire (now’s the time to break out those tartan pieces!) and the host says a few words. Everyone takes their seats and the Selkirk Grace is said.
- The meal: The starter is served, usually a soup course. The haggis is piped in and the host performs Address to a Haggis. Everyone toasts the haggis and then the main meal is served, followed by dessert, often Cranachan or Tipsy Laird (a Scottish whisky-laden version of the English trifle).
- After the meal: The first Burns recital is performed, the Immortal Memory (the main tribute speech to Burns) is given followed by the second Burns recital. Then there’s a Toast to the Lassies, followed by a Reply to the Toast to the Lassies and then the final Burns recital is performed.
- To end the night: The host gives a vote of thanks and everyone stands and sings Auld Lang Syne, crossing their arms and joining hands at the line ‘And there’s a hand, my trusty fere!’.
What do you serve at a Burns Night Supper?
I’ve gathered together thirty-eight of the finest Scots-inspired recipes to inspire you for your Burns Night Supper. These recipes feature traditional dishes from Scottish food bloggers such as Claire over at Foodie Quine, Jacqueline at Tinned Tomatoes and Janice at Farmersgirl Kitchen as well as vegetarian variations. There are also a few rather unusual recipes for haggis too!
Starter Recipes for a Burns Night Supper
Cock-a-Leekie Soup by Recipes from a Pantry
Cullen Skink by Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary
Scottish Tattie, Neep & Carrot Soup by Tinned Tomatoes (Vegan)
Haggis, Neeps & Tatties Soup by Foodie Quine
How to Make Bannocks by A Taste of Shetland
Beer-battered Haggis Bites by Tinned Tomatoes (Vegan)
Haggis & Beef Scotch Eggs by Foodie Quine
Haggis, Potato Cake & Poached Egg by Hodge Podge Days
Meatball Thistles by Foodie Quine
Main Course Recipes for a Burns Night Supper
Vegetarian Haggis and Mushroom Wellington by Amuse Your Bouche
Traditional Haggis, Neeps & Tatties from Scotland.org
Scotch Beef & Haggis Meatloaf with Whisky Neeps by Foodie Quine
Haggis Shepherd’s Pie with Scotch Lamb by Foodie Quine
Vegetarian Mushroom Haggis Pakoras with Curried Neep Chips by Allotment 2 Kitchen
Shetland Beef & Valhalla Ale Slow Cooker Pie by Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary
Pan-fried Scallops on a Leek Puree with Crispy Bacon and Kale Chips by Farmersgirl Kitchen
Venison Stew with Tomatoe-Fruits from Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary
Chicken with Oatmeal Stuffing and Whisky Sauce by Caroline’s Cooking
Scotch Beef with Whisky Ale & Barley by How to Cook Good Food
Haggis, Neeps & Tattie Pie: Burns Night on a Budget by Farmersgirl Kitchen
Vegetarian Haggis & Red Lentil Nut Loaf by Tinned Tomatoes
Irn Bru Pulled Pork by Foodie Quine
Scottish Mince & Tatties by My Kitchen Love
A Simplified Haggis ‘My Heart’s in the Highlands’ by Caroline’s Cooking
Dessert Recipes for a Burns Night Supper
Almond & Cardamom Rye Shortbread with Whisky Raspberry Cream by Tin & Thyme
Orange Bundt Cake with Salted Whisky Caramel by Recipes from a Pantry
Homemade Mini Rustic Oatcakes for a Cheeseboard by Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary
Shortbread Kilts by Foodie Quine
‘Nae Cloot’ (no cloth) Clootie Dumpling (made in the slow cooker) by Farmersgirl Kitchen
Cape Breton Oatcakes by Cooking with Craic
Cranachan & Ideas for a Burns Night Celebration by Caroline’s Cooking
Chocolate Haggis (aka Shortbread & Whisky Fridge Cake) by Foodie Quine
Tipsy Laird by Scotland’s Enchanting Kingdom
Scottish Oatcakes by Caroline’s Cooking
How to Make Scottish Crowdie Cheese by Outlander Kitchen
You might also like
Shaheen at Allotment 2 Kitchen visits Robert Burns’ Birthplace
How to Host the Ultimate Burns Night Supper: Recipes & Traditions from Farmersgirl Kitchen
How to Cook a Haggis by Scottish Mum
Perfect Your Haggis by Visit Scotland
How to Host your own Burns Night Supper an ebook from Visit Scotland
A Story of Porridge, a Scottish Castle & a Ghost by Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary