Celebrate New Year’s Like an Italian! Recipe Ideas

There are no hard and fast rules for celebrating New Year’s Eve or Day like an Italian in Italy. Here are some mouthwatering menu ideas to make the New Year special.

New Year Recipes: Appetizers

#1 Focaccia Genovese

Eat it alone, serve it with a spread, or fill it like a sandwich with fine Italian meats and cheeses! However you enjoy it, Focaccia Genovese always delivers.

Authentic Focaccia Genovese Recipe
Soft with those lovely fingerprints… It's the authentic Focaccia Genovese recipe from Genoa in the Liguria region of Italy.
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Focaccia Genovese

#2 Italian Tuna Mousse

Tuna Mousse Recipe (Italian Tuna Salad)
Tuna Mousse is Italy’s answer to ‘tuna salad.’ It is often found in bars during the aperativo, coffee shops and even bakeries and convenient stores. The tuna mousse is typically served as a sandwich filling or inside rolled-up roasted red peppers.
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Italian Tuna Salad - Tuna Mousse
Italian Tuna Mousse

New Year Recipes: Main Course

#3 Spaghetti with Clam Sauce

Italian Spaghetti with Clam Sauce Recipe
Finally! Restaurant-quality Spaghetti with Clam Sauce that you can easily make at home. Our tested recipe will make it easy.
Spaghetti alla Vongole

#4 Italian Lentils

This is the most iconic dish for the New Year in Italy. Lentils are a symbol of good luck. Check out our video in which Nonna Margherita shows three ways to serve her lentils.

Nonna Lulu with her Italian Lentils

#5 Penne with Vodka and Pancetta

Many of you will be surprised to learn that Penne with Vodka is considered Italian, though a relatively new addition to the canon of Italian cuisine. It allegedly arrived to the Italian disco scene in the 1970’s where it was popular with club goers and enjoyed as a late night snack. This recipe is seriously delicious—the vodka does its job in bringing out new flavors in the tomato and other ingredients.

Penne alla Vodka Recipe with Pancetta
Here, we show our Penne alla Vodka recipe with pancetta. Creamy and decadent, this is an unforgettable dish!
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Penne with Vodka

#6 Penne with Vodka and Salmon

Once the 1980’s rolled around, the Italian disco clubs had another new twist on Penne alla Vodka on the menu: Vodka Penne with Salmon! For our money, there’s no better way to dance in the New Year’s than with a plate of this amazing pasta.

Penne alla Vodka with Salmon (Smoked) —1980’s Disco Vodka Pasta Recipe
Amazing! Indulge in the best Penne alla Vodka with Salmon recipe. Rich, creamy vodka sauce + delicate smoked salmon.
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Penne alla Vodka with Salmon (Smoked)

#7 Seafood Spaghetti

Seafood spaghetti is always considered a ‘special’ dish in Italy for those who enjoy the fruits of the sea.

Seafood Spaghetti Recipe
The ultimate Italian Seafood Pasta recipe! Spaghetti with clams, mussels, calamari, squid, shrimp and scampi— a seafood lover’s dream!
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Seafood Spaghetti

#8 Truffle Pasta with Ricotta (alla Norcia)

Truffle is a decadent ingredient—just what the New Year calls for! You can go with a more economical truffle-infused oil if you prefer. This traditional pasta recipe from Norcia is to die for. Be sure to use whole milk ricotta to make the sauce.

Pasta alla Norcina Recipe (Truffle Pasta with Sausage and Ricotta)
A traditional truffle pasta recipe from Norcia in Italy! 'Pasta alla Norcina' has truffle, sausage, onions and a creamy ricotta cheese sauce.
Check out this recipe
Norcia Pasta with Truffle

#9 Baked Sea Bass Recipe with Oven Roasted Potatoes

Sea bass is on the pricey side, but it is totally worth it! This deliciously mild fish usually even appeals to those who normally aren’t a fan of fish. This is a traditional recipe from the Italian island of Sardegna that is sure to please.

Baked Sea Bass with Herbed Roasted Potatoes
A whole sea bass roasted with a blend of fresh Italian herbs, tomato and laid on a bed of crispy roasted potatoes. Substitute any type of sea bass (spigola or branzino). Seriously good eats from the Italian island of Sardinia (Sardegna)!
Check out this recipe
Sardinian Sea Bass with Potatoes and Tomatoes

#10 Cordon Bleu (Involtini or Rotolo)

This is not an Italian classic, but it has become increasingly popular in Italy. Our recipe has an Italian twist: prosciutto! You’ve got to try it.

Easy Baked Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe with Prosciutto and Gruyere
This easy Baked Chicken Cordon Bleu recipe with Prosciutto and Gruyère is a modern twist on a classic dish, offering a perfect blend of flavors and textures. It's not just a meal; it's an experience that brings gourmet dining right to your table.
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Chicken Cordon Bleu

New Year Recipes: Desserts

#11 Italian Tiramisù

If there’s every a time you need a ‘pull me up’ it’s on New Year’s Eve! Time to make one of Italy’s most iconic desserts, and one of the world’s most famous coffee desserts.

Tiramisù without Raw Eggs Recipe
Mascarpone cheese, eggs, coffee—all of the decadent deliciousness of the traditional tiramisu but without raw eggs.  As more Italians have become concerned about food safety, various no-raw-egg recipes for tiramisu have popped up in Italy. This is our tested recipe, which we feel arrives closest to the perfection of the traditional dessert.  
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#12 Sicilian Cannoli

Another classic? Cannoli! You’ll want to use our authentic Sicilian Cannoli recipe.


#13 Torta Mantovana

Italian Almond Cake Recipe
This traditional Tuscan cake is deliciously simple. Eggs, flour, butter, lemon and almonds come together in perfect harmony.
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Italian Almond Cake Recipe
Torta Mantovana

#14 Italian Hot Chocolate

Italian hot chocolate isn’t your mama’s hot cocoa! This thick and luxurious drink will satisfy like no other.

Italian Hot Chocolate Recipe
This Italian hot chocolate recipe makes a thick, rich hot chocolate in the European style! So easy to make and so decadent.
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Italian hot chocolate

#15 Zuppa Inglese

Zuppa Inglese Recipe
This Zuppa Inglese recipe is the perfect festive layered cake for a birthday or holiday. It features layers of sponge cake (pan di spagna) soaked in liquor and filled with layers of silky chocolate and vanilla pastry cream. One of the most beloved Italian desserts that you can make with the Italian sponge cake (pan di spagna). 
Check out this recipe
Zuppa Inglese

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Classic recipes from Italy and beyond. Traditional Italian Cooking and Mediterranean Diet recipes!

PIATTO™ Recipes bring traditional Italian food recipes to your table with our tested, step-by-step recipes and videos. You'll find the best Italian recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert. Always tested, always delicious.

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