This Christmas is a special one for the royals. With Prince Harry's engagement to Meghan Markle, royal tradition is being broken.
Usually, only members of the royal family are invited to partake in royal festivities, and they take this very seriously. When Kate Middleton was engaged to Prince William, she was not allowed to attend the dinner. However, Markle will be attending this year's celebration, despite not being married to Harry yet.
"In 2010 Kate was not invited to do so after her engagement to William nor was Mike Tindall after his to the Princess Royal's daughter Zara Phillips and only spouses and close family are usually invited," Richard Fitzwilliams, a Royal expert, said. "However Harry and Meghan will be living together at Nottingham Cottage at Kensington Palace and her family are in the United States."
"The monarchy relies heavily on precedent and tradition but it also makes its own,"� he said.
Meghan will be attending church with the family, and also their traditional Christmas dinner. So what does she have to look forward to?
Darren McGrady, former chef to Queen Elizabeth II, Diana Princess of Wales and Princes William and Harry, revealed how the Royal family likes to spend their day.
"The royals are of German descent so they weave in German traditions to their celebrations," McGrady said. "After afternoon tea, they open gifts on Christmas Eve, as is the German tradition."
"After church, that's when they have a big lunch that includes a salad with shrimp or lobster, and a roasted turkey, and all of your traditional side dishes like parsnips, carrots, Brussels sprouts and Christmas pudding with brandy butter for dessert," continued McGrady.
"They all go their own way before coming together again for afternoon tea and traditional Christmas fruitcake," revealed McGrady. "Then they gather again in the evening, where a buffet dinner with 15-20 different items awaits them."
"Right before the Christmas buffet, the senior chef on duty goes into the dining room and carves the rib roast or turkey or ham and once he's done, Her Majesty presents the chef with a glass of whiskey and they toast. That's the only time the chef goes into the dining room and has a glass of whiskey with the royal family. It's one of the chef's favorite traditions."
Don't expect any finger foods, though. McGrady says that's where Americans and the British differ.
"They don't do appetizers on Christmas like many do in the U.S. Instead, appetizers and canapes are reserved for New Year's Eve."
As for Queen Elizabeth's guilty pleasure? McGrady has that covered.
"The queen is a major chocoholic, particularly dark chocolate, so she always has a chocolate treat on Christmas. She also loves mint."