Holiday Entertainment

Bluey sneakily attempts to look at a present under the Christmas tree.
The Best Christmas Episodes To Watch As A Family

From Elena of Avalor to Full House, there’s plenty for both kids and parents to enjoy!

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Christmas episodes in sitcoms and popular TV shows are almost as much of a tradition as leaving out cookies and milk for Santa Claus. And while finding episodes in those classic shows, like Friends or The Office, isn’t too tricky, what about the kids? Thankfully, there are plenty of kids and family TV shows with great Christmas episodes to stream and we’ve compiled 20 of the best from Disney Junior favorites for toddlers to nostalgic ‘90s sitcoms.

In fact, some of the episodes featured on this list have been out for over 20 or 30 years. Classics. Younger kids may not understand the significance just yet, but the timeless messages featured within could be appreciated by all. And let’s face it, they just don’t make television shows like The Flintstones, Hey Arnold!, or The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air anymore, so little ones are in for a real treat. The Christmas and holiday episodes on this list also offer opportunities to discuss the true meaning of the holiday season with kids beyond gifts and Santa.

So heat up some sweet hot cocoa with extra tiny marshmallows, put on a pair of your coziest socks, and add these 20 Christmas episodes to your family’s annual watch list. Happy streaming!

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse: “Mickey Saves Santa”

Season 1, Episode 20

A cute one for the tots! Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald Duck, Daisy, and Pluto must rescue Santa when his sleigh breaks down so he can deliver gifts around the world. Using the Mystery Mousketool, they manage to fix the harness on Santa's reindeer. Mrs. Claus also makes her debut. The 2006 episode is the first Christmas episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.

Watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse on Disney+.

Elena of Avalor: “Navidad”

Season 1, Episode 11

Another Disney one! In the episode “Navidad,” Elena brings all the communities of Avalor together to share each other's holiday traditions and remind them of the true spirit of Christmas. Isabel’s friend Cristina, invites Elena and her family to their village for their Nochebuena celebration, the night before Navidad. Everyone ends up meeting in Castillo Park for festive holiday celebrations. But disaster strikes when the goats Cristina's father brought get spooked and wreck the celebration resulting in a fight. Elena convinces everyone to build floats instead for the Navidad parade, which Doña Paloma sees a chance to make a profit out of. Elena confronts her about it and reminds everyone about the holiday spirit of giving.

Watch Elena of Avalor on Disney+.

Rugrats: “Babies In Toyland”

Season 9, Episode 3

Rugrats has been around for over 20 years, so both kids and adults could appreciate this hour-long holiday episode. Titled “Babies in Toyland,” the babies do a spinoff of their version of How The Grinch Stole Christmas. In this case, Angelica sort of portrays the Grinch, who discovers that Christmas is about more than just greed and presents. This is also the episode in which babies are stranded in the Stu-inspired displays at a Christmas party and Dil celebrates his first Christmas. Angelica ends up gifting her little cousin with a reindeer toy.

Watch Rugrats on Paramount+, the Nickelodeon website, Hulu, and Google Play.

Bluey: “Verdanah Santa”

Season 1, Episode 52

In the “Verdanah Santa” Christmas-themed episode, Bluey asks a common question any kid will want to know — how does Santa come and visit them if their house doesn’t have a chimney? Bluey and her cousins, Muffin and Socks, take turns pretending to be Santa until the pups take it too far. Socks nips Bluey, and she refuses to leave her a present. In the end, they all must learn the true meaning of being good and kind for Christmas. Bluey is a cute show about a family of Australian cattle dogs. The show has three seasons. No official word yet on a fourth season, but we have hope!

Watch Bluey on Disney+.

The Doc McStuffins Christmas Special

Season 5, Episode 3

Doc comes to the rescue in The Doc McStuffins Christmas Special! When there are no presents under the tree, Doc suspects there's something wrong at the North Pole and she and her toys time travels to figure out what went wrong and save Christmas! It turns out the power was down and toys were unfinished and gifts were unwrapped. “Without Christmas there are so many kids who won't get toys to love,” she says. With the help of her friends, they get together to finish everything up so kids will have presents under the tree. The songs in the episode, “One Toy at a Time”, “Christmas Is Coming” and “Christmas Miracle” are catchy and festive.

Watch Doc McStuffins’ The Doc McStuffins Christmas Special on Disney+ and Hulu.

The Proud Family: “Seven Days Of Kwanzaa”

Season 1, Episode 11

In this Proud Family episode, we explore another festive holiday that’s celebrated around Christmas and that’s Kwanzaa. The holiday, created in 1966 by Dr. Maulana Karenga, commemorates Black culture and roots. In “Seven Days Of Kwanzaa,” the family is out Christmas shopping when they meet a family experiencing homelessness. Penny invites them over for Christmas dinner. Soon they learn the family celebrates Kwanzaa and goes on to educate the Prouds about it. Kyla Pratt, who voices Penny, discussed how the topics the series covered impacted her personally. “Back in the day, literally, the Proud Family was something that, taught me about so many things that I hadn’t learned about in school, or even at home,” Pratt told RoyalTee Magazine. “And I’d be like, ‘wait, what is this?’ And then you start the conversation at home.”

Watch The Proud Family on Disney+.

Lizzie McGuire: “Aaron Carter’s Is Coming To Town”


Season 1, Episode 7

In this throwback Christmas episode, Aaron Carter comes into town to do a Christmas video shoot which Lizzie and Miranda have to be part of. They enlist their friend Gordo to help them crash the set. They try to sneak in but Aaron's manager catches them. When she goes back to get the tape recorder she left behind, she ran into Aaron, who gives her a kiss and the teens all get to be extras in the video, which turned out to be his popular “I Want Candy” single. This episode is nostalgic and more memorable than ever since Carter’s sudden passing in November 2022.

Watch Lizzie McGuire on Disney+.

The Brady Bunch: “The Voice of Christmas”

Hulton Archive/Archive Photos/Getty Images

Season 1, Episode 12

It doesn’t get more family-oriented than Brady, Carol, Greg, Bobby, Marcia, Jan, and Cindy. In The Brady Bunch’s first-ever holiday episode titled “The Voice of Christmas,” Carol comes down with laryngitis and is afraid she won't be able to get her voice back in time to sing her solo at the family's holiday church service. Cindy tells Santa (the mall one) that all she wants for Christmas is for her mother to get her voice back and sing at church Sunday morning. Santa assures Cindy that her mother’s vocal cords will heal. And lo and behold, Carol’s voice is healed just in time for Christmas morning. Cindy wrote a letter thanking Santa for fulfilling her wish. But we like to think it was Alice’s grandmother’s laryngitis brew and laying under a humidifier that did the job!

Watch The Brady Brunch on Hulu and Paramount+.

The Flintstones: “Christmas Flintstone”

Season 5, Episode 15

To help pay for some Christmas family finances, Fred Flintstone is working part-time as a department store Santa Claus at Macysrock (get it?). Soon he becomes labeled as the best Santa Claus the store has ever had. As a matter of fact, he gets so good that word gets back the real Kris Kringle at the North Pole about him. Santa sends two elves, Twinky and Blinky, to recruit Fred and ask him to take over the Christmas Eve duties after the real Santa gets sick. Fred travels the world delivering gifts and Christmas greetings in French, Swedish, Italian, and Dutch.

Watch The Flintstones’ Christmas Flintstone on HBO Max and Amazon Prime via Boomerang.

Hey Arnold!: “Arnold’s Christmas”

Season 1, Episode 11

This episode is a great one about reuniting the family. In “Arnold's Christmas,” we finally get the backstory of Arnold’s neighbor Mr. Hyunh. Twenty years prior, Hyunh gave his daughter, Mai, to American soldiers in hopes that she will have a happier and safer life. He had not seen his daughter since. Arnold makes it his mission to track down Hyunh’s daughter and reunite the two for Christmas. But in the end, it was Helga who ends up finding her.

Watch Hey Arnold! on Paramount+ and Hulu.

Full House: “A Very Tanner Christmas”

Season 6, Episode 12

Oh, Mylanta! What are the holidays with the family without a few surprises? This throwback episode of the Tanner family has a few of them which includes one kid moving to Florida for college and a trip to the homeless shelter to explore the holiday’s true meaning. Not to mention the Olsen twins as the adorable Michelle Tanner is another worth-watching reason. When you’re finished with “A Very Tanner Christmas,” fast-forward a few years later to A Fuller House and check out the “Nutcrackers” episode.

Watch Full House on HBO Max.

Little Baby Bum: “Christmas Shark”

This is a good sing-a-along for the toddlers and can get stuck in the head of adults if you’re not careful! In the 2018 short clip, Mia visits the aquarium with her family on Christmas and the sharks are dressed up in different festive, holiday costumes. There’s a Christmas Shark, Reindeer Shark, Snowman Shark, Present Shark, and Santa Shark. Little Baby Bum is a nursery rhyme series that covers everything from rainbows and ducks to “Hickory Dickory Dock” and “Wheels On The Bus.” The series has other Christmas-related episodes as well, but this particular one is the catchiest and cutest!

Watch Little Baby Bum on YouTube, HBO Max, and Hulu.

Glee: “A Very Glee Christmas”

Season 2, Episode 10

Another musical one! This time for the older kids and teens. In “A Very Glee Christmas,” everyone at McKinley High is working to get into the holiday spirit but that’s easier said than done. The Glee Club carol in the classroom in hopes of raising money for unhoused children. But instead of support, they’re met with insults from students and a thrown shoe from a teacher. Yikes! Finn and Rachel try to kick Brittany’s belief in Santa Claus and someone paints themselves up as the Grinch. This episode pays homage to several classic movies and songs including “Welcome Christmas.”

Watch Glee on Amazon Prime.

The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air: “Christmas Show”

Season 2, Episode 13

In the Season 2 episode, “Christmas Show,” Will and the Banks family go to a ski resort for Christmas. But events take a downward slope when their presents are stolen by a robber that Will invited to their cabin. In the end, the robber is caught and the family gets their stuff back, as well as going around and sharing their verbal, heartful Christmas gifts to one another. This is another episode that teaches kids the values of Christmas, excluding gifts, and a reminder to not let strangers in the house.

Watch The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air on HBO Max.

Black-ish: “Father Christmas”

Season 6, Episode 10

Black-ish actually has several Christmas episodes but the Season 6 one is pretty unique. In “Father Christmas,” Dre’s father visits for the holidays, which is a surprise since he rarely celebrates Christmas but it seems he wants to make up for lost time. In the midst of the family celebrating, there’s a blast from Lynette’s past (played by Loretta Devine). Season 7’s “Compton Around the Christmas Tree” is also a good one to catch.

Watch Black-ish on ABC and Hulu.

Home Improvement: “I'm Scheming of a White Christmas”

Getty Images/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Season 2, Episode 12

Before Tim Allen was Santa Claus or Buzz Lightyear, he was just Tim. Home Improvement’s “I'm Scheming of a White Christmas” episode is worthy of a watch for the family and teaches good lessons on the generosity of others and the spirit of giving. In the Season 2 episode, Tim’s kids, Brad and Randy, are collecting money for charity. The boys’ intentions are good, until they decide to keep a portion of the money for themselves to buy comics and video games.

Watch Home Improvement on Apple TV+.

Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper: “Christmas Show”

Season 3, Episode 12

“Christmas isn’t about turkeys, trees, and presents. It’s about friends and family getting together.” A quote from this family sitcom that pretty much seems up the entire episode and holiday season. In the episode “Christmas Show,” Mark Cooper, played by Mark Curry, takes a job as Santa at the mall. But as the synopsis reads, “his Christmas plans at home both fail miserably.” In the end, the Christmas spirit, like always, wins. This is a reoccurring theme in most of the Christmas episodes. A young Raven-Symoné also starred in this ‘90s classic.

Watch Hangin’ With Mr. Cooper on HBO Max.

Smurfs: “Baby’s First Christmas”

Season 3, Episode 42

In Smurf Village, Papa Smurf and the other Smurfs are preparing to celebrate Baby Smurf’s first Christmas. There’s music, lots of food (including smurfberry taffy), mistletoe (Grouchy sneaks a kiss from Smurfette), and red and green diapers. Nearby, the evil witch Chlorhydrus plans to ruin their Christmas by casting a spell on Mr. Nicholas to make him hate the holidays. The plan doesn’t work, of course. Meanwhile, Gargamel fantasizes about his Smurf Christmas meal and we’re not talking about invites for dinner. His plans were spoiled as well! There’s lots of holiday Smurf music in this episode and Papa Smurf Christmas wisdom.

Watch Smurfs on HBO Max.

Happy watching!

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