Kate Middleton Gave the Queen a Thoughtful, Homemade Gift for Her First Christmas with the Royal Family

"I thought back to what would I give my own grandparents..."

Kate Middleton and the Queen
(Image credit: Oli Scarff)
  • When she spent her first Christmas with the royal family (opens in new tab) in 2011, Kate Middleton was, understandably, nervous.
  • The Duchess of Cambridge admitted during an interview for the 2016 ITV special Our Queen at Ninety (opens in new tab) that she worried about what to get the Queen as a gift.
  • Ultimately, Kate decided to make the Queen some of her own grandma's homemade chutney recipe, which was a big hit.

Spending the holidays (opens in new tab) with the in-laws can be nerve-wracking for anyone, but when your in-laws are literally the most famous family in the world, the pressure is next level. Kate Middleton (opens in new tab) has admitted she was nervous when she spent her first Christmas with the royal family (opens in new tab) in 2011 after her wedding to Prince William (opens in new tab). Of course, Kate didn't need to worry because she crushed it when it came to finding the perfect gift for Will's grandma, Queen Elizabeth II (opens in new tab).

In an interview for the 2016 ITV special  (opens in new tab)Our Queen at Ninety (opens in new tab)Kate opened up about what her first Christmas with her in-laws was really like—and how she picked out the perfect gift for the Queen. 

“I can remember being at Sandringham, for the first time, at Christmas. And I was worried what to give the Queen as her Christmas present,” Kate revealed, according to People (opens in new tab). "I was thinking, ‘Gosh, what should I give her?’ I thought back to what would I give my own grandparents. And I thought, ‘I’ll make her something.’ Which could have gone horribly wrong, but I decided to make my granny’s recipe of chutney."

The homemade gift was a big hit and, looking back, Kate thinks she knows why.

"I was slightly worried about it, but I noticed the next day that it was on the table," Kate said. "I think such a simple gesture went such a long way for me and I’ve noticed since she’s done that on lots of occasions and I think it just shows her thoughtfulness, really, and her care in looking after everybody."

So, just in case you ever have to give the Queen a present (opens in new tab), take note: Simple gestures are the best gestures.

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Kayleigh Roberts
Weekend Editor

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional experience. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.