The best 'New Girl' Christmas episodes, ranked

Festive lap dances, holiday travel stress and Megan Fox—the best 'New Girl' Christmas episodes have all that and more

The best New Girl Christmas episodes. Zooey Deschanel in the "Christmas Eve Eve" episode of NEW GIRL
(Image credit: FOX Image Collection/Getty)

The adventures of Jess Day and co. are the gift that keeps on giving, and these New Girl Christmas episodes are festive proof. 

Like the best Friends Christmas episodes, New Girl's holiday editions feature a lovable, ragtag group of roommates and buddies—Jess (Zooey Deschanel), Nick (Jake Johnson), Schmidt (Max Greenfield), Winston (Lamorne Morris), Cece (Hannah Simone) and Coach (Damon Wayans, Jr.)—as they navigate the highs and lows of the yuletide season, from Christmas party-hopping to canceled flights home. 

The sitcom knows its way around holiday cheer—it also gave us some of TV's best Thanksgiving episodes—but out of the five Christmas-themed episodes that the Fox comedy put out over its seven-year run, we have a clear favorite. Here are the New Girl Christmas episodes, ranked. 

The best 'New Girl' Christmas episodes:

Max Greenfield (R) in the "Stuck in the Bar" episode of NEW GIRL airing Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2014 (9:00-9:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX

(Image credit: FOX Image Collection/Getty)

5. 'Clavado En Un Bar' (Season 3, Episode 11)

Consider this one an honorable mention. Though this season three entry doesn't outwardly mention the December holiday, context clues hint to viewers that the episode takes place around Christmastime: it begins with the gang enjoying some Scotch at their hangout spot The Griffin, which is decorated with colorful holiday lights, and ends with flashbacks to Schmidt working at a Christmas tree farm. The storylines don't revolve around Christmas, however, instead giving us hilarious peeks into the characters' pasts, including how Jess and Cece first met and Winston's basketball careers in Latvia. 

4. 'LAXmas' (Season 4, Episode 11)

Traveling during the holidays is, frankly, a Christmas curse, and New Girl mines the humor of those flight fiascos in this season four episode, which finds our True American gang stranded at the titular California airport thanks to a bad storm. Hijinks obviously ensue, especially when Jess's ever-so-cheerful self butts heads with a disgruntled airport employee, played by none other than Billy Eichner. 

Jake Johnson and guest star Megan Fox in the "Christmas Eve Eve" episode of NEW GIRL airing Tuesday, Dec. 13 (8:30-9:01 PM ET/PT) on FOX

(Image credit: FOX Image Collection/Getty)

3. 'Christmas Eve Eve' (Season 6, Episode 10)

In the last of the series' holiday episodes—there's no Christmas-themed chapter in the seventh and final season—Jess arranges a Secret Santa gift swap to get the slightly Grinchy loft gang into the holiday spirit, even flying in Nick's girlfriend Reagan (Megan Fox) as his present. But the episode's best surprises are Cece and Winston's weird-but-wholesome gifts to each other—a beanbag chair made out of blankets and a check made out to the phone company, respectively—and the gang's surprise for Jess: a jolly serenade of "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" by the one and only Darlene Love. 

2. 'Santa' (Season 2, Episode 11)

The holidays can be a melodramatic time, and this midseason finale encapsulates that wistful emotion—but don't worry, the show's signature silliness is still there to balance out all that heart with humor. (Winston spends a good portion of the episode with a cranberry stuck in his ear.) Sam (David Walton) wants Jess back, Schmidt wants Cece to say she loves him too, and Nick wants to be more adventurous for Angie (Olivia Munn), the latter of which results in Nick giving his girlfriend a sweetly intentioned but very uncoordinated lap dance in public. 

The 23rd - Max Greenfield in New Girl (2011)

(Image credit: Greg Gayne/Fox)

1. 'The 23rd' (Season 1, Episode 9)

First is best, and when it comes to New Girl Christmas episodes, that's certainly true. The friends all find themselves at Schmidt's office holiday party—he and his tiny nipples are tasked with being a shirtless "Sexy Santa," of course—where both awkward and heartwarming moments abound. When Jess's boyfriend Paul (Justin Long) tells her "I love you" for the first time, she cringingly responds "thank you," which becomes even worse when Nick interferes. 

After Jess and Paul break up, Nick misses his flight home to take her and the rest of the roomies to Candy Cane Lane as an apology, with the whole group yelling from the street to try and get the residents to wake up and turn on their holiday lights. Soon the whole block is beautifully lit up and Jess and the loft gang have themselves a merry little Christmas, indeed. 

Want even more holiday-season goodness? Check out our picks for the best Christmas movies of all time.

These New Girl Christmas episodes are available for streaming on Netflix. 

Christina Izzo

Christina Izzo is the Deputy Editor of My Imperfect Life. 

More generally, she is a writer-editor covering food and drink, travel, lifestyle and culture in New York City. She was previously the Features Editor at Rachael Ray In Season and Reveal, as well as the Food & Drink Editor and chief restaurant critic at Time Out New York

When she’s not doing all that, she can probably be found eating cheese somewhere.