Shabbat Dinner Menus and Recipes for Every Season

Shabbat Dinner with chicken, potatoes, salad, challah, and wine

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Every week, Jews break away from their individual, busy work lives and enter into a spiritual together time with their loved ones and friends. The Jewish Day of Rest, Shabbat in Hebrew, begins on Friday at sundown and ends on Saturday at nightfall. Tables are set with tablecloths, good dishes, candles, wine and challah loaves. And everyone sits down together to fill up on the good things in life, reconnecting with their children, seeing family, and enjoying good food.

Some people love the simplicity and predictability of serving the same menu for their Shabbat meals week after week. Others like to try out special new recipes or showcase seasonal produce in honor of the Jewish Sabbath. While some people spend hours in the kitchen preparing for Shabbat, others need practical shortcuts for making a great meal without a huge time investment.

Whatever camp you're in, you'll find menus and recipes to love in this collection of Shabbat menus and recipes. 

Traditional Ashkenazi Sabbath Dinner

For Jews of Ashkenazi (Eastern European) descent, a traditional Friday night Sabbath dinner menu often includes a menu with homemade challah, gefilte fish, chicken soup, chicken, and asparagus. 

Quick Sabbath Menus and Recipes for Busy Cooks

If your busy lifestyle makes it difficult to find the hours needed to prepare delicious home-cooked meals for the Sabbath or you feel especially rushed with Shabbat cooking during the winter when Shabbat starts early, don't worry. Try some quick Shabbat menus and recipes to help busy cooks prepare Shabbat meals for their families.

Shabbat Meals for a Crowd

If you are adding to your crowd with friends, neighbors, or any other guests, the preparation can get timely and expensive. In order to serve a large group of hungry people while staying within budget, use a low-cost Shabbat menu for a crowd. Some economical Sabbath menus are designed to satisfy big appetites without putting a big hole in your pocket.

Seasonal Sabbath Menus and Recipes

October is the official "After the Holidays" month. And after three weeks of holiday meals (from Rosh Hashanah through Simchat Torah), you may prefer to spend time in the gym rather than in the kitchen. Fall Shabbat menus include quick and easy recipes for Sabbath meals.

The cold hits in December, but winter still feels fresh and fun at this early date. Use a winter Shabbat menu that may include for creamy vegetable soup, savory roast chicken, side dishes that make the most of winter vegetables, and rich chocolate desserts.

In the spring and summer, you are probably looking for more light and festive Shabbat menus. A spring Sabbath menu could include grilled meat, barley and a variety of salads. In the summer, a Shabbat menu might include quick recipes for light dishes that won't have you slaving too long over a hot stove in the heat.