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Food List

(New) Cereals

Other Berachot

Hebrew Text



The Proper Beracha on Foods

This list covers both beracha rishona and beracha achrona. 

The following are the primary rules of beracha achrona:  

1) One should recite a beracha rishona on even the smallest amount of food, but a beracha achrona is not recited unless one eats a minimum of a kzayis (somewhat more than the volume of one fluid ounce) of solid food or a rviyis (somewhat more than three fluid ounces) of liquid.

2) One should not recite a beracha achrona on foods unless one eats a minimum of a kzayis within the time of 3 to 4 minutes (see Mishna Brurah 210:1).  Similarly one does not recite a beracha achrona after drinking liquids unless one drinks a minimum of a rvi’is without interruption (there is, however, considerable controversy in this issue (ibid.). Therefore, some foods that are normally eaten very slowly do not require a beracha achrona (e.g., sucking candy).

3) One who eats a meal of cake, pie or crackers has effected a kvias s’udah (a set meal) and must wash netilas yadayim and recite hamotzee beforehand and recite Bircas Hamazon after the meal .  Certain mezonos foods have such a small grain content (e.g., cheese cake, certain knishes), so that eating them rarely constitute a kvias sudah.  In addition the status of certain mezonos foods is subject to a dispute among Poskim whether or not they are subject to the rules of kvias s’udah.  This list reflects those differences.

Some other important halachot:

  All fruits or vegetables require the beracha indicated only if they are eaten in the usual fashion (i.e., a cooked, not raw, potato).  If, however, the fruit or vegetable is eaten in an unusual fashion, a shehakol may be required.

Certain foods are subject to a dispute among Poskim as to their proper beracha rishona or beracha achrona.  In such cases this list follows the general rule of safek beracha L’hakel (a doubt pertaining to a beracha should be resolved in a lenient manner). Therefore, one recites the more inclusive (less particularized) beracha or the fewest berachas possible.

Often a combination of two foods requires two berachas, in which case one recites the berachas according to the rules of the proper sequence of beracha. At times, due to halachic doubts one must recite the beracha of lower stature first.  This list reflects those halachic doubts, thus any food requiring two beracha has its beracha listed in the proper sequence.

Whenever the food is subject to the rules of ikar v'tafel (primary and secondary ingredients), we often stated the beracha in terms of which ingredient is the majority.  This is based on the assumption that one has no particular interest in any of the ingredients.  If, however, one specifically wants one of the ingredients, it is considered the ikar and its beracha exempts the other ingredients from a beracha of their own.

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