Summary: Devarim Hatefeilim Leseuda-Foods eaten during a meal that are exempt with Hamotzi
Sources: Shulchan Aruch Chapter 177; Seder Birchas Hanehnin Chapter 4; Luach Birchas Hanehnin Chapter 5; Ketzos Hashulchan chapter 40
- Meal foods: All foods which are normally served within a meal, which means that it is common to establish a meal on such foods, and they are not commonly eaten as a snack outside of a meal setting but rather only during a meal, are exempt from having a blessing recited over them prior to their consumption, as they are included in the bracha of Hamotzi said over the bread.
- Foods eaten with bread: Thus: Foods that are eaten together with bread such as meat, fish, cheese, vegis, eggs, pickles and olives are exempt from a bracha.
- Satiating foods: Likewise, all foods that are satiating such as cabbage, beets, and all Mezonos foods, are exempt from a bracha even if one does not eat them together with the bread, as the bracha on the bread which is the main part of the meal exempts them.
- After bracha: Likewise, one does not say an after bracha after these foods, as they are included in bentching.
- May one eat a small amount of bread in order to exempt the other foods? It is questionable whether the bracha over bread exempts the other foods in such a case, and thus one is not to say Hamotzi and eat bread, and is rather to say a bracha before each food, with exception to Shabbos and Yom Tov [due to the requirement of Lechem Mishneh].  The above doubt however is only by those foods that are eaten with the bread. However, those foods which are eaten to satiate, such as Mezonos foods, are always exempt with the bracha. [KU”A 2]
- Vetzaruch Iyun if this applies when washing for bread in order to eat rice, as perhaps one should not do so unless he will be eating a nice amount of bread, as perhaps rice is under debate as to whether it is a Minei Liftan or Mazon.
- Snack foods: Foods that are not eaten due to the meal, which means that it is uncommon to set a meal over them, neither to eat with bread or as a starch, but rather they are eaten as a snack throughout the day, then one must recite a bracha over them during a meal.
- Thus: All Fruits whether cooked or raw require a bracha to be said before eating them.
- Fruits cooked with meat: This applies even if the fruit was cooked together with meat. Nevertheless, if one eats the fruits without bread he must say a Bracha over them. [See M”B 177 in Biur Halacha, and PT 177/5; Some say however that only when one is eating a full side course of cooked fruits is a Bracha to be said. If, however, one cooked meat or rice together with the fruit they rule no Bracha is made on the fruit itself. See PT ibid. One must say that this is true as it has the same law as Ikkur Vetafal so why should one recite a blessing on the Tafel fruits if it is batul to the Ikkur meat which is included within a meal.]
- [Seemingly however if one eats the fruit together with the meat in the same bite no blessing should be said on the fruit. Furthermore even if it is not eaten in one bite but one after the other one should not recite a blessing on the fruits, as is the law regarding one who eats a Tafel after finishing the Ikkur, in which case one does not recite a blessing on the Tafel-see Seder 3/7. If however one does not desire to eat the salad, or is eating the fruits alone and only afterwards will eat the Ikkur, then seemingly a blessing must be recited.]
- The above applies even if one is eating the fruits at the end of the meal in order to help digest the food, nevertheless a bracha must be made before hand.
- An after bracha is never said on the fruits as they are included within the bentching after the meal. [Seder 4/2] The reason they are included is because Birchas Hamazon includes all the foods one ate during the meal. [177/3]
- Eating cooked fruits for satiation: There are those Poskim which question whether a bracha must be made over cooked fruits that are eaten for satiating purposes. Therefore, practically one should eat a little bit of fruit before the meal and have in mind to exempt the cooked fruits that he eats during the meal. One is to eat less than the Shiur in order so he will not have to say an after bracha after eating the fruit. [In such a case one is not to leave rooms in between before starting the meal. Alternatively, one is to eat some of the cooked fruits with bread in the beginning and end. KH]
- Eating raw fruits for satiation but not setting meal on them: A blessing must be said. [so is implied from here that the above Halacha is only recited regarding cooked fruits, and so is implied from 4/4 regarding one who sets his meal on fruits, that only if one sets his meal on them is it exempt.]
- The above is only when one eats the cooked fruits for satiation however when eating it for dessert or as a sweet then according to all a bracha must be said.
- One who eats dates between courses in order to arouse his appetite does not need to make a bracha before eating them. [KH]
Does one say a blessing on potato/kale chips during a meal?
Yes, if eaten as a snack.
Does one say a blessing on popcorn during a meal?
Yes, if eaten as a snack.
If one is served a half grapefruit after hamotzi is a Bracha recited?
In general all fruits served during the meal even at the very beginning [after Hamotzi] one must say a Bracha prior to eating them, as they eaten for desert purposes. However if one is eating it specifically to open his appetite than no bracha is recited. [PT 176/4]
- Question: [Motzei Shabbos, 12th Teves 5781]
Should one make a blessing of Haietz when eating olives during a meal with bread? Is it similar to all fruits that we say a Haeitz during the meal or is it different being that it is not sweet?
One who eats olives during a meal with bread does not say a blessing over it even if he is eating it alone without any other food.
The explanation: The rule is that all meal foods are exempt with the blessing of Hazmotzi said over the bread and therefore an individual blessing over the food does not need to, and may not, be recited. The definition of a “meal food” is any food that is normally eaten with bread or is normally eaten during a meal, as opposed to a food that is usually designated to be eaten only as a dessert. Commonly, sweet fruits and vegetables are designated as dessert foods and therefore a blessing must be said over them during a meal whether it is Haietz [i.e. an Apple] or Hadama [i.e. watermelon]. However, fruits and vegetables that are not sweet are not designated dessert foods and therefore a blessing is not said over them during a meal. Accordingly, when eating olives during a meal a blessing is not recited. The same would apply to avocado. The differentiation in this matter is not in regards to what blessing is said, such as Haietz versus Hadama, but rather due to how the food is eaten as stated above.
Sources: See Admur Seder Birchas Hanehnin 4:1, Shulchan Aruch Admur 177:1 and Michaber 177:1 who all mention pickled foods as foods that are secondary to the meal, and therefore a blessing is not recited; Piskeiy Teshuvos 177 footnote 11
Halacha 3: [Seder 4/3; 177/3]
- Eating fruits with bread: Whenever one eats fruit together with bread he does not say a bracha on the fruit even if you are eating the fruit for pleasure.
- When eating fruits for dessert or as a sweet with bread then although a blessing is not made when eating it with the bread, nevertheless a blessing must be made when eating it without the bread even if one began eating it with bread and [concluded eating it with bread].
- However if one is eating the fruit as a dip for the bread then if one eats it with bread in the beginning and end no bracha is made on the fruit even if in the middle he decides to eat it without bread. Practically however one should eat a small amount of the fruit without bread and say a bracha before hand, and then one can eat it with or without bread as he wishes.
Peanut butter or jam sandwich and have a spoon of peanut butter or jam in middle does one say a blessing on the jam or peanut butter?
If having the jam or peanut butter at the end of the meal, after finishing the bread, then seemingly a blessing must be said, as this new Jam is not Tafel to the bread or to the Seuda. If however one is still eating more bread with jam or peanut butter, such as he did not yet finish his sandwich, then a blessing is not recited. However it is best to eat some of the jam plain before eating it with bread. On the other hand perhaps when eating a peanut butter of jam sandwich it is considered like the case in 4/4 that one is setting his meal on the fruits and hence a blessing is not recited even when eating it plain.
Does the above law apply even with Mezonos?
Such as one is eating the Tafel with crackers and then has some plain, and then plans to eat it again with crackers, or does it only apply with bread due to it being considered part of the meal?
Seemingly this law only applies by a meal and not by Mezonos and hence it is not brought in chapter 3.
Does the above law apply even with fruit salads eaten during a meal?
Such as one is eating a lettuce salad with peaches and one is now eating peaches plain without salad and will then continue eating salad, is a blessing recited on the peaches?
Seemingly this law only applies by a meal and not by Mezonos and hence it is not brought in chapter 3.
Are Jams considered snack products or meal products? Is a blessing said on plain jam during a meal?
List of fruit courses:
- Fruit salad
- Cranberry salad.
- Lettuce peach salad
- Hawaiian chicken and meat.
- Fruit rice.
- Pine apple schnitzel.
- Rule: however if one eats the fruit together with the meat in the same bite no blessing should be said on the fruit. Furthermore even if it is not eaten in one bite but one after the other one should not recite a blessing on the fruits, as is the law regarding one who eats a Tafel after finishing the Ikkur, in which case one does not recite a blessing on the Tafel-see Seder 3/7. If however one does not desire to eat the salad, or is eating the fruits alone and only afterwards will eat the Ikkur, then seemingly a blessing must be recited.]
- Set meal on fruits: If one set his meal on fruits, meaning that is his main course, then there is a dispute whether one must say a blessing over the fruit if he eats it plain without bread. Practically one is to eat a little bit of fruit with bread in the beginning of the meal and in such a case even if one eats the fruit plain later on no bracha is recited.
When eating a sandwich with a sweet spread, such as jam, chocolate spread etc, is the spread considered to have had the meal set on it and hence a blessing is not required to be recited?
- It makes no relevance to the above laws if one had in mind to eat the fruits while saying Hamotzi or if they were on the table or if they were brought by surprise in middle for the meal.
- Thus when eating fruits with bread even if one did not have them in mind by Hamotzi no bracha is recited.
- Likewise even if fruits were on the table by Hamotzi and one had in mind to eat it when eating it for pleasure a bracha must be recited.
- All foods that were sent as a surprise during a meal one must say a blessing over them before eating them This applies even to meat and chicken etc, as since at the time of Hamotzi one had no idea that he would be eating this food it is therefore not included in the Bracha.
- Today however the custom is not to say a Bracha on surprise food gifts as since receiving such gifts are very common it is as if one has his mind on it from the beginning of the meal.
- If one only had a small piece of bread available and decided to finish his meal and was then brought more bread, or went to buy, he needs to say a new blessing. [Seder 5/1] The same applies for any other food that one did not have in mind to eat during the meal [that if one decided to stop eating and then received that food and changed his mind], then he has to say a new bracha. [Seder 5/6] Vetzaruch Iyun why here Admur ignores a) the custom today to never recite a blessing on new foods brought to meal and b) the law that a blessing is not recited when one is still eating a similar food, and hence if one still has some bread a blessing should not be recited? The explanation is that here we are discussing a case of Nimlach-that one decided to no longer eat anymore, and in such a case we say that according to all a new blessing is required even if he is brought the same bread etc as one cant say that it is common to change your mind and continue eating new foods. See Ketzos Hashulchan 41footnote 4
Today that we are no longer accustomed to receive foods in middle of a meal, should a blessing be recited?
- Mezonos foods that one eats to satiate himself during a meal one never says a Bracha over them even if they are filled with fruits, jam, chocolate. Even over the fruits no bracha is said in such a case as they are secondary to the pastry.
- If one is eating the cake/pastry for Taavas/Dessert: Then if the pastry is filled with fruits and sweets one is to say a mezonos.
- Mezonos bread: One never says a Bracha on it during a meal, as there is a Machlokes if they are in truth Hamotzi and hence one was already Yoztei the bracha according to that opinion. [However to avoid the above doubt it is best to say Shehakol on sugar and have in mind also the Mezonos bread. KH]
- Pretzels and crackers: Even if one eats for the sake of Taava [of tasting a good taste] no bracha is said as there are opinions that say that crackers and pretzels are always Hamotzi. [PT 177/7]
- Sufganiyot? No Bracah is said [PT 177/7] However in truth seemingly if eaten for Taavas Mezonos must be said as they are deep fried
- Bisli? If one is eating it for Taavas a blessing is said as bisli is deep fried and can never become Hamotzi.
- Bamba: If eaten for Taanug one must say a blessing.
- Chocolate: Must say Bracha.
Eating for satiation: All mezonos foods, including mezonos deserts such as pastries, which are eaten for purposes of satiation are included within the blessing of Hamoitzi and thus are not to have an individual blessing recited over them. This includes if the pastry is filled with a fruit filling, that when eaten for satiation no blessing is said either on the pastry or fruit.
Eating for desert: All Mezonos foods which are eaten for pleasure of eating rather than satiation, whether in middle of the meal or after as desert, then if they are considered Meznos according to all opinions are not included within the blessing of Hamoitzi and hence require an individual blessing of Mezonos said over them. However Mezonos foods which in are disputed if their blessing is Mesonos or Hamoitzi, then no blessing is to be said over them during a meal, even when eating it for pleasure and desert.
List of foods that have a disputed blessing and hence are not to be blessed over during a meal even when eating as a desert:
- Mezonos breads: All breads which are Mezonos due to having been kneaded with other liquids are not to have a blessing said over them during a meal.
- Cakes cookies and Pastries
Halacha 8: [Seder 4/7; 174/2]-Drinks during a meal:
- Water and other beverages are exempt from a blessing during a meal even if one drinks it to quench his thirst and not in order to soak the food that is in his stomach. The reason for this is because it is not possible to eat without drinking, as food brings on thirst.
- Sweet beverages and beer: Even those beverages that one drinks for Tava and not to quench thirst such as beer, and Meiy Dvash, one does not recite a blessing on them during the meal as it is not common to drink them before the meal but rather after it, therefore when one drinks them during a meal they are secondary to the meal.
- If one drank alcohol and ate something to sweeten the alcohol taste no bracha is said on that sweetener.
Halacha 9: [Seder 4/8; 174/2]
Wine during a meal:
- Whenever one drinks wine during a meal one must say a blessing of Hagafen over the wine, even if he is drinking it to soak the food, as wine is Chashuv as is seen from the fact we say Kiddush and Havdala over wine.
- One does not say an after bracha on the wine during a meal as it is exempt with Birchas Hamazon.
- If one drank wine before the meal he does not need to say a Bracha on wine during the meal if he had in mind to drink wine also during the meal. [So whoever drank the Kiddush wine does not repeat the blessing when drinking wine during the meal. However the listeners who did not drink any of the wine must say a Bracha]. If he did not plan to drink wine during the meal and then changed his mind a new bracha must be recited.
Halacha 10: [Seder 4/9; 174/5]
- Switched areas between drinking the wine before the meal and the wine of the meal: When do we say that the wine drank before the meal exempts a bracha from wine drank during the meal, if one did not switch rooms in the interim, if however one switched rooms and did not originally drink a Revius then he must repeat the bracha unless he had in mind to switch rooms at the time of the Bracha.
- If however he went from inside to outside or vice versa and lost sight of his original area of blessing then if he drank less than a Revius he must always repeat the bracha on the wine drank during the meal even if he had in mind.
If one switched rooms between Kiddush and Hamotzi must he repeat the blessing on wine during the meal?
Halacha 11: [Seder 4/10; 174/2]
Drinking mashkeh during a meal:
- If one drinks Mashkeh [any alcohol] in order to arouse his appetite it is considered secondary to the meal and no blessing is said.
- However if one drinks the alcohol in order to warm up the abdomen in order to digest the food than a bracha must be said unless he drank Mashke already before the meal as explained above regarding wine.
- This however only applies in those countries that they drink mashkeh throughout the day not specifically by meals, in order to strengthen the heart, and it thus has the same status as fruits. However in these countries that we only commonly drink Mashkeh during a meal no bracha is said even when drinking to warm up the heart.
- Tea and coffee as dessert: When drinking tea or coffee at the end of a meal as dessert before birchas Hamazon there is question whether a bracha should be said and hence one is to first say Shehakol on sugar and have in mind the coffee/tea. [KH; pt 177 footnote 25]
Is a blessing to be recited upon eating ice cream during a meal?
Although the blessing of Hamotzi said over bread by a meal exempts all other meal foods from requiring a blessing during the meal, nevertheless, dessert foods such as sweets require a blessing to be said over them even when eaten during the meal. However, drinks do not require a blessing to be said over them when drunk during a meal, even if they’re drunk for pleasure. Based on this information, we will now analyze the law regarding eating ice cream during a meal, and if it should be viewed as a dessert food and require a blessing of Shehakol recited prior to eating it, or viewed as a pleasure drink of which a blessing is not recited over.
- The ruling:
One is required to say blessing of Shehakol upon eating ice cream during a meal, and so was the widespread custom. Nonetheless, some Poskim rule that it is questionable whether a blessing is to be recited, and it is therefore not to be eaten during the meal, but rather afterwards, or is to be included in the blessing of Shehakol said over another food, such as a candy. In the event that one decides to eat it during the meal, a blessing is not to be recited according to their opinion.