3 Seder Menus That Break the Mold

Whether you are hosting Seder for friends and family or flying solo, we’ve taken menu planning off your to-do list.
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Seder table
Seder table. (Photo: rbarenblat/Flickr)

Craving a traditional Ashkenazi meal? Is Sephardi food more your speed? On the hunt for some delicious vegan options? Whether you are hosting seder for friends and family or flying solo, we’ve taken menu planning off your to-do list so you can focus on more important things (like which haggadah to have at seder or which wine is best for the four cups).

Basic Bites

Inspired by traditionally Ashkenazi dishes, these recipes are just like bubby used to make! (This type of cuisine is also what’s most often identified as “Jewish food” by American cooks.)

Matzah Ball Soup

Classic matzah ball soup. (Photo: sa_ku_ra/Flickr)

Most people already have a go-to recipe for this classic Jewish comfort food, but if you don’t (or you’re looking to try something new), check out this one from Jewish food blog, Nosh with Tash

Tomato Herb Brisket

Tomato herbed brisket with (Photo: Chabad.org)

A warm, hearty brisket is an excellent addition to any seder (or any meal, for that matter!). Bonus points to this recipe that relies on a few pantry staples to cut time without sacrificing flavor. (Note, even though the above photo shows rice, if you’re Ashkenazi that’s a no-no! We explain why here.)

Potato Kugel

Passover potato kugel. (Photo: edsel_/Flickr)

If you are unfamiliar with this quintessential Jewish side dish, it’s basically a giant latke or hash brown casserole. Potato kugels also freeze really well, making them a great option for make-ahead prepping. Check out this beginner-friendly recipe by Tori Avey. 

Tzimmes

This side dish has spring written all over it. (Photo: Jerry James Stone)
This side dish has spring written all over it. (Photo: Jerry James Stone)

Often associated with a different Jewish holiday, tzimmes is a traditional stew made from carrots and dried fruit. A perfect dish for spring-time, this orange-glazed carrot recipe is a great starting point (just add raisins or prunes!) for a tzimmes your friends and family will love.

Macaroons

Passover macaroons (Photo: mhaithaca/Flickr)

If you’re like me, you associate these bite-sized bits of coconut with the Kosher section of every grocery store in America (usually next to the jar of gefilte fish and Manischewitz wine). Turns out, they are so much better when they are made from scratch! Requiring few ingredients and very little time, they are the perfect dessert to round out your Seder. Try this Chocolate Dipped Macaroon recipe from Jewish cookbook author, Jamie Geller.      

Sugar and Spice

Ready to up your flavor game? These Sephardi-inspired recipes are packed with rich spices and seasoned to perfection. 

Moroccan Fish Balls

Photo: Fanfo/Shutterstock

The brightness of the tomato and the richness from the pepper compliment each other perfectly in this dish that will warm you up from the inside out. Recipe here.

Lamb Osso Bucco

Lamb osso bucco (Photo: beckayork/Flickr)

Slow cooked until fork tender, this dish is bound to be a crowd pleaser. As with most slow-cooked dishes, this recipe requires very little hands on time, so feel free to “set it and forget it” as you go about preparing the rest of dinner!  

Mujadara

Syrian style Mujaddara. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Another recipe from Tori Avey, this rice and (brown) lentil dish is a must try for every kitniyot eater (and for those of you who don’t eat rice on Passover, it’s a great one to save for later!) 

Grilled Eggplant and Chickpea Salad

Grilled vegetables. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

This dish is crunchy and light, making it the perfect pairing for some of the richer flavors on this menu. Don’t let its simplicity fool you though — this salad is still packed with flavor! Swap the pita chips in this recipe for matzah and you are good to go!  

Almendrados

Spanish almendrados. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

This Spanish almond cookie is a light and refreshing after dinner treat. Consisting of just 4 ingredients, this dessert is sure to give macaroons a run for their money.   

Produce Perfection

For all our vegan and vegetarian seder goers, this one’s for you.   

Vegan Siniya

Photo: Limor Tiroche

Think “shepherd’s pie” except with vegetables in place of meat and tahini in place of mashed potatoes. This recipe is in Hebrew, but don’t let that stop you from trying it out (google translate is your friend!). It’s worth it! 

Quinoa and Butternut Squash

Quinoa with butternut squash. (Photo: kimonomania/Flickr)

Quinoa is a Passover staple in my house (non-kitniyot eater over here) and this recipe is one of my favorites. The sweet and citrusy flavors are perfect for spring and keep the dish from sitting too heavily in your stomach.

Lemon Roasted Asparagus

Photo: Jerry James Stone

Asparagus is a delicious vegetable on its own so it doesn’t require a lot of work on your end to make it taste good. Use a vegan butter alternative and this recipe will leave your guests asking for seconds! 

Sorbet

A taste of summer is always welcome when the weather gets chilly. (Photo: Jerry James Stone)
A taste of summer is always welcome when the weather gets chilly. (Photo: Jerry James Stone)

The sky’s the limit when it comes to sorbet flavor options but if it’s your first time, try going with a crowd favorite, like strawberry. If you’re looking for a more tropical flavor, try pineapple or grapefruit for the ultimate palate cleanser. 

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