Chametz-Free Meal Ideas for Passover

Looking for Passover meal ideas? The notion of chametz means that anything leavened – a grain-based food that either rises with yeast or other additives or swells with the addition of water – is out, making Pesach menus tricky to put together.

In addition, many communities – in particular Ashkenazi ones (Jews of German descent) – have other restrictive customs, such as not eating kitniyot. Literally taken to mean legumes, this ancient custom prohibits the consumption of anything that can be ground into flour that resembles wheat flour, and includes rice, beans, peas, lentils, soy, peanuts, sesame, and chickpeas. These restrictions don’t apply to Sephardi Jews.

On top of that, people still hold by their own food choices – so a vegetarian or vegan Ashkenazi Jews has seriously limited options for the week!

…all in all, that doesn’t leave you with many options. That’s why we’ve put together this list of easy meal ideas that are so much more exciting than chicken and potatoes! Most of our ideas are vegetarian or vegan – with four full days of actual “Yom Tov” outside of Israel, many people seem to prefer lighter meals on the days in between to counter their heavy festival meals and the sheer number of eggs in Passover desserts.

  • Baked sweet potatoes with vegan cashew “cheese” or “sour cream”
  • Big salads with lots of roasted root vegetables and toasted nuts and dark green leaves
  • This fantastic French dish called potatoes boulangère (it’s basically thinly sliced potatoes layered together and baked in stock – you can also make it with a mix of different root veg such as carrot, celeriac, and potato)
  • Another awesome French dish called potatoes dauphinoise, which is thinly sliced layers of potatoes baked in cream with garlic and thyme
  • Quiches with a hash brown base instead of pastry: shred potatoes, squeeze to drain, season, and use to line a pie dish. Bake until pale golden brown, then fill with vegetables of your choice and a cream-egg mixture, and bake until set
  • Baked portobello mushrooms filled with a chestnut-leek mixture and topped with goat’s cheese, with herby warm potato salad and something green
  • Roasted tomatoes/cherry tomatoes with basil and avocado and broccoli/sunflower sprouts
  • Quinoa salad with toasted almonds, shredded baby leaves, cucumber, red onion, avocado, craisins, strawberries etc…
  • Maple roasted sweet potatoes and beets with walnuts (so pretty if you can find multicoloured beets)
  • Garlicky roasted broccoli and cherry tomatoes and onions with lots of olive oil and herbs tossed through pesach pasta, gnocchi, or boiled potatoes
  • Cauliflower, potato, and spinach curry in a coconut milk base
  • Matzah balls served in a wholesome vegetable soup

Plus, don’t miss our ideas on how to cook with matzah!