Seuda Shelishit

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Seuda Shlishit is the third meal that a person eats on Shabbat. While the first is eaten at night and second in the morning, the third one should be eaten on shabbat afternoon before sunset.


  1. There is an obligation to eat three meals on Shabbat,[1] and if one missed the meal on Friday night, he should eat three during the day.[2]
  2. The obligation of eating the third meal of Shabbat (Seuda Shelishit) is rabbinic.[3]
  3. Women are obligated in Seuda Shelishit.[4]

Amount to Eat

  1. If one is full, one should still try to eat at least a KeBaytzah of bread.[5] However, if one is unable, one should at least have a Kezayit.[6]
  2. This obligation applies even if one is not hungry,[7] but if one can not eat at all then one is not obligated to pain oneself, as this would violate oneg shabbos. Nonetheless, a wise person will see ahead and leave room for Seuda Shelishit.[8]

What to Eat?

Two Challahs

  1. According to Sephardim, one should be careful to have two whole loaves of bread for Lechem Mishneh at seuda shelishit.[9] However, according to Ashkenazim, it's preferable to have two whole loaves, but it's sufficient to have just one whole loaf.[10]
  2. If one only has one whole loaf of bread and a broken piece, one should use the whole one for seuda shelishit instead of saving it for Melava Malka.[11]

Covering the Bread

  1. One doesn't need to cover the loaves of bread before making HaMotzei. However, it's preferable to do so.[12]

Bread, Mezonot, or Fruit

  1. One must eat bread for Seuda Shelishit. However, if one is very full and unable to eat bread, then one should eat Mezonot. If that is also impossible, one should have food that usually accompanies bread, such as meat or fish or at least fruit (cooked fruit is preferable). If one doesn't have fruit, then one may use a Revi'it of wine.[13] One may not rely on this leniency of not having bread for the Friday night meal or the first daytime meal.[14]


  1. One should try to have fish even for seuda shlishit, unless one doesn't like fish.[15]


  1. The earliest time to fulfill Seuda Shelishit is from 6 and a 1/2 hours (Shaot Zmaniot) into the day.[16] If one began before this time and continued and ate at least a Kezayit after this time, he does fulfill his obligation.[17]
  2. The Minhag is to eat Seuda Shelishit between davening Mincha and Maariv/Arvit.[18] If one is unable to have it after davening Mincha, one can have it before davening mincha (but still after 6.5 hours into the day).[19]
  3. Although it is forbidden to begin eating after sunset until one says Havdalah,[20] and it is definitely preferable to eat before sunset,[21] some poskim give extra time to begin the meal if one hasn't yet eaten seuda shlishit. Some say one can start up to 9 minutes or 13.5 minutes after sunset.[22] Others disagree.[23]
  4. If one began eating before sunset he may continue to eat even after nightfall.[24] However, this doesn't apply if one was only drinking not as part of a meal[25] or to eating only mezonot or fruit, so one must stop if that is all that he is having.[26]

Birkat Hamazon

  1. One is obligated to say ritze vihachalitzenu during Birkat HaMazon after eating seuda shlishit, as well as adding Yaaleh VeYavo on rosh chodesh or chol hamoed.[27] This applies even if the meal continued past Tzet HaKochavim.[28]
  2. If one forgot to say it and then remembered:
    1. After finishing boneh yerushalayim but before the next beracha - he should insert there a beracha instead of ritze "Baruch Ata Hashem Elokenu Melech Ha'olam Asher Natan Shabbatot Le'menucha Le'amo Yisrael Be'ahava Le'ot U'berit Baruch Ata Hashem Mekadesh Ha'Shabbat."
    2. After beginning the fourth beracha - he should just continue and not repeat.[29]
    3. Women should only say the beracha without Hashem's name or just continue onward even if she remembered before starting the fourth beracha.[30]
  3. When rosh chodesh or the first day of chanuka falls out on Sunday, even if the seudah continued until after dark, one doesn't say Yaaleh VeYavo in Birkat HaMazon.[31]


  1. There is no obligation to recite kiddush at seuda shelishit, but it is nice to make a beracha on wine during the meal.[32]


  1. Shulchan Aruch 291:1, Mishna Brurah 291:1, Rambam Shabbat 30:9, Yalkut Yosef Shabbat Volume 1 page 399. This is based on the gemara in shabbat 117b which derives from the verse in Shemot 16:25 which mentions the word "hayom" meaning today three times. The Gemara Shabbat 118b describes the great rewards for one who eats all three meals on shabbat.
  2. Rama 291:1
  3. Mishna Brurah 291:1, Shu"t Maharil 94, Pri Megadim Mishbetzot Zahav 291:1. See Sh"t Tzitz Eliezer 16:13. Pri Megadim Mishbetzot Zahav 291:1 quotes the Levush who says that this obligation is from the torah, even though he himself disagrees. The Sefer Chareidim 14:3 and Maharal quoted by the Taz 472:1 agree with this opinion.
  4. Shulchan Aruch 291:6, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 77:16, Yalkut Yosef (Shabbat vol 1, pg 410). This is based on Rabbeinu Tam in Sefer Hayashar 70:4 who says that women are obligated because they too were part of the miracle of the manna. The Ran on Shabbat 44a "vikatav" says that it is based on the same source as a woman's obligation in Kiddush mentioned in Berachot 20a, that since they are obligated in refraining from melacha, they are also obligated in the mitzvot aseh even if it is only rabbinic. The Meiri Shabbat 118a seems to agree. Shilobei Haleket 93 presents another explanation; since the three meals are based on the three times it says hayom by the maan and the maan is equally relevant to women. The Aruch Hashulchan 291:4 says that many women are unaware of their obligation and a person should try to fix this misconception.
  5. Shulchan Aruch 291:1, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 77:16
  6. Mishna Brurah 291:2, Kaf HaChaim 291:5, Yalkut Yosef (Shabbat vol 1 pg 399)
  7. Shulchan Aruch 291:1. Kaf Hachayim 291:3 quotes the Chida saying that one should really make that extra effort because one would normally would eat a meal friday night and shabbat morning anyway so the afternoon meal is the only one that is clearly for the honor of shabbat, and proves that the first two were as well.
  8. Shulchan Aruch 291:1
  9. Shulchan Aruch 291:4, based on Rambam Shabbat 30:9. This is based on the gemara shabbat 117b, in which rebbe abba states that a person is obligated to make hamotzi on two loaves of bread on shabbat, since the pasuk by the manna describes how on Friday in the desert, bnei yisroel would collect "לחם משנה" (lit: a double portion). The Aruch Hashulchan 291:11 points out that the gemara doesn't specify which meal on shabbat it is referring to, and thus presumably refers to all three of them. Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 77:17 simply writes that one should have Lechem Mishneh for all three meals of Shabbat.
  10. Rama 291:4. The Tur (siman 291) quotes the Yerushalmi and Mechilta that an omer of manna provided enough for two loaves, and so if 2 omers fell on Friday, this provided enough for 4 loaves. They would eat 1 of them Friday morning, 1 Friday night (at the shabbat seuda), and 1 more at the seuda shabbat day. This left only 1 loaf left for seuda shlishit, thus proving that one does not need lechem mishnah for seuda shlishit. The Beit yosef cites this as the position of the Shibolei Haleket as well. However, he cites numerous rishonim who disagreed and ideally required two loaves at seuda shlishit as well, including the Mordechai, Rabbenu Yerucham, Maggid Mishnah, teshuvot attributed to the Ramban, and Maharam. Hence, the psak of the Rama that ideally one should have lechem mishnah, despite the common minhag being to have only one.
  11. Beiur Halacha 291 s.v. VeLePachot
  12. Yalkut Yosef (Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 291:9). This perhaps depends on the reason for covering the challah. If the reason is because the order of brachot is such that the bracha on bread should precede that of wine (based on the pasuk ארץ חיטה ושעורה גפן וכו׳), and so we cover the bread so as not to "embarrass" it by snubbing it and going out of order, then presumably there would be no need to cover the challah by seuda shlishit since there is no kiddush. However, if the reason to cover the bread is in order to remember the manna, which was covered both above and below by a layer of dew (כמונח בקופסא), then presumably it would apply by seuda shlishit as well. The Aruch Hashulchan 299:14 says this lomdus (that the nafka minah between these two reasons for why we cover the challah would be whether we cover it at seuda shlishit), and concludes that since the minhag is not to cover the challah at seuda shlishit (as he records in 291:10), it must be that the real reason for covering it in general is not to embarrass the bread (but not as a remembrance of the manna).
  13. The above is from Yalkut Yosef (Shabbat vol 1 pg 409).
    • Tosafot Yoma 79b "minai" says that one must eat bread based on the connection between seuda shlishit and the manna. Rambam Hilchot Shabbat 30:9, Tur 291, Shulchan Aruch O.C. 291:4-5 all accept this opinion.
    • Rabbenu Tam (cited by Tosfot Brachot 49b s.v. iy) held that it is possible to fulfill seuda shelishit without bread. His proof is Sukkah 27a that says that it is possible to fulfill a meal of sukkot with targima, which Tosfot explains is mezonot. Shibolei Haleket 93 agrees. Rabbenu Yonah 36b s.v. birchat quotes this. Tosfot Yoma 79b s.v. mini argues that bread is necessary for all three meals since it is learned from the maan and he rejects Rabbenu Tam's proof. Tosfot Sukkah 27a s.v. bmini, Brachot 49b s.v. iy, Rosh Sukkah 2:13, Smag 27, and Hagahot Maimoniyot 30:6 agree. The Rosh Sukkah 2:13 says that minei targima are foods made from one of the five species of grain based on a Tosefta that says that the beracha on minei targima is borei minei mezonot. Tosafot to Succa 27a "minei targima" say that foods which usually accompany bread such as meat or fish are included in this as well. Rashi "minei targima" there, as well as Rabbeinu Yona Brachot 36b "birkat," and the Ran Shabbat 44a "v'ika" include even fruit in this category.
    • Shulchan Aruch O.C. 291:5 quotes all these opinions and concludes that one should eat bread.
    • Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 77:16 writes that one must eat bread for Seudat Shelishit, however, if one is very full and is unable, then one should eat Mezonot. If that is also impossible one should have food which usually accompany bread such as meat or fish. If that too is impossible one should have at least fruit cooked fruit.
    • Aruch Hashulchan 291:12 says that it is not proper to rely on any of these opinions unless one is sick.
    • Magen Avraham 444:2 when discussing what to do on erev pesach that falls out on shabbat gives several options and also quotes the Shla saying that one may fulfill seudat shlishit with divrei torah. The Rokeach 55 allows one to skip seudat shlishit to go here a shiur in the afternoon. Pri Megadim (E"A 290) disagrees and says one shouldn't miss seudat shlishit even to hear a shiur. Aruch Hashulchan 290:3 and Kaf Hachayim 290:14 agree with the Pri Megadim.
  14. Tosfot Pesachim 101a s.v. tiyma writes that even though it is possible to have targima for the seudat shelishit it is ineffective for the Friday night or first daytime meal since those are the main meals fulfilling kavod Shabbat (Oneg). Rabbenu Yonah Brachot 36b s.v. birchat explains it differently. He explains that it doesn't work for the first two meals since it is necessary to have a bread meal then since it is necessary to have bread for kiddush bmakom seudah.
  15. Yalkut Yosef Shabbat volume 1 page 408. Mishna Brurah 242:2 says this enhances kavod shabbat.
  16. Shulchan Aruch 291:2, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 77:16, Yalkut Yosef shabbat volume 1 page 402. The Behag quoted by the Ran Shabbat 43b "tanu rabanan" says that it could be eaten at any time of the day, but Tosfot Shabbat 118a "bimincha" and Rosh Shabbat 16:5 say that it is specifically at the start of Mincha gedola. Rambam Shabbat 30:9, Hagahot Maimoniyot 30:8, and Sh"t Min Hashamayim 14 write that seudat shelishit is specifically in the afternoon. Shibolei Haleket 93 quotes some say it must be after 4 hours into the day but he disagrees and says it could be anytime. Shulchan Aruch rules like Tosfot and the Rosh. Aruch Hashulchan 291:3 says that you don't fulfill your obligation if you eat earlier than that.
  17. Yalkut Yosef shabbat volume 1 page 402. Aruch Hashulchan 291:6 says also that if one began before mid-day and had in mind to continue until after mid-day and fulfill his obligation then he does fulfill it.
  18. Rama O.C. 291:2. Yalkut Yosef shabbat volume 1 page 402-403 Rabbeinu Tam quoted by the Tosfot Pesachim 105a "vihani milei", as well as the Rosh Shabbat 10:13 say that one should eat before saying Mincha because it is forbidden to drink water between Mincha and Arvit on shabbat because drinking between Mincha and Arvit could cause harm to the souls that leave after shabbat. Rambam Hilchot Shabbat 30:10 writes that it is best to eat it after saying Mincha and the hagahot maimoniot hilchot shabbat 30:20 agrees and quotes a different version of rabbeinu tam. The Rama quotes both opinions and says that the minhag is to do like the Rambam. The Magen Avraham 291:5 says this is because of the prohibition to eat before davening mincha. Aruch Hashulchan 291:4 also says the minhag is to eat after davening mincha.
  19. Aruch HaShulchan 291:4. Mishna Brurah 291:11 says to make sure to eat before the time of Mincha ketana arrives. Yalkut Yosef Shabbat volume 1 page 402 says also that you fulfill your obligation but should try to get somebody to remind you to say Mincha if you are going to eat before saying it.
  20. Shulchan Aruch O.C. 299:1, Rif Pesachim 21b.
  21. Mishna Brurah 299:1, Magen Avraham 299:1. See Shmirat Shabbat Kihilchita chapter 56 note 15 where he says that the idea that one should eat at least a Kezayit of bread after Tzet HaKochavim on Friday night quoted in Mishna Brurah 267:5, because there is an opinion that says you cannot fulfill a seudat shabbat during tosefet shabbat, should carry over to seudat shlishit, and therefore to satisfy this opinion one should be stringent and eat prior to sunset.
  22. Shaar Hatziyun 299:2 gives two reasons for this. First, he says one can rely on the opinion of the Taz 299:1 who thinks that the Rosh Pesachim 12:10 allows eating until nightfall since there is a potential fulfillment of a mitzva. Second, the potential fulfillment of the mitzvah of seudah shlishit should override the potential prohibition of eating during bein hashimashot. Menuchat Ahava (v. 1, p. 184) agrees.
    • Mishna Brurah 299:1 says that if one hasn't yet eaten the meal or is really starving then one can still eat until a half hour before tzet hakovachim. R. Avraham Chaim Naeh in Ketzot HaShulchan (chapter 94 note 6), notes that Mishna Brurah's ruling that one may eat until a half hour prior to nightfall is following the opinion of Rabbeinu Tam that nightfall is seventy-two minutes after sundown. However, according to the Vilna Gaon, nightfall can be within one half hour of sunset. If so, one who follows the opinion of the Vilna Gaon would be prohibited from starting to eat one half hour before nightfall (of the Vilna Gaon) which is prior to sunset. Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach quoted in Shemirat Shabbat Kehilchata chapter 56 note 17 says that since even those who follow the opinion of the Vilna Gaon with regards to when to end Shabbat will never actually recite Havdalah within one-half hour of sunset, they may start eating up until sundown.
    • Rav Moshe Feinstein (quoted in The Radiance of Shabbos ch. 15 note 36) can start up until nine minutes after sunset. Pninei Halacha Shabbat vol. 1 page 130 quotes Rav Moshe Feinstein Iggerot Moshe 4:62 that one has until thirteen minutes and a half minutes after sunset.
    • Yalkut Yosef shabbat 1 page 414 allows one to start until thirteen and a half minutes after sunset.
  23. Kuntres Seyda Lderech p. 39 quotes Chazon Ish that one may not start seuda shelishit after sunset.
  24. Shulchan Aruch O.C. 299:1, Aruch Hashulchan 299:3. Mishna Brurah 291:2 says that having said the beracha is enough of a start to your meal to allow one to continue afterwards. He also quotes an opinion that this only applies during bein hashemashot but after Tzet HaKochavim one would not be allowed to continue. Rama says that the minhag is not so, rather one can continue even after Tzet HaKochavim, and the Aruch Hashulchan 299:4 says that is the minhag.
  25. Shulchan Aruch O.C. 299:1
  26. Aruch Hashulchan 299:5
  27. Yalkut Yosef Shabbat volume 1 page 410.
  28. Yalkut Yosef shabbat 1 page 414
  29. This is because there are opinions that one is not obligated to eat bread at seudat shlishit and Mishna Brurah 188:26 says that if the meal is not obligatory you don't return for missing ritzei. Mishna Brurah 291:6 based on Shaare Teshuva 291:1, Yalkut Yosef shabbat 1 page 411. For the rules for the first two meals see Rabbi Mansour on
  30. Yalkut Yosef shabbat 1 page 412.
  31. Yalkut Yosef (shabbat 1 page 412).
  32. Yalkut Yosef (shabbat volume 1 page 405). Shulchan Aruch 291:4 says you do not need to say Kiddush for seuda shlishit. However, Mishna Brurah 291:21 says that it is nice to make a beracha on wine during the meal because it enhances the meal. Rambam Shabbat 30:9 says that we establish the third meal with lechem mishneh and wine. The Tur 291 cites the Rambam 30:9 as holding that one should recite kiddush at seuda shelishit. The Bet Yosef points out that he isn't sure how the Rambam implies that. In any event, most rishonim disagree. Bet Yosef cites the Rabbenu Yerucham 12:65, Mordechai Shabbat 397, Rashba (Meyuchas lRamban 210), and Rabbenu Yonah 36b s.v. birchat as holding there's no kiddush for seudat shelishit. Shibolei Haleket 93 explains that just like there is only a mitzvah of kiddush once at night there's only a mitzvah derabbanan of kiddush once by day. Also, he explains that once midday of Shabbat has passed there is intrinsic kedusha to the day and it is unnecessary to declare it holy with kiddush. The Beit Yosef 291 says since most rishonim hold that we don't say Kiddush, it is unnecessary, but you don't lose anything if you do. Shulchan Aruch 291:4 rules that seuda shelishit doesn't need kiddush. Rav Avigdor Neventzal in the Biyitzchak Yikare edition of the Mishna Brurah 291:4 footnote “ein tzarich” says that Rav Shlomo Zalman did drink wine during the meal (to fulfill the shita of the Rambam), and adds that if one person says the beracha out loud, everybody fulfills this rambam that one should establish his meal on wine.
Category Topic
Mitzvot of Shabbat
Kiddush Levana - Enjoying Shabbat - Fourth meal of Shabbat - Havdalah - Having a meal on Friday - In the Spirit of Shabbat - Kiddush - Lighting Shabbat Candles - Making Early Shabbat - Making one hundred Brachot on Shabbat - Preparing foods on Shabbat - Preparing for Shabbat - Shenayim Mikrah - Kavod Shabbat - Shabbos Davening - Seudat Shabbat - Seudat Shelishit - Lechem Mishneh - Motzei Shabbat - When Does Shabbat Start?
Restrictions of Shabbat
Allowing Carrying Using an Eruv Chatzerot - Animals on Shabbat - Asking a Jew to work on Shabbat - Asking a non-Jew to work on Shabbat (Amirah LeNochri) - Benefiting from a Violation of Shabbat (Maaseh Shabbat) - Books, notebooks, and papers - Brushing Teeth on Shabbat - Building a structure on Shabbat (Boneh) - Carrying on Shabbat - Cleaning the dishes - Cleaning and Folding Garments on Shabbat - Clearing the table - Cooking (Ofeh and Bishul) - Cosmetics on Shabbat - Dancing and clapping on Shabbat - Electricity on Shabbat - Eruv Chatzerot - Eruvin - Games on Shabbat - Getting dressed on Shabbat - Giving birth on Shabbat - Grinding (Tochen) - Handling objects on Shabbat (Muktzeh) - Infants on Shabbat - Introduction to the Modern Eruv - Kneading (Lash) - Mail on Shabbat - Medicine on Shabbat (Refuah on Shabbat) - Melacha That Begins Before Shabbat - Opening bottles and containers (Boneh) - Plants on Shabbat (Zoreah) - Preparing for after Shabbat (Hachana) - Reading on Shabbat (Daber Davar) - Recreation on Shabbat - Sechirut Reshut - Separating mixtures (Borer) - Squeezing fruits (Sechita) - Speaking on Shabbat (Daber Davar) - Taking a cruise over Shabbat - Taking measurements on Shabbat - Techum - Transactions on Shabbat - Transportation on Shabbat - Going to and Staying in the Hospital on Shabbat - Wages on Shabbat (Sachar Shabbat) - Washing one’s body on Shabbat
Introduction to Melechet Machshevet - Marbeh Bshiurim - Plowing - Planting - Harvesting - Gathering - Threshing - Winnowing - Separating - Grinding - Sifting - Kneading - Baking and Cooking - Shearing - Laundering - Combing - Dyeing - Spinning - Mounting warp threads - Making two loops - Weaving - Unraveling fabric - Tying - Untying - Gluing, taping, or stapling - Ripping - Trapping - Slaughtering - Skinning - Tanning - Smoothing - Scoring - Cutting precisely - Writing - Erasing - Building - Demolishing - Completing a vessel - Extinguishing a flame - Kindling a fire - Carrying