Simchat Yom Tov

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Simchat Yom Tov

  1. There is a mitzvah of simcha on Yom Tov.[1]
  2. It is preferable to eat meat at the Yom Tov meals. While some consider this to be an obligation, others hold that there is no technical requirement to do so. [2]
  3. It is preferable to have meat both at the nighttime and daytime meal of Yom Tov. Those who have a practice to eat one dairy meal, however, have what to rely on.[3]
  4. Whether the meat has to be eaten within the context of a bread meal is a discussion.[4]

See Shavuot#Eating_Dairy_on_Shavuot for more details on this topic.


  1. Rambam (Aseh 54), Chinuch 488.
    • Rav Hershel Schachter (Bikvei Hatzoan p. 81) writes that simcha on Pesach may be a composite mitzvah for all of Pesach, whereas simcha on Sukkot is a separate mitzvah for each day of Yom Tov and Chol HaMoed. He supports this contention from the fact that Hallel with a bracha is only said on the first day and that the Korbanot Mussaf of Sukkot were different every day. Similarly, Rabbi Mordechai Willig (Pesachim shiur 110 on simchas yom tov) quoted Rav Yerucham Fishel Perlow on Rasag p. 254-5 says that there's only mitzvah to eat meat once on pesach.
  2. The Rambam (Yom Tov 6:18) rules that the Mitzvah of Simchat Yom Tov is fulfilled through consumption of meat and wine. The Beit Yosef 529:2 asks why the Rambam codifies the consumption of meat on Yom Tov when the Gemara (Pesachim 109a) states clearly that the mitzvah of Simcha is fulfilled through eating meat only during the time of the Beit HaMikdash, while nowadays the mitzvah is fulfilled through wine alone. Accordingly, the Shulchan Aruch O.C. 529:1 writes that one must have wine at each Yom Tov meal and makes no mention of the consumption of meat. The Eliyah Rabba 529:6 and Bei’ur Halacha 529 s.v. Keitzad explain that Shulchan Aruch intentionally omitted the obligation to eat meat because of his question in the Beit Yosef.
    • The Yam Shel Shlomo (Beitzah 2:5) answers the Beit Yosef’s question by reinterpreting the Gemara to mean that nowadays, one must have wine in addition to meat, as opposed to the times of the Beit HaMikdash when one could fulfill the Mitzvah through meat without wine. Thus, Mor U’Ketziah 529, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 103:7, Aruch HaShulchan 529:5, and Chazon Ovadia (Yom Tov, p. 319) rule that it is an obligation to eat meat on Yom Tov.
    • The Bach 529, however, explains that although there is no obligation to eat meat nowadays, there still is a mitzvah to do so, and one would fulfill the Mitzvah of Simcha thereby. The Magen Avraham 529:3, Shulchan Aruch HaRav 529:7, Mishna Brurah 529:11, and Kaf HaChaim 529:28 agree.
    • See also the Sha’agat Aryeh (Siman 65), who argues that Simchat Yom Tov does not obligate one to eat meat in particular; rather, it is fulfilled by what is subjectively considered enjoyable by each person (see Pesachim 109a). Birkei Yosef 529:4 agrees. Darkei Teshuva 89:19 quotes Rav Chaim of Sanz as disagreeing with the Sha’agat Aryeh.
  3. The Darkei Teshuva (89:19) mentions a number of minhagim regarding eating dairy on Shavuot and a large part of the discussion is whether it is necessary to have meat at both meals. Those who hold that it is sufficient to have one meat meal include the Steipler (Orchot Rabbeinu v. 2 p. 98), Otzrot Yosef (Rav Dovid Yosef 13:7), Rav Hershel Schachter (Bikvei HaTzon p. 81), Sfat Emet (Sukkah 48a), Rabbi Mordechai Willig (Pesachim Shiur 110, min 40-50; Kol Tzvi Yoma 5778), and The Radiance of Shabbos p. 163 fnt. 33 cites Rav Chaim Pinchas Sheinberg.
  4. Seemingly not since the obligation for the meat and the bread stem from two different places. The obligation of bread is based on Kiddush, Kiddush Bmakom Seuda, or Oneg Yom Tov. However, the meat is because of simcha (Pesachim 109a). Furthermore, the obligation to have a bread meal at all on Yom Tov is a debate. The Rambam, the one who holds that it is necessary to have meat today, holds that there's no obligation to have a bread meal on Yom Tov besides the first night of Pesach and Sukkot. However, the description of the Rama of how to have dairy and meat in the meal of Shavuot in order to fulfill simchat Yom Tov is within the context of a bread meal. The same is true of the later poskim. Though it isn't necessarily the case that it isn't possible to fulfill it outside the context of a meal. See also Aruch Hashulchan 495 regarding Purim who mantains that it is critical to have the meat meal with bread otherwise it isn't a seuda. Perhaps that is a paradigm for simchat Yom Tov as we see the poskim compare and learn the laws of simchat Yom Tov from Purim. Rav Shraga Feivel Pavarsky in Bet Yitzchak v. 24 p. 388 learns from Rambam Yom Tov 6:18 that it isn't necessary to have the meat of simchat yom tov in the meal. The Radiance of Shabbos p. 163 writes that meat should be eaten at the day meal, implying that it must be eaten in the context of the bread meal. Rav Hershel Schachter (Piskei Corona #51) clearly indicates that it isn't necessary to have the meal as part of the bread meal in order to fulfill simchat yom tov as he writes that when there's very little space in the sukkah they can just make kiddush and eat bread in the sukkah, say birkat hamazon, and then eat meat at home. However, note that he is writing for an extenuating circumstance and perhaps can't be extended.