Cool Whip on Matzah?
What are we allowed to eat on Passover? I consider myself Conservative-to-Reform, but growing up I was told things like you cannot eat peanuts. Can you eat Cool Whip?
The Aish Rabbi Replies:
The Torah instructs a Jew not to eat (or even possess) chametz during all seven days of Passover (Exodus 13:3). "Chametz" is defined as any of the five grains - wheat, spelt, barley, oats and rye - which has come into contact with water for more than 18 minutes. This is a serious Torah prohibition, and for that reason we take extra protective measures on Passover to prevent any mistakes.
As a further precaution, we do not use Passover food in the category of "kitniyot." Sometimes referred to generically as "legumes," this includes rice, corn, soy beans, string beans, peas, lentils, peanuts, mustard, sesame seeds and poppy seeds. Even though kitniyot cannot technically become chametz, Ashkenazi Jews do not eat them on Passover.
As for Cool Whip and other things, it all depends on the ingredients. It's always best to look for a kosher certification symbol on the package, indicating that it is kosher for Passover. Don't worry - there's plenty of delicious food to eat on Passover. For ideas, check out our gourmet Passover recipes at http://www.aish.com/h/pes/r/.