Contact Us

Shabbat Preparations II

Shabbat Preparations II

Prepare Foods and Self



Cooking and baking, warming up food, and lighting or extinguishing a fire are forbidden on Shabbat. So, much of the food preparation has to be completed before the onset of the Day of Rest.

Food that will be served warm on Shabbat, such as soup or cholent, should be placed on the stove before Shabbat, with a blech, a thin metal sheet, separating the food from the fire. Set up an urn if you will be needing hot water.


Ideally try to leave work early on FridayFriday afternoon is the time to prepare for Shabbat. Ideally try to leave work early on Friday, to have ample time to complete all the Shabbat preparations.

Friday afternoon meals or snacks should be very light, in order to preserve a hearty appetite for the Shabbat meal.

It is a mitzvah to bathe in honor of the Shabbat, so if you’re pressed for time on Friday, consider taking a shower on Friday afternoon instead of in the morning.

Apply makeup before candle lighting, as applying makeup is forbidden once Shabbat has begun.

Finally, we save our best for Shabbat, including clothing. Get dressed in your Shabbat finery and you are now ready to usher in the holy Day of Rest.

Click here for information regarding pre-Shabbat food preparations.

Illustrations by Yehuda Lang. To view more artwork by this artist, click here.
© Copyright, all rights reserved. If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you comply with's copyright policy.
Join the Discussion
Sort By:
1000 characters remaining Staff March 17, 2015

Re Make Up David, Malkie Janowski is a learned Jewish woman, she weighed in on the matter yesterday. Reply

David Pinto Montreal March 16, 2015

Make-up Too bad that Orthodox Judaism does not allow women to become rabbis. If they could become rabbis, they might want to weigh in on the make-up issue. Reply

Malkie Janowski March 16, 2015

Makeup There are two problems with makeup on Shabbat. One is the prohibition against coloring things on Shabbat, which is essentially what makeup is all about - adding color to or changing the color of one's skin. The second issue is that we may not smear on Shabbat. Not all makeup is smeared, such as loose powders, but many makeup products do involve smearing. Reply

Anonymous March 13, 2015

To Leni: Please see here:
To David: They clearly DO understand that. That's why they said "ideally."

To the author: Great article and super helpful. Thanks! :) Reply

Mrs. Chana Benjaminson via March 12, 2015

to David Pinto Thousands of Jews of different levels of observance around the world currently work for Non Jewish companies and manage to observe Shabbat. Yes, on Fridays they leave early. In exchange, they often work on Sundays, on Non Jewish holidays, a little extra during the week and other similar arrangements. There are ways and means to accomplish the goal of keeping Shabbat, given the right tools and a little planning and effort. If you need assistance, a local Chabad rabbi will be happy to help. Reply

David Pinto Montreal March 12, 2015

Leaving work early on Friday You said: Ideally try to leave work early on Friday ... Oh, you should leave work early 52 Fridays a year ... Of course, it has not occurred to the folks at Chabad that thousands of Jews work for non-Jewish companies. Leave work early fifty-two weeks a year and you will not have a job! Reply

Leni NJ March 12, 2015

shabbat rules & regs why would applying makeup be forbidden? Reply

Geoff Boston February 21, 2011

Bathing Generally speaking, we do not bathe during Shabbat, correct. Note that certain required hand washings are not included in the prohibition, and are in fact required, as they are during the week. Reply

Chief Abraham Izuogu Lagos, Nigeria February 21, 2011

Shabbath Rest Since one is adviced to bathe and apply makeups before sun set on friday, does that mean that we are not permitted to bathe on Saturday, the day rest proper? Reply

Susan Rene Hendren Waterloo, Il February 19, 2011

Thanks I wanted to know how to do certain things to honor God and now I know. Thank you so much. I jut found out about 4 months ago that I was Jewish. And I was pleasantly surprised. Thank you LORD. Reply

Geoff Boston February 17, 2011

Re: Baking Jacqueline,

I'm pretty sure that the answer would depend on both a number of details you don't give, as well as which Rabbi you ask. My gut tells me that the biggest issues would be with regard to how you remove it from the oven, and what the "Sabbath mode" actually does.

Find a Rabbi you trust, and follow his advice. Reply

Jacqueline Hollywood, Florida February 14, 2011

Baking If I put in my Hameen (cholent) a few hours before Shabbat into the oven and my oven has a Sabbath mode, is that equivalent to the hot plate and permissible? Reply

Related Topics