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Chicken is meat. Why are chicken's eggs pareve?

Chicken is meat. Why are chicken's eggs pareve?


The prohibition mentioned in the Torah is to mix meat (beef) with milk. This injunction was extended by the Sages to include fowl as its meat can be confused with beef. Eggs do not fall into this category as they cannot be mistaken for meat. Furthermore, eggs are considered a separate entity once they have been hatched and are considered to be pareve, or neutral, so that they can be eaten with either milk or meat.

Interestingly, the Code of Jewish Law (Yoreh Deah 87:5) mentions that if fully formed eggs are found inside a chicken these may be consumed with milk products, however, if the eggs are not fully formed, they may not be consumed together with milk although one would be able to eat dairy products after eating one of them.

Chani Benjaminson,

Chani Benjaminson is co-director of Chabad of the South Coast, coordinator of Chabad’s Ask the Rabbi and Feedback departments, and is a member of the editorial staff of
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Discussion (24)
May 16, 2013
G_d told Moses, and Moses told the Israelites (who were complaining about starving) in the desert that, G_d would provide them with meat, and then, quail covered the land. This has nothing to do with interpretation by a rabbi.
February 22, 2012
Irony of modern day kashrut
I had always learned that the reason chicken was considered meat was not as much due to the fact that the person eating it would think he or she was mixing milk and meat, but rather because someone else might think that that person is eating milk and meat. And if that is the case, then why is it ok to produce all of these imitation products? Isn't there the possibility that soy cheeseburgers and fake crab, or imitation bacon, etc. temsmight be perceived to a third party as being non kosher items? And therefore isn't this the same issue that was derived from chicken?
Westchester, Ny
November 24, 2011
The Chicken Dance
I like humour ! Well, tuna steaks may look like meat, but the smell is clearly fishy.
Why fish is not fleishig, and poultry is ?
I dont know ....
Why to be kasher, the birds must be killed by a shochet, and fish not ?
I dont know...
Why ruling poultry as fleishig ages ago ?
Complicated ... But it happened, and as many Nations have their laws, so does the Jewish People.
Many laws are not convenient, like speed limits, tax income, and taxes in general, and so on. So, as long as nobody gets hurt: laws were made to be broken.
On the Jewish part, there is the chumra principle of making the Law more strict then needed to avoid trangressions. So the birds were dragged into the meat category.
Now, in 21st Century, what does one do?
Either keep it as tradition, or don't keep it because we are all "modern".
Judaism goes from very strict observance to totally liberal, and yet we all can remain Jews. Just keep it (Judaism) !
Mark Bebernig
July 29, 2011
I love this makhloket
I have been questioning why chicken is considered meat for several years now. I appreciate the link in the 07/15/2009 post to "Why isn't chicken pareve?" and I'm glad to see others actively grappling with the question instead of defeatedly accepting the Rabbinic decree.

To the "Rabbis distorting the Torah" post, I say that rather than distorting, we are all constantly fertilizing, watering, and pruning Torah, as a careful gardener does when she cares for a tree. If Torah is truly a "tree of life," then it will always be changing and growing... but of course it will always need its roots and its trunk to survive.

Today, with our wider-spread literacy and access to information, we are more capable of trusting our own inner Rabbi. At the same time, I also value the traditional Rabbinical opinions.

For now, I eat chicken and dairy together. Not because I have decided that this is the right way, but because I struggle with the question, like Ya'akov with the angel.
Westfield, NJ
October 4, 2010
Why are chickens even Kosher?
Why are chickens Kosher, does the Torah not say to not eat of animals that eat dead other dead animals?
camp, ar
January 3, 2010
shouldnt chicken be parev?
i see the point that the anonymous from tel aviv is making. i wouldnt put it in such way (rabbis distorting the torah) but i do wonder if moses and king david had a nice glass of warm milk with their chicken soup?
shlomo zalman
b''klyn, usa
January 3, 2010
Rabbis distorting the Torah
To suggest that God does not know how to express Himself by saying he meant all living animals in lieu of just the "kid" in the milk and meat law is to belittle God and a continuing ongoing display of massive disrespect. Surely God means what He says and doesn't need help to express Himself- despite what the highly self opinionated Rabbinate believes.

Secondly, if King David, Moshe and Joshua were not treating chicken as "meat" but as pareve, then who are we, to change the Torah?

Thirdly, regarding the theory of chicken resembling meat, does not Tuna steaks look like red meat? I t certainly does, and much more so than chicken or poultry. Why is no-one posseking tuna to be fleishik?

We need to wake up, respect God, abide by His dictums and protect the law that we are not to add or subtract from His laws
Tel Aviv, Israel
July 15, 2009
While it is true that chickens do not produce milk, the rabbis of the time decreed that chicken and other fowl are included in the meat category (which, by the way, is the same category used in the secular world). Please see Why isn't chicken pareve? for more on this subject.
Chani Benjaminson,
July 15, 2009
milk and poultry
I agree with Efron on this issue I think that the rule should not apply to non-mamalian kosher meat. I would also like to add that I think the meat of poultry is easy to differentiate from that of beef while raw pork and other nonkosher meat is more easily confused with beef and other kosher meats. I think a better rule from the sages would be if you don't know what type of meat it is don't eat WITH ANYTHING.
St. Paul
May 27, 2009
chickens not being pareve
The rule is to "not seethe an animal in its mother's milk". A chicken is not a mammal and therefore has no milk in which to boil the offspring. This rule should not apply. It's time to change the rule. It is irrelevant whether or not the chicken is not vegetarian. Of course it isn't, neither is fish. There's quite a difference between the definitions of pareve and vegetarian.
Mrs. Efron
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