Charoset: A Passover Tradition

plate of charoset with matzoh

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Thinking back to our Passover seders growing up, there is one thing that stands out in my mind, more than anything else. I’m standing in my Nana and Papa’s kitchen, helping Nana make charoset (also referred to as haroset or charoises) for the Seder plate. It was one of the things I loved helping with because it meant she would ask me to taste it to make sure it was perfect. And charoset is one of those things that I can eat by the spoonful. It’s that good.

Even though this year’s circumstances don’t allow us to have a traditional seder, I wanted to bring in some of the elements for my kids, to make sure we don’t lose the traditions I grew up with.

For my non-Jewish readers, the Passover Seder is a feast that includes reading, drinking wine, telling stories, eating special foods, singing, and other Passover traditions. One of those traditions, is creating the Seder plate. The Seder plate contains symbolic foods for Passover, including a shank bone (zeroa), egg (beitzah), bitter herbs (maror), parsley (karpas) and a sweet paste of apples and nuts called charoset.

Now that you have a little background, I’m excited to share the charoset recipe I grew up with. Nana wasn’t one for writing all of her recipes down, at least that I can remember. She usually just “eyeballed” it. I’ve always done the same for this particular dish, until I realized that if we don’t write it down somewhere, our kids won’t have access to the recipe. And if I’m going to write it down for them, I might as well share it with all of you!

plate of charoset with matzoh

bowl of charoset next to matzoh

Let me start by admitting that it’s not the prettiest dish. But if you can get past it’s looks, you will fall in love with it as much as my family has for generations. I made a big batch earlier this week (it will keep in the refrigerator for about a week, if it lasts that long) and my kids have been asking for it for dessert every night. I imagine Nana smiling down every single time they take a bite.

Charoset is very easy to prepare. The amount of sugar should be based on your taste. Some may not need any at all, depending on the type of grape juice you use. I do recommend tasting it before you add the sugar and then add as needed.

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bowl of charoset next to matzoh

Charoset: A Passover Tradition


  • Total Time: 15 minutes

Description

Quite possibly our favorite part of the Passover seder plate. Charoset is the perfect combination of walnuts, apples, cinammon, sugar and grape juice.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 16 oz walnuts (finely chopped)
  • 2 granny smith apples (peeled and chopped)
  • ½ lemon (juiced)
  • ¾ cups grape juice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 56 tsp sugar

Instructions

  1. Finely chop walnuts in your food processor. I use the pulse setting over and over again until it's evenly chopped. Place chopped walnuts into a bowl.
    finely chopped walnuts
  2. Add chopped apples and lemon juice to your food processor and using the same setting, pulse until apples are diced. Add to bowl with walnuts.
    finely chopped walnuts and apples
  3. Add cinammon, sugar and grape juice and stir until combined. Let sit for 15-30 minutes and serve with matzoh.
    close up of charoset kosher for passover
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cuisine: Jewish

bowl of charoset next to matzoh

piece of matzoh with charoset spread on top

While you can eat it straight out of the container (and we do), it’s really delicious spread on matzoh (egg matzoh is our favorite). My 10 year old described it as tasting like apple pie, and I have to agree that it does have a number of similar ingredients. And even though it’s a Passover tradition, you can make it year round.

If you choose to try our charoset recipe (and I hope you do), I would love to hear your thoughts below. Don’t forget to check out our potato kugel recipe while you’re at it!

Quite possibly our favorite part of the Passover seder plate. Charoset is the perfect combination of walnuts, apples, cinammon, sugar and grape juice.

 

 

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I'm so honored that you've found us! I'm Heather, a Mom of 3 who blogs about parenting, food, occasional travel and how I overcame my daily struggle with anxiety. I miss sleeping and rely on coffee and laughter to get me through the day. I hope you enjoy and visit often!

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Recipe rating


  1. This is such an interesting recipe. Honestly, it looks like a bowl of crumbled meat! But it sounds like a wonderful combination of flavors.

  2. This is an interesting recipe with a great story behind it. I’ll definitely try this one out as I love walnuts.

  3. I had no idea about this tradition so thanks for sharing it! Also the food looks delicious. I am going to try your recipe for sure.

  4. I still have a lot of walnuts from the previous year and I am very curious how this dish tastes. I just have to add apples and grape juice to the nearest shopping list and I will certainly try out what Charoset tastes like.

  5. What a wonderful tradition. Charoset sounds like an amazing dish. Will try at home some day. Is matzoh something like a cracker?

  6. I havent tried this one. It’s good to know some of the traditions from other culture. We also have ours – it’s called binignit. 🙂 Btw, that one looks delicious!

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  7. I’ve never heard or eaten charoset before but that looks tasty. Quite an interesting dish.

  8. I can see what you mean by the fact it’s not the prettiest of things. But it does sound like it would taste good. Lots of delicious and blended flavors. I would definitely try this out.

  9. I had never heard of this tradition. This sounds very interesting, I will have to give it a try!!

  10. Learned about a new tradition, which is interesting. Learned about a recipe which is completely new to me. Looks interesting, a new cuisine to know of.

  11. So interesting! I thought it had olives, judging by the color! Can’t wait to try it!

  12. The purple colour is what drew me in at first! I’m so curious about it, because I was wondering what this food was and it’s all the things I would eat and it’s easy to make so I’m game!

  13. This sounds like a great spread and I have all the ingredients for it. Healthy too! I hope you had a beautiful Passover. Stay safe and be well!

  14. Don’t worry. It looks appetising to us. And definitely something I would want to try for my family to experience it as well.

  15. I’ve never tried a Charoset but I am very curious. I will definitely make your recipe!

  16. It looks good! I was reading through the ingredient list and I liked everything that goes in that dish. I will try making this for the family. Love that it is so easy to make too.

  17. It’s so wonderful to have family recipes and traditions to share together. This looks delicious… I’ve never tried anything like it.

  18. I love having traditions like this for holidays. This looks like a really tasty dish!

  19. A friend and I were discussing this recipe the other day. She wasn’t sure how to make it. Sending it to her inbox now.

  20. Happy Passover. I hope you had a great one despite the circumstances. I’ve been lucky to attend several Sedars over my time due to friends’ invites. I love charoset with matzo! thanks for the recipe.

  21. I’ve never heard of this before or tried it. Looks really good though. I may have to give this a try too.

  22. I enjoy reading about the traditions of others. Passover Seder sounds wonderful. I haven’t heard of Charoset before. It sounds yummy.

  23. Even though I’ve never heard of this recipe, it sounds really good and I would make it.

  24. This apple recipe sounds delicious! I think the combination of apples and nuts sounds so delicious to me.

  25. Live and learn. I have never heard of this recipe. But the flavors together sound so good.

  26. I had never heard of charoset before our family went to Israel. We got a chance to taste a variety of amazing traditional Jewish recipes and they were all delicious!

  27. Never heard of charoset before but it looks right up my alley! I will definitely have to try this recipe while in quarantine. I agree about writing down recipes. My grandma did most of the cooking growing up, and she’s starting to get old and no one knows how she made some of our favorite dishes. She is old school and would just “eyeball” things too, so that might be hard to do lol.

  28. oh i’ve never heard of Charoset! I love traditions and I love food so this is a must for me lol…Thanks a lot.

  29. I’ve never had this before. I’ll have to try it and see if I like it. I am sure I will!

  30. I haven’t had this in forever! I had a 4th-grade teacher who was Jewish and she shared so much about her faith and traditions which I so greatly appreciated. I used to love eating it with matzoh and a side of garlic potato latkes!

  31. I’ve heard about this dish before but I never heard about this recipe. I always wanted to try it just because I want to know why you guys ate in Passover.

  32. The Jewish Passover traditions are very beautiful and ensure that God’s miraculous deliverance of His people from slavery in Egypt will never be forgotten. As a Catholic, I have a great respect for the Jewish faith tradition and pray for full unity one day! Thanks for sharing this lovely recipe.

  33. I am very curious about this recipe in its simplicity and I must also assume in its healthy goodness!

  34. I have never heard of or tried Charoset but would love to after checking out the yummy recipe. The ingredients sound delightful and I would for sure love to give the traditional recipe a try 🙂