Healthy Eating During Passover with Fruit Compote Recipe

Passover is one of those holidays that tests my knowledge, patience, and waistline. The rules for what you can and can’t eat during the eight-day holiday are lengthy and complicated. And in my large, extended family, we don’t all choose to observe the dietary laws in the same way. It’s hard to find a dish that everyone can eat.

Strictly observant or not, the basics of a Passover diet mean abstaining from leavened foods for eight days. Instead of bread, buns or pasta, we eat matzah, a thin, mostly flavorless cracker. During Passover, starchy side dishes are traditionally made with matzah, matzah meal (ground matzah) or potatoes.

Then, there are all the special holiday desserts that come into play. It’s amazing how many delicious unleavened, sugary desserts must be consumed because “it’s tradition.”

These unleavened, potato-filled and matzah-laden dishes often lead to an uncomfortable side effect – constipation.

But, the eight days of Passover don’t have to result in discomfort or weight gain. There are many healthy things we can eat, such as lean meat and most fruits and vegetables. Adding extra vegetables and fruits to meals and snacks is a great way to add fiber, nutrients and flavor without a lot of calories.

A fruit compote is a nice addition to the week’s food fest. It’s the perfect dish when you want something sweet but not heavy and can be served as a side or with dessert. And it has an added benefit of helping to move all that matzah through your system.

What is a fruit compote? Basically, it’s a mixture of fruits, usually dried, that have been stewed in water, honey and spices. Stewing softens the dried fruit and adds texture and flavor. There are various recipes, but here’s a standard guideline that you can personalize to your liking.

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Main image photo credit: jrwasserman

Fruit compote photo credit: Proformabooks

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Fruit compote


  • 2 cups of dried fruits – usually dried plums and apricots. You can also add raisins, dried cherries and dried apples to your liking. Some people add pears.
  • Lemon rind, or a little lemon juice – ¼ cup
  • A little honey or sugar – ¼ to ½ cup
  • A cinnamon stick, or several shakes of ground cinnamon


Basic Fruit Compote Recipe

1. Place all ingredients into a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 30-45 minutes or until fruit is soft and liquid has thickened.
2. Remove lemon rind and cinnamon stick.
3. Remove from heat and let sit for another 10 minutes, so the flavors continue to meld and the liquid thickens a bit more.

Can be served warm or cold. Enjoy on the side of your favorite Passover dishes or everyday meals to add some fruity flavor.

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