Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

How many slices are required to make you responsible to wash on Pizza?

share|improve this question
Wow who knew that many people looked at this site but a very important question – whiskey Feb 2 '11 at 3:39
See also judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/9644. – msh210 Aug 28 '11 at 15:04
This is a great question; I up-voted and favorited it. However, it provides NONE of the necessary background information that this site ordinarily expects a question to have. (That is, @SimchasTorah needs to tell us on what assumptions the question rests) – SAH Feb 16 '15 at 6:30
@SAH unfortunately, SimchasTorah hasn't been around the site in years so is unlikely to update this very old question. Today we would ask for more information, but apparently we weren't as concerned about that in 2010. (That's before my time on the site, by the way.) – Monica Cellio Feb 16 '15 at 21:25
@SAH Many Ashkenazim consider pizza to be פת הבאה בכיסנין, based on the Taz (OC 168:20) who says that the cheese would give it that status. According to this practice, m'zonos would be recited over pizza unless someone eats the pizza as a meal (or eats a quantity large enough that it is generally eaten as a meal rather than a snack; it could also be that an amount of three or four k'beitzim is a ceiling above which it is automatically regarded as a meal). – Fred Feb 17 '15 at 2:23
up vote 13 down vote accepted
  1. The opinion of Harav Moshe Feinstein zt”l holds two slices makes you responsible to wash.(I believe this would be the Main Psak (Halachic Ruling) for American's)

  2. Harav Shlomo Zalman Aurbach zt”l, and Harav Elyashiv say one slice of Pizza since it has 8-9 k’zaysim it would require one to wash and bentch.

  3. Rav Belsky Shlita Rosh Yeshiva of Torah Voddas and Posek for the Orthodox Union says
    two slices would only be a meal if they are eaten with something else, such as a knish. While I personally ascribe to 3 each person should seek Rabbinical counsel for this and all other question.

Square otherwise known as Sicilian pizza which is made by first baking the dough and then adding the cheese is always Hamotzei the same applies to Pita-Pizza made by taking a Pita and putting cheese and Ketchup on it the Bracha also maintains it's Hamotzie status.

The above is a summary of a recent Halachicly Speaking article available here: http://www.ladaat.net/siteimages/fl_4c1258431c6eb.pdf

share|improve this answer
1 slice = 8-9 k'zaysim?! That's a very large slice of pizza!! A number of years ago I participated with Rav Betzalel Rudinsky in the weighing and measuring of various Monsey area pizza slices and we never came up with one slice = even 8 k'zaysim! and please do not tell me that Israeli slices are much larger. Maybe they said two slices and were misquoted? – Yahu Jun 16 '10 at 18:42
YS, I understand your concern about Rav Elyashiv; but in this case it's reasonable (see the other answer about "pashtida"), I know Rabbi Welcher, a talmid of his, holds this way. – Shalom Jun 17 '10 at 7:12
Oh just to add -- if you go to Pizzeria Efrat, there's a sign up from Rabbi Riskin that says you don't wash unless you've eaten 3 slices. – Shalom Jun 17 '10 at 7:13
Important point to add: washing/hamotzee and benching aren't always linked. According to the two-slice opinion: if you planned on eating two, washed and said hamotzee, then decided to stop at one (let's say you're not full, but you wanted to save room or something), you'd just end with al haMichya. Similarly (has this ever happened to you?), if you make a mezonos to just eat one slice, then decide you want (only) one more, you make a new mezonos, then bench afterwards. Not a hamotzee, as you won't be eating a new hamotzee's worth (2 new slices). – Shalom Jun 17 '10 at 7:15
YS, although I agree with you regarding believing what one hears in the name of great people, in this case it seems pretty obvious that someone made a mistake in what he heard. 8-9 k'zaysim = 4-5 k'baitzos which is the shiur given by hazal for k'viyus seudah on pas habaah b'kisanin. Anyone who is familiar with these shiurim would never have mistaken merely one slice to be equal to this 8-9 k'zaysim. – Yahu Jun 17 '10 at 23:41

The answer in this shiur too:

Brachos Shiur -Rabbi Viner

share|improve this answer
Hello vf, and welcome to mi.yodeya! Thank you for your contribution of another angle on this topic. Consider registering your account to enjoy all the benefits of being a mi.yodeya member. – WAF Jul 13 '10 at 13:50
Summarizing what it says about the issue would better the answer. – msh210 Apr 23 '12 at 2:42

Please refer to the final halacha in b'tzias hapas. The Shulchan Aruch rules that pashtida (dough filled with various fillings including meat, fish or cheese) is hamotzi even as a snack. The Mishna Berurah distinguishes this from pas haba'a b'kisnin in that the latter is mainly baked as a treat whereas pashtida is eaten for satiation. He says it's no different than a meat sandwich You just put the meat on before baking, but the intent is the same. I will let the reader opine for himself where pizza falls in.

share|improve this answer
Rabbi Welcher in Queens holds it's like pashtida and therefore you wash on one slice. But the common practice in America is two slices. – Shalom Jun 17 '10 at 7:11
Clearly Reb Moshe Feinstein did not hold that pizza is pashtida, otherwise he would never had said a shiur of two slices. – Yahu Jun 17 '10 at 23:37
Clearly Reb Moshe Feinstein did not hold that pizza is pashtida, otherwise he would never had said a shiur of two slices. At the time that the poskim ruled on pizza, people did not eat pizza as a normal meal. It was a treat. As my zeide used to say: "Who eats pizza for dinner?" Pizza has become a normal meal. I have heard people argue that pizza is a meal that you make when you don't feel like making a real meal and is still considered kinuach. – YDK Jun 18 '10 at 3:08
I'm told R Mordechai Willig holds this way as well. – Double AA Nov 10 '13 at 16:47

Rabbi Jachter suggests, based on a Biur Halacha, that the amount required for washing should vary based on gender and age. The money quote:

"It should be noted that the Biur Halacha (168b s.v. Af Al Pi) asserts that the “objective standard” varies from group to group. He specifically mentions a distinction between young and old people. Thus, if an older individual plans to eat an amount of Pat Habaah BeKisnin that most older people consider to constitute a meal, he must recite Hamotzi even though a younger person would view that amount of food as merely a snack. Rav Daniel Wolf of Yeshivat Har Etzion (Yeshivat Har Etzion’s Daf Kesher volume 6) suggests that a distinction can be made between men and women regarding this matter, as men generally eat more than women. I have often wondered whether adolescent boys should be considered as a distinct group regarding this matter as well, since they tend to eat more than most other people. Personally speaking, I considered three slices of pizza to constitute a meal when I was a teenager, and as an adult I consider two slices of pizza to constitute a meal."

The full article can be found here:


share|improve this answer
I believe the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch raises the question of age/gender relativity ... I think he leaves it as tzorech iyun? – Shalom Jun 17 '10 at 20:10
Rav Ruderman told my father that in Slobodka they would use the Biur Halacha only for theoretical learning of the lomdus of Halacha. For the final word on such a "Tzarich Iyun" question they would go to the Kovna Rov. I believe that this rule should apply to this most controversial sh'ailah as well. – Yahu Jun 17 '10 at 23:36
+1. I can sometimes go for 4 slices, but i count 3 as a meal too. My parents count 3 as more than a meal. :) – Scimonster Nov 8 '14 at 20:06

I thought that commonly pizza dough in the US was made mezzonot(so that one would need to eat the necessary shiur to pass into it being considered a meal).

Whereas pizza dough in E"Y is typically made as lehem and thus one slice needs washing.

share|improve this answer

Some kashrus orgnazations require apple juice in dough not all

share|improve this answer

Maran writes (Hazon Obadia Tu Bishvat, Berachot) that if the dough is made with butter or oil (as opposed to water) you should make Mezonot as long as you're not eating a Shiur of Keviat Seuda. However, if you can't taste the sweetness than you make Hamosi.

Or Lesion writes (vol. 2 pg. 97) that no matter what the dough is made of if the sauce is melted into the dough after the baking the Beracha becomes Mezonot.

I asked a few Talmide Hachamim if Hacham Ovadia would agree to that Or Lesion and they said he wouldn't.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.