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Orach Chaim 603 says that a person should avoid eating Pas (bread/baked goods) made by Kuthim (or non-Jews, Mishnah Berurah, ad loc.) during the Aseres Yemei Teshuva. Does this include cereals made from the 5 grains? (Cheerios, Shredded wheat, Honey Bunches of Oats, Fiber one, etc.) A sourced answer with an explanation would be appreciated.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Rav Herschel Shechter of YU every year reiterates that cereals are not bread but a cooked food. If Cheerios aren't bishul akum the rest of the year, they aren't bishul akum in the days of repentance.

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Is that the case with all cereals? Or perhaps there are those that are baked and would be considered Pas Kuthim? – Gershon Gold Sep 19 '12 at 16:23
@GershonGold, I think he was saying it for all cereals he is aware of, or all OU cereals (he gives psak for the OU). Can you think of a cereal that you would consider bread-like enough that a large quantity requires washing? – Ze'ev Felsen Sep 19 '12 at 23:34
@Ze'evFelsen Cheerios do look a lot like little bagels... – Double AA Sep 20 '12 at 14:00
@DoubleAA, while I certainly can't entirely speak for Rav Herschel Shechter, it seems to me that he looks to making a sandwich as a fundamental part of being pat haba b'kisnin. Would you put some cream cheese between two cheerios, for a bagel sandwich? – Ze'ev Felsen Sep 11 '13 at 19:02

This would depend on whether or not someone would make hamotzi if eating a meal's worth of breakfast cereal. To paraphrase from http://www.halachipedia.com/index.php?title=Pat_Akum:

Breakfast cereals which are Mezonos would be subject to Pas Akum only if they have tzuras hapas, because otherwise one would never make Hamotzi on them (Rama O.C. 168:13, Shulchan Aruch O.C. 168:15, Mishnah Berurah 168:3). Rav Scheinberg zt"l (as quoted in Vezos Ha’beracha page 192) thinks that cereals such as Cheerios should be considered to have tzuras hapas, but the OU's policy, as determined by R. Schachter, R. Belsky, and R. Genack (in OU Document A-94) is that breakfast cereals such as Cheerios are permitted to be eaten when made by a non-Jew, because they lack tzuras hapas and are also not fit for a king's table.

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