This is sort of the counter question to Mezonos bread. At what point does a grain based admixture transition between bread and non bread?

To clarify:

The general position of Sephardic Jewry is that any alteration of taste removes it from the status of bread, such as adding sugar, honey, or large amounts of oil. Here I'm NOT LOOKING to alter the taste per se, but I am looking to make a lower carb recipe by replacing much if the flour with a mixture of something else.

For instance: would pure gluten still allow it to qualify as at least mezonos? Or a mixture of gluten, wheat flour, and chickpea flour allow it to be hamotzi? At what point would the transition (at least from an Ashkenazi perspective) be between bread and Mezonos, and between Mezonos and shehakol?

Additional research that may help. If we consider Pas Haba Bikisnin (PHbK), the primary definition of bread is water and flour. "Adulterating" the water by adding in a rov of non-water (For Ashkenazim, or enough to change the taste for Sephardim) would push an object into PHbK. This is irrespective of the additive being a liquid (oil, juice, possibly eggs, etc.) or a solid (fruit/raisins, sugar, etc.).

Potentially, both the gluten and the chickpea flour might be considered "adulterants." What isn't clear is whether the addition of more flour of another type is considered an adulteration to the water or the wheat flour. The chickpeas, since they operate as flour might be consider to dilute the wheat rather than the water. Gluten, since it is a wheat derivative, may even be rendered completely battel to the rov of flour, rendering the wheat flour volume of the bread effectively higher and allowing you to add in more chickpeas...

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    AFAIK, as long as the grain serves an important function in the makup of the product (and isn't just a binding agent) then Mezonos rules (and I assume bread as well). That is the oft-quoted Halacha of cheesecake, anyway.
    – Yishai
    Commented Feb 26, 2015 at 17:53
  • So I got a single response so far to my inquiry from spamming Kashrus agencies. They only quoted the requirement of taste (from the Mishna berura). That's not really an answer and it doesn't address any of the detail in my question. What if there is no flour (or very little) and it still tastes like bread? How loose is the parameter of taste? Etc. Not a very helpful answer, so that's disappointing... Commented Mar 1, 2015 at 6:24
  • The chickpea flour threw me off. But wouldn't this be the same halacha as cornbread? Maybe you can look into the Halacha brought down by cornbread and see what you find.
    – LN6595
    Commented Mar 2, 2015 at 4:43
  • @ln6595 Sort of, but corn bread is intended to be/taste different than regular bread. And this is where it gets confusing: some say you make Hamotzi of cornbread, but it tastes nothing like regular bread. The MB would therefore rule it as mezonos, not motzi. Here I'm trying to keep it Hamotzi. Commented Mar 2, 2015 at 12:31

2 Answers 2


According to this article which is aiming to create a bracha of mezonot/hamotzi for the gluten intolerant, one needs 1/60 of flour from the 5 grains in order to require a hamotzi/mezonot. Footnote 9 notes this is out of all ingredients. So using less wheat flour than 1/60 of all ingredients should produce something on which hamotzi/mezonot need not be said. Presumably you'll want to use some non-5 grains flour to constitute part of the rest, or else you'll have something more like a slightly thickened soup. I'll note that the same article claims a bread of rice flour is mezonot, though I believe that is a topic of debate. If the resulting bread has less than 1/6 or 1/8 wheat flour, one will never say birkat hamazon. If it has more than that, one will say birkat hamazon only if one ate enough in 9 minutes to constitute an olive's worth of wheat flour. So if 1/4 is wheat, only if one ate 4 olives worth in 9 minutes will one say birkat hamazon.

NOTE: Wheat here is a stand in for any of the 5 grains. Oats, barley, rye and spelt have the same halakhot.


If it looks like bread, and tastes like bread; then you bless hamotzi. Otherwise, you bless mezonot.

If it tastes sweet(and the intention was such when it was being made) even though it looks like bread, then you bless mezonot; according to Sephardic custom.

Any food item that contains some amount of flour(of the five grains; wheat, barley, spelt, oats, rye) in order to add flavor, then a mezonot is made; even if it is a minority ingredient(like greater than 2%). The exception to this rule is if it is added in order to keep the food item together and the flavor of the grain is not noticed(this is subject to machloket amongst Sephardi and Ashkenazi poskim regarding whether a flavored grain additive is tafel when it binds the food item together-like cheesecake).

Any breads not made with flour of the five grains, and doesn't include a certain amount of them, would warrant a shehakol(like potato starch, chickpea flour, etc.).

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