Is it permissible to make a hot toddy drink on Shabbat? If so, are there any special considerations to take into account to do so Halachically?

Wikipedia describes the drink, generally, thus:

A hot toddy is a mixture of a spirit (usually whisky, rum, or brandy), boiling water, and honey (or, in some recipes, sugar). Additional ingredients such as cloves, a lemon slice or cinnamon (in stick or ground form) are often also added.

Obviously, one may not boil the water on Shabbat. Assume that already-hot water is available. What other issues are there, and can they be overcome? Some possible issues to consider:

  • Cooking the other ingredients by combining them with water
  • Measuring
  • Coloring the water.

1 Answer 1


It seems that you may be able to make your hot toddy using various stipulations. I'm addressing only the issues that you asked about. I can't think of others, offhand, so, obviously, address the scenario with your rav.


You mentioned the lemon slice, and this is addressed on Halachipedia:

According to many poskim, one should not place a sliced lemon in a cup of tea because of the issue of cooking on Shabbat.[113] According to others, one may pour from a kli sheni onto lemon juice.[114]

The sources cited for this are: Igros Moshe O.C. 4:74-18; Harav S.Z. Auerbach, quoted in Shemiras Shabbos K'hilchasah 1, note 150; Harav Y.S. Elyashiv, quoted in Me'or ha-Shabbos 1:221. And Halacha Yomit, citing Chacham Ovadia Yosef.


See p. 183 in this Google book (Shaarei Halachah: A Summary of Laws for Jewish Living, ed. Zeʼev Grinṿald). The conclusion appears to be that you may never measure exactly, which implies using a measuring tool. However, they state that even when using the measuring tool, if you don't fill it exactly, you are not "measuring". Of course, the best idea would be not to use any tool and approximate the amounts that you need by just pouring the ingredients. What could a little more schnapps hurt on Shabbat?


Not a problem. According to this article, en tzove'a b'ochlim - there is no concern of coloring when it comes to food. He continues to say that this is assuming that the coloring is to add flavor. You may not color the food simply for decoration, such as via food coloring.

  • 3
    What about heating the alcohol or honey?
    – Daniel
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 17:20
  • 1
    "What could a little more schnapps hurt on Shabbat?" It could make it harder for you to learn Torah. Recall, Shabbat is not a drunken frat party.
    – Double AA
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 17:24
  • @Daniel That's probably why the author stated using a kli sheni.
    – DanF
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 18:15
  • @DanF A kli sheini won't help if the liquid starts boiling.
    – Daniel
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 18:19
  • @Daniel I may have a bad understanding of the temp. of a kli sheini. My understanding is that by the time it gets to there, and then gets pored into another kli, it has gone below boiling point.
    – DanF
    Commented Jan 22, 2016 at 18:21

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