Can one place cheese upon a slice of bread that is put onto a blech on Shabbos?

Is there a problem to melt cheese on Shabbos?

Some of the specific consideration:

1) Since you are putting the cheese on top of bread which is on top of the blech is this considered indirect enough to not be bishul?

2) Furthermore you are changing it from hard to soft and not really cooking it. Is this considered Bishul?

3) Additionally, if it is made from Pasteurized milk is it considered Ein Bishul Acher Bishul?


  • 3
  • 1
    I don't understand what you mean by 2. In what way are you not really cooking it? How hot is the Blech?
    – Double AA
    Feb 1, 2016 at 21:04
  • 1
    I'm not sure I follow 1. In what way is this indirect cooking? You are directly applying heat to an uncooked (ignoring 3 for the moment) item. What is indirect?
    – Double AA
    Feb 1, 2016 at 21:05
  • @DoubleAA the bread is on the blech, the cheese is placed on the bread. So the cheese isn't on the heat source directly. Wouldn't that be indirect? or is that considered one item and direct?
    – RCW
    Feb 1, 2016 at 22:33
  • @DoubleAA I thought there would be a difference in Bishul if you are melting something, but not cooking it per se.
    – RCW
    Feb 1, 2016 at 22:34

2 Answers 2


I posted your question, yesterday, on dinonline. This is their answer:

There are a number of potential problems:

Cooking: it must be verified if the cheese was actually fully cooked in the production process. If not, bringing it to a temperature of Yad Soledes [about 110F] will violate the melacha of cooking.

Chazara: Even if there is no cooking involved, one may not put even cooked food directly on the fire or “blech” on Shabbos, because of the Rabbinic prohibition of Chazara. This could be circumvented by putting it on top of a pot or pan which is on the blech.

Melting: There is a Rabbinic prohibition of Molid, turning a solid substance into a liquid. Melting solid cheese may involve this prohibition, depending on how melted it will get.

Keep in mind, that their answer is one opinion, and since this is a short Q&A, the rav frequently does not source his info. There may be leniencies, esp. regarding the melting problem.

As for item #3, my thinking is that this doesn't apply to pasteurization. As far as I am aware, one cannot cook cold milk on Shabbat. Since you raised the issue, I'll see if I can research more on that topic.

  • 1
    "one cannot cook cold milk on Shabbat" - If I'm not mistaken, that has to do with different restrictions on liquids with regards to recooking previously cooked foods, not about whether pasteurizing is considered cooking or not. Feb 2, 2016 at 15:18
  • @Salmononius2 I was trying to point out that I don't think pasteurization halachically be considered "cooking". That would make the concept of "reheating" an already cooked liquid irrelevant to the discussion. The question may be more complex in that for most people who don't drink unpasteurized milk, would it even be considered a "food" to start with? This may even lead to a question of brachot, come to think of it.
    – DanF
    Feb 2, 2016 at 15:25

As Gershon Gold posted:

Rav Ovadya Yosef addresses this issue in Yechaveh Da'at (3:22):

And even though the great author of Sho'el U-meishiv, in the Mahadura Telita'a (2:20), ruled that it is forbidden to place baked bread on the oven on Shabbat for it to further harden and become toast, bringing proof from the Rambam's ruling that one may not soften a hard item or harden a soft item, and here one transforms the soft bread into hard toast, nevertheless, even should we assume that we may equate the status of eggs with that of bread, it would still seem that the Sho'el U-meishiv's comments are not halakhically compelling. The Rambam's comments, that it is forbidden to soften a hard item or harden a soft item, do not apply to food items, for it constitutes the standard manner of eating. Just as one may soak dry bread in boiling soup to soften it, as the Kenesset Ha-gedola wrote (318:5), and as the great Maharsham also noted in his work Da'at Torah (318:5), that from the poskim's discussions plainly permitting baking a previously-baked item, it emerges clearly that there is no prohibition against hardening soft bread, and that the Rambam's comments forbidding the hardening of a soft item do not apply to foods, as this is the normal manner of consumption.

Source: http://etzion.org.il/vbm/english/archive/shabbat66/02shabbat.htm

If however you aren't Sephardic, i don't know how this might apply to you. As there are many Ashkenazim who won't even put things directly on platas and other such stringencies. It is not unknown in the Sephardic World to make grilled cheese sandwhiches on a plata on Shabbat.


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