Skip To Content

Coconut Quinoa Comfort for Tisha B’av

Photo by Molly Yeh

On these days leading up to Tisha B’av — especially in light of the current conflict in the Middle East — thinking about food doesn’t carry the joyous qualities that it typically does. It almost feels trivial.

In my kitchen, this is not a time for cakes or colorful foods — and for many who have begun their observance, not a time for eating meat. As my mind races with thoughts of Israel and Gaza, my stomach seeks out comfort and nourishment and little else. Here is a simple recipe for a multi-use dish that can be eaten in the days prior to Tisha B’av, to break the fast as a Shabbat meal or even Sunday brunch.

Coconut Quinoa with Nuts and Dates

Makes 4-6 servings


1 13.5-ounce can coconut milk
1 cup water
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
A pinch of kosher salt
1/4 cup honey or brown sugar, or to taste
1 tsp almond extract
3/4 cup toasted nuts, coarsely chopped (I recommend a mix of almonds, hazelnuts, and pistachios, but other combinations will work too)
1/2 cup dates, chopped
Optional: shredded coconut and ground cinnamon, for garnish


1) Combine the coconut milk, water, and quinoa in a saucepan and bring to a boil over moderately high heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the quinoa is tender and the liquid has been absorbed, about 15-20 minutes.

2) Stir in the salt, honey or brown sugar, and almond extract.

3) Distribute the nuts and dates on top. Add shredded coconut and cinnamon, if desired.

This can be made the night before and eaten cold or gently reheated with a splash of milk (dairy or non-dairy) the next day. Enjoy!


Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.