>> To view the Current Chabad Meal Plan Menu click here.
>> To download the Application click here.
Would you like fries with that? The question isn’t coming through the loudspeaker at your local drive-through. It’s part of the typical weekday meal offerings at Chabad House. And the fries in question accompany a fresh hot lunch of hot dogs, hamburgers, rice, grilled vegetables, pea soup, peaches, cranberry sauce, and iced tea to wash it all down. And it’s all strictly kosher.
Indeed, for a college setting, kosher dining has never been more accessible – or appetizing – than at the Chabad House. All thanks to the Kosher Meal Plan. Students may sign up for a variety of options to suit their dining needs. For students only on campus during the day, there is the five-day-a-week plan. For students living in or around Chabad House, options range from five to eighteen meals per week, or in other words, the full meal plan. Meal options run the full gamut of the students’ tastes and appetites, including pizza, falafel, overstuffed hero sandwiches, pepper steak, tacos, wraps, grilled vegetables, burritos, and a variety of hot soups, fresh fruits and salads.
Students who participate know they’re getting a good meal-and a good deal. All the food is Glatt Kosher, expertly prepared and lovingly served by Chabad’s full-time kitchen staff—devoted members of the Chabad family. On Shabbat, the Chabad Meal Plan is served free to encourage Shabbat observance, and to help students who are considering participation to sample a traditional Shabbat meal. Explains Chabad House administrator, Rabbi Mendy Carlebach, “our overall budget is huge and the meal plan is the most costly part of it. It takes a lot of fundraising to serve close to seven hundred free meals every Shabbos, but we believe it’s entirely worth the expense.” He smiles and adds, “Besides, that’s the Chabad House way.”
The history of the Chabad House meal plan actually traces back to Rabbi Baruch Goodman, just after he arrived to serve as the Chabad House Campus Rabbi. It was the mid-1980s. Boy George was already played out on FM radio, punk hairstyles were as common on campus as the Jets’ losing streak, and Chabad House was just beginning to gather steam. Rabbi Goodman recognized that bringing Chabad to the next level involved something that would have a direct effect in the lives of the students, something that would bring students through the doors of Chabad each and every day. Food! More precisely, good kosher food. From this line of reasoning the Chabad Meal Plan and International Food Court were first established.
“In the late eighties, it was just becoming popular to attend Jewish functions on campus,” explains Chabad House Executive Director Rabbi Yosef Carlebach. “The meal plan was instrumental in capitalizing on this growing sense of Jewish pride and increasing the level of Jewish observance and participation on campus.”
Subsequently, as many students report, the meal plan served another very important function for Jewish students-friendships. “When I first arrived at Rutgers, I signed up for the general meal plan at Brower Commons, the main student cafeteria,” explains Merisa Vinick. “Then I decided that I wanted to see my Jewish friends on a regular basis. My first step was signing up for the Chabad Meal Plan.” Vinick has been enrolled in the meal plan ever since, now her fourth year. “I’ve made most of my friends through Chabad House-I love everything about this place. And it doesn’t hurt that the food is so good, either.” Explains senior Eugene Grudnikov, “Chabad has everything, food for the body, food for the soul. I’ve made many of my friends through Friday night dinners and the meal plan.”
The meal plan served another very important function for Jewish students — friendships.
“When I first arrived at Rutgers, I signed up for the general meal plan at Brower Commons,
the main student cafeteria,” explains Merisa Vinick. “Then I decided that I wanted to see my Jewish
friends on a regular basis. My first step was signing up for the Chabad Meal Plan.”