Is Tequila Kosher for Passover?

Tequila is a popular alcoholic drink that many people enjoy, especially during holidays and celebrations.


For those who follow kosher laws, however, the question of whether tequila is kosher for Passover arises. Passover is a significant Jewish holiday that commemorates the liberation of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. During this time, there are strict dietary restrictions that must be followed, including the consumption of only kosher foods and drinks.

To understand whether tequila is kosher for Passover, it is essential to understand what kosher means. Kosher refers to food and drinks that meet specific dietary requirements according to Jewish law. These laws dictate what animals can be eaten, how they must be slaughtered, and the types of ingredients that can be used in food and drinks. During Passover, there are additional restrictions, including the avoidance of leavened bread and grains.

When it comes to alcoholic beverages, there are specific kosher laws that must be followed. For example, wine must be produced and handled only by observant Jews. Additionally, any spirits that contain grain alcohol or kitniyot (legumes) are not considered kosher for Passover. So, is tequila kosher for Passover? The answer is yes, but only certain varieties that meet the strict kosher requirements.

Understanding Kosher and Passover

Kosher is a term used to describe food that is permissible to eat under Jewish dietary laws.

barman pours blanco tequila from a bottle in five shots

Passover, also known as Pesach, is a Jewish holiday that commemorates the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt. During Passover, Jewish people avoid eating any food that contains chametz, which refers to any grain that has risen or fermented. This includes bread, pasta, beer, and other fermented products.

To be considered kosher for Passover, even the smallest amount of chametz is not allowed. This means that certain types of alcohol, such as beer and whiskey, are not permitted during Passover. However, other types of alcohol, such as tequila and brandy, are allowed as long as they are certified kosher for Passover.

During the Passover Seder, it is traditional to drink four cups of wine. All wines are made from fermented grapes, which are not considered chametz. However, some Jewish people prefer to drink only wine that is certified kosher for Passover to ensure that it meets all dietary requirements.

It is important to note that not all tequilas are kosher for Passover. To be considered kosher for Passover, tequila must be made with 100% blue agave and be certified by a rabbi. Some popular brands of tequila, such as Patron, produce kosher for Passover varieties that are certified by the Orthodox Union.

Alcoholic Beverages and Kosher Laws

Alcoholic beverages are subject to specific kosher laws, especially during the Passover holiday. These laws are designed to ensure that the ingredients, production process, and equipment used in the production of alcoholic beverages are in accordance with Jewish dietary laws.

tequila mixer recipes

During Passover, fermented grain-based alcoholic drinks such as beer, whiskey, and bourbon are not allowed because they contain chametz, which is any food that is made from wheat, barley, rye, oats, or spelt that has come into contact with water and been allowed to ferment and rise. Gin, which is made from fermented grain, is also not allowed.

Wine, on the other hand, is generally considered kosher for Passover, as long as it is produced under the supervision of a rabbi and does not contain any chametz. Grapes are not chametz, so wine made from grapes is not considered chametz either.

Tequila, a Mexican distilled liquor made from blue agave, is also considered kosher for Passover. A large number of tequila varieties are now certified kosher for Passover, including two varieties produced by the popular Mexican distillery Patron. Mezcal, another Mexican distilled liquor made from agave, is also kosher for Passover.

Vodka, which is made from fermented grain or potatoes, is subject to debate. Some types of vodka are made with chametz and are not kosher for Passover, while others are made from potatoes and are considered kosher for Passover. Potato vodka is a popular choice for Passover.

Liquors such as brandy, plum brandy, and rum are also considered kosher for Passover, as long as they are produced under the supervision of a rabbi and do not contain any chametz.

Tequila and Its Production Process

Tequila is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from the blue agave plant, which is native to Mexico. The production process of tequila is strictly regulated by the Mexican government, and there are specific guidelines that must be followed to make it kosher for Passover.

blue agave plant roasting to produce mexcal

To make tequila, the heart of the blue agave plant, known as the piña, is harvested and cooked to convert its starches into fermentable sugars. The cooked piña is then crushed to extract the juice, which is fermented with yeast to produce alcohol. The resulting liquid is then distilled to increase its alcohol content.

The type of tequila produced depends on how long it is aged. Silver or blanco tequila is not aged, while reposado and añejo tequilas are aged for a minimum of two months and one year, respectively, in oak barrels. Extra añejo tequila is aged for at least three years.

During the production process, there are several factors that can affect the kosher status of tequila. For example, if the fermentation process is done using yeast derived from fermented grain, then the tequila would not be considered kosher for Passover. Additionally, if the barrels used for aging the tequila were previously used to age non-kosher wine, then the tequila would also not be considered kosher for Passover.

Kosher for Passover Tequilas

Tequila is a popular alcoholic drink that many people enjoy during Passover. However, not all tequilas are kosher for Passover. The Greater Phoenix Va’ad HaKashruth releases an annual list of kosher for Passover tequilas.


This list is organized by manufacturer and comes to them courtesy of Supervisores en Calidad Kosher: Tequilas.

Some of the popular kosher for Passover tequilas include:

  • Patron Spirits México, S.A. De C.V.
    • Gran Patrón Platinum Silver Tequila
    • Gran Patron Smoky Silver Tequila
    • Patron Silver Tequila
    • Roca Patron Silver Tequila
  • Tequila 100% De Agave Silver Gran Patron Platinium
  • Tequila 100% De Agave Silver Patrón
  • Tequila Blanco “Patron”
  • Brown Forman Tequila Mexico
  • Don Eduardo Blanco
  • Antiguo De Herradura Blanco 100% Agave
  • El Jimador Blanco 100% Agave
  • Herradura Blanco 100% Agave
  • Herradura Plata 100% Agave
  • Tequilas Del Señor, Blanco 100% Agave

It is important to note that only silver/blanco tequilas, silver/blanco mezcals, and sotols are considered kosher for Passover, even when KFP status is not indicated on the bottle. Therefore, it is recommended to check the annual list of kosher for Passover tequilas before purchasing any tequila for Passover.

While tequila is not inherently kosher or non-kosher, there are certain guidelines that must be followed to make it kosher for Passover. The main ingredients in tequila are blue agave, water, and yeast. Some producers may also add sugars or other flavorings, but these are not required for the production of tequila.

Please drink responsibly, be fully accountable with your alcohol consumption, and show others respect.

Written by Paul Kushner

I have always had a deep interest in the restaurant and bar industry. My restaurant experience began in 1997 at the age of 14 as a bus boy. By the time I turned 17 I was serving tables, and by 19 I was bartending/bar managing 6-7 nights a week.

In 2012, after a decade and a half of learning all facets of the industry, I opened my first restaurant/bar. In 2015, a second location followed, the latter being featured on The Food Network’s
Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

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