I’m not exaggerating.

The bane of my Passover existence has been pareve baking. I cook a lot more meat during the holiday than I do the rest of the year, which means a lot more pareve desserts. Which has, up until now, usually meant margarine made from disgusting ingredients such as cottonseed oil.

Last year, I caught wind of the possibility that extra virgin coconut oil, the darling of crunchy mamas everywhere, was Kosher for Passover. Alas, I didn’t catch wind of this possibility until the day before Passover when it was too late to call the OU hotline.

This year, I planned ahead and called and emailed the OU hotline. And what I learned will change your life. Trust me.

Spectrum unrefined organic coconut oil is kosher for passover when labeled OU. (No special Passover labeling.)

I know you won’t believe me. I don’t know why it’s not in their Passover guide. But friends, I have names. And an email. The person whom I spoke to at the OU hotline was named Rabbi Geiger, and he said I could quote him.

Here is the email I got from the Webbe Rebbe (also of the OU.)

From: Webbe Rebbe <kosherq@ou.org>

To: ‘amy meltzer’ <xxxxxx> 
Sent: Monday, March 19, 2012 12:07 PM
Subject: RE: extra virgin coconut oil?

Thank you for contacting the OU.

 That is correct, Spectrum unrefined coconut oil is kosher for Passover.

 Please do not hesitate to contact us again should you have any further questions.


 The Web(be) Rebbe

Orthodox Union Kashruth Division

From: amy meltzer [xxxxxxx]
Sent: Monday, March 19, 2012 12:39 PM
To: Webbe Rebbe
Subject: Re: extra virgin coconut oil?

Will it be labeled OUP or does it not require the P?

 thanks for your help in this-

I received this reply on Tuesday, March 20

Thank you for contacting the OU.

With a plain OU symbol.

Note: This information is valid for Passover 2012 only.

Please visit www.oupassover.org or consult our printed “Guide to Passover” for more a proper listing and other details.

Please do not hesitate to contact us again should you have any further questions.

Have a Kosher and happy Pesach.


The Web(be) Rebbe

Orthodox Union Kashruth Division

For those of you who haven’t used Coconut oil, it’s a solid at room temperature and has a mild coconut flavor. While refined coconut oil is on everyone’s list of unhealthy fats, unrefined coconut oil is generally considered  somewhere from benign to a miraculously healthy. (Here’s a fairly balanced NYTimes article on the topic.) I won’t take sides, I just know it’s better than hydrogenated cottonseed oil. I’ll be making Levana’s Passover Brownies this year with coconut oil. Yum.

More from Beliefnet and our partners
previous posts

As a public school child in the 70’s, my Valentine’s Day often ended in tears. I remember digging into my optimistically large brown paper bag in first grade to find only three envelopes, even though my mother had insisted I fill out mass-produced cards for every child in my class. “No one likes me!” I […]

One of the greatest privileges of being a kindergarten teacher in a Jewish day school is having the opportunity to teach children to recite the four questions. Unlike almost anything else I teach them about Jewish ritual, this is “real work.” The candles will get blessed, kiddush will be recited, and birkat hamazon chanted with […]

I’m not a haggadah junkie. I know many Jews whose shelves are overflowing with numerous versions of the Haggadah – from the traditional Maxwell House to the not-so-traditional Santa Cruz – and whose seders are an amalgam of commentaries, poems, and (alas) responsive readings, from these dog-eared, post- it covered books. Maybe it’s because my […]

This time of year, I’m always excited when I look at my google analytics and see that people have landed at my blog by searching for “hamentashen recipe”. I love the idea of people all over the world making my great-grandmother’s fabulous hamentashen, the same ones my mom made with me and that I make […]