Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch
When and how many times a day did the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) eat?
What kind of food and drinks did the Prophet (peace be upon him) consume?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate.
There is not much information regarding the number of times the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) took meals.
It is evident from the Prophetic biography that the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) ate little. He would go many days without any food. Often he would discover that there was no food in his home, and he would intend fasting.
Likewise, narrations about the times of the day that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) ate are hard to come by.
Why Not Much Detail?
It is likely that these details are few and far between because the food was not a large part of the life of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) and those of his companions as compared to our time.
In short, they ate to live and did not live to eat.
Eating More than Once a Day
It is a likely estimate that the majority of the time, when the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) had food available and ate, he would eat only once a day.
It is narrated from our mother ‘Aisha (Allah be pleased with her) that she said, “The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) saw me eating twice in a day and said, ‘O ‘Aisha, you have taken the worldly life as your stomach. Eating more than once a day is wasting, and Allah loves not the wasters.’” [Suyuti, Jam‘u al-Jawami‘; Bayhaqi, Shu‘ab al-Iman]
What Foods and Drinks Did He Eat?
The Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) had an exemplary diet. Much of his diet has been formed into a science called Prophetic Medicine or al-Tibb al-Nabawi.
- Various types of meats and fish.
- A multitude of fruits and vegetables: Some of which are; Dates, Figs, Grapes, Milk, Honey, Olive Oil, Vinegar, Watermelon, Barley, Pumpkin, squash, and any other vegetables.
- Various types of bread and grains: The majority type of bread eaten by the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) was barley bread that had not been sifted prior to baking. He would also eat barley, wheat, and other grains in various styles of cooking, such as soups.
- Various types of drinks: Milk (note that the Prophet did eat cheese as well), Nabidh (water with various fruits soaked therein, but not till fermentation), Water, and Honey (Arabs consider honey a drink).
The blessed work of Imam al-Tirmidhi (Allah have mercy on him), titled al-Shama’il al-Tirmidhiyya, is one of the foremost works on the specific details of the Prophetic life.
He has an entire section based upon the foods and drinks that the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace) partook in.
Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch teaches Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York, where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences.
He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he studied for three years in Dar al-Mustafa under some of the most outstanding scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib.
In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Quran and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Quranic exegesis, Islamic history, and several texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.