Food focus: whole wheat matzo

the season for matzo photo: Donna P Feldman

the season for matzo
photo: Donna P Feldman




Passover doesn’t start until next week, but traditional foods like matzo have been in the super market for weeks.  And if you can find whole grain matzo, so much the better.

Matzo is essential unleavened bread.  It’s just flour and water baked into a flat cracker.  According to tradition, it represents bread made hastily, without yeast and with no time to rise.  Matzo is as flat as you can get for bread.  But don’t let that stop you.

Whole wheat matzo nutrition:

  • no fat
  • no sodium
  • no sugar
  • significant fiber
  • significant protein for a simple whole grain food
  • B vitamins, potassium, magnesium, iron and zinc
  • vegan and vegetarian, but obviously full of gluten

A large 1 oz rectangle has only 110 calories, 4 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber.

The taste is delightfully whole-grain rich, but if you’re used to overly processed salty-sugary crackers, you might think they’re bland at first.  They’re crispy, so they don’t make for a good sandwich, such as with sliced meat, but they make great basis for snacks and lunches.  Spread them with:

  • nut butters
  • jam or jelly
  • cream cheese, goat cheese or thick Greek style yoghurt and top with smoked salmon
  • tuna salad or other fish salads or canned fish like sardines
  • melted cheese
  • pate or liverwurst, topped with sliced cucumbers or tomatoes

White flour matzo is also made with nothing but flour and water, but the fiber and nutrient content will be less. The healthier choice is whole wheat matzo.

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