Manners of Eating

This is one of the manners that can be easily taught as first of all everyone needs to eat. And thus since it is also a family activity, observation can be made whether they are living the lessons they learnt. There are some parts about eating manners which are hard to do sometimes. Particularly the eating too much. Especially when you are invited to people’s house. It is very difficult to not eat a lot in most malay’s household. Either the food is too good or they’d pester you to eat more.

May I walk the talk myself. Insya Allah.

My syllabus for this topic was mostly taken from TJ on adabs of eating. Masya Allah. She has made such resourceful site. Very useful for those who want to teach their children Islam like myself. May Allah bless her for her great work.

If you would like to read her notes on Etiquette & Manners : Eating, just click HERE.


  • What do we say before we eat?

You say Bismillah

  • What would happen if we do not say Bismillah?

Then the shaytan will eat with you.

The prove is in Rasulullah’s s.a.w. hadeeth

The Book of Drinks (Kitab Al-Ashriba)

Muslim :: Book 23 : Hadith 5006

Jabir b. ‘Abdullah reported Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: When a person enters his house and mentions the name of Allah at the time of entering it and while eating the food, Satan says (addressing himself: You have no place to spend the night and no evening meal; but when he enters without mentioning the name of Allah, the Satan says: You have found a place to spend the night, and when he does not mention the name of Allah while eating food, he (the Satan) says: You have found a place to spend the night and evening meal. This hadith has been narrated on the authority of Jabir b. Abdullah through the same chain of transmitters but with a slight variation of wording.

We do not want to be feeding shaytan now do we?

  • Oh No! I forgot to recite Bismillah. What should I do now?
it’s ok you can recite this
بسم الله فى أوله وا~خره
Bismillahi Fee awwalihi wa akhirihi
Narrated by Ummayah Ibn Makhshi
Umayyah was sitting and a man was eating. he did not mention Allah’s name until there remained the last morsel. When he raised it to his mouth, he said : In the name of Allah at the beginning and at the end of it. The Prophet s.a.w. laughed and said: “The devil kept eating along with him, but when he mentioned Allah’s name, he vomited what was in his belly.”
Abu Dawud

  • What do you say when you have finished eating?
We say Alhamdullilah

Narrated by Abu Umama:

Whenever the Prophet finished his meals (or when his dining sheet was taken away), he used to say. “Praise be to Allah Who has satisfied our needs and quenched our thirst. Your favor cannot by compensated or denied.” Once he said, upraise be to You, O our Lord! Your favor cannot be compensated, nor can be left, nor can be dispensed with, O our Lord!”

الحمد الله حمدا كثيرا طيبا مباركا فيه غير مكفي ولا مودع ولا مستغني عنه ربنا

Volume 7 : Book 65 : Hadeeth 369

I am putting these dua on the fridge so that we can easily refer to them when we need. It has been proven to be very useful especially when they forgot their Basmallah. 😀

  • Now, what should we do with the dishes after we finished eating?

– throw the rubbish on the plate

– put the idshes in the sink

– Haziq to wash the plates

– Sya to wipe and sweep the table and floor.

More Manners of eating : Some are not necessarily from sunnah but are still in accordance to good manners.

  • Eat what is closest to you

Narrated by ‘Umar bin Al Salama:

Who was the son of Um Salama, the wife of the Prophet:

Once I ate a meal with Allah’s Apostle and I was eating from all sides of the dish. So Allah’s Apostle said to me, “Eat of the dish what is nearer to you.”

Volume 7 : Book 65 : Hadith 289

This is one of the perhaps most difficult thing to do.  Thus if we are the host, we should make the dish easily accessible on the table to everyone.

  • Eat with right hand

Salim, on the authority of his father, reported Allah’s messenger S.a.w. as saying : “None of you should eat with his left hand and drink with that (left hand) for the Shaytan eats with his left hand and drinks with that hand.” Muslim 5010

Activity for Zachary : To trace his right hand on a paper and labeled I eat with my right hand.

I found this cute poem from

Which hand is my right hand?
It’s sometimes hard to know.
But I have a special way
That I will share and show.
Put both hands out in front of you.
Then it is easy to tell.
Cause when you straighten out your thumbs
The left hand makes an “L”

  • To lick your fingers
Sahih Muslim Book 023, Number 5041
Abdullah b Ka’b reported that his father Ka’b narrated to him that Allah’s Messenger s.a.w. used to eat with three fingers and when he had finished (eating), he licked them

It was a habit of Rasullullah S.A.W. to eat only with three fingers. Although there are in narrations that he eats with five too. The benefit is so that one will not eat too much.

The Book of Drinks
Muslim :: Book 23 : Hadith 5043

Jabir reported that Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) commanded the licking of fingers and the dish, saying: You do not know in what portion the blessing lies.”

And this is the wisdom of licking the fingers after eating. Because we do not know where the barakah in our food lies.

Book of Drinks
Muslim :: Book 23 : Hadith 5040

Ibn Ka’b b. Malik reported on the authority of his father that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) used to eat (food) with three fingers and he licked his hand before wiping it (with towel).

Sometimes we do eat with utensils. Take care that we do not eat with our left hand for eating with for and knife, often requires us to cut with right hand, and to eat with the left.

  • Chew with your mouth closed.

Why? Discuss.

– polite

– its quite gross otherwise

  • Chew your food well.

Why? Discuss.

– you might choke

– help you digest better

  • Don’t stuff your mouth.

Why? Discuss.

– gluttony

– you’d tend to eat too much

– it is again quite gross

  • Rinse your mouth after drinking milk

Narrated by Ibn ‘Abbas:

Allah’s Apostle drank milk, rinsed his mouth and said, “It has fat.”

Sahih Bukhari : Volume 1 : Book 4 : Hadith 210 :

To take good care of our teeth, we should rinse our mouth every time we eat.

  • Do not overeat

Narrated by Ibn ‘Umar:

Allah’s Apostle said, “A believer eats in one intestine (is satisfied with a little food), and a kafir (unbeliever) or a hypocrite eats in seven intestines (eats too much).”

Bukhari : Volume 7 : Book 65 : Hadith 306

This is probably one of the hardest sunnah to follow among the sunnah of eating. especially now when we have so many invitations are good eateries. Too much delicious food! May I be able to follow through, Insya Allah.

  • Do not criticise food. If you don’t like it, leave it.

Narrated by Abu Huraira:

The Prophet never criticized any food (presented him), but he would eat it if he liked it; otherwise, he would leave it (without expressing his dislike).

Bukhari : Volume 4 : Book 56 : Hadith 764

This shall serve as a reminder for me not to criticise food that I don’t find pleasure in it.

  • If the iqama is called, and your food has been served, eat first before praying.

Narrated by ‘Aisha:

The Prophet said, “If supper is served, and Iqama is pronounced one should start with the supper.”

Bukhari : Volume 1 : Book 11 : Hadith 640

This however, my children, does not apply if you are only going to pray when the praying time is nearly over. This usually happen as for they come home (from school) hungry but yet they have not prayed Dzuhur.

  • Pick Back the food you drop, clean it and eat it.

The Book of Food


Jabir r.a. reported that : I heard the Messenger of Allah s.a.w. saying :’Satan attend to all your affair, even your food. When some of teh food falls on the ground, one should remove the soiling from it and then eat it. He should not leave it to Shaytan. When you finish eating, lick your fingers, because no one knows (in which spot the plate) the (blessing of Allah) is.

As this is the topic for the class, we have been reminding each other about the manners of eating and drinking. Among them are reciting Basmallah, eating with right hand and licking the fingers.

I also reminded them to chew slowly and to not eat too fast.


Filed under Akhlaq/ Nasihah, Dua

2 responses to “Manners of Eating

  1. Pingback: Entering the House « Lollies Place

  2. Omae

    asalamu aleiykum
    May god bless you

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