Would meat flavored ramen violate the rule regarding meat on Fridays in Lent?

Hey everyone. I have been wondering about this for a couple of days now. I often eat ramen noodles because they are cheap and I like them. Well, one of my favorite flavors is chicken ramen. I also like beef ramen. Well, I just learned that sometimes the flavoring packets contain meat-based flavoring. Take a look at this link:


So, would eating ramen with those flavors on a Friday in Lent be allowed?

This is from the USCCB web site:

Q. I understand that all the Fridays of Lent are days of abstinence from meat, but I’m not sure what is classified as meat. Does meat include chicken and dairy products?

A. Abstinence laws consider that meat comes only from animals such as chickens, cows, sheep or pigs — all of which live on land. Birds are also considered meat. Abstinence does not include meat juices and liquid foods made from meat. Thus, such foods as chicken broth, consomme, soups cooked or flavored with meat, meat gravies or sauces, as well as seasonings or condiments made from animal fat are technically not forbidden. However, moral theologians have traditionally taught that we should abstain from all animal-derived products (except foods such as gelatin, butter, cheese and eggs, which do not have any meat taste). Fish are a different category of animal. Salt and freshwater species of fish, amphibians, reptiles, (cold-blooded animals) and shellfish are permitted.

I consider beef or chicken flavored ramen noodles to be included as a by-product of meat. I was taught that you cannot have beans that have been cooked with ham or salt pork or sausage even if you eat only the beans and not the meat. This is my understanding from first grade. So I prepare a package of macaroni and cheese or tomato gravy on Fridays when I have pasta. My personal belief.

Holly - looks like you are OK on the Raman noodles…based on SuscipeMeDomine’s reply.
However I would like to suggest that, since these are your favorites, you might consider giving the up on Fridays in favor of shrimp flavored one.
In this way you are covered - both avoiding meat AND giving up something you really like (each Friday).

Just a thought.


I agree. A similar situation has been those soy burgers that Burger King has but I figure they still grill them on the same grills they use for meat, maybe not and maybe there is a way around it but it still seems they could be tainted with beef. I’d definitely think beef flavored ramen would not be correct. Isn’t that basically like beef bullion? You wouldn’t have that either.

Though reading post #2: Now I get it: “Abstinence does not include meat juices and liquid foods made from meat.” Though that same paragraph goes on to say Moral Theologians seem to think we should try totally sustaining. And this IS the Moral Theology section!


And also, if I need protein and since you mention cheese macaroni, cheese seems a fitting substitute for meat to me, cheese is satisfying. At least something I can do 1 time a week. I’m already somewhat of a low meat eater. Eggs are alright.

Are there not even some beefbased drinks out there?? Beefamato like Clamato, Beefamato may be discontinued nowadays.

Whatever! Cheese does it for me, get a big bar of it, mix it with rice or whatever, raw! :slight_smile:

But if one has problems keeping up their energy, whatever, I can see some leeway for chicken broth, etc. I would think.

This is the Moral Theology section though and note this excerpt from the post you quote:

…However, moral theologians have traditionally taught that we should abstain from all animal-derived products (except foods such as gelatin, butter, cheese and eggs, which do not have any meat taste). Fish are a different category of animal. Salt and freshwater species of fish, amphibians, reptiles, (cold-blooded animals) and shellfish are permitted.

At least something to reflect on.

Who is God? Is he merciful, loving, tender-hearted, like a good father (Abba), or is he the one who, in the OT, would strike someone dead if they said the wrong word, or chastize Moses because he didn’t strike the rock the right number of times? I can’t form a coherent mental image of what God is approximately about. Does God really take it to heart if we eat knowingly something that has been in contact with a molecule of meat? In which case, the scrupulous are actually right in acting/thinking the way they do.

Who in their right mind would want to eat reptiles unless they were stranded on an island and hadn’t eaten in 5 days?:eek:

I do not know what the heart of God would be like nor his judgment but I would trust the Church and we are talking about a bullion mix or meat juices, not exactly a molecule .

It is important as well to many to follow the spirit of the law.

In sports games, often a rule can be bent, it’s legal but it’s not really in the spirit of the game.

Fair enough.

aaahhh just get the shrimp ramen :smiley:

The Burger King bit about Soy burgers does seem like a tangent a bit, until you think about them possibly grilling 200 burgers or so for every one Soy burger that comes out. If they are cooked on the same grill, don’t mean to get gross here but the grease used cooks a lot of meat first. I always looked at this though through the eyes of one who has at least tried in the past to be a vegetarian over extended periods of time rather than how we live during Lent but it is a similar situation.

But I do see how that is in itself sort of a tangent. Burger King might even have a note about that issue at its stores. The Soy Burgers aren’t that great to begin with so I didn’t take real note of it. Lots of white bread, if one is going the healthy route, they might want to skip the white bread as well.

Have to add in, some of your healthy fats are filling too, avocados and the like. Almost like a meat.

Robert Anthony: Yes, thank you for your kind answer, I just wanted to add on, probably going overboard but as to the “molecule” bit itself, I’m sure some of us have seen on products we buy, oh, let’s say Wasabi Peas from the store, I like those and then there might be a note on the bag “this was processed at a plant and on equipment that also processes peanuts (or nuts)” and sometimes I think it refers to allergies as well, so who knows, maybe that one little molecule in that situation at least can make a difference. Again, a similar situation. Sorry to get off on this little bit Holly, the thread can return to its main purpose.

Ewww, don’t use that junk that comes with ramen!

Go online and you’ll find lots of easy recipes for easy ramen flavors that aren’t 200% of your daily sodium! :slight_smile:

I’m pretty sure that’s why I bought ramen! :smiley:

You bring out a very good point here - especially as regards how these things can effect those who struggle with scrupulosity.

In these types of things I am always reminded of Mt 12:1-8 that ends with Jesus saying, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath.”
So it must be with all “law”. While it is good and useful we must never let the rules enslave us to the detriment of our spiritual life and journey,


So you equate emulating Jesus’ fasting and going meatless one day a week as enslavement?

That wasn’t what I took away from the post. We should abstain from meat, but we should not worry ourselves needlessly over whether something might have been made with meat products. Those of us with more scrupulous tendencies can easily turn fasting into something that less honors Christ and more is about making sure we are perfect in following the rules to the strictest they can be interpreted. The worry and fear destroys the benefit of the fasting, because it turns our minds back on ourselves and away from God.

I don’t think fasting one day a week is enslavement and trying to follow the Church’s teaching. Enslavement is a strong word to use, so I stick by that. Talking about scrupulosity in regards to fasting and eating meat. The point stands.

If trying to honor God during a short time of the year by not eating meat on Friday is enslavement, perhaps these people should just eat meat on that day and find another loophole in Church teaching.

Ramen cannot really be considered a food item. Ramen is what people eat when they don’t have food. :smiley:

Although meat flavoring is permitted, you might consider abstaining from these for the very reason that you like them. Consider substituting a food that does not appeal to your senses, that is more of a sacrifice to eat.