What is the Daniel Fast?


Every January our church corporately participates in the Daniel Fast.  What is the Daniel Fast?  I’m glad you asked. The Daniel Fast is a type of religious fast that is based on the biblical account of the prophet Daniel, who is said to have abstained from certain foods in order to focus on prayer and spiritual growth. The fast is often used as a means of spiritual discipline and self-denial. It typically involves abstaining from certain types of food and drinks for a period of time.

Daniel Fast Rules

The specific guidelines for the Daniel Fast can vary.  It generally involves not eating foods that are from animals, such as meat, dairy products, and eggs. Many people also abstain from certain types of processed and refined foods, including white flour and sugar.

How Long Should You Fast?

The Daniel Fast often lasts for 21 days, which is the length of ours with the church. Some people fast for shorter or longer periods, depending on their personal goals and circumstances.

Daniel Fast Food List

Vegan Protein options on the Daniel Fast.
What is the Daniel Fast? Vegan Protein options are good meat substitutes.


On the  Daniel Fast, we  consume a diet that is primarily whole, unprocessed foods, such as:

  • Fruits: All types of fresh, frozen, or dried fruits are typically allowed on the Daniel Fast. Some options include apples, bananas, berries, citrus fruits, melons, and stone fruits.
  • Vegetables: All types of fresh, frozen, or cooked vegetables are typically allowed on the Daniel Fast. Some options include leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, root vegetables, and squashes.
  • Whole grains: Whole grains such as oats, quinoa, brown rice, and whole wheat are typically allowed on the Daniel Fast.
  • Legumes: Legumes such as beans, lentils, and chickpeas are typically allowed on the Daniel Fast. These can be eaten as part of soups, stews, salads, and other dishes.
  • Nuts and seeds: Nuts and seeds such as almonds, cashews, peanuts, and sunflower seeds are typically allowed on the Daniel Fast. These can be eaten as a snack or used to add texture and flavor to dishes.

While the Daniel fast is used as a means of spiritual discipline, I’ve also benefited from weight loss in the past. I would welcome dropping a few pounds this time around.    However, this year I need to be mindful not to overcompensate for the lack of meat by eating more carbs.

If you are considering the Daniel Fast, it is a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian to ensure that you are meeting your nutritional needs.

Recipe Ideas

Planning is the key for me.  I’ve found that the fast is much more difficult when I am not prepared.  I have included a few easy recipes that I’m planning to try.

  1. Veggie stir-fry: Stir-fry a variety of vegetables, such as bell peppers, onions, broccoli, and carrots, in a wok or large skillet. You can add some tofu or tempeh for protein, and season the stir-fry with a mixture of soy sauce, ginger, and garlic.
  2. Black bean and sweet potato tacos: Mash cooked black beans and sweet potatoes together, and use the mixture to fill corn tortillas. Top the tacos with shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, and a sprinkle of cumin and chili powder.
  3. Quinoa and roasted vegetables: Cook quinoa according to package instructions, and roast a variety of vegetables, such as zucchini, bell peppers, and onions, in the oven. Toss the quinoa and vegetables together with some chopped herbs, such as parsley or cilantro, and a squeeze of lemon juice.
  4. Curried lentil soup: Sauté onions, carrots, and celery in a large pot, and then add lentils, diced tomatoes, and a variety of spices, such as curry powder, turmeric, and cumin. Cover the mixture with water or broth, and simmer until the lentils are tender.
  5. Grilled vegetable and hummus wraps: Grill a variety of vegetables, such as eggplant, zucchini, and bell peppers, and then wrap them up with hummus and lettuce in a whole-grain wrap.

I’ve also found a few other recipes in this 15-minute cookbook.  I’m all about time-saving recipes.

Daniel Fast Survival Kit

My Daniel Fast survival kit includes a few necessities such as cookbooks and a journal.

Another important piece of my survival kit is a daily devotional.  I’ve found there to be several in the bible app. I plan to follow the  Awakening: 12 Days of Prayer and Fasting Devotional.  Feel free to follow along with me or select something else that resonates with you, such as daily meditation.

I’m armed and ready to start the New Year off right.  I would love for you to join me on this journey. If you have other recipe suggestions drop me a note in the comments.

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