Make Shabbat special by joining us for a gourmet meal overlooking the Charles River. Take a break from paper plates, take out food containers, and finger food by taking advantage of an all-inclusive dining experience with wait-staff and real china, glasses, and silverware–and best of all, it’s completely free!

Limited space is available for our free dinners, so you must sign up in advance.  All meals are strictly Kosher and under the supervision of the KVH – Vaad of Boston.

Shabbat Schedule

     Early Fall and Spring     Services: 6:30pm
Dinner: 7:30 pm
     Late Fall and Winter     Services: 6:00pm
Dinner: 7:00 pm

These times are based on daylight savings times.

Check our website calendar to confirm times.

FREE Shabbat Dinner

That’s right, we said it: Shabbat Dinner is completely, 100% free. Space in our dining hall is limited; we can only accomodate up to 190 people each Friday night. To reserve your spot at our Free Shabbat Dinners, you MUST sign up in advance at

  • When can I sign up? Sign-up for the current week’s Shabbat dinner opens each week on Monday morning at 10:00am and closes on Friday at 12:00pm (or when sign-up is full). You must  sign up for your free meal within that timeframe. You cannot sign up for a Shabbat dinner before the Monday of that week, so mark your calendars to sign up first thing Monday morning!
  • What time should I arrive for dinner? Dinner begins each Friday night after Religious Services end, at 7:30pm. You do not have to attend services to attend dinner. HOWEVER: all reservations expire at exactly 7:30pm. After that time, you lose your space, if the dinner list is full and there is a waitlist, we will give your spot to someone on the waitlist. If you show up after 7:30pm and there is still space, you can come in, but your spot is not guaranteed.
  • If I miss the sign-ups, can I walk in? Yes. If you are unable to sign up, you can certainly walk in. HOWEVER: space in our dining hall is limited. We can only accomodate up to 190 people each Friday night. Once we hit 190 everyone else will be put on a walk-in list and will be let in if seats open up, but there are no guarantees.
  • What if I’m put on the walk-in list? Is there any chance I’ll get in? Each Friday at 7:30pm, all reservations expire; that is, anyone who hasn’t shown up for dinner by 7:30pm loses their spot. At that point, individuals on the walk-in list will be allowed into the dining hall.
  • What if I have to cancel? If your plans change, please go back online and cancel your reservation. By doing this, you will open up a seat for someone else. Reservations can be canceled until noon on Friday.
  • Can I bring guests? Each BU student who signs up during the current week’s sign up period for our free Shabbat dinner can register up to 2 guests for that Shabbat dinner. All guests must be registered with their real names. Walk-ins may not bring guests.
  • If I’m on the Kosher Meal Plan, do I get signed up automatically?   No. All students on the Kosher Meal Plan must sign up each week to attend Shabbat Dinner. You are also NOT automatically added to the lists for holiday meals (High Holidays, Sukkot, Passover, etc.), so please plan accordingly!
  • I still have questions!  That’s cool. Give Lindsay, Hillel’s Office Manager, a call at 617-353-7665, shoot her an e-mail at, or drop by her office on the second floor (behind the gallery, through the staff kitchen!).

Shabbat Services

Orthodox, Conservative and Reform services are held simultaneously on Friday nights. All services are held on the fourth floor and meet at 6:00pm during daylight savings and 5:30pm during the winter. The community joins together after services for the singing of Kiddush in the 4th floor foyer.

There are also Orthodox services every Shabbat morning at 10:00am and Conservative services most Shabbat mornings at 10:00am.

Which Community is Right for Me?

Not sure which service you’d like to attend? Learn more about BU Hillel’s spiritual communities here.

Hillel Dining

Learn the ins and outs of Hillel Dining!