Greek Easter Week Traditions and Lenten Recipes

by Mary Papoulias-Platis

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This last Sunday began the holy week for all Orthodox Christians, starting with Palm Sunday. Greek Easter week traditions are followed closely with many families around the world. Special recipes are shared among the communities to make fasting more accessible to all Greek homes. Every four years the Greek Easter is observed on the same day as the  American Easter.  This year is that year. The Orthodox followers participate by going to church, involving their families in events at their local church while eating a restricted fasting diet. This is the most spiritual time for the Greek culture, and fasting is the preparation for the rebirth on Saturday night at midnight.

Easter Sunday, is the most important day of the year and called “Pascha”. The festivities begin with a service called “The Great Vespers of Agape” (God’s Love) encouraging love, forgiveness, and reconciliation. Afterwards dancing, eating traditional foods, and visiting with friends and family at church picnics becomes an all-day event of celebration.

Lenten foods are eaten during this week and a typical menu may include legumes, vegetables, fruit, and shellfish. Below, I have listed recipes for you and your family to make this busy week easier.


Lenten Recipes can be found here.

Vegetable Dishes /Meatless – Spinach, potatoes, eggplant dishes…here.

Greek Soups  –  White Bean Soup Lentil Soup and other soups here.

Salads and Fruit  – Greek Salad, Fruit salads, bean salads…here.

Meatless Monday Recipes… Recipes here

Greek Easter Eggs

Red Easter Eggs are always dyed on Thursday, here.

Easter Bread is made with the dyed red eggs and served on Easter.

“Koulouria” are also traditional and made for Easter day, here.

Greek Kouloulakia

Holy Week Schedule

Sunday – Palm Sunday an The Martins of Christ the Bridegroom
Holy Monday – The Martins of Christ the Bridegroom
Holy Tuesday – The Martins of the Bridegroom
Holy Wednesday – The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts and The Sacrament of the Holy Unction
Holy Thursday – The Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great
Holy Friday – The Reading of the Royal Hours,T he Decent from the Cross and The Martins of Lamentation(Epitaphios)
Holy Saturday – The Decent into Hades and the Anticipation of the Resurrection
Easter Sunday (Anastasi)

Christos Anesti!




© 2014 – 2018, Mary Papoulias-Platis. All rights reserved.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Olga Stephens

I absolutely love your page! It is so informative and your recipes are awesome! Thank you and Kali Anastasi!

2 Mary Papoulias-Platis

Thank You Olga! Have a lovely Easter week! Xristos Anesti!

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