HOLY WEEK 2024: A Perfect Filipino Meal Plan for the Family

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HOLY WEEK 2024 PHILIPPINES – The Philippines is widely known for its Catholic beliefs and practices. This is because more than 86% (eighty-six percent) of the Filipinos in the country are Roman Catholic, based on the data from Asia Society. As the dominant religion, different holidays are celebrated in a day or even weeks, including the Lenten season. The Holy Week, or Lenten season, will be celebrated this year from March 24 to 30. This is to commemorate important life events of Jesus from Palm Sunday until Holy Saturday before his resurrection on Easter Sunday.

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During this week, Christians observe various holy practices. Mainly fasting and avoiding certain foods such as meats, sweets, and alcoholic beverages. Some Christians fast after Ash Wednesday. Moreover, it’s better to make a meal plan this Holy Week 2024 to still meet the nutrients that our body needs, like protein-rich and carb-rich foods that are mostly found in meats. Thus, we make here the alternatives so that you don’t have to worry about what you should serve to your family. This is the best Filipino cuisine meal plan for this Holy Week 2024 celebration.

Foods to Avoid During Holy Week 2024 and Why They Should Be Avoided?


Most Catholics abstain from eating meat on Good Friday because they believe this is their form of penance for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ in the whole world. Though it’s not a sin to eat meat on Good Friday, according to the Roman Church, most believers remove meat from their diet. In any case, some Filipino Christians abstain from meat for the whole week of the Lenten season. That’s why the Church did not prohibit Catholics from eating meat because it’s a way of showing their faith. Instead, the church keeps reminding them that fasting excludes pregnant women, people older than 65, people taking medications, and kids under 14 years old.


Like meat, abstaining from sweet foods is not required by the Roman Church. However, Catholics avoid eating sweets as food fasting is observed, which includes avoiding snacks that are not essential for the day. They believed this was their form of sacrifice to show their unwavering love for Jesus.


Lastly, alcoholic beverages are strictly prohibited in the observance of Holy Week to maintain peace and order. For the previous years, a liquor ban is established by the Philippine government. But as of now, there are no announcements regarding this. 

The Alternatives: A Perfect Filipino Meal Plan This Holy Week 2024

If you’re concerned with what to serve and what shouldn’t in accordance with the Holy Week celebration, we created an alternative meal plan highlighting mouthwatering Filipino dishes that are vegan, meat-free, and sugar-free. Follow along!

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1. BREAKFAST: Meat-free Wraps and Sugar-Free Breads

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. That’s why it will be hard to start your day without proper nutrients in your stomach. So, here’s a good place to eat enough breakfast during the Holy Week 2024 celebration.

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Enjoy a meat-free breakfast wrap from Feel Good Food Group made from creamy spinach and mushrooms. You can also try their vegan and sugar-free breads, perfect for your coffee, like their sugar-free keto pandesal, bar, multigrain breads, and muffins. Also available in bundle packs. Order their other plant-based protein pack meals and vegan soup from Feel Good Food Group. Click here.


(MUST TRY) Cozy Meal Set 3 per Pack: 1 piece of roasted tomato and basil soup served with a kesong puti sandwich and sugar-free drinks.

2. LUNCH OPTION 1: Vegetables Lutong Ulam

 For your first lunch option, you might want to serve vegetable Filipino dishes on the table. For instance, Ginataang Laing, a famous Filipino dish made with dried taro leaves and coconut milk, is a better alternative to meat. And that’s what Poochinis Restaurant is famous for!

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Order Chopsuey, Ginataang Kalabasa, Ginataang Langka, Pakbet, and many more Filipino veggie ulam at Poochinis Restaurant. The price starts at only P45 for their veggie meals. Click here to order.

3. LUNCH OPTION 2: Lumpiang Sariwa

The second lunch option is Lumpiang Sariwa. Lumpiang Sariwa has been a traditional meal served in my family during the Lenten season because, aside from being healthy, it’s a perfect dish to enjoy while observing the Holy Week with your family.

Filipino Vegan Meal Lumpiang Ubod 리핀 배달 Food delivery ph - LAHAT FOOD

This Filipino dish is also known as Lumpiang Ubod (Fresh Spring Rolls), a popular vegetable dish made of fresh vegetables including singkamas, green beans, carrots, mung bean sprouts (togue), and sweet potato (kamote). However, if you don’t want to include shrimp, tofu is a better option. Then, it’s wrapped in a soft and unfried special wrapper. Moreover, the real magic behind this dish is the peanut sauce.

4. LUNCH OPTION 3: Filipino Pritong Isa and other Seafoods

Some kids are picky eaters, especially when they see greens on their plate. So, this is your option number 3 for the family’s lunch this Holy Week 2024. Viaje Plus PH has a lot of appetizing seafood choices that you can enjoy at an affordable price.

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Tilapia, bangus, and even blue marlin dishes are available. Try their signature Flying Tilapia, Fried Boneless Bangus, Blue Marlin with Thai Soy Glaze, Blue Marlin Steak, Tawilis, and many more. Order here.


(MUST TRY) Boneless Bangus with Mushroom Gravy Sauce: A Viaje Plus PH original Filipino dish made with whole boneless bangus topped with their original mushroom gravy sauce.

5. MERIENDA: Ginataang Bilo-Bilo

Next, Ginataang Bilo-Bilo for an afternoon snack. This snack is commonly called as Ginataang Bilo-Bilo or Ginataan in Luzon, while it’s called Binignit in Northern Mindanao. In addition, this Filipino comfort food is made of glutinous rice balls (bilo-bilo), pearls, and popular fruits like banana, sweet potato, purple yam, and gabi, which are then cooked in fresh coconut milk. You may enjoy this snack hot or cold.

Filipino Vegan Meal Ginataang Bilo Bilo 리핀 배달 Food delivery ph - LAHAT FOOD

How to cook Ginataang Bilo-Bilo:

  1. Over medium heat, heat the water in a pot until it boils.
  2. Add the ripe fruits into the pot, including sweet potato, yam, gabi, and then your uncooked pearls. After a couple of minutes, add the glutinous rice balls. Cook and stir the fruits occasionally.
  3. Add brown sugar and fresh coconut milk. Stir for 8-10 minutes.
  4. Serve and enjoy.

6. DINNER OPTION 1: Vegan Kare Kare and Vegan Soup

Some people don’t eat dinner in anticipation of the Holy Week celebration. But if you still want to eat dinner, that’s fine. Here’s a nutritious meal that you can try, which is just enough to end your day.

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Taste the family secrets of Chef Lau and Chef Jackie Laudico by trying their signature Vegan Kare Kare here at their restaurant called Chef Laudico OK Cafe. The traditional Filipino dish becomes healthier with its chunky vegemeat, simmered with peanut vegetable broth and fresh vegetables. Don’t forget about the bagoong—a vegan bagoong! Learn more.


(MUST TRY) Creamy Shitaki Mushroom Soup: Get ready to enjoy the fusion of Japanese and Filipino tastes with Chef Laudico OK Cafe’s appetizer, Creamy Shitake Mushroom Soup.

7. DINNER OPTION 2: Plant-based Viands and Chicken

Finally, here’s Eat Your Greens, a local restaurant located in Sampaloc, Manila that serves vegan meals. Plant-based Filipino cuisine is available, like Estofado, Binagoongan, Humba, and Ginataang Isda, for P130.

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But aside from plant-based ulam, they also have plant-based chicken. Perfect for picky eaters like me who prefer chicken meals than other red meats. Served with free gravy! Order here.

How To Celebrate the Holy Week 2024?

During Holy Week, Filipinos follow various taboos such as avoiding baths on Good Friday, minimizing noises, and preventing injuries. Even though these are just proclaimed by the Catholic believers and not the Church, Filipinos are still following these practices to show their atonement for their sins and to show their gratitude for Jesus’ sacrifices. The Church emphasizes that there’s nothing wrong with following these practices. As UP Professor Christian Rosales cited in the Spot.Ph exclusive interview, this has to do with Filipino indigenous culture and the doctrine of Catholicism:

"It says something about who we are and about what we do to help each other understand a rather elite Western Theological-philosophical foundation of the Church’s teachings about Jesus in a way that is culturally relevant to a community."

Holy Week 2024 필리핀 배달 Food delivery ph - LAHAT FOOD

Ultimately, you have the choice to follow these practices or not. As stated by Pope Francis, it is important to participate in this event with a big heart and faith rather than looking at the inconsequential things. He also mentioned of allowing ourselves to go out during this event:

Holy Week is a time of grace, let us not forget; it is a time of grace that the Lord gives us so that we can open the doors of our hearts, our parishes, our confraternities. To “open” and to “go out” is what we are asked to do in Holy Week, to open the heart and go towards Jesus and others, and also to bring the light and joy of our faith. Always go out! And do so with the love and tenderness of God, with respect and patience, knowing that we give our hands, our feet, our heart, but it is God who guides us and shows us the way.

Wishing everyone a blessed Holy Week celebration!

Religion in the Philippines. (n.d.). Asia Society. https://asiasociety.org/education/religion-philippines#:~:text=The%20Philippines%20proudly%20boasts%20to,well%20over%20100%20Protestant%20denominations.

Online, C. (n.d.). Holy Week – Easter / Lent – Catholic Online. Catholic Online. https://www.catholic.org/lent/holyweek.php

Regalado, P. (2024, February 29). From skipping baths to avoiding injuries: The origins of Filipino Holy Week beliefs. SPOT.PH. https://www.spot.ph/newsfeatures/culture/104344/holy-week-beliefs-superstitions-explainer-a4832-20230405-lfrm

Mares, C. (2024, March 10). Pope Francis’ advice for Holy Week: Look to the cross, our hope is there. Catholic News Agency. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/254024/pope-francis-advice-for-holy-week-look-to-the-cross-our-hope-is-there

McCabe, K., & McCabe, K. (2024, March 24). Pope Francis’s plans for Holy Week 2024. Where Peter Is. https://wherepeteris.com/pope-franciss-plans-for-holy-week-2024/