In an interfaith marriage, we know what Muslims can and cannot eat (i.e halal only).

For the practicing Christian woman, whilst she has stopped drinking alcohol (in fact, never really drank alcohol but only on special occasions), she has also or is trying to give up eating pork items.

The question is: in such a marriage/situation, can the Christian woman eat some pork items even though she is not Muslim and provided the Muslim man keeps things separate, is this allowed/permissible (of course, ensuring Allah SWT is not angry/mad at the Muslim)?

We are talking about things like salami or pepperoni. She can eat and keep it separate but in such a marriage, is it possible/allowed?

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    Children eat what their mothers eat, and fathers are responsible for the kids upbringing (including for what they eat). So, even though halal/haram rulings do not apply to non-muslims, such a setup of family relationship does not seem sustainable in long run.
    – ozbek
    Oct 28, 2016 at 5:21
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    I kind of understand what you mean. But lets take children out of the picture. There are no children here. What about the wife who is a non Muslim but of the book? Oct 28, 2016 at 6:14
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    Is this a hypothetical question or a real life usecase? If the latter, why would Islamic rulings apply to the non-muslim unless she reverts? And yes the point made above about children is important.
    – Ahmed
    Nov 1, 2016 at 18:40
  • As I said, there are no children. Be it real life or hypothetical does not matter - facts are facts. Reason for applying Islamic to non Islamic would be to try and perhaps bring the non Muslim into the Islam world, slowly without pressure but also if not then at least she would respect the husband, correct? Also there would be things which are better for her which are given to us in Islam. Nov 2, 2016 at 15:35

2 Answers 2


TL;DR: Islam forbids eating pork, etc., and this applies to every human (although a non-Muslim wouldn't ordinarily follow Islamic sharia). Fatawa encourage a Muslim husband to encourage or instruct his non-Muslim wife to not eat pork. For Christianity in particular, they highlight how pork is described as unclean in the Bible. A husband is forbidden from "cooperating in sin" (so he shouldn't encourage eating pork), but it seems unlikely that merely refraining from forbidding his wife from eating pork is sinful.

There are certain things which are forbidden in Islam to be consumed (e.g., pork, alcohol, animal blood). In principle, these things are forbidden whether or not you're a Muslim: the Qur'an and Sunnah don't list exceptions.

This means that things that are forbidden to Muslims are also forbidden to them, such as drinking alcohol, eating pork, introducing innovations or celebrating them.
Islam Q&A

However, someone who is not a Muslim wouldn't necessarily adhere to Islamic sharia. For comparison, cows are considered sacred in Hinduism, while Muslims consider eating beef as permissible. In this case, Hindu beliefs do not affect the Muslim diet.

An About Islam article encourages a husband to appeal to his Christian wife not to eat pork, highlighting how it's also mentioned as unclean in the Bible (see Ruling on eating pork in Christianity as per Bible?). For this reason, an About Islam fatwa writes:

As for eating pork, it is even prohibited in all religions, and as such the husband can prevent her from eating it.

(Here "all religions" presumably means Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.)

Indeed, the aforementioned Islam Q&A fatwa uses Qur'an 6:66 (...protect yourselves and your families from a Fire whose fuel is people and stones...) as justification that a Muslim men "should stop his wife from committing any of these actions", including eating pork.

Also note that Christianity espouses a wife's obedience to her husband (...wives should submit to their husbands in everything... Ephesians 5:22-34). However, it's unclear how much this applies when a Muslim husband forbids his wife to eat pork, given that the Bible discourages (or perhaps forbids) marriage to non-Christians in the first place: Do not be yoked together with unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6:14); see also Christianity.SE.

It seems unlikely that a husband merely not disallowing his wife to eat pork would count as a sin for him. While the Qur'an encourages ...forbidding what is wrong... (Qur'an 3:104), it should be weighed against ..no bearer of burdens will bear the burden of another... (Qur'an 35:18) and For you is your religion, and for me is my religion (Qur'an 109:6).

Actively encouraging or facilitating eating pork would be regarded as sin:

... do not cooperate in sin and aggression ...
Qur'an 5:2

... they may bear their own burdens in full on the Day of Resurrection and some of the burdens of those whom they misguide without knowledge ...
Qur'an 16:25

  • Thanks for the detailed response. I don't encourage her to eat this but disapprove however unfortunately in the end, it is up to them what they want to eat. I can only disapprove/forbid her but cannot "force" her to stop. Really only thing left is to separate/Talaq. Apr 13, 2018 at 16:22
  • Separating etc. seems like an overreaction to me. Apr 13, 2018 at 20:41
  • Not really. I've been tolerant. But there are other things that play into it too, not just this. Apr 13, 2018 at 21:31

Ofcourse it’s allowed for a spouse who isn’t muslim to consume pork, the question isn’t is this allowed or not. The question should be: if the husband or wife continue consuming pork should those love birds kiss? Nope. (I’m just the village idiot don’t mind me.)


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