Preparing the Shiva House - Checklist

This list is a guide to items that may be needed at the Shiva House.

Estimate the number of people you expect to have visit when you sit shiva. You may want to "overestimate" when figuring how much of each item will be needed, as not to get caught short, and unused items can be returned.

You will probably have left over shiva food that needs refrigeration, so try to begin shiva with a nearly empty refrigerator and anticipate the need for additional storage.

preparing the shiva houseYou can also search for a food pantry near the shiva house that accepts donations.

  • Plastic Water Pitcher
  • Paper towels
  • Trash Basket

First day, after returning from the cemetery only

Memorial Candle - usually supplied by the funeral home \ Benches- cardboard benches may be supplied by your funeral home\ Mirror Covers- sheet, pillowcase, towel or shiva shade

Serving Tables with Table Cloths

  • 6 ft. folding or large round for food,

  • 3 ft. or Card table for drinks

  • Folding chairs

  • Snack Tables

  • Coat Rack

For Serving

  • Plastic Silverware- (estimate 2 forks, 1 spoon, 1 knife per person)

  • Dinner Napkins-(estimate 1 per person)

  • Cocktail Napkins- (estimate 2 per person)

  • Plastic Dinner Plates- (estimate 1 per person)

  • Plastic Dessert Plates- (estimate 2 per person)

  • Plastic 9 0z Cups - (estimate 2 per person)

  • Hot Cups- (estimate 1 per person)


  • Ice Bucket

  • Cooler Chest- filled with ice for bottled water

  • 30 cup Electric Coffee Pot for Decaf

  • 30 cup Electric Coffee Pot for Regular (optional)

  • 12 cup Electric Coffee Pot for hot water, Tea

Grocery Items:

  • Decaf Coffee, Regular Coffee, Tea, Sugar, Sweetener, Milk,

  • Non-dairy Creamer, Bottled Water (estimate 1 per 2 people) Large Plastic Trash Bags

  • Soda Assortment (estimate 10oz. per person)

  • Ice (estimate 1 bag for the cooler and 1 bag per 15 people)