Is Dave's Hot Chicken HALAL or HARAM for Muslims To Eat?

Khadija Ahmed

-
September 20, 2023
Muslim man asking if Dave's Hot Chicken is halal

One of the best restaurants to have launched in the last decade, Dave's Hot Chicken is a relative newcomer to the restaurant industry, hailing from the West Coast.

With humble street food beginnings in 2017 in Los Angeles, California, the popular brand of fast-food chains now boasts over 100 locations not just in the United States but all over the world in countries like Canada, United Arab Emirates and most recently, Qatar.

But for the Muslim community looking to get a taste of Dave's spicy chicken, the biggest question ("Is Dave's Hot Chicken halal?") is whether this fast-casual restaurant has halal certification for halal chicken or not.

What is Dave's Hot Chicken?

Dave's Hot Chicken restaurant

Dave's Hot Chicken started humbly in an East Hollywood parking lot. It was founded by best friends Dave Kopushyan, Gary Rubenyan, Arman Oganesyan and Tommy Rubenyan as a street food stand serving signature chicken tenders, chicken sliders and kale slaw by chef Thomas Keller.

Their secret sauce? The unique blend of cayenne pepper, married to different spice levels, ensures every piece of chicken is a fiery delight. And better yet for Muslim customers, they've never served any pork products.

Inside the very first Los Angeles chain, the restaurant incorporated graphics from local street artists, boosting its appeal in the local community. Dave's founders have continued this art trend in all their restaurants.

Dave's Hot Chicken most popular products

Dave's Hot Chicken halal sliders

Dave's Hot Chicken has a relatively simple menu. They have only four items available to buy.

Dave's #1 includes chicken tenders with fries. The tenders are a juicy piece of chicken and Dave's uses crinkle-cut fries only for maximum taste.

Dave's #2 includes delicious chicken sliders with fries and each slider includes a white bread bun with pickles, Dave's sauce and of course a tender chicken inside packing some fiery flavors.

Dave's #3 and #4 on the menu includes the same tenders and sliders in different quantities.

Is Dave's Hot Chicken halal?

Founders of Dave's Hot Chicken

Arman Oganesyan, one of the founders of Dave, in an interview with LA Times, expressed their commitment to an increasing Muslim population. “We realized the lack of halal places offering flavors like ours. It’s not just about the chicken being halal-certified, it’s about recognizing and respecting the beliefs of all our customers,” he stated.

The owner of the restaurant, joined by the Red Sox owner Tom Werner, echoed the sentiment on Good Morning America, underlining the brand's commitment to quality, taste, and inclusivity.

So yes, Dave's Hot Chicken is halal. They serve only halal meat according to the company, inline with Islamic dietary laws, and have obtained halal certification including certification from Halal Transactions of Omaha.

For Muslims wanting to adhere to strict halal standards, Dave's chicken is confirmed halal and suitable for those following a halal diet, unlike McDonald's in the UK which is not halal-certified.

What do Islamic dietary laws say about halal chicken?

Chicken in front of a mosque masjid

Islamic dietary laws, anchored in the principles of the Quran and Hadith, have stringent requirements. From the time of slaughter to specific practices, every step matters. For meat to be deemed halal, the animal’s blood should be fully drained from its veins, and the person doing the slaughter must invoke Allah’s name during the process, using a sharp knife. These procedures ensure the animal’s well-being and adhere to the Islamic principles of mercy.

There is an argument that any meat slaughtered by people of the book is halal zabiha and therefore permissible for people to eat where the main religions of the country include Christianity and Judaism. Others prefer to only consider a meat halal when slaughtered by Muslims invoking Allah's name in the killing.

However, while the halal-certified chicken tenders and the crinkle-cut fries might be halal, Muslims would do well to keep a keen eye out for any alcoholic beverages on the menu, ensuring they stick to a halal diet fully.

In the ever-evolving culinary world, Dave's Hot Chicken stands out, not just for its flavours but for its commitment to its fans. They've not only showcased how to craft the perfect hot chicken but also how to do it with a respect for diverse beliefs. While the halal logo might be a small symbol on the menu, its significance is monumental for many.

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