Delicious French idioms with food

If you’d like to communicate like a French native, along with proper grammar and conjugation, you should start to learn a few French idioms. The list below related to food and drinks is quite long (and there are even more) but don’t worry. Just pick a few to begin with and remember the ones that you’ll be likely to use the most. C’est du gâteau (easy as pie) !

french idioms with food

Tasty French idioms with vegetables

1 – Les carottes sont cuites

  •  Literally : the carrots are cooked
  • Meaning : It’s over now, the game is up

2 – Occupe-toi / Mêle-toi de tes oignons

  • Literally : mind your onions
  • Meaning : mind your own business

3 – Mettre du beurre dans ses épinards

  • Literally : Put butter in your spinach
  • Meaning : top up your income

4 – Ne pas avoir un radis

  • Literally : not having a radish
  • Meaning : be broke

5 – Raconter des salades

  • Literally : to tell salads
  • Meaning : to tell lies, tell stories

6 – Etre dans les choux

  • Literally : to be in the cabbages
  • Meaning : be all at sea, not be with it, be lost

7 – Se prendre le choux 

  • Literally : take yourself the cabbage
  • Meaning : lose your temper, worry unnecessarily

8 – Etre un navet

  • Literally : be a turnip
  • Meaning : it’s a really bad movie
apple french idioms

Tasty French idioms with fruits

9 – Etre haut comme trois pommes

  • Literally : high as three apples
  • Meaning : knee hight to a grass hoper

10 – Tomber dans les pommes

  • Literally : fall in the apples
  • Meaning : faint, pass out

11 – Compter pour des prunes

  • Literally : count as plums
  • Meaning : count for nothing

12 – Lâcher la grappe

  • Literally : lay off the grape
  • Meaning : leave someone alone, give some space

13 – Avoir/Prendre le melon

  • Literally : have/take the melon
  • Meaning : be big-headed, have an inflated ego

14 – C’est la cerise sur le gateau

  • Literally : it’s the cherry on the cake
  • Meaning : icing on the cake
cherry french idioms

15 – Avoir la pêche / avoir la banane

  • Literally : have the peach / the banana
  • Meaning : be on form, good spirits, be happy

16 – Se fendre la poire

  • Literally : red as a tomato
  • Meaning : red as a beetroot

17 – Couper la poire en deux

  • Literally : cut the pear in two
  • Meaning : split your sides laughing

18 – Porter ses fruits

  • Literally : carry their fruits
  • Meaning : get results for your efforts

19 – Etre rouge comme une tomate

  • Literally : red as a tomato
  • Meaning : red as a beetroot

20 – Ramener sa fraise

  • Literally : bring back your strawberry
  • Meaning : stick your noise in, show off
strawberry french idioms

Tasty French idioms with meals and wine

21 – Cracher dans la soupe

  • Literally : spit in the soup
  • Meaning : bite the hand that feeds you

22 – Être soupe au lait

  • Literally : be a milk soup
  • Meaning : be a hot head, quick-tempered

23 – Oh, purée !

  • Literally : oh mash potato
  • Meaning : oh, sugar ! oh, fudge !

24 – Casser du sucre sur le dos de quelqu’un

  • Literally : break sugar on someone’s back
  • Meaning : talk about somebody behind his/her back

25 – Avoir la moutarde qui monte au nez

  • Literally : have the mustard getting into your nose
  • Meaning : get upset, lose your temper

26 – Va te faire cuire un œuf !

  • Literally : go to cook yourself an egg !
  • Meaning : go jump in a lake ! get lost !
egg french idioms

27 – Avoir le cul bordé de nouilles

  • Literally : have the ass rimmed with noodles
  • Meaning : be a lucky so-and-so, be a lucky sod

28 –  En faire tout un fromage

  • Literally : make a whole cheese of it
  • Meaning : make a mountain out of a molehill

29 – Avoir du pain sur la planche

  • Literally : to have bread on the plate
  • Meaning : to have a lot on your plate

30 – Avoir un pépin

  • Literally : to have a pip
  • Meaning : to have a problem

31 – Pour une bouchée de pain

  • Literally : for a bite of bread
  • Meaning : for a trifle, for next to nothing

32 – Ne pas en perdre une miette

  • Literally : not waste a crumb
  • Meaning : take everything in, not miss a thing

33 – Mettre de l’eau dans son vin

  • Literally : put water in his wine
  • Meaning : back down

34 – Avoir du blé

  • Literally : to have wheat
  • Meaning : to be wealthy
french idioms with bread

A bientôt ! Feel free to contact me for more French idioms during my private French classes in Paris and/or online.