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Your Italian Language Pantry

assorted vegetables and spices on wood surface

Photo by Angele J on

While our regular language lessons, Food Talk With Luna: A Taste of La Lingua Italiana, will lead you to food fluency, we thought to provide a glossary of key Italian food terms (and drinks too) to help in the process. Think of these (nearly 150 words!) as your Italian language pantry to build your knowledge and break out in Italian restaurants and specialty stores at home and during your next trip to Italy!

Food (cibo)

Meal Basics:

Breakfast (colazione)

Lunch (pranzo)

Dinner (cena)

Snack (spuntino)

Drinks (bibite)

Soup (zuppa)

Sandwich (panino)

Salad (insalata)

Appetizer (antipasto)

1st course (primo piatto) - Primo

2nd course (secondo)

Side dish (contorno)

Dessert (dolce)

Kitchen Basics:

Salt (sale)

Pepper (pepe)

Red Pepper (peperoncino)

Olive oil (olio)

Bread (pane)

Butter (burro)

Nuts (noccioline)

Walnuts (noci)

Almonds (mandorle)

Chestnuts (castagne)

Flour (farina)

Rice (riso)

Vinegar (aceto)

Balsamic vinegar (aceto balsamico)

Pasta (pasta)

Polenta (Polenta)

Sauce (Sugo)

Eggs (uovo) plurale uova

Cereals (cereali) 

Meat (carne):

Ground Beef (carne di manzo macinata)

Steak (bistecca)

Chicken (pollo)

Pork (maiale)

Sausage (salsiccia)

Rabbit (coniglio)

Duck (anatra)

Pigeon (piccione)

Lamb (agnello)

Turkey (tacchino)

Salumi (cured meats)

Prosciutto (prosciutto) - prosciutto crudo

Ham (prosciutto cotto)

Salami (salame)

Coppa (coppa)

Hog Jowl (guanciale)

Bacon (pancetta)

Boloney (mortadella)

Fish (pesce)

Shrimp (gamberi)

Crab (granchi)

Salmon (salmone)

Clams (vongole)

Mussels (cozze)

Oysters (ostriche)

Squid (calamari)

Octopus (polpo)

Lobster (aragosta)

Branzino (branzino)

Vegetables (verdure)

Onion (cipolla)

Carrot (carota)

Asparagus (asparagi)

Eggplant (melanzane)

Artichoke (carciofi)

Peppers (peperoni)

Garlic (aglio)

Celery (sedano)

Kale (cavolo)

Broccoli (broccoli)

Broccoli Rabe (cime di broccoli)

Cabbage (cavolo)

Cauliflower (cavolfiore)

Beets (bietole)

Spinach (spinaci)

Brussels Sprout (cavolini di Bruxelles)

Corn (mais)

Zucchini (zucchine)

Potatoes (patate)

Pumpkin (zucca)

Peas (piselli)

Lettuce (lattuga)

Green Beans (fagiolini)

Salad (insalata)

Fennel (finocchio)

Mushrooms (funghi)

Truffles (tartufi)

Fruit (frutta):

Apple (mela)

Banana (banana)

Pear (pera)

Strawberry (fragole)

Blueberry (mirtillo)

Blackberry (mora)

Mixed Berries (frutti di bosco)

Tomato (pomodoro)

Watermelon (cocomero / anguria)

Cantelope (melone)

Legumes (legumi):

White beans (fagioli bianchi)

Chickpeas (ceci)

Lentils (lenticchie)

Peas (piselli)

Herbs (erbe):

Basil (basilico)

Rosemary (rosmarino)

Thyme (time)

Sage (salvia)

Oregano (origano)

Saffron (zafferano)

Dairy (latticini):

Mike (latte)

Cheese (formaggio)

Cream (crema)

Whipped cream (panna)

Butter (burro)

Ice cream (gelato)

Drinks (Bevande):

Wine (vino)

Red Wine (vino rosso)

White Wine (vino bianco)

Sparkling Wine (Prosecco or Spumante)

Beer (birra)

Coffee (caffè)

Water (acqua)

Still water (acqua naturale/liscia)

Sparkling Water (frizzante/gassata)

Milk (latte)

Juice (succo)

Fresh-squeezed juice (spremuta)

Orange juice (spremuta d’arancia)

Tea (tè)

Soda (bibite gassate)


Fork (forchetta)

Knife (coltello)

Spoon (cucchiaio)

Teaspoon (cucchiaino)

Napkin (tovagliolo)

Glass (bicchiere)

Table (tavolo)

Plate (piatto)

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