Food is one of our favourite topics and whether you are trying to eat less or wishing we could eat more, it is a constant conversation piece. Today, you will learn English Food Idioms. Let’s start!
1. APPLES AND ORANGES – used when trying to compare two things that are very different
ex. He bought a new car, it was a Mercedes. He used to drive a Fiat. It was like comparing apples with oranges. They were two totally different cars.
Don’t forget to watch my short video lesson What does Apples and Oranges mean
English Food Idioms
2. A BANANA SKIN – when something is likely to cause you to halt or to slip up
ex. His business was doing well. However the bank were not prepared to lend any more money. This was the banana skin on which his business would slip.
3. TO GO NUTS – to get very upset or to go mad
ex. The car driver did not see him parked on the street and crashed into him. He went nuts when he saw all the damage.
4. A COUCH POTATO – someone who sits at home all day on the sofa watching TV
ex. He had not been out with his friends for many months. His wife told him to stop being a couch potato and take her to the restaurant.
5. NOT TO PUT ALL YOUR EGGS IN ONE BASKET – to spread your risks
ex. David wanted to invest his money in an oil company. His adviser told him to invest in a number of different companies and spread his risk. He told him it was not wise to put all your eggs in one basket.
6. AS COOL AS A CUCUMBER – to stay very calm and relaxed, especially when everyone else around you is nervous or stressed
ex. He stayed as cool as a cucumber during his driving test and passed it first time.
7. TO GO BANANAS – to behave in a silly or crazy way, to get angry
ex. Mum will go bananas when she sees your school report.
8. CUP OF TEA – if something is your cup of tea, it means you like or enjoy it. We usually use it in a negative sentence.
ex. My husband loves cricket, but it’s not my cup of tea.
9. PIECE OF CAKE – something is very easy to do
ex. My English test was a piece of cake.
10. TO PAY PEANUTS – to pay very little money
ex. I recently left my job because I’ve been paid peanuts for ages.
11. TO BRING HOME THE BACON
A very common and popular food in many countries especially in the UK and Ireland. In Ireland for many years bacon and cabbage was the traditional meal for many families. The person who brings home the bacon is usually the main earner in the family or bread winner. So now when we refer to this idiom it means that we are referring to the key person in the family he/she who earns the most and pays the bills.
ex. The father in the family retired and his son took over the business. He made all the decision as he brought home the bacon.
12. THAT’S HOW THE COOKIE CRUMBLES
Cookies (biscuits) are very tasty but usually very delicate and can break easily and leave crumbs everywhere. That’s how the cookie crumbles means that it is just the way things happen and you can do nothing about it.
ex. Deirdre had been thinking for a long time to change her car. The garage had advertised a really special deal if you changed the car before the end of the month. She went in to the garage on the 2nd of February and was told she was too late. She was really disappointed. But that’s the way the cookie crumbles. You are too late!!
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More information can always be found at BBC Learning English website.