Italian Food Sayings

We assembled in this page a collection of Italian food sayings, Italian proverbs, their literal translation and, when possible, their English equivalent.

Italian food sayings are many and imaginative due to our rich food culture. We hope you have as much fun reading them as we had picking them.




Sacco vuoto non sta in piedi.

An empty sack cannot stand.

Meaning: You can’t work on an empty stomach.

Chi va a letto senza cena, tutta notte si dimena

He who goes to bed without dinner tosses and turns all night.

Summer, 1573
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Quando la fame entra dalla porta, l'amore esce dalla finestra.

When the hunger gets in though the door, love gets out from the window.

L'avaro è come il porco, è buono dopo morto.

Mean people are like pork, they are good when they are dead.

Gallina vecchia fa buon brodo.

Old hen makes good soup.

Gallina che non becca ha già beccato.

Hen who doesn't’ t eat has already eaten.

Al contadino non far sapere quanto è buono il cacio con le pere.

Don't tell a peasant how tasty is cheese with pears.

Chi mangia solo crepa solo.

He who eats alone dies alone.

Chi mangia da solo si strozza.

He who eats alone, chokes.

È meglio un uovo oggi di una gallina domani.

Better an egg today than a chicken tomorrow.

Tanto va la gatta al lardo che ci lascia lo zampino.

The cat that goes too often to the lard loses its paw.

Meaning: Curiosity killed the cat.

L'appetito vien mangiando.

Appetite comes with eating.

Autumn
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Non si fanno frittate senza rompere le uova.

You can't make an omelette without breaking the eggs.

La pecora che bela perde il boccone.

The sheep that bleats loses a mouthful.

A tavola non si invecchia.

At the table one doesn’t get old.

Il diavolo fa le pentole ma non i coperchi.

The devil makes the pots but not the lids.

Prendere due piccione con una fava.

To catch two pigeons with one bean.Meaning:To kill two birds with one stone.

Troppi cuochi guastano la minestra.

Too many cooks spoil the broth.

Ne ammazza più la gola che la spada.

Gluttony kills more than the sword.

Non c'è fumo senza arrosto.

Where there's smoke, there's fire.

O mangiar questa minestra o saltar questa finestra.

Eat this soup or jump out this window.Meaning: Take it or leave it.

Pane al pane, vino al vino.

Bread to bread and wine to wine.Meaning: To call a spade a spade.

Una mela al giorno leva il medico di torno.

An apple every day keeps the doctor away.

The Waiter: an Anthropomorphic Assembly of Objects Related to Winemaking
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Italian Food Sayings about wine

Bacco, tabacco e Venere riducono l'uomo in cenere.

Wine, women, and tobacco can ruin a man.

Non domandare all'oste se ha buon vino.

Don't ask the innkeeper if he has good wine.

Nella botte piccola c'è il vino buono.

Good wine in small barrel.

Nel vino, la verità

In wine is the truth.

L'acqua fa male e il vino fa cantare.

Water makes you sick and wine makes you sing.





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