Language of Food

In addition to people with dietary restrictions or personal preferences, this page is aimed at learners of 🇰🇷Korean language🇰🇵, Korean foodies interested in improving their 🇬🇧English skills🇺🇸 and anyone fascinated by 🥢food culture🍴 in general.

📝 Any questions, comments, vocabulary suggestions and language feedback are welcome! 🤗

As a short overview, here are the most necessary phrases and words regarding food:

Basic words

  • chaesik ju-eui-ja 채식주의자 – vegetarian 🥕
  • wanjeon chaesik ju-eui-ja / bigeon 완전채식주위가 / 비건 – vegan 🥕🥦
  • gogi 고기 – meat🥩
  • saengseon 생선 生鮮 – fish🐟
  • haesanmul 해산물 海産物 – seafood🦐
  • yujepum 유제품 乳製品 – dairy🥛🧀
  • gyeran 계란 – egg🥚🍳
  • ggul 꿀 – honey🐝🍯

  • uyu 우유 – milk 🥛
  • myeolchi 멸치 – anchovy🐟
  • jeotgal 젓갈 – fish sauce🐟
  • jogae 조개 – shellfish, clams 🐚
  • sora 소라 – 🐚
  • sae-u 새우 – shrimp 🦐
  • ge 게 – crab 🦀
  • ojingeo 오징어 – squid 🦑
  • muneo 문어 – octopus🐙
  • so gogi 쇠고기 – beef 🐄
  • doeji gogi 돼지고기 – pork 🐖
  • dak gogi 닭고기 – chicken meat 🐓
  • ori gogi 오리고기 – duck meat 🦆
  • yang gogi 양고기 – mutton 🐑
  • gae gogi 개고기 – dog meat 🐕

Simple phrases

  • Chaesik ju-eui-ja yeyo. 채식주의자예요. I am a vegetarian. 🥕
  • Chaesik haeyo. 채식해요. I eat vegetarian food. 🥕
  • Jeoneun gogi, saengseon ina haesanmul mot meogeoyo. 저는 고기, 생선이나 해산물 못먹어요. I cannot eat meat, fish or seafood. 🚫🥩🐟🦐
  • Jeoneun yujepum, gyeran ina ggul mot meogeoyo. 저는 유제품, 계란이나 꿀 못먹어요. I cannot eat dairy, egg or honey. 🚫🥛🧀🥚🍳🐝🍯

Common phrases of Korean food culture:

  • Jal meok-gessimnida! 잘 먹겠습니다. I will eat well. (said BEFORE the beginning of the meal. Similar to the 🇫🇷French “Bon appetit” or 🇩🇪German “Guten Appetit”.)
  • Jal meo-geossimnida! 잘 먹었습니다. I have eaten well. (said AFTER the meal.)
  • Manhi deuseyo! 많이 드세요! Please help yourself! [literally ‘Please eat a lot!’]
    (normally said by the host)
  • Masikke deuseyo! 맛있게 드세요! Please enjoy the food!
    🇩🇪German “Lass es dir schmecken / Lassen Sie es sich schmecken” (normally said by the host)
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