Variants in Spanish Food Vocabulary

You know when you are traveling abroad, feeling all confident after taking all those lessons and studying all those flashcards, and you walk into a little cafe or restaurant, ask for some peach juice, and the waiter just stares at you? You know you formed your question correctly, you studied so hard and even consulted the phrase book before asking! Well, did you ask for “zumo de melocotón” or “jugo de durazno”? It makes all the difference.

Depending on where you are, Spanish food vocabulary can be completely different from what you may have learned. And while this may be frustrating at times, it is also one of the greatest things about Spanish and it’s ability to adapt and evolve with the people who are speaking it. I mean, think about all the different ways English-speakers have come up with to say bathroom: toilet, water closet, loo, restroom, etc. So I say take this chance to learn a few extra words that all mean the exact same thing! That way when you are traveling in Argentina, you won’t get that disappointed look from that cute waiter or waitress. Take a look at a few more examples I found below and study hard!

Popcorn: palomitas (Mexico, Spain), cabritas (Chile), crispeta (Colombia), pochoclo (Argentina, Uruguay), cotufas (Venezuela), rositas (Cuba), popororo (Guatemala)

Catfish: siluro (Spain), bagre (Latin America)

Tortilla: tortilla (Mexico and central America), omelete-like egg dish (Spain)

Strawberry: frutilla (Argentina), fresa (Spain, Latin America, South America)

Avocado: palta (Bolivia, Peru, Southern Cone*), aguacate (Spain, Latin America, Northern South America)

Sweetcorn: maíz (understood everywhere), tierno, elote (Mexico), choclo (South America), jojoto (Venezuela)

Bean: poroto (Argentina), alubia, judía (Southern Cone*), frijol (Spain), caraota (Venezuela)

Pepper: pimiento (Spain), ají (Argentina, Uruguay, Peru), pimentón (South America), chile (Mexico)Variants in Spanish Food Vocabulary

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