With Thanksgiving approaching, let’s get in the mood for a feast with a few food idioms. Use these today to season your speaking, and your English will sound delicious!

Feast or famine – a situation on which everything is either very good or very bad
Last week I got four evenings of babysitting work, and this week I can’t get any. This job is really feast or famine.

To feast one’s eyes on something – to enjoy looking at something
We drove to mountains last weekend and feasted our eyes on the beautiful scenery.

To have a lot on one’s plate – to have many tasks to complete
Beth is teaching five classes this term and leading the conversation partners program. She has a lot on her plate.

To butter someone up
to flatter someone to get what one wants
She tried to butter up the teacher by baking cookies for him.

To pig out – to eat a lot
Everyone brought a delicious dish to share for International Lunch, so I really pigged out. Now I need to take a nap!

To bite off more than one can chew – to take on more responsibilities than one can manage
Do you think you are biting off more than you can chew by taking classes and working full-time?

To bring home the bacon – to make money to support one’s family
With a house payment, a car payment, and a child to feed, I work hard to bring home the bacon.

To make one’s mouth water – to make one hungry
I can smell the delicious chili that Adia is cooking for the welcome lunch, and it makes my mouth water.

There’s no such thing as a free lunch – You can’t get something without working for it
The student wanted to keep his visa without attending class, but Duane explained that there’s no such thing as a free lunch.

Champagne taste on a beer budget – preference for things one can’t afford
The college student really wants a new BMW, but he can barely afford bus fare. He has champagne taste on a beer budget.


(photo credits: smallgods, mailloux, Anders Adermark)