When eating out in Portugal, you will soon notice that the cuisine is still very traditional, even the more modern, chic eateries stay close to their origins, adding an innovative, artistic touch. We have put together this useful Portuguese to English glossary and menu decoder to help you get the most out of your Portuguese dining and cuisine experiences. Print it out and use it on your next Tour in Portugal. And of course, please let us know if we should add anything to it. Bom apetite!

Cooking Methods & Condiments

açúcar – sugar
assado – roasted
bem passado/mal passado – well done/rare.
brasa – on the charcoal
caseiro – home-made
churrasco – barbecued
cozido – boiled
dose – serving, portion.
empada – hot pie.
entradas – starters, entrees
espetada – on the spit
estufada – stewed
grelhado – grilled.
fresca – chilled.
frito – fried.
fumado – smoked.
grelhado – grilled
molho – sauce
no forno – in the oven
pão – bread.
pão integral – wholemeal bread.
piri piri – hot chilli sauce.
prato do dia – dish of the day.
sal – salt.
salteado – sautéed.
sande – sandwich.
vinagre – vinegar.


adegas – wineries or wine cellars.
água – water
água com gás – sparkling water
aguardente – clear brandy
amendoa amarga – liqueur made from bitter almonds
aperitivo – aperitif
batido – milk-shake
cacau – cocoa.
carioca – weak black coffee.
cerveja – beer
chá – tea.
com gelo – with ice
gás – fizzy.
ginjinha – is a liqueur made by infusing ginja berries (sour cherry).
leite – milk
sumo – juice
vinho da casa – house wine.
vinho tinto – red wine
vinho branco – white wine
vinho verde – semi-sparkling, young wine.
xarope – cordial

Fish & Seafood

amêijoas – clams
amêijoas – clams with butter and parsley.
anchovas – anchovies
arroz de polvo – octopus with rice.
atum – tuna
atum grelhado – grilled tuna fish.
bacalhau – codfish
bacalhau à brás – fried dried cod with fried potatoes and scrambled eggs
berbigões – cockles
besugo – sunfish
caldeirada de peixe – fish stew.
camarões – shrimps
cataplana – fish/shellfish cooked with ham, onion & pepper.
caranguejo – crab
cavala – mackerel
cherne – stone bass
choco – cuttlefish.
congro – conger eel
creme de marisco – seafood soup
dourada – bream
enguias – eels
ensopado de enguias – eels with fried bread
gambas – king prawns
lagosta – lobster
lampreia – lamprey.
lapas – limpets.
linguado – sole
lulas – squid
marisco – seafood
mexilhões – mussels
ostras – oysters
pargo – sea bream
peixe – fish
pescada – hake
polvo – octopus
raia – skate
rissois de camarao – shrimp pies.
robalo – sea bass.
rodovalho – halibut.
sardinhas – sardines
salmão – salmon
salmonete – red mullet
sapateira – crab
sarda – mackerel.
sardinhas – sardines.
sopa de marisco – shellfish soup.
sopa de peixe – fish soup.
truta – trout
vieiras – scallops

Fruit & Vegatables

Abacate – avocado.
Abóbora – pumpkin.
Açucar – sugar.
Alcachofra – artichoke.
Alface – lettuce.
Alho – garlic.
Alho francês – leek.
alperces – apricots
Ameixas – plums.
Ananás – pineapples.
Azeite – olive oil
Azeitonas – olives.
batatas – potatoes.
batatas fritas – fried potatoes.
berlingela – aubergine.
caldo verde – cabbage and potato soup
cebola – onion
cenoura – carrot.
cerejas – cherries.
cogumelos – mushrooms
couve – cabbage
ervilhas – peas
espargos – asparagus
favas – broad beans.
feijoa – beans.
figos – figs.
framboesas – raspberries.
gaspacho – cold soup.
grao – chickpeas
laranja – orange.
limão – lemon.
maçã – apple.
manga – mango.
melão – melon.
meloa – cantaloupe.
morangos – strawberries.
nabo – turnip
pepino – cucumber.
pera – pear.
pimenta – pepper.
salada – salad.
saval – shad.
sopa de feijao verde – green bean soup.
sopa de grao – chickpea soup.
sopa de legumes – vegetable soup.
uvas – grapes.


alheira – a type of Portuguese sausage, made with meats other than pork (often chicken, duck, rabbit).
almondegas – meatballs
arroz à moda de valência – paella.
arroz de pato – duck with rice.
bife – steak
borrego – lamb
cabrito – goat
cabrito assado – roast goat / kid
canja – chicken broth
caracóis – snail
carne – meat
carne assada – roast beef
chanfana – goat stew braised in red wine
chouriço – spicy sausage
churrasco – pork on a spit.
coelho à caçadora – rabbit stew
coelho – rabbit
costeletas – chops
cozido à portuguesa – boiled meat and vegetables
dobrada – tripe
entrecosto – rib
espetada – kebab
febras – pork steaks
feijoada – dried beans with rice and meat.
fiambre – boiled ham.
figado – liver.
fiambre – ham
francesinha – grilled steak, ham, &cheese in a beer and tomato sauce, with a fried egg on top.
frango – chicken
frango de carril – roast chicken in hot sauce.
frango na pucara – chicken cassarole.
iscas – liver
leitão – baby pork
lingua – tongue
lombo – pork loin
moela – gizzard.
morcela – black pudding/blood sausage.
paio – smoked pork sausage.
pasteis de carne – pastries stuffed with meat.
pato – duck.
peru – turkey
porco – pork
pomba – pigeon
prego no pão – steak sandwich with a fried egg
presunto – smoked ham
rim – kidney.
salsichas – sausages
vaca – beef
vitela – veal


arroz doce – sweet rice/rice pudding.
biscoito – biscuit
bolo – cake.
doces – desserts.
gelado – ice cream.
leite creme – custard
manteiga – butter.
papos de anjo – butter cakes with syrup.
pasteis – cakes.
pasteis de nata – custard tart.
pudim flan – cream caramel.
queijo – cheese.


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One thought on “Portuguese A-Z Food Dictionary

  1. David says:

    This was great. I only wish that you would have included cooking and baking items such as baking soda/powder, spices etc. Thanks, David

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