Store Colleague in Fruit and Veg Aisle

UK taste-buds may have been going global over recent years but the native tongue struggles to keep pace with changing tastes. Our research reveals the top taste-bud tongue twisters which are, often unknowingly, confusing consumers up and down the country.

Top 20 food words consumers struggle to pronounce are:

  1. Tzatziki
  2. Bouillabaisse
  3. Ceviche
  4. Parmigiano Reggiano
  5. Edamame
  6. Acai
  7. Nicoise
  8. Chipotle
  9. Manchego
  10. Prosciutto
  11. Crudites
  12. Gnocchi
  13. Quinoa
  14. Habanero
  15. Maraschino
  16. Bouillon
  17. Rioja
  18. Halloumi
  19. Anise
  20. Guacamole

This video explains why we find these food phrases difficult:


Teaming up with us is The Oxford English Dictionary’s Head of Pronunciation Dr Catherine Sangster, who said: “These pronunciations can be unexpected or controversial. When a new food or drink becomes popular, we at the Oxford English Dictionary keep an eye on how its name gets adapted into English. Some speakers will want to say the name in a completely authentic manner, matching the original language, and other speakers will be influenced by the spelling or prefer to anglicize the sounds. In the dictionary, we give pronunciations that are accurate and also reflect the reality of how the word is being spoken.”

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