Vegetarian Phrases
In Other Languages

with thanks to

and reader contributions


  • Ana Nabatee (I am vegetarian [male]
  • Ana Nabateeya (I am vegetarian) [female]
  • Mish Akool Lahma walla Ferekh khalis (I don't eat meat or chicken at all)


  • (yes) busa'ker=banjara'ker em. (I'm a vegetarian)
  • (yes) mis/panir/kat/dzu=havkit/meghr 'chem utum. (I don't eat meat/cheese/milk/eggs/honey)
    [Words separated by = are synonyms, e.g. you can say dzu or havkit. ch as in English. (yes) means you can leave this out. These are Eastern Armenian forms, i.e. the variety of Armenian spoken in Armenia, Russia, etc. and Iran, but they are easily understood by Armenians everywhere. The apostrophe *preceding* a syllable means that syllable is more strongly stressed. Pronounce the vowels as in Italian or Spanish, or should I say Scottish, i.e. a, e, i, o, u as in heart, get (gate), feet, note, soot, but shorter. These are only approximate transcriptions, since Armenian has its own alphabet. ]


  • Ez dut jaten haragirik, txerrikirik, ezta oilaskorik ere (I do not eat meat, pork or chicken)
  • Arraultzak, esnea eta gazta jaten ditut (I eat eggs, milk and cheese)
  • Ez dut jaten arraultzarik, esnerik, ezta gaztarik ere (I don´t eat eggs, milk or cheese)
  • Ez, ez dut nahi arrainik (No, I don't want any fish)
  • Animaliak maite ditut, horregatik ez ditut jaten (I love animals, so I don't eat them)
  • Esnekiak (Dairy products)
  • Eztia (Honey)
  • Ez dut esnerik edaten (I don´t drink milk)
  • Ba al duzue plater barazkijalerik? (Do you have any vegetarian dishes?)


  • Wo chi su (Pronounced: wo chur soo), I am vegetarian; or
  • Wo chi zhai (Pronounced: wo chur jayy), I am vegetarian (in the Buddhist sense, which means no onions and a host of other things not traditionally excluded from vegetarian diets, but people understand it to mean vegetarian in the American sense, as well. The Cantonese example above is using this.)
  • Wo bu chi rou (Pronounced: wo boo chur row)
There is no real need (and no word really) for vegan, since vegetarian food in China rarely employs eggs, milk, etc. But,
  • I don't drink milk is: Wo bu he naiyou (wo boo huh nay-yo)
  • I don't eat eggs is: Wo bu chi jidan (wo boo chur jee dan)
  • I don't eat cheese is: Wo bu chi rulao (wo boo chur roolao) [note: no Chinese food has cheese anyway]


  • Sóc vegetarià/vegetariana (I am vegetarian)
  • No menjo ni carn, ni porc ni pollastre (I do not eat meat, pork or chicken)
  • Menjo (no menjo ni) ous, (ni) llet (ni) formatge (I do (do not) eat eggs, milk or cheese)
  • No, no vull cap mena de peix (No, I don't want any fish)
  • Jo estimo als animals, per això no me'ls menjo (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Ne jedem meso (I don't eat meat)
  • Ne volim meso (I don't like meat)
  • Ne pijem mlijeko, ne jedem jaja (I don't like milk or eggs.)


  • Jsem vegetarian(ka) (I'm vegetarian. -(fe)male)
  • Jsem vegan(ka) (I'm vegan. -(fe)male)
  • Nejim maso, vejce a syry (I don't eat meat, eggs and cheese)
  • Nepiji mleko (I don't drink milk)
  • Mate take nejaka vegetarianska jidla? (Do you have any vegetarian dishes also?)
  • Mam rad(a) zvirata (I like animals. - (fe)male)
  • Rad(a) jim cerstvou zeleninu a ovoce (I like to eat fresh vegetables and fruits. -(fe)male)


  • Jeg er vegetar (I am vegetarian)
  • Jeg spiser ikke kød (I don't eat meat)
  • Jeg elsker dyr, så jeg spiser dem ikke (I love animals, so I don't eat them)
  • Jeg vil undgår alle mælkeprodukter og ægprodukter or Yi vil oongoh alluh maelkprodookter oh a-egprodookter.
    (I want to avoid all milk products or egg products)
  • Kan jeg få (spinat) i stedet for? or Can yi foh (spin-at) ee sted-et for kød?
    (Can I have (spinach) instead of meat? (Substitute the food you want))
  • økologisk mad or oohkahl-o-gisk mal [as in Malcolm]
    (organic food)


  • Ik ben een vegetarier (I am a vegetarian)
  • Ik eet geen vlees, vis of gevogelte (I don't eat meat, fish or poultry)
  • Ik houd niet van vlees (I don't like meat)
  • Ik eet geen eieren en melk (I don't eat milk and eggs)
  • Heeft u ook vegetarische gerechten? (Do you have vegetarian dishes also?)
  • Ik hou van dieren dus ik eet ze niet (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Mi estas vegetarano. [mee EST-ahs veh-geh-tah-RAH-noh] (I am a vegetarian)
  • Mi estas vegetalano. [mee EST-ahs veh-geh-tah-LAH-noh] (I am a vegan)
  • Mi ne man^gas viandon, fi^sa^jon, ova^jon, a~u lakta^jon. [mee neh MAHN-jahs vee- AHN-dohn, fee-SHAH-zhohn, oh-VAH-zhohn, ow lahk-TA-zhohn.] (I don't eat meat, fish, eggs, or dairy products)
  • ^Cu vi havas iujn vegetarajn pladojn? [choo vee HAH-vahs EE-ooyn veh-geh-TAH-rine PLAH-doyn] (Do you have any vegetarian dishes?)
  • Mi amas bestojn, tial mi ne man^gas ilin. [Mee AH-mahs BEST-oyn, TEE-ahl mee neh MAHN-jahss EE-leen] (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Olen kasvisyöjä (I am a vegetarian.)
  • En syö eläimiä (I don't eat animals)
  • En syö lihaa (I don't eat meat)
  • En syö edes kanamunaa (I don't eat eggs either)
  • Ei edes maitotuotteita (not even milk products)
  • Rakastan eläimiä joten en syö niitä (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Je suis un végétarien(ne). Je ne mange pas de viande, de porc ou de poulet (I am a vegetarian(female). I do not eat meat, pork or chicken)
  • Je mange des d'œufs, du lait et du fromage (I eat eggs, milk or cheese)
  • Je ne mange pas d'œufs, du lait ni de fromage (I do not eat eggs, milk or cheese)
  • Végétalien(ne) (vegan)
  • J'aime des animaux, alors je ne les mange pas (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Ich bin Vegetarier[in] (I am a vegetarian)
  • Ich esse kein Fleisch, auch kein Huhn (und keinen Fisch). I do not eat meat, nor chicken (and neither fish)
  • Ich esse [ich esse keine] Eier, Milch oder Käse. (I [do not] eat eggs, milk or cheese)
  • Welches dieser Gerichte kann ich essen. (Which of these dishes could I eat)
  • (Dairy = Milchprodukte, fowl = Geflügel, honey = Honig)
  • Ich liebe Tiere - also esse ich sie nicht (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Eimai hortofagos. Den troo kreas i kotopoulo [EE-may hor-to-FAH-gos. Then tro KRAY-ahs ee ko-TO-poo-lo.] (I am a vegetarian. I do not eat meat, pork or chicken.)
  • (Den) troo avga, gala, kai (i) tiri. [(Then) tro ahv-GA, GA-la, keh (ee) tee-REE.] (I do (do not) eat eggs, milk or cheese)
  • per-ee-EH-hee (does it contain):
  • zo-ee-KAH pro-ee-YON-da? (any animal products?)
  • zo-ee-KO LEE- pos? (animal fat?)
  • zou-MEE ah-PO KRAY-ahs ee ko-TO-pou-lo? (meat or chicken broth?)


  • Ani tsimchoni(t) (I am a (fe)male vegetarian.)
  • V'ani lo ochel(et) chalav o g'vinah. (And I don't eat milk or cheese.)
  • Ani lo ochel(et) dagim. (I don't eat fish)
  • Ani ohev(et) chayot, az ani lo ochel otam [accent on last syllables] (I love animals, so I don't eat them)

Hindi (India)

  • Main maas-machhli nahin khata/khati (masculine/feminine) hoon. (I do not eat meat [includes poultry] or fish.)
  • Main shakaharee hoon (I am a vegetarian)


  • Vegetarianus vagyok. (veghetarianush vadiok) I am Vegetarian.
  • Vegan vagyok. (veghan vadjok) I am vegan.
  • Lakto-ovo vegetarianus vagyok. (lakto-ovo veghetarianush vadjok) I am lacto-ovo vegetarian)


  • Saya tidak makan daging (I don't eat meat)
  • Saya tidak bisa makan daging (I can't eat meat -- sometimes more useful than the above)
  • Janganlah pakai daging (please don't use meat)

Irish Gaelic

  • Ni/ ithim aon feoil (na/ iasc) (na/ sici/n) (I don't eat meat (nor fish)(nor chicken))
  • Ni/ o/laim bainne (I do not drink milk)


  • Sono vegetariano/a (I am vegetarian - male/female)
  • Non mangio carne, nè pollo o pesce (I don't eat meat, chicken or fish.)
  • Sono un vegano/ una vegana. (I am a vegan - male/female)
  • Sono strettamente vegetariano/a (I am a strict vegetarian - male/female)
  • Non bevo il latte. (I don't drink milk.)
  • Non mangio il burro, il formaggio, le uova, o il miele (I don't eat butter, cheese, eggs, or honey.)
  • Avete un piatto vegetariano? (Do you have a vegetarian dish?)
  • C'e' un ristorante vegetariano qui vicino? (Is there a vegetarian restaurant near here?)
  • C'e' del brodo di carne o pollo in questa zuppa? (Is there meat or chicken broth in this soup?)
  • Io amo gli animali, percio' non li mangio (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Watashi wa vegetarian desu. (I'm a vegetarian (see note below)
  • Shojin ryori
  • [show-zine ryo-ree] (vegetarian cuisine, usually Buddist style)
  • Watashi wa ..(insert one of the following words here) o itadakimasen. (I don't eat ......)
    1. niku (nee-koo) (meat)
    2. sakana (sa-kah-nah) (fish)
    3. tori (tor-ree) (chicken (or any type of poultry))
    4. tamago (tah-margo) (egg)
    5. gyunyu (giu-new) (milk)
    6. nyu seihin (new say-hinn) (dairy products)
[NOTE: for many people the English word "vegetarian" is already a familiar, well-known word; but in the rural areas or if you talk to an old person, please use the word "Saishoku shugisha" [sigh-shoh-koo hoo-gee-sha], a Japanese word for vegetarian. (Don't worry about this word if you are just visiting Tokyo -- just say "vegetarian".

The people in Japan don't know well the concepts of being a vegetarian since it is still a strange thing. Besides, it is considered very rude if you refuse to eat what your host gives you.

And it is very, very hard to find vegan foods there. My suggestion is:

  1. find a local Seventh Day Adventist Church for info;
  2. look for some large Bhuddist temple and ask:
    Shoujin ryori wa yatte imasuka? (Do you serve vegetarian foods?)]

Kannada (South India)

  • Naanu shaakaahaari (I am a vegetarian)
  • Naanu maamsa thinnuvudillaa (I do not eat meat)


  • Gogi han mogoyo (I don't eat meat.)
  • Gogi han droguh-nun mo issoyo? (What is there that doesn't have meat?)
  • Gogi no chi maseyo (Don't put in any meat)


  • Bo Sin (No meat.)

Low Saxon (Low German)

[ a (now finally officially recognized) minority language in the northern half of Germany and the eastern parts of the Netherlands. (Pronunciation for English speakers in [].)]
  • Ik bün 'n Vegetarier(sch) [ick buen ve-gheh-TOH-ree-ur(sh)] (I am a vegetarian -- male (female))
  • Ik eet keen Fleesch; Hohn or Fisch ook nich.
    [ick eyt keyn fleysch -- hone or fish oke niH] (I do not eat meat, neither chicken or fish.)
  • Ik eet (keen) Eier, Melk or Kääs'. [ick eyt (keyn) I-ur, melk or kehz] (I [do not] eat eggs, milk or cheese)
  • Wilket Eten kann ik hier eten? [VIL-ket EYtn kahn ick heer EYtn] (Which dish here can I eat?)
  • Food containing dairy = Eten mit Melk binnen [EYtn mit melk binn] Fowl = Vagel(s) [FOH-gl(ss)] Honey = Honnig [HON-niH]
  • Ik heff Deerten leef; daarwegen do ik se nich eten. [ick heff DEYRtn leyf; DOHR-vehgng doe ick zey niH EYtn] (I love animals, so I don't eat them.)

Malay (Bahasa Malaysia)

  • Saya seorang vegetarian (I am a vegetarian) -- nb: rural areas may not be familiar with the phrase.
  • Saya tidak makan daging, ayam atau makanan laut (I don't eat meat, chicken nor seafood)
  • Saya tidak makan telur (I dont eat eggs)
  • Tolong jangan bubuh kichap tiram, udang kering, sotong atau apa-apa jenis makanan yang ada daging/ayam/makanan laut/telur (please do not cook with any oyster sauce, dried prawns, squid or any foods with meat/chicken/seafood/eggs).
  • Adakah makanan ini mengandungi daging/ayam/makanan laut/telur ? (does this dish contain any meat/chicken/seafood/eggs?)
  • Sayur (vegetables); Nasi (rice); Banyak sayur- sayuran (lots of vegetables); Terima kasih (thank you)


  • wo bu chi rou, wo chi shu cai. [written in pinyin] (I don't eat meat, I eat vegetable)
  • wo bu xihuan chi rou (I don't like to eat meat)
  • Wo3 ai4 dong4 wu4, suo2 yi3 wo3 bu4 chi1 ta1 men [Wau AYE DONG-oo, SWAU-ee wau BOO CHR tah- men] (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


  • Malai maasu nakhanne (I don't eat meat)
  • Malai maasu monpardaina (I don't like meat)
  • Malai dudh ra phul nakhanne (I don't eat milk and eggs)


  • Jeg er vegetarianer (I am a vegetarian)
  • Jeg er veganer (I am a vegan)
  • Jeg spiser ikke kjøtt,egg eller meieriprodukter (I don't eat meat, eggs nor dairy products)
  • Jeg spiser verken kjøtt, kylling eller fisk (I eat neither meat, chicken nor fish)
  • Jeg liker ikke kjøtt. (I don't like meat)
  • Har du noen vegetarretter. (Do you have any vegetarian dishes?)


    [Original [Phonetic approximation (British spellings?)] (Translation) ]
  • Jestem wegetarianinem (male)/ wegetarianka (female) [yestem vegetarianinem/vegetariankauw] (I am a vegetarian)
  • Nie jem miesa, drobiu, ryb, jajek, sera. [nyea yem miowsa, drobewe, rip, yayek, serah] (I do not eat meat, poultry, fish, eggs, cheese)
  • Nie pije mleka [nyea piaow mleka] (I don't drink milk)
  • Czy sa dania wegetarianskie/ jarskie? [tCHey soww danya vegetarianski/yaraskia] (Do you have vegetarian dishes?)
  • weganin -- a vegan [male]
  • weganka -- a vegan [female]
  • weganska dieta -- vegan diet
  • weganska kuchnia -- vegan cuisine


  • Eu sou vegetariano (I am a vegetarian)
  • Eu não como carne, peixe ou frango (I don't eat meat, fish or poultry)
  • Eu não bebo leite, nem como ovos ou queijo (I don't drink milk, nor eat eggs or cheese)
  • Eu não como nada preparado com gordura animal (bacon ou banha) (I do not eat anything cooked with animal fat (bacon or lard))


  • Sunt vegetarian [male]/ vegetariana [female] (I am a vegetarian)
  • Aveti mancaruri vegetariene? (Do you have a vegetarian dish?)
  • Exista vreun restaurant vegetarian prin apropiere? (Is there a vegetarian restaurant near here?)
  • Exista cumva carne sau zeama de pui in aceasta supa? (Is there meat or chicken broth in this soup?)
  • Mie nu-mi place carnea (I don't like meat/pork)
  • Eu nu maninc carne/oua/lactate/lapte/branza/miere (I do not eat meat/eggs/fish/dairy products/milk/cheese/honey)
  • Nu maninc nimic gatit in grasime animala (slanina sau untura) (I do not eat anything cooked in animal fat (bacon or lard))
  • Eu iubesc animalele, asa ca nu le mananc (I love animals, so I don't eat them)

Russian (phonetic)

  • Yah nye yem meeyasa. (I don't eat meat)
  • Yah nye yem rihbu. (I don't eat fish)
  • Yah nye pyooh mahlahko eeee yah nye yem sihr. (I don't drink milk and I don't eat cheese)
  • Yah lyublyu gihvahtnihh poehtahmuh yah nye yem eeh (I love animals, so I don't eat them)


['vegetarian' is pronounced with "g" like in "gear" ]
  • Som vegetarian(ka) (I am a vegetarian (fe)male)
  • Som vegan(ka) (vaegun) ( I am a vegan. (fe)male)
  • Nejem maso, ryby, mlieko, vajcia ( I don't eat meat, fish, milk and eggs)
  • Mate vegetarianske jedlo (yedlo) ? (Do you serve some vegetarian meal?)
  • Je toto jedlo vegetarianske? (Is this meal vegetarian?)
  • Kde je vegetarianska restauracia? (Where is some vegetarian restaurant?)


  • Ne jem mesa (I don't eat meat)
  • Ne maram mesa (I don't like meat)
  • Ne jem mleka in jajc (I don't eat milk and eggs)


  • Yo soy vegetariano/a (I am vegetarian (depending on the speaker's gender))
  • Yo no como carne, cerdo/puerco, ni pollo. (I do not eat meat, pork or chicken)
  • Yo como (no como) huevos, leche/lácteos, o queso. (I do (do not) eat eggs, milk/milk products or cheese)
  • No quiero pescado (I don't want fish) or No como pescado (I don't eat fish).

Swahili (East Africa)

[More precisely: Kiswahili, the language of the Swahili ]
  • Mimi sili nyama walla kuku (I eat neither meat nor chicken)
  • Mimi sili nyama (I don't eat meat)
  • Mimi sili mayai (I don't eat eggs)
  • Mimi sili nguruwe (I don't eat pork)
  • Ng'ombe (beef/cow) Maziwa (milk) Samaki (fish)


  • Jag äter inte kött (I do not eat meat)
  • Jag är vegetarian (I am a vegetarian)
  • Jag är vegan. (I am vegan).
  • Jag äter inte ost (I do not eat cheese)
  • Jag äter inte ägg (I do not eat eggs)
  • Jag äter inte kyckling (I do not eat chicken)
  • Jag äter inte mjölkprodukter (I do not eat dairy)
  • bönor (beans) linser (lentils)
  • Jag älskar djur, så jag äter dem inte (I love animals, so I don't eat them)
  • Jag äter inte fisk" (I don't eat fish) [English is understood by most Swedes so just give it a try in english.]


(capital letters are elongated vowels. E.g., nAn rhymes with 'pawn')
  • nAn saivam (I am vegetarian)
  • nAn saiva sAppAdu-thAn sAppiduven (I eat only vegetarian food)
  • nAn asaivam sAppiduvathu illai (I don't eat non-vegetarian food)
  • nAn mAmisam sAppiduvathu illai (I don't eat meat)
  • nAn meen sAppiduvathu illai (I don't eat fish)
  • nAn kozhi sAppiduvathu illai (I don't eat poultry)
  • nAn muttai sAppiduvathu illai (I don't eat eggs)
  • nAn pAl sAppiduvathu illai (or:) nAn pAl kudippathu illai (I don't eat (!) (drink) milk)

Telugu (India)

  • Nenu maamsamu chepalu thinanu (I don't eat meat or fish)


  • Phom kin phak / Phom kin jeh / Phom mang-sa-wirat (All three mean - "I am a vegetarian")
  • Phom mai kin plaa (I don't eat fish)


  • Hic et yiyemem [heech et yee-yeh-mem] (I can't eat any meat)
  • Et suyu bile yiyemem. (I can't even eat meat juices)
  • ... yiyemem (I can't eat ...)
  • Et yiyemem (I can't eat meat)
  • Tavuk [tah-vook] (chicken)
  • Pilic [pee-leech] (chicken)
  • Yumurta [yoo-moor-tah] (egg)
  • BalIk [bah-luck] (fish)
  • Etsiz yemek var mI? [Et-seez yeh-mek var muh?] (Do you have any dishes without meat?)


  • Toi an chay (prounounced: toy ahn jay, all in a high flat tone)

Welsh (Cymraeg)

  • Rydw i'n llysieuwr [Rudd-oo een LLush-*ay*-ur] (I am a vegetarian)
  • Dydw i ddim yn bwyta cig neu cyw ia+r [Duddoo ee *THim* un *boy*-tah keeg nay queue ee-*arrr* (roll that r)] (I do not eat meat or chicken)
  • Rydw i'n (Dydw i ddim yn) bwyta wyau, llaeth a chaws. [Rudd-oo een (duddoo ee *THim* un) *boy*-tah *oi*-yeh, LL-eye-th aa CHowsss] (I do (do not) eat eggs, milk and cheese)
  • Pa un o'r rheiny alla i bwyta? [*Paah* een oooRrrr *rainy* aLL-ah ee *boy*-tah?] (which of these dishes could I eat)
  • LL - Line tongue around roof of mouth so air can escape only at the back and underneath - smile - and push air out fast narrowing the gap to make it louder.
  • TH as in 'THem'
  • CH as in 'J.S. BaCH'
  • 'tah' as 'ta' in 'tank'
corrections and additional suggestions welcome

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