How to Order Food in Arabic
Knowing how to order food in Arabic is essential, whether you’re on a short visit to the Middle East or planning to live there. Put some some basic Arabic restaurant (maT’am) vocabulary into your head to make the experience of eating out in a Middle Eastern restaurant a lot more fun.
naadil/naadila [M/F] (waiter/waitress)
In the Middle East, as in most of the rest of the world, there are three main meals of the day: faTuur (breakfast), ghadaa‘ (lunch), and ‘ashaa‘ (dinner).
To tell someone you’re hungry in Arabic, say anaa jaw‘aan/anaa jaw’aa. (I’m hungry [M/F]). If you want to ask somebody if he or she is hungry, you say hal anta jaw‘aan?/hal anti jaw‘aa (Are you hungry? [M/F]).
Here are some food items you can order.
ka‘k (cake, pastries)
laHm al-baqr (beef)
You might want to use the following adjectives to describe to your naadil/naadila (waiter/waitress) how you want the food prepared.
To tell someone you’re thirsty in Arabic, say anaa ‘aTshaan/anaa ‘aTshaa. [M/F]. When you want to ask somebody whether he or she is thirsty, you say hal anta ‘aTshaan?/hal anti ‘aTshaa (Are you thirsty? [M/F]). To order your drink, say sa‘shrab . . . (I will drink . . .). Then add the name of the drink you want.
The following phrases might help you when you’re eating at a restaurant.
uriid laHm mashwii, min faDlik. (I would like grilled meat please.)
al-laHm ladhiidh. (The meat is delicious.)
hal’indakum dajaaja wa-ruzz? (Do you have chicken with rice?)
a’Tiinii al-fatuura, min faDlik. (Please bring the check.)