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mettre du beurre dans les épinards

The French expression “mettre du beurre dans les épinards” translates literally to “to put butter in the spinach”.

English meaning:

  • to help make ends meet
  • to help get by

French meaning:

  • gagner un peu plus d’argent pour aider sa situation financière to earn a bit more money to help your financial situation

Example sentence:

  • Nancy est prof de musique a l’école mais elle donne des cours de violin apres le travaille pour mettre du beurre dans les épinards. Nancy is the music teacher at school but she gives violin lessons at night to make ends meet.

Synonymous expression:

  • joindre les deux boutsLiterally to join both ends – to make ends meet.

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David Issokson

David Issokson is a lifelong language enthusiast. His head is swimming with words and sounds as he speaks over six languages. Of all the languages he speaks, he's the most passionate about French! David has helped hundreds of students to improve their French in his private online lessons. When procrastinating working on his site,, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.

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