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10 Popular French Dishes You’re Probably Pronouncing Wrong

10 Popular French Dishes You’re Probably Pronouncing Wrong

France arguably has the most delicious cuisine in the world. Whether you’re sitting in a chic French restaurant in New York City or sitting at an outdoor terrace in Paris, you’ll be faced with the challenge of pronouncing names of French foods. Learn the the proper pronunciation for these ten common French dishes and impress all your friends!

Lesson explaining how to pronounce the names fo 10 French foods

How to pronounce the names of 10 French dishes


Ratatouille is a vegetable stew dish which originates from Nice in the south of France. The dish uses tomatoes as its base and includes several vegetables which are sautéed separately then added to the stew which is then baked. Vegetables included are onions, zucchini, bell peppers, eggplant and squash.

la ratatouille

Ratatouille recipe from

Boeuf Bourguignon

Boeuf Bourguignon originates from the Burgundy (or Bourgogne), a region in east-central France. The dish is a stew of beef braised in red wine and cooked with garlic, onions and mushrooms. Typically the dish is larded and recipes today call for bacon. Considered a food of the peasants, chefs cook this dish slowly.

le boeuf bourguignon

Beef Bourguignon recipe from

Coq au Vin

Coq-au-vin is one of the most typical French dishes. It literally means “rooster in the wine” and consists of slowly cooking chicken (female hens are used nowadays!) in a sauce of wine, lardons, garlic, mushrooms and various seasonings.

le coq au vin

Coq au vin recipe from New York Times Cooking

Confit de canard

Confit de canard is a duck dish that’s prepared in a special way which allows for the meat to be extremely tender, flavorful and last for long periods of time. The duck is first salted and rubbed with herbs. After about one day of refrigeration the meat is baked in its own fat at a very low temperature for many hours. The meat is then removed from the bones and can be stored in the refrigerator for several months.

le confit de canard

Confit de canard recipe from


Cassoulet is a dish that originates from Southwestern France. The dish consists of white beans cooked with various kinds of meat including pork sausage, goose, duck confit and mutton. The dish is slow cooked in a special dish called a “cassole” and was originally a dish of the peasants. The specific kind of meat used varies depending on the city.


Cassoulet recipe from

Moules frites

Moules frites consists of mussels and French fries. Actually, this dish is typically Belgian. But, it’s widely enjoyed in France, especially in the North near the Belgian coast. There is a very wide variety of ways of preparing the mussels. Sometimes they are boiled and sometimes they are steamed. Often they’re cooked with either white wine or beer. Shallots, parsley, leeks and garlic can also be added to the sauce.

les moules frites

Moules Frites recipe from


Steak-frites consists of a piece of steak served with French fries. This is often considered the most typical French dish. A piece of steak, often a rib eye (entrecôte) is pan fried in butter and served “saignant” or bloody with a mountain of French fries. Hollandaise and béarnaise sauces are both served with steak-frites. Both France and Belgium claim steak-frites to be a national dish.

le steak-frites

Steak-frites recipe from


Raclette is name of a cheese that’s used in an entire meal that’s also referred to “raclette”. Raclette originated in Switzerland and consists of melting cheese onto a plate and accompanying it with potatoes, gherkin cucumbers (cornichons), pickled onions and ham or prosciutto.

Traditionally the cheese is scraped off the larger block of cheese on to the diner’s plate. But, today the cheese is heated and melted with a special table-top device. The raclette meal is a very social occasion and take place over many hours.

la raclette

Raclette recipe from

Pot au feu

Pot au feu, or “pot on the fire” is a French stew dish that consists of multiple vegetables such as carrots, leeks, celery, turnips and cabbage cooked with cuts of beef which require longer cooking times. The dish dates back to the 1600s when King Henry IV referred to the dish as “poule au pot” or chicken in the pot.

le pot au feu

Pot au feu recipe from

Salade Niçoise

Salade Niçoise is a salad that consists of vegetables including tomatoes, lettuce, green beans and potatoes combined with anchovies, olives and hard-boiled eggs and vinaigrette. The salad originates from Nice in Province in the south of France.

la salade niçoise

Salade niçoise recipe from

Conclusion: top French foods

These are my favorite French dishes. What are yours? Please leave a comment below and a link to a delicious recipe if you’d like!

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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 FrenchLearner, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.

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