Kazakh Words for Food and Dining Experiences

Exploring a new language not only enriches your communication skills but also opens the door to understanding the culture and traditions of its speakers. When learning Kazakh, a Turkic language spoken mainly in Kazakhstan, one of the most delightful aspects to delve into is the vocabulary related to food and dining. Kazakhstan, with its rich nomadic heritage, offers a unique gastronomic experience, and knowing the language can significantly enhance this experience. In this article, we will explore essential Kazakh words and phrases that will help you navigate dining experiences, whether you are visiting a traditional Kazakh restaurant or enjoying a home-cooked meal.

Basic Food and Beverage Terms

Starting with the basics, knowing how to identify different types of foods and beverages can be quite helpful. In Kazakh, the word for food is тамақ (tamak), and drink or beverage is сусын (susyn).

Менің сүйікті тамағым – бешбармак.
(I love beshbarmak the most.)

When it comes to beverages, tea, which is immensely popular in Kazakhstan, is called шай (shay).

Шай ішейік пе?
(Shall we have some tea?)

Meals of the Day

Kazakh people typically have three main meals a day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Breakfast is known as таңғы ас (tangi as), lunch as түскі ас (tuski as), and dinner as кешкі ас (keshki as).

Таңғы асты не істейміз?
(What shall we have for breakfast?)

Ordering Food

When you’re at a restaurant, knowing how to order food politely can enhance your dining experience. To order food, you might use the phrase Мен … аламын (Men … alamyn), which means “I will take …”

Мен манты аламын.
(I will take the manty.)

If you want to know what is recommended or popular, you might ask:

Қандай тағамдарды ұсынасыз?
(What dishes do you recommend?)

Describing Taste and Preferences

Describing the taste of food or your preferences makes the conversation about food more engaging. The word for tasty in Kazakh is дәмді (dәmdi).

Бұл шынымен дәмді!
(This is really tasty!)

To express your preference or dislike, you might say:

Мен етті ұнатамын or Мен етті ұнатпаймын.
(I like meat/I do not like meat.)

Special Dietary Requirements

For those with specific dietary needs or restrictions, communicating effectively is crucial. For instance, if you are vegetarian, you could say:

Мен вегетарианшылмын.
(I am a vegetarian.)

If you need to avoid certain foods due to allergies, it’s important to specify:

Мен … аллергиям бар.
(I am allergic to …)

Traditional Kazakh Dishes

Kazakh cuisine is hearty and primarily meat-based, reflecting the nomadic lifestyle. Some traditional dishes you might encounter include бешбармак (beshbarmak), which literally means “five fingers” because it is traditionally eaten with one’s hands, and қазы (kazy), a type of horse meat sausage.

Бешбармакты татып көрдіңіз бе?
(Have you tried beshbarmak?)


Understanding and using these Kazakh terms can greatly improve your dining experiences and help you connect more deeply with Kazakh culture. Whether you are ordering a meal, discussing food preferences, or exploring traditional dishes, these words and phrases will be invaluable on your language learning journey. Enjoy the flavors of Kazakhstan, and as they say, Ас болсын! (Bon appétit!)

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