what do french people eatThe French are world-famous for many things, not least of which is their cuisine, which is intrinsically tied into their culture, and is associated with richness and extravagance. While most people think of fatty foods such as butter and foie gras when they think of French food, a lot of it is actually quite healthy and varied. After all, the average French citizen wouldn’t live past the age of thirty if all they ate was goose liver and butter. The French are known for lingering on their meals, taking their time and enjoying their food. Even though the American-style supermarket is well-established in France, many still like to purchase their bread from a baker, and their meat from the local butcher.

Today, we will be discussing what French people eat. This isn’t meant to be a history lesson on French cuisine, or an extensive overview of every type of French food, but rather just a glimpse into the culinary habits of your everyday Frenchman (and woman), and we will go through what they might eat for each meal of the day. If you’re a budding Francophile, and would like to learn more about this beautiful country, this article on facts about France will introduce you to the country, and this course on Napoleon will tell you a bit about its most famous citizen.

Breakfast (Le petit déjeuner*)

*To learn how to say a lot of other things in French, we have a two part course for you: part 1 and part 2 will have you speaking Français in no time.

Unlike here in the United States, the French prefer their breakfast to be on the lighter side, with coffee playing an especially important role in the proceedings. Some of the foods and beverages you’ll find at a typical French breakfast table include:

Lunch (Le déjeuner)

While the French breakfast is pretty cut and dry, and almost always happens in the home, lunchtime is where things start to pick up. Served between 11 A.M. and one in the afternoon at restaurants, lunch can last anywhere from a quick bite on the street, to a two-hour meal in a restaurant.

Restaurant or Home Lunches eaten at restaurants and at home tend to be extravagant, and consists of several courses.

Street Vendor For the Frenchman on the go, there are plenty of street vendors and kiosks at train stations that cater to busy commuters. Obviously, these meals are less extravagant than the ones in restaurants.

Dinner (Le diner)

Much like lunch, the French dinner is a multi-course affair, and is relished and savored, rather than rushed through. The specifics of what is served depends on what’s in season, so a meal in Winter would be different than a Summer meal, and there is no typical French dinner.

Because the French usually don’t normally snack and graze in between meals, they’re usually quite hungry when they sit down to lunch or dinner, making it a special occasion. Eating is a ritual to the French, and is seen almost as a celebration. The French have a healthy outlook when it comes to food, and if that’s something you’d like to adopt, this course on healthy cooking will show you the fundamentals of living and cooking healthy.


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