Common English Fruit and Vegetable Idioms With Examples
When it comes to idioms, the English language seems to love them! There are thousands of English idioms out there, some more strange and funny than others. Furthermore, there are tons of fruit and vegetable idioms that are very common in day-to-day interactions and conversations.
We at Glish have compiled a list of the most common and useful fruit and vegetable idioms with pictures, to really help you understand the meaning of these expressions and hopefully, use them in a conversation soon!
Here are the most useful fruit and vegetable idioms in English:
1. A bad apple
This fruit idiom means that if someone is a bad apple, they are a bad influence on other people. They normally encourage others to do naughty things or behave badly.
Example: “I want you to stop hanging out with Jacob, he’s a bad apple.”
2. Go Bananas!
This fruit idiom means to go bananas means to become a little crazy or irrational. It can also mean that you are overly excited about something.
Example: “I go bananas when I spend too much time indoors!”
Example: “I go bananas when I see my favourite singer in concert!”
3. As cool as a cucumber
This vegetable idiom means to be extremely calm or relaxed.
Example: “I always feel as cool as a cucumber after a massage!”
4. Full of beans
This vegetable idiom means to have a lot of energy or excitement.
Example: “I’m feeling full of beans after this large coffee!”
5. A bite at the cherry
This fruit idiom means that there is a good opportunity, usually in terms of success. Sometimes this fruit idiom can also mean that the opportunity is very rare and not common, so you should pursue it while you still can!
Example: “When I told my friends about my business idea, they all wanted a bite at the cherry!”
6. The apple of my eye
This fruit idiom refers to someone or something that you love very much. It can sometimes also mean a favourite among other people.
Example: “My wife is the apple of my eye. I would do anything for her!”
Example: “I have had many students in my teaching career but Nina will always be the apple of my eye!”
7. A couch potato
This vegetable idiom refers to someone who spends most of their time on the couch, in front of the tv or lying down. They do not exercise or practice healthy habits.
Example: “Don’t be such a couch potato! Let’s go for a run!”
8. Two peas in a pod
This vegetable idiom refers to two people who are very close or similar to each other.
Example: “My best friend and I are like two peas in a pod. We do everything together!”
9. Peaches and cream
This fruit idiom means when everything in life seems to be going great and there are no major problems.
Example: “Ever since we started therapy, my wife and I have been peaches and cream.”
10. Apples and oranges
This fruit idiom means when two people or things are very different from each other, like opposites.
Example: “Even though we are twins, we are like apples and oranges.”
Example: “I have two jobs but they are like apples and oranges. One allows me to make money but the other one allows me to be creative.”
11. In a pickle
This vegetable idiom refers to when someone is in a difficult or complicated situation.
Example: “I was in a pickle after I got fired from my job.”
12. Dangle a carrot
This vegetable idiom refers to when you need to tempt, attract or persuade someone to do something by promising a reward. The reward can be things like money, job promotions, favours, etc.
Example: “I always dangle a carrot in front of my son in order to get him to clean his room. I tell him that he can play video games after he is done cleaning.”
13. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!
This fruit idiom is very popular. It means that when there is a sad or bad situation in life, look for the positives and turn the situation around. Find a solution!
Example: “I was sad when I lost my job but then, I decided to go back to school and study. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!”
14. Not give a fig
This fruit idiom means to not care about something at all.
Example: “I don’t give a fig about watching sports. I would rather watch a movie.”
15. Through the grapevine
This fruit idiom refers to when a piece of information is shared and heard through an informal source. This means that the person did not tell you directly. Gossip is a great example of when information is shared through the grapevine.
Example: “I heard through the grapevine that Kevin is going to propose next week! Is that true?”
This vegetable idiom refers to a person who is not very smart or intelligent. The expression comes from how small a pea is in size, meaning that the person’s brain is as small as that!
Example: “My mom was so glad when I told her that I broke up with my boyfriend. She has always told me that he was pea-brained.”
17. Hold out an olive branch
This vegetable idiom is used when someone decides to provide a solution or make an offer of peace after there has been a disagreement or problem.
Example: “After a fight with my good friend, I tried to be the kinder person by holding out an olive branch.”
18. The apple never falls far from the tree
This fruit idiom is used when someone has a personality or behaves in a way that is very similar to their parents.
Example: “Both her parents are teachers and now she is studying to become a teacher. The apple never falls far from the tree!”
19. The cherry on top
This fruit idiom is used to describe the final touch to make something perfect or complete. This expression is usually used in a very positive way.
Example: “Today was the perfect day. I spent time with my friends, had a fantastic meal and the cherry on top was that it was sunny all day.”
20. A melon head
This fruit idiom is used as English slang, so it is very casual and should not be used with strangers or colleagues at work. This expression refers to someone who is stupid or foolish.
Example: “Don’t listen to that melon head. He is always giving bad advice.”
Alright English learners, there you go! That was our list of 20 common English fruit and vegetable idioms that will surely have you sounding like an advanced English speaker. Make sure to try using one of these fruit or vegetable idioms in your next conversation and have fun! We have another blog post on more general English idioms with examples if you enjoy learning new idioms!
If you’d like to hear some of these idioms out loud and with more context, be sure to listen to our latest Glish podcast episode all about it on The English Journey Podcast, free to listen on all streaming platforms! You can also follow us on Instagram to see more English idioms and vocabulary on your feed for daily English practice!