Grocery Shopping Vocabulary

A printable supermarket translation sheet

Written by
Published on 17.07.2005 23:35 (updated on 17.07.2005)

Written by
for the Ceska Sporitelna Handbook

Here is a handy, printable sheet to help you with visiting the grocery store and deciphering the names of vital goods from English to Czech.

Čerstvé máslo is fresh butter and the best choice when a recipe calls for pure butter.

Stolní máslo
is second quality butter.
Tuk do těsta is a mixture of shortening and butter, best for making a pastry dough.

Máslo s rostlinným tukem is a mixture of butter and vegetable shortening.

Rostlinný tuk is a vegetable shortening (similar to Crisco) and sold in 220 gram blocks in the dairy case. 220 grams is approximately 1 cup.

Hera or Perla are two brands of margarine sold in blocks, although there are various brands available suitable for baking.
Rama and Flora are good basic brands of tub margarine. There are many on the market with various fat bases (vegetable, corn, et.) and also „light“ spreads. It is a matter of experimenting for taste and preference.

Cheese – Sýr
Tvaroh is the closest equivalent to cottage cheese, although „real“ cottage cheese can be found in Tesco, Delvita and some other supermarkets. Tvaroh měkký is used for baking, while tvaroh tvrdý is grated. Tesco also has real ricotta cheese.

Kiri and Buko are the closest equivalents to cream cheese , with Lučina in a close second. Pomazánka is a soft cream cheese spread sold in different flavors.

Cream – Smetana
Cream is sold several ways. Heavy or whipping cream is šlehačka, light cream is smetana, and cream for coffee is polosmetana or smetana do kávy.


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Eggs – Vejce
Fresh eggs are stamped with a red circle. Older refrigerated eggs have a black circle. Eggs are usually sold in conventional cartons at large grocery stores containing 6 or 10 eggs. Look for the „Vejce od slepic chovaných na podestýlce“ – eggs coming from hen kept on bedding usually sold by 6 in yellow boxes in large department stores like Delvita, Tesco and Carrefour.

Milk – Mléko
Most milk is sold as long-life (trvanlivé) in cartons. They have a long shelf-life and the expiration date is stamped on the top of the box. Once opened, keep refrigerated and treat as fresh milk. Fresh (čerstvé) milk is refrigerated , but long-life milk can be confusingly sold either refrigerated or not.

All milk is sold with varying fat (tuk) contents:

Plnotučné is 3.5% whole fat milk.
Polotučné is 1.5% low fat milk.
Nízkotučné is 0.5% – 0.8% low fat milk.
Evaporated condensed milk (zahuštěné slazené mléko) is sold under the Salko brand with a drawing of a cow and mountains on the label.

Podmáslí is buttermilk.
Dr.Oetker Smeta-Fix is an additive to make whipping cream „stand up“ and not deflate. It comes in small packets found in the baking aisle. The next best thing to Cool Whip!

In the Baking Aisle:

Droždí (yeast) is sold by cube-shaped cakes in the dairy cooler or small packets of instantní droždí in the baking aisle. One cake is equal to 2 tablespoons of the dry yeast.
Jedlá soda (baking soda)

Kypřící prášek do pečiva (baking powder) is sold under different brand names such as Vitana or Dr. Oetker. Each packet contains approximately 1 tablespoon.
Kukuřičný škrob (cornstarch) is sold under the brand Dr. Oetker as Gustin Maizena.

Skořicový cukr is a cinnamon sugar.
Vanilkový cukr (vanilla-flavored sugar) is sold in packets in the baking aisle. Under the Dr. Oetker brand, you can also find small vials of vanilla (and lemon) essence. Sometimes bottles of vanilla extract can be found with the international foods in tesco.

Chocolate chips – You can buy large bars of solid chocolate (dark, milk and white) in the candy aisle and chop them into chungks for a very good quality and tasty cookie.

Flour – Mouka
Hladká mouka is finely ground flour (also seen as Hladka Special OO Extra on some flour bags). It can be used for both b read and cakes but it is not self-rising.

Hrubá mouka is coarsely ground flour, from hard wheat. This flour is preferred for making bread because of its high protein and low starch content. It is also used to make dumplings.
Polohrubá mouka is a semi-coarse flour.

Krupice (semolina/durum flour) is ground from durum wheat and makes a strong, sturdy dough frequently used for pasta.
Mouka bezlepková is a high gluten flour derived from hard wheat with starch removed and protein concentrated. Gluten flour is for people who cannot tolerate wheat flour.
Celozrnná mouka (wholewheat), grahamová mouka (graham), žitná mouka (rye), kukuričná mouka (corn) and other flours can also be found.

Pšeničné otruby is a wheat bran, a little bit finer than Miller´s bran. Špaldova is a nice quality of wheat flour, sold in health food stores.

Sugar – Cukr
Krystal is the coarsest grain and is generally used for decorating cookies, cakes and pasries. It is often served with coffee and tea in restaurants.
Krupice is granulated sugar and appropriate for baking.
Moučka is similar to confectioners sugar. Icings made using moučka tend to have a grainy texture. It can be mixed with warm liquid such as water or lemon juice to make a glaze.
Cukr kostky are sugar cubes and are seen in 0.5 kg boxes.
Tesco sometimes stocks its own brand of light and dark brown sugar.

Meats and Poultry – Maso a Drůbež
Kuře (chicken) is sold fresh and frozen, whole and in parts. Bez kosti means boneless.

Kuřecí prsa is chicken breast, and kuřecí stehno is chicken thigh.


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Krůtí (turkey) is found in vacuum packs fresh and frozen. You can find whole frozen turkeys as well. Also in vacuum packs are smoked (uzené) turkey parts. Krůtí prsa is turkey breast (whole piece), krůtí prsa na řízky is turkey breast cutlets and krůtí stehno is turkey thigh.

Hovězí (beef) is sold fresh, however, some of the cuts may look different. One very good cut is svíčková (tenderloin). Mleté maso is ground or minced meat, and can be found with all beef or a mixture of beef and pork.
Vepřové (pork) is also sold fresh and in various cuts which should be familiar to you.

Jehněčí (lamb) and telecí (veal) are also available but more frozen than fresh.

Šunka (ham) is found at the deli counter as various types. Uzená šunka is smoked ham. Whole hams can be found usually at a store specializing in meats.

Spices – Koření
Spices are sold in bottles or packets. Celý means whole and mletý is ground.

Basil – Bazalka<?xml:namespace prefix = o />Bay leaf – Bobkový list Caraway – Kmín Cinnamon – Skořice Chives – PažitkaCloves – Hřebíček Dill – KoprGarlic – ČesnekGinger – ZázvorHorseradish – KřenMarjoram – Majoránka Mustard – HořčiceNutmeg – Muškátový ořechOregano – OreganoPaprika – Paprika Parsley – PetrželPepper – PepřRosemary – RozmarýnSage – ŠalvějSalt – SůlTarragon – EstragonThyme – Tymián

Shopping Phrases

Are you open on Saturday? Máte otevřeno v sobotu?
Are you open on Sunday?   Máte otevřeno v neděli?
Could I have?   Mohl(a) bych dostat?
I would like   Chtěl(a) bych
How much is it?   Kolik to stojí?
Do you have a different colour?  Máte jinou barvu?
Do you have a different size? Máte jinou velikost?
Do you have?   Máte?
Excuse me.   Promiňte.
How much does it cost?  Kolik to stojí?
How much does it weigh?  Kolik to váží?
Is the bread fresh?  Je ten chleba čerstvý?
Is the chicken fresh?  Je to kuře čerstvé?
What time do you close?  V kolik zavíráte?
What time do you open?  V kolik otvíráte?


JanHandyman with van

JanHandyman with van

Help in transporting goods (major..

This article was originally published by, for the Ceska Sporitelna welcome Hand Book.