Manger and Boire : French Verbs for Eat and Drink

how to say drink and eat in french manger boire

Talking about food and drink is one of the first things you learn when learning French. We all have to eat. And drink.

That’s why learning verbs manger and boire are on the top of the list when learning French.

French Verbs System

FIRST GROUP: finishes in -ER ( aimer, parler)

SECOND GROUP: finishes in – IR ( finir, partir)

THIRD GROUP: irregular verbs (savoir, vivre)

Every one of these verb categories has specific rules that govern how they change.

Verbs Manger and Boire

Manger – to eat

Boire – to drink

Because of the related meaning, they are often learned together, even though they belong to different verb groups.

How to conjugate Manger

The verb manger is regular, and belongs to the first group of verbs, ending in -er.

Manger is a regular French -er verb, but it is also a spelling-change verb.

This means that it takes all the regular -er endings, but a small spelling change is made to the stem for consistency of pronunciation. The stem is that part of the verb after we delete the ending -er. It looks like this :

manger / mang (stem)

The regular verbs in French, have these endings added to the stem (e, es, e, ons, ez, ent).

The only difference with other completely regular verbs, is that the letter e is added, in order to preserve the pronunciation (mɑ̃ʒɔ̃). If we wouldn’t add e, we would have to pronounce letter (g)

Je mange

Tu manges

Il/Elle mange

Nous mangeons  (mang+e+ons)

Vous mangez

Ils/Elles mangent

Let’s see some examples with the verb manger.

Je mange du poisson.

l eat fish.

Tu mangez de la pizza.

You eat pizza.

Nous mangeons des fraises.

We eat strawberries.

How to conjugate Boire

On the other hand, the verb boire is irregular and belongs to the third group of irregular verbs in French.

Here is the conjugation in Present Tense.

Je bois

Tu bois

Il/Elle boit

Nous buvons

Vous buvez

Ils/Elles boivent

There are plenty of other French verbs that conjugate similarly to boire.

To see how the verb boire conjugates in other modes and tenses, click here. 

Let’s take a look at some examples using the verb boire.

Je bois une bière au pub.

l drink a beer at the pub.

Nous buvons de l’eau dans le parc.

We drink water at the park.

Ils boivent du vin dans le restaurant.

They drink wine at the restaurant.

To practice using manger and boire in Present Tense, take an exercise here.

Being Hungry and Thirsty in French

To say l am hungry in French, you’ll have to say J’ai faim. You may notice that instead of using the verb to be, French use the verb to have. The same goes when expressing you are thirsty.

J’ai faim.

l am hungry.

J’ai soif.

l am thirsty.

Express Your Cravings in French

Now, that you learned how the French words “to eat”, and “to drink” work in a sentence, it’s time to give yourself a try and create a sentence of your own.

What French food inspires you today ?

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