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Things in Spanish: 137 Spanish Words You Need to Know for Everyday Stuff

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“Things” in Spanish is cosas. And when you’re just starting to learn Spanish… Well, there are a lot of things you want to talk about!

Like how about telling your new Spanish friends you must have your coffee first thing in the morning. Or how about trying to immerse yourself at home and talk about las cosas en tu casa — the things in your house. Maybe you’re doing this to help teach your kids Spanish. Or you’re trying to learn how to talk about things around the office so you can someday work abroad.

Whatever your reason is for learning, you have to know how to chat about a lot of things in Spanish. Starting with some common everyday vocabulary is a great place to start! You’ll be able to talk about things you encounter in your day-to-day routine, in other words, the things that are most relevant to you.

So, I’ve created a list of cosas en español to get you going and beef up your vocabulary based on a “usual” daily routine. Not all these words will be relevant to you, though. Maybe you have fur babies instead of tiny humans or you work from home or travel instead of going to the office. That’s fine! Skip those words if you don’t think you’ll need them. It’ll only slow you down trying to memorise words you don’t need. Instead, take this as a starting point to brainstorm or look up the word you would need instead of the one on the list. Maybe that morning coffee isn’t brewed in a coffee pot, but with a French press. Or you drink loose-leaf tea instead. Well, learn those words then!

The point is, today we’re going to learn a bunch of things in Spanish and need to focus on the words we’ll use most. Take this opportunity to expand your vocabulary so you can talk about more topics and daily routines in your life!

When You Wake Up: Things in Spanish for the Morning

Do you get up right away in the mañana (“morning”), or do you hit snooze on your despertador (“alarm clock”) many times? One of the first things I need in the morning is a fresh cup of café (“coffee”) from the cafetera (“coffee pot”). Maybe you drink (“tea”), or start off with a healthy cup of aqua y limón (“water and lemon”).

After rehydrating, it’s time for breakfast, desayuno! Huevos y tocino (“Eggs and bacon”) or fruta fresca (“fresh fruit”) make a healthy start to the day. What other breakfast foods do you like? Here’s some vocab for around the kitchen:

  • Pan: Bread
  • Rosquilla: Bagel
  • Mantequilla: Butter
  • Naranja: Orange
  • Fresa: Strawberry
  • Azúcar: Sugar
  • Leche: Milk
  • Jugo: Juice
  • Licuadora: Blender
  • Tostadora: Toaster
  • Horno: Oven
  • Microonda: Microwave
  • Congelador: Freezer
  • Nevera: Fridge
  • Estufa: Stove
  • Plato: Plate
  • Cuenco: Bowl
  • Tenedor: Fork
  • Cuchara: Spoon
  • Cuchillo: Knife
  • Vaso: Cup

Getting Dressed: Clothes and Toiletries in Spanish

Besides knowing your body parts in Spanish, you may want to talk about things you’ll need for your cuerpo y salud (“body and health”). If you’re travelling and forgot your pasta dental (“toothpaste”), you can ask the hotel for some complementary artículos de tocador, “toiletries”.

But on a normal day, you’ll need to tomar una ducha (“take a shower”) and vestirse (“get dressed”).

  • Baño: Bathroom
  • Ducha: Shower
  • Armario: Closet
  • Ropa: Clothes
  • Camisa: Shirt
  • Pantalones: Pants
  • Calcetines: Socks
  • Zapatos: Shoes
  • Chaqueta: Jacket
  • Traje y corbata: Suit and tie
  • Vestido: Dress
  • Falda: Skirt
  • Papel higienico: Toilet paper
  • Toalla: Towel
  • Toallita: Washcloth
  • Jabón: Soap
  • Lavado de cuerpo: Body wash
  • Champú y acondicionador: Shampoo and conditioner
  • Desodorante: Deodorant
  • Maquillaje: Makeup
  • Crema facial: Face cream
  • Loción corporal: Body lotion
  • Maquinilla de afeitar: Razor
  • Cepillo: Hairbrush
  • Cepillo dental: Toothbrush

Heading to Work and Office Vocab in Spanish

Time to head to your work, or your trabajo. Where I currently live in NYC, most New Yorkers take the subterraneo or metro — the subway. But maybe you drive to work in your coche (“car”) or catch the autobús (“bus”, of course). If you’re eco- or health-conscious, riding your bici (“bike”) to work is the way to go.

Once you get to the oficina (“office”), what’s the first thing you do? Head to your escritorio, your desk? Do you first check in with your jefe or jefa (your boss), or read your mensajes (“messages”)?

Also, you should know that despacho is more commonly used for “office” in Spain and some other Spanish-speaking countries. But oficina is understood anywhere.

What other things in Spanish should you know in the office?

  • Empresa: Company
  • Reunión: Meeting
  • Compañero: Coworker
  • Ordenador: Computer
  • Teclado: Keyboard
  • Informe: Report
  • Factura: Invoice
  • Bolígrafo: Pen
  • Lápiz: Pencil
  • Papel: Paper
  • Teléfono: Telephone
  • Impresora: Printer
  • Enfriador de agua: Water cooler
  • Archivador: Filing cabinet
  • Sala de descanso: Breakroom

Eating Out

Besides talking about the weather, food and drinks are a universal conversation starter. I personally love the rich food culture in Spain, and taking time for sobremesa — chitchat “over the table” with good company and good food.

Here is some common food vocabulary to know. Also, if you have food allergies, you should make sure to memorise those words first! Then you can use the phrase Soy alérgico al ____ to let the server at a restaurant know.

  • Comida: Food
  • Almuerzo: Lunch
  • Cena: Dinner
  • Bocadillo: Snack
  • Postre: Dessert
  • Carne: Meat
  • Verduras: Vegetables
  • Arroz: Rice
  • Queso: Cheese
  • Ensalada: Salad
  • Pastas: Pasta
  • Sopa: Soup
  • Jamón: Ham
  • Pescado: Fish
  • Res: Beef
  • Pollo: Chicken
  • Cerdo: Pork
  • Mariscos: Shrimp
  • Cacahuate: Peanut
  • Champiñón: Mushroom
  • Tomate: Tomato
  • Cebolla: Onion
  • Patata: Potato
  • Ajo: Garlic
  • Frijoles: Beans
  • Trigo: Wheat
  • Sal y pimienta: Salt and pepper
  • Hierbas y especias: Herbs and spices
  • Las bebidas: Drinks
  • Cerveza: Beer
  • Vino: Wine
  • Cola: Soda
  • Restaurante: Restaurant
  • Cuenta: Check
  • Menú: Menu
  • Camarero: Server
  • Orden: Order

Around the House

Heading home after work, you’ll unlock your puerta (“door”) with your llave (“key”). Do you first watch televisión (“TV”) on the sofá (“couch”)? If you have kids, maybe you spend time together playing with juguetes (“toys”). Or, play fetch with your perro (“dog”) outside on your césped (“lawn”).

Especially if you’re trying to teach your kids Spanish at home, knowing vocabulary for things around your house will be helpful. You can start speaking to your children in Spanish and encourage them to learn what’s around them as well. Try labelling things with sticky notes so you see the Spanish words every time you look them!

  • Ventana: Window
  • Mesa de café: Coffee table
  • Mesita: Side table
  • Sillón: Armchair
  • Piso: Floor
  • Lámpara: Lamp
  • Alfombra: Rug
  • Cama: Bed
  • Almohada: Pillow
  • Manta: Blanket
  • Lavandería: Laundry
  • Cuarto de lavado: Laundry room
  • Cuna: Crib
  • Perrera: Kennel
  • Caja de arena: Litter box
  • Estante: Shelf or bookcase
  • Espejo: Mirror
  • Habitación: Bedroom
  • Sótano: Basement
  • Escalera: Stairs

Hobbies and Entertainment

Last, let’s look at some ways you unwind at the end of the day and spend your tiempo libre (“free time”)! “Hobby” in Spanish is pasatiempo. So, what do you enjoy doing? Do you like to cook, cocinar? Or are you a fan de los deportes (“fan of sports”)? In Spain, fútbol — “football”, or “soccer” in the US — is a major event. Friends, or amigos, get together for good food, cerveza, and a fun time yelling at the TV.

Maybe you prefer quieter activities like reading, leer. Or you prefer rock and roll, and enjoy tocar un instrumento musical (“playing a musical instrument”). If you’re a movie buff, then you enjoy cine (“movies”), or perhaps teatro (“theatre”).

Here are other hobbies to talk about:

  • Nadar: Swimming
  • Pescar: Fishing
  • Baloncesto: Basketball
  • Béisbol: Baseball
  • Ejercicio: Exercise
  • Correr: Running
  • Coleccionar: Collecting
  • Videojuegos: Video games
  • Dibujar: Drawing
  • Pintar: Painting
  • Arte: Art
  • Aprendizaje de idiomas: Language learning
  • Jardinería: Gardening
  • Voluntaria: Volunteering
  • Meditación: Meditation
  • Excursionismo: Hiking
  • Tejer: Knitting
  • Bailar: Dancing

Know Your Things in Spanish

Now you’re well on your way to knowing “all the things” in Spanish! Memorise what’s relevant to you, look up the things that were missing, and ignore the rest. Don’t waste your time on things that you don’t encounter on a regular basis! Instead, take this list as an idea of daily routines and what you should learn. It’ll help you fill in any gaps in your speech, and recognise an area you may be weak in. If you’re very comfortable talking about your hobbies but never thought to learn how to say things around the kitchen, learn now. Take this opportunity to expand your vocabulary!

Then, take some time to learn how to absorb Spanish like a sponge and seek out a Spanish language exchange partner. Make use of effective study habits and then use these new words in conversation. You can also learn some of my favourite Spanish language hacking techniques!

If you’re ready to expand your Spanish abilities even more, make sure to check out SpanishPod101. One of my favourite methods for expanding my vocabulary and phrases is listening to podcasts. You learn new words in context with dialogues by native speakers. And SpanishPod101 is sorted by level, topics, and more!

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Benny Lewis

Founder, Fluent in 3 Months

Fun-loving Irish guy, full-time globe trotter and international bestselling author. Benny believes the best approach to language learning is to speak from day one.

Speaks: Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Esperanto, Mandarin Chinese, American Sign Language, Dutch, Irish

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