25 Idioms About Bread and Dessert
Wheat — the staff of life — and the baked products derived from it invite many idiomatic associations. Here are references to bread and other flour-based products in phrases and expressions.
1. “Bread and butter” refers to the basics in life.
2. “Bread and water” refers to the bare minimum of food and drink, based on the traditional punitive prison diet.
3. “The greatest thing since sliced bread” is something considered revolutionary and indispensable.
4. “Half a loaf is better than none” means that one shouldn’t complain about not having everything, because it is better to have something than nothing.
5. “Half baked” means “incomplete” or “not thoroughly planned or conceived.”
6. To know “which side (one’s) bread is buttered on” is to recognize what is advantageous.
7. To “sell (something) like hotcakes” is to be very successful at selling something.
8. To “separate the wheat from the chaff” is to distinguish what is useful or valuable from what is not.
9. Something that is “as flat as a pancake” is extremely flat.
10. Something “as warm as toast” is very warm and comforting.
11. To “have your cake and eat it, too” is to have or accomplish something more than one way; the phrase often refers to an unrealistic expectation.
12. Something “as easy as (apple) pie” is very simple to do or understand.
13–14. To “have (one’s) finger in the pie” is to be involved, but to “have (one’s) fingers in too many pies” is to be committed in too many endeavors, thus reducing one’s effectiveness.
15. “Icing on the cake” is an additional benefit.
16. An activity that is “like taking candy from a baby” is very easy.
17. Something that is “pie in the sky” is unrealistic.
18. Something that is “a piece of cake” is extraordinarily easy.
19. To get “a piece of the pie” is to be among those who earn an advantage or reward.
20. To “sugarcoat” something is to put it into a deceptively or inaccurately positive light.
21. Something that “takes the cake” is significantly better or worse than other comparable things; the phrase often refers to an action or comment that is audaciously irritating.
22. “That’s the way the cookie crumbles” means that what is referred to is an expected or typical outcome.
23. Someone or something “as nutty as a fruitcake” is crazy or ridiculous.
24. Something “as slow as molasses (in January)” is very slow.
25. Something “as sweet as honey” is very appealing.