Which adjective would you usually use to allude to something "not delicious"? (Something that has a bad taste)

  • i.e. It won't eat this food! It's really ....... (bad-tasting) food.

Perhaps, there are lots of words in English which can encompass this meaning; including:

  • nasty
    very unpleasant to taste, smell, see, or feel.
  • sour
    with an unpleasant taste or smell, especially because of no longer being fresh.
  • unpalatable
    formal unpalatable food tastes unpleasant.
  • bland
    not having a strong taste and therefore not very interesting to eat.

and etc.

But I only need the most common adjective which represents a not delicious food. Something that tastes bad.

Please let me know which word is mostly used in this sense?

4 Answers 4


"It really tastes bad." Almost your original phrasing is the most generic wording. Or "I don't like the taste of it." Or, simply, "I don't like it."

Any other wording would convey something specific to the context in two different directions.

One is the flavour -- "this is too salty". And can be more personal "this is too salty for me".

The other is food quality -- "this is rotten" or "this is inedible"

Because food preferences are so variable and you often don't want to offend the cook, there are a variety of possible wordings -- some more or less direct -- some more or less descriptive.


If something is deeply unpalatable, for any of a variety of reasons, e.g. rotten, very ill-seasoned, badly cooked, or even just unfamiliar, one can say that it is disgusting, revolting, inedible, vile, horrible, horrid, etc. In my (British) experience, 'disgusting' is possibly the most common. To a large extent, the answers that you get are going to be opinion-based. There is no single word that really stands out.


'Gross' and 'disgusting' are the strongest and most general. Saying it tastes 'bad' is a very common and very general term. For a mild general term, you can say it 'tastes off' or 'the taste is off' (meaning somehow incorrect, not tasting how you expect). You can use 'foul' if the food is spoiled or it tastes very wrong. 'Bitter' is a good term, if you want something more specific. Most non-food plants taste bitter.


The most common colloquial words are "icky" and "yucky". Children especially use them a lot.

However, when someone eats something that tastes very bad, they don't usually say "this is icky". They just say "Ew!" or "Ick!" or "Yuck!".

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .