group of person eating indoors
Type: Vocabulary
Originally published on March 27, 2023 and last updated on May 14, 2023

The topic of dinner is a great conversation topic for beginner level English learners because it is a familiar and relatable topic that everyone can talk about. It provides a simple context for practicing basic vocabulary related to food, cooking and eating.

Additionally, it allows for the use of common sentence structures and basic grammar concepts, such as verb tenses and prepositions. Discussing dinner also encourages the use of descriptive language to describe the taste, texture and appearance of food, allowing learners to expand their vocabulary and develop their speaking skills in a fun and engaging way.

What’s For Dinner?

Dinner is a meal that is enjoyed all around the world, and what people eat for dinner varies greatly depending on the country and region. In the United States, a common dinner might include meat or fish, a side of vegetables and potatoes or rice. In Mexico, dinner could be tacos or enchiladas, while in Italy it might be pasta with sauce and bread.

The time that dinner is typically eaten also varies by country. In many European countries, dinner is eaten later in the evening, often between 7 and 10pm. In the United States, dinner is commonly eaten between 5 and 7pm.

Regardless of what people eat or when they eat it, dinner is usually a time for families and friends to gather together and enjoy a meal.

Go through the vocabulary below with your students and ask them to try and use this vocabaulry where possible when discussing the different conversation questions.

Useful Vocabulary

Try and use the following vocabulary when answering the question. Click to look up the definition in the dictionary

  • prepare (verb)
  • late (adjective)
  • plate (noun)
  • dish (noun)
  • eat out (phrasal verb)
  • full (adjective)

Conversation Questions

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  • What did you have for dinner last night?
  • What is your favourite food to have for dinner?
  • Do you like to cook dinner, or do you prefer to eat out?
  • What is a traditional dinner in your country?
  • What time do you usually eat dinner? Is it common to eat at that time in your country?
  • Do you like going out for dinner with friends?
  • What do you usually order for dinner if you are eating out?
  • Do you like to try new foods for dinner, or do you prefer to stick with familiar foods?
  • How important is dinner in your culture? Is it a time for socialising or just a time to eat?
  • What would be a horrible dinner for you?
  • Do you usually eat a big meal for dinner?
  • If I was coming round your house for dinner what would you cook for me?
This conversation topic was prepared by Gregory

Gregory is a qualified TEFL teacher who has been teaching English as a Foreign Language (ESL) for over a decade. He has taught in-person classes in Spain and to English learners around the world online.