From Baking to Boiling: Exploring Russian Cooking Verbs

Hey there, foodies! Today, we’re diving into the exciting realm of Russian cuisine, specifically focusing on the essential topic of verbs. We’ll explore an array of cooking verbs in Russian, ranging from basic actions like chopping and stirring to more specialized techniques such as braising and baking.

Understanding and mastering these verbs is key to unleashing your culinary creativity and immersing yourself in the rich flavors of traditional Russian dishes. Throughout this article, I’ll give you clear explanations, practical examples, and useful tips to help you navigate the world of Russian cooking verbs with ease.

Let’s get cooking!

List of Common Cooking Verbs

Let’s start with a comprehensive list of common cooking verbs in Russian, along with their English translations. They’re categorized based on their use in various stages of cooking, like preparation, cooking, and serving.

I will give explanations for those verbs that have specific uses.


The journey of creating a delicious meal begins with the preparation of ingredients. Russian cuisine, known for its rich flavors and diverse dishes, has a set of essential verbs that guide the initial stages of cooking.

чистить / почистить – to clean, to peel

резать – to cut, to slice, to chop

Many other verbs related to cutting are formed from the verb “резать”:

отрезать – to cut off, to chop off

It implies cutting or removing something from a larger piece or object.

Example: Он отрезал кусок мяса. – He cut off a piece of meat.

нарезать – to cut into pieces, to slice

It indicates the action of cutting something into specific shapes or portions.

Example: Я нарезаю овощи на кубики. – I am cutting the vegetables into cubes.

разрезать – to cut open, to split

It is used when cutting something such that it opens or separates.

Example: Она разрезала пирог пополам. – She cut the pie in half.

Cutting verbs in Russian

See Also: Things You Use to Cook and Eat in Russian

Порезать indicates the action of making multiple cuts or incisions. It suggests a repeated or multiple cutting motion.

тереть / натирать / натереть – to grate

отделить – to separate

мариновать / замариновать – to marinate

обваливать/обвалять – to coat, to dip

добавлять / добавить – to add

солить / посолить – to salt

взбивать / взбить – to beat (e.g., eggs, cream)

разделывать / разделать – to cut up

The verbs “размешивать,” “перемешивать,” “замешивать,” “смешивать,” and “помешивать” are related to mixing or stirring, but they are used in slightly different contexts. Here’s the difference between them:

Размешивать/размешать is used when you want to mix or stir something already present in a container or a dish. It implies the action of gently blending components without specifying a specific starting point or direction.

Перемешивать/перемешать is similar to “размешивать,”, it is used when you want to mix ingredients or substances, usually in a continuous or repetitive manner. It indicates the ongoing or repeated action of mixing.

Помешивать means “to stir” or “to agitate.” It is used when you want to describe the act of stirring something lightly, often for the purpose of preventing sticking or settling. It implies a gentle or intermittent stirring.

Помешивайте варенье, чтобы оно не пригорело. (Stir the jam to prevent it from burning.)

Она помешивала суп ложкой. (She stirred the soup with a spoon.)

Замешивать/замесить means “to knead” or “to work in” and is commonly used in the context of working with dough or other similar mixtures. It implies physically blending or folding ingredients into a dough-like consistency.

Как правильно замесить дрожжевое тесто? (How to properly knead yeast dough?)

Смешивать means “to combine” or “to mix.” It is used when you want to express the action of combining various ingredients or substances to create a mixture.

Смешайте масло, муку и соль в миске. (Combine the butter, flour, and salt in a bowl.)

Смешайте все ингредиенты для соуса. (Mix all the ingredients for the sauce.)

See Also: Russian Vocabulary for Eating Out


Once your ingredients are prepared, it’s time to turn up the heat and get cooking.

готовить / приготовить – to cook, prepare

The verb “готовить” is used to express the ongoing or continuous action of cooking or preparing food. It refers to the process of cooking rather than the completed result. This verb is often followed by a direct object, specifying the food being cooked or the dish being prepared. For example:

Я готовлю ужин. – I’m cooking dinner.

Мама готовит суп. – Mom is making soup.

Here, “готовить” is used to emphasize the ongoing action of cooking. It indicates that the person is in the process of preparing the food, but it does not specify whether it is finished or not.

On the other hand, the verb “приготовить” is used when referring to the completed or finished act of cooking or preparing food. It implies that the food is ready or has been prepared. The verb “приготовить” is typically followed by a direct object or a dish being prepared. For example:

Я приготовил завтрак. – I prepared breakfast.

Она приготовила пирог. – She made a pie.

Other examples of using “готовить” and “приготовить”:

Я не люблю готовить. – I don’t like to cook.

Приготовь что-нибудь вкусненькое. – Cook something delicious.

Я приготовлю курицу на ужин. – I’ll make chicken for dinner.

In these sentences, “приготовить” emphasizes that the cooking or preparation process is complete and the food is ready to be consumed.

In summary, while both “готовить” and “приготовить” relate to cooking or preparing food in Russian, “готовить” is used to express the ongoing action of cooking, while “приготовить” is used to indicate the completed act of cooking or preparing food.

жарить / пожарить – to fry

варить / сварить / отварить – to boil

варить на медленном (слабом) огне – to simmer

тушить / потушить – to stew

запекать / запечь – to bake, to roast

запекать в духовке – to bake in the oven

охлаждать / охладить – to cool down

обжаривать / обжарить – to sauté

ставить / поставить на огонь – to put on the stove, heat

убрать / убирать с огня – to remove from the heat

разогревать / разогревать – to heat up

Cooking verbs in Russian

See Also: Essential Food Vocabulary in Russian


The final act of a culinary masterpiece is presentation. How a dish is served can be just as important as how it’s prepared and cooked.

подавать / подать – to serve

подавать горячим – to serve hot

украшать / украсить – to garnish

украсить зеленью – to garnish with herbs

поливать / полить – to drizzle

посыпать – to sprinkle

положить на бумажное полотенце, чтобы избавиться от излишков масла – to put (drain) on paper towel to remove excess oil

Cooking Instruction Examples

To truly appreciate the use of cooking verbs in Russian cuisine, let’s explore a couple of simple classic recipes and dishes where these verbs come to life. These examples will not only showcase the verbs in action but also allow you to get a taste of Russian culinary traditions.

Пельмени (Dumplings):

  1. Замесите тесто для пельменей. (Knead the dough for dumplings.)
  2. Варите пельмени в кипящей воде, пока они не всплывут. (Boil the dumplings in boiling water until they float to the surface.)
  3. Подавайте пельмени с сметаной и соусом. (Serve the dumplings with sour cream and sauce.)

Блины (Russian Pancakes):

  1. Смешайте муку, молоко и яйцо для теста. (Combine flour, milk, and egg for the batter.)
  2. Жарьте блины на сковороде до золотистой корки.
    (Fry the pancakes in a pan until they are golden brown.)
  3. Подавайте блины с вареньем или сгущённым молоком.
    (Serve the pancakes with jam or condensed milk.)

Here are some more instructions and random sentences using Russian cooking verbs to demonstrate their usage:

Нарежьте огурцы на тонкие круги. – Cut the cucumbers into thin slices.

Нарежьте свеклу и картофель кубиками. – Chop the beets and potatoes into cubes.

Обжарьте мясо на сковороде до золотистой корочки. – Sauté the meat in a pan until golden brown.

Посыпьте торт сахарной пудрой. – Sprinkle powdered sugar on top of the cake.

Запеките рыбу в духовке при температуре 180 градусов. – Bake the fish in the oven at a temperature of 180 degrees.

Варите картофель до готовности. – Boil the potatoes until cooked.

Добавьте немного соли и перца. – Add a little salt and pepper.

Поставьте суп на огонь и доведите до кипения. – Put the soup on the stove and bring it to a boil.

Жена печет хлеб каждый уикенд. – My wife bakes bread every weekend.

Помешивайте кофе, чтобы сахар растворился. – Stir the coffee to dissolve the sugar.

Он добавил соль и перец в соус для пасты. – He added salt and pepper to the pasta sauce.

Она украсила торт ягодами и шоколадом. – She garnished the cake with berries and chocolate.

Помешивайте суп, пока он не закипит. – Stir the soup until it comes to a boil.

I hope this article has inspired you to explore the vast world of Russian cuisine and language. What are your favourite recipies? Share with me in the comments!

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