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How To Say "Potato" In Spanish

If you are a fan of Spanish cuisine or are simply looking to expand your vocabulary, you might be wondering how to say potato in Spanish. In this article, we will explore the different words used to refer to this versatile vegetable in the Spanish language.

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What is "Potato" in Spanish?

The most common word used to refer to a potato in Spanish is "patata" (IPA: /paˈtata/). However, there are other regional variations that you may come across, depending on the country or region you're in. Here are some examples:

  • In Mexico and some other Latin American countries, you might hear papa (IPA: /ˈpapa/) instead of "patata".
  • In parts of Argentina, Uruguay, and Paraguay, "papa" can also refer to a sweet potato, so "batata" is used instead to refer to a regular potato.
  • In some regions of Spain, particularly in the Canary Islands, "papa" is the word commonly used for a potato.

Meaning of "Potato" in Spanish

The word "patata" has its roots in the Quechua language, spoken by indigenous peoples in the Andes mountains of South America. It was brought to Europe by Spanish conquistadors in the 16th century and quickly became a staple crop throughout the continent. Today, potatoes are used in a wide range of dishes in Spanish cuisine, from the classic tortilla de patatas (Potato omelette) to patatas bravas (Spicy fried potatoes) and papas arrugadas (Canarian-style wrinkled potatoes).

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Regional Differences

As mentioned earlier, there are some regional differences when it comes to the word used for potato in Spanish. In general, "patata" is the most common word used in Spain, while "papa" is more common in Latin America. However, there are some exceptions to this rule, particularly in certain regions of Spain where "papa" is used instead.

Additionally, there are different words used to refer to specific types of potatoes. For example, "papa criolla" is a type of small yellow potato commonly used in South American cuisine, while "papa chilota" is a type of potato native to the Chiloé Archipelago in southern Chile.

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How to Say "Potato" in Spanish: Sample Sentences

Here are five sample sentences you can use to say "potato" in Spanish:

  • ¿Me pasas la patata, por favor?

(Can you pass me the potato, please?)

  • Las papas fritas son mi guarnición favorita.

(French fries are my favorite side dish.)

  • La batata es más dulce que la patata.

(Sweet potato is sweeter than regular potato.)

  • Voy a hacer una tortilla de papa para la cena.

(I'm going to make a potato omelette for dinner.)

  • Las papas arrugadas con mojo picón son un plato típico de Canarias.

(Wrinkled potatoes with spicy sauce are a typical dish from the Canary Islands.)


Knowing how to say "potato" in Spanish is essential for anyone learning the language or traveling to a Spanish-speaking country. While both "patata" and "papa" are correct, it is important to note the regional differences in usage. Whether you are enjoying a plate of papas fritas in Mexico or a bowl of sopa de patata in Spain, knowing the right word for "potato" will help you navigate the language with ease.

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