I wonder if there is a Chinese word or phrase equivalent to "difficult to eat" or "hard to eat".

For example, someone said that pomegranates and artichokes are among the 19 most hard-to-eat foods.

I thought it would be "难吃" or "不方便吃", but the former literally means "taste bad" and the latter means "it's not the right time to eat".


I know a long answer: 吃起来不方便. For example, 石榴吃起来不方便。

Is that the best/only expression?

  • How about 難以食用 / 難以進食?
    – L Parker
    Commented May 22, 2021 at 14:56
  • 2
    Perhaps, 吃起来费劲 or 吃着费劲.
    – dan
    Commented May 23, 2021 at 8:28

4 Answers 4


You could try: 吃起来很麻烦

I can't agree with the list of hard to eat foods!


无从下口 is a possible idiom in some contexts.

eg. 老虎吃田螺,无从下口


难以食用 also implies the object cannot be eaten or it is almost impossible to eat it (e.g. 难以抵挡 = cannot withstand; 难以置信 = unbelievable)

无从下口 also refers to 'can't interject opinion'

I suggest 食用不便 (inconvenient to eat) or 吃来麻烦 (trouble to eat)

For example, crustaceans with hard shells, fish with fine bones are inconvenient to eat, but not impossible


Yes for example 不好吃 味道一般 These two words are not offensive

  • 1
    The question is not asking for less offensive expressions.
    – L Parker
    Commented May 23, 2021 at 0:05
  • 1
    I think your answer means "not tasty", not "difficult to eat".
    – T-Pioneer
    Commented May 23, 2021 at 3:27

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