Food is central to the lifestyle and culture of Italy. It extends way beyond simple nourishment, going straight to the heart of what it means to be Italian.
The magic of the country’s cuisine has inspired quotes about Italian food from actors and authors, foodies and filmmakers.
Whether you are looking for an Italian food quote to use as an Instagram caption or to simply inspire you, dive into my hand-curated collection of famous sayings about Italian food.
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Italian Food Quotes to Savour
1. Polenta is to northern Italy what bread is to Tuscany, what pasta is to Emilia-Romagna and what rice is to the Veneto: easy to make, hungry to absorb other flavors, and hugely versatile. – Yotam Ottolenghi, chef
2. I grew up in Italy, and our country is a country of great agriculture and food produce. It wasn’t like I was urban and only knew about high-heeled shoes and purses and never knew where my eggs came from. – Isabella Rossellini, actress
3. The commonplace about Italian cooking is that it’s very simple; in practice, the simplicity needs to be learned, and the best way to learn it is to go to Italy and see it firsthand. – Bill Buford, author
4. I’m definitely looking forward to the day when I stop working – if I ever stop working. I like the idea of keeling over in my tomato vines in Sardinia or northern Italy. – Anthony Bourdain, chef
5. I love the simplicity, the ingredients, the culture, the history and the seasonality of Italian cuisine. In Italy people do not travel. They cook the way grandma did, using fresh ingredients and what is available in season. – Anne Burrell, chef
6. Italian food is seasonal. It is simple. It is nutritionally sound. It is flavorful. It is colorful. It’s all the things that make for a good eating experience, and it’s good for you. – Lidia Bastianich, chef
7. Like most of Italy, Neapolitans like their food, and there are restaurants everywhere. But to make like a true Neapolitan, grab a pizza from a street vendor and eat it there and then. We tried a pizza that’s folded over four times to make it nice and portable, then you eat it straight out of paper, like fish and chips. – Paul Hollywood, chef
8. I think that lunch is one of the most enjoyable and important things in the day. But you need to create the space and the time to do just that. And in Italy, we do that. – Lidia Bastianich, chef
9. As they say in Italy, Italians were eating with a knife and fork when the French were still eating each other. The Medici family had to bring their Tuscan cooks up there so they could make something edible. – Mario Batali, chef and restauranteur
10. I spent a college semester in a small town in Italy – and that is where I truly tasted food for the first time. – Alton Brown, chef
11. You know, people come to Italy for all sorts of reasons, but when they stay, it’s for the same two things. What? Love and gelato. – Love and Gelato, Jenna Evans Welch
12. It was the greatest thing in the world getting fat. Every meal out was an event. Or we’d go to Italy and we’d have pasta, truffles, and dessert and then plan the next incredible meal. It was a happy-go-lucky time. I never had so much fun. – Kirstie Alley, actor
13. Italian cuisine is the most famous and beloved cuisine in the world for a reason. Accessible, comforting, seemingly simple but endlessly delicious, it never disappoints, just as it seems to never change. – Matt Goulding, author
14. In the 20th century, the French managed to get a death on the myth that they produce the world’s best food. The hype has been carefully orchestrated, and despite the fact that the most popular food in the last quarter has undoubtedly been Italian, the French have managed to maintain that mental grip. – Clarissa Dickson Wright, chef
Quotes on Italian Food and Culture
15. In Italy, food is an expression of love. It is how you show those around you that you care for them. Having a love for food means you also have a love for those you are preparing it for and for yourself. —Joe Bastianich, restauranteur
16. Wherever I go, I am Italian. The way I talk, the way I eat, the way femininity is important to me. The way I love Italian food. – Monica Bellucci, actor
17. I think people in Italy live their lives better than we do. It’s an older country, and they’ve learned to celebrate dinner and lunch, whereas we sort of eat as quickly as we can to get through it. – George Clooney
18. It’s in the nature of Italians to live life with a positive tone and to celebrate the invitations that come along in life. Italian food is so conducive to all of that. – Lidia Bastianich, chef
19. Watching Italians eat (especially men, I have to say) is a form of tourism the books don’t tell you about. They close their eyes, raise their eyebrows into accent marks, and make sounds of acute appreciation. It’s fairly sexy. – Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, Barbara Kingsolver
20. Italian food really reflects the people. It reflects like a prism that fragments into regions. – Lidia Bastianich, chef
21. We always ate with gusto…It would have offended the cook if we had nibbled or picked…Our mothers and zie [aunties] didn’t inquire as to the states of our bellies; they just put the food on our plates.
‘You only ask sick people if they’re hungry,’ my mother said. ‘Everyone else must eat, eat!’
But when Italians say ‘Mangia! Mangia!’ they’re not just talking about food. They’re trying to get you to stay with them, to sit by them at the table for as long as possible. The meals that my family ate together- the many courses, the time in between at the table or on the mountain by the sea, the hours spent talking loudly and passionately and unyieldingly and laughing hysterically the way Neapolitans do- were designed to prolong our time together; the food was, of course, meant to nourish us, but it was also meant to satisfy, in some deeper way, our endless hunger for one another. – Passion on the Vine, Sergio Esposito
Italian Food Quotes About Pasta and Pizza
22. Everything you see I owe to pasta. – Sophia Loren
23. Life is a combination of magic and pasta. – Federico Fellini, filmmaker
24. Life is too short. If we’re in Italy, have pizza and pasta. But not every day. – Harley Pasternak, nutrition expert
25. In heaven, after antipasti, the first course will be pasta. – Steve Albini, musician
26. You can do irrefutably impossible things with the right amount of planning and support from intelligent and hardworking people and pizza. – Scott M. Gimple, writer
27. Life is too short, and I’m Italian. I’d much rather eat pasta and drink wine than be a size 0. – Sophia Bush, actor
28. I do love Italian food. Any kind of pasta or pizza. – Jennifer Love Hewitt, actor
29. Ideas are like pizza dough, made to be tossed around. – Anna Quindlen, author and journalist
Italian Food Puns
Are you in the mood for some seriously silly wordplay? The pesto’s yet to come.
Here is a generous helping of pasta puns
30. How pre-pasta-rous
31. I walked right pasta restaurant without realizing it.
32. I’m feeling a little saucy today.
33. Pasta la vista, baby.
34. The pastabilities are endless!
35. Think about the pasta-bilities.
36. You’re pasta-tively amazing.
37. Life is about exploring pasta-bilities.
38. You are tortellini awesome.
39. Everything is sauce-some
40. Dressed to im-pesto
41. It cost a pretty penne
42. Penne for your thoughts.
43. Holy Cannelloni!
44. I Cannelloni laugh at my mistakes
45. I’m laughing so hard I’m ravioling on the floor
46. It’s the pesto both worlds
Quotes about Italian Food for Instagram
There are times when only a caption will do. Here is a selection of short quotes on Italian food that you can use for your Instagram, Twitter or Facebook feed. Simply copy and paste.
47. In Italy, they add work and life on to food and wine. – Robin Leach, reporter
48. The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you’re hungry again. – George Miller, filmmaker
49. There’s nothing more romantic than Italian food. – Elisha Cuthbert, actor
50. If your mother cooks Italian food, why should you go to a restaurant? – Martin Scorsese, filmmaker
51. Italy will always have the best food. – Diane von Furstenberg, fashion designer
52. So… Italian gelato. Take the deliciousness of a regular ice-cream cone, times it by a million, then sprinkle it with crushed-up unicorn horns. – Love & Gelato, Jenna Evans Welch
54. Espresso is a miracle of chemistry in a cup. – Andrea Illy, businessman
54. Italian food is all about ingredients and it’s not fussy and it’s not fancy. – Wolfgang Puck, chef
55. Buon cibo. Buon vino. Buon amici. This translates to ”Good food. Good wine. Good friends.”