Have you ever visited China and found yourself longing for a refreshing treat on a scorching day? If so, you might have wondered about the Chinese term for “ice cream.” Or perhaps you’re a language enthusiast who’s curious about how to express “ice cream” in Mandarin. Either way, you’ve come to the right place!
The Mandarin Translation for “Ice Cream”
In Mandarin, the most commonly used term for “ice cream” is “bīng qí lín” (冰淇淋). The word “bīng” (冰) means “ice,” while “qí lín” (淇淋) is the transliteration of the English word “cream.” Therefore, “bīng qí lín” can be literally translated as “ice cream.”
Alternative Words for Ice Cream in Chinese
Although “bīng qí lín” is the most prevalent expression for “ice cream” in Chinese, there are a few other words that can be used to describe this frozen delight.
One alternative term is “nǎi xué gāo” (奶雪糕), which means “milk snow cake.” This phrase is typically used for ice cream bars or popsicles.
Another option is “shuǐ guǒ bīng” (水果冰), which translates to “fruit ice.” It is employed to refer to fruit-flavored ice cream or sorbet.
Expressing Love for Ice Cream in Chinese
To convey your adoration for ice cream in Chinese, you can say “wǒ ài chī bīng qí lín” (我爱吃冰淇淋). Here, “wǒ” (我) means “I,” “ài” (爱) means “love,” “chī” (吃) means “eat,” and “bīng qí lín” (冰淇淋) signifies “ice cream.”
Regional Variations for “Ice Cream” in Chinese
While “bīng qí lín” is the most common term for “ice cream” in Mandarin, there might be regional variations in other Chinese dialects. For instance, in Cantonese, “bīng gā” (冰家) is used to describe “ice cream.”
Different Chinese Terms for “Ice Cream”
In Chinese, there are three distinct terms for “ice cream,” each with its own nuances and usage. The first term, “冰淇淋” (bīng qí lín), is the universally recognized term for ice cream in China. The second term, “雪糕” (xuě gāo), is more commonly used in Taiwan and Hong Kong. The third term, “冰激凌” (bīng jī líng), is often used interchangeably with “冰淇淋” in China.
So, are there any differences among these three terms? Yes, there are, although they are subtle. “冰淇淋” is a transliteration of the English term “ice cream.” “雪糕,” on the other hand, was coined in Taiwan and Hong Kong and is a combination of the Chinese characters for “snow” (雪) and “cake” (糕). Lastly, “冰激凌” was created in China in the 1950s as a translation of the English term “ice cream.”
The Most Commonly Used Term in China
As mentioned earlier, “冰淇淋” is the most widely used term for ice cream in China. It is understood throughout the country, from bustling cities to rural areas. If you’re in China and want to order ice cream, using the term “冰淇淋” is your best bet.
How to Pronounce each Term Correctly
Now that we’ve explored the three Chinese terms for ice cream and identified the most commonly used one, let’s learn to pronounce each term correctly.
冰淇淋 (bīng qí lín) – The first syllable, “bīng,” is pronounced like “bing” in “bingo.” The second syllable, “qí,” is pronounced like “chee” in “cheese.” The third syllable, “lín,” is pronounced like “lin” in “linen.”
雪糕 (xuě gāo) – The first syllable, “xuě,” is pronounced like “shweh” in “shwedagon.” The second syllable, “gāo,” is pronounced like “gao” in “gaoled.”
冰激凌 (bīng jī líng) – The first syllable, “bīng,” is pronounced like “bing” in “bingo.” The second syllable, “jī,” is pronounced like “jee” in “jeep.” The third syllable, “líng,” is pronounced like “ling” in “lingerie.”
Popular Ice Cream Flavors in China
In China, some of the most popular ice cream flavors include red bean, green tea, and black sesame. These flavors are not only found in traditional Chinese desserts but are also gaining popularity in ice cream.
Here are the first 10 ways to say “ice cream” around the world:
- 巧克力 (qiǎo kè lì) – Chocolate
- 蛋糕 (dàn gāo) – Cake
- 冰淇淋 (bīng qí lín) – Ice cream
- 甜甜圈 (tián tián quān) – Donut
- 糖果 (táng guǒ) – Candy
- 棉花糖 (mián huā táng) – Marshmallow
- 布朗尼 (bù lǎng ní) – Brownie
- 软糖 (ruǎn táng) – Gummy candy
- 太妃糖 (tài fēi táng) – Toffee
- 饼干 (bǐng gān) – Cookie
In conclusion, “bīng qí lín” (冰淇淋) is the most commonly used term for “ice cream” in Chinese. However, there are a few other words that can be used to describe specific types of ice cream or frozen treats. And if you want to express your love for ice cream in Chinese, simply say “wǒ ài chī bīng qí lín” (我爱吃冰淇淋). Now that you’ve learned how to say “ice cream” in Chinese, why not try ordering a scoop the next time you’re in China?