What съедобный is to food, __________ is to drinks.

Of course, one can say которую можно пить, and there's the word питьевой, but both are not quite equivalent in meaning and usage to the aforementioned съедобный. Any ideas?

  • 2
    Why exactly do you not like “питьевой”? This exactly means “drincable/potable” as in “fit to drink, fit for consumption”. Which is same usage as “edible” (fit to eat). And if by “съедобный” you mean colloquial meaning, then the question should clarify that. However, colloquial meaning, although mentioned by Ushakov, is not as common in everyday usage as “fit to eat”.
    – theUg
    Jun 26, 2012 at 6:35
  • 1
    + to питьевой. питьевой спирт, питьевое молоко питьевая вода.
    – Anixx
    Jun 28, 2012 at 15:15

2 Answers 2


The word съедобный has two meanings. One is that an item is edible. Another one is that it's tasty, and is used only in spoken language.

With liquids, for the first meaning, the technical word is пищевой, meaning 'suitable for consuming as a food'. For example цистерны, бутылки для пищевых жидкостей (GOST terms). However this word is rarely used in daily life, since it's usually clear for all liquids except for water if they are drinkable or not (fuel and milk for example), so one doesn't need an additional adjective. For water, since one should clearly distinguish drinking and technical water, the word питьевой (meaning literally 'drinking') is usually used. Obviously, milk for example can be spoiled and not drinkable. I think there is no single word to convey this meaning in Russian (nor actually in English).

There is no word for the second meaning for liquids, as far as I know.

  • +1 In English there's this word comestible which AFAIK covers both food and drinks. Also, if I'm not much mistaken, the word edible can be used for drinks as well. Jun 20, 2012 at 12:36
  • There is a little confusion in explanation: “physically eatable” should be “edible”, and simply “eatable” is what actually “(sufficiently) tasty” (though both can be used interchangeably per English usage as “fit to eat” which adds to the confusion).
    – theUg
    Jun 26, 2012 at 6:23
  • 1
    Just a notice - recently I saw "пищевое молоко" written on some food package in "Ingredients" section. Looks like it is technically correct, but looks weird to me.
    – Artemix
    Aug 12, 2013 at 9:12
  • 1
    There is a word for second meaning: вкусный.
    – Anixx
    Aug 22, 2013 at 8:33

In my opinion, cъедобный - is the best choise in your case. But also you can try пьющийся

  • 8
    Пьющийся is absolutely wrong. At best it would mean the liquid is being drunk, but it would sound extremely awkward.
    – kotekzot
    Jun 20, 2012 at 14:13
  • 1
    хорошо пьётся - но это немножко про другое)))
    – shabunc
    Jul 9, 2012 at 12:07

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