Spanish Expression of the Day: 'No comerse una rosca'

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Spanish Expression of the Day: 'No comerse una rosca'
'No comerse una rosca' has come to be known as ‘not scoring’, in the romantic sense. Photo: Allison Shaw/Unsplash

In today’s Spanish Expression of the Day, we look at what not eating doughnuts has to do with sex.


If someone says in Spanish ‘no comerse una rosca’, it means that a person is not having much success with their romantic conquests.

So although no comerse una rosca means ‘to not eat a doughnut’ in its literal sense, it really refers to someone having problems getting laid, flirting and so on. 

It’s just one of a wide array of funny Spanish expressions to do with sex, many of which are included in the article linked just here. 

READ MORE: Ten hilarious Spanish expressions to refer to sex


In case you’re wondering how this odd colloquial expression came about, it’s believed to have originated during Madrid’s famous San Isidro patron saint celebrations. 

During this spring festival in the Spanish capital, it used to be customary to have a rosca in Madrid’s San Isidro Park together with a glass of 'miracle' water from the local chapel’s fountain. 

Tradition marked that if a young unmarried woman or man accepted the sugary dough treat from a potential suitor, they were in turn giving them thumbs up for their courtship.

Therefore, if someone wasn’t given a rosca by a potential partner, it was understood that they had not broken any hearts and were going hungry that night, so to speak. 

And so, no comerse una rosca came to be known as ‘not scoring’, in the romantic sense. 

Nowadays, if someone isn’t finding much success in other walks of life - whether it be locating something, passing an exam or making money -  no comerse una rosca can also be used. 

However, it’s mainly used to refer to physical and romantic relationships, or the lack of them rather.

It’s also acceptable to use the masculine form un rosco rather than una rosca, as in no comerse un rosco.


Salgo de fiesta todos los findes pero no me como una rosca.

I go out partying every weekend but I never score.


Si te vistes así no te vas a comer una rosca.

If you dress like that you’re not going to get any. 


El no se come una rosca, pero tú no paras de pillar cacho.

He’s getting absolutely nowhere, but you can’t stop pulling.


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