Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
English grammar comparatives, photo of nuts on NYC streets

A couple weeks ago, we did an episode where we talked about “nut” idioms.

We’re going to do a follow up on this, and get into comparatives using nuts as the subject here.

So if you are wondering how to say that you love something or that it’s the very best, you’re going to learn that now.

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Today we have a question from a listener about how to address preferences in conversation.

Hi ladies,

I just love your show! I have a question for you, and I’m hoping you can help. What is the appropriate phrase to say that you love something much better? What if you wanted to say that something has a greater or more distinct advantage or difference? I struggle with this and would love to know some ways to express this.

Thank you very much,


Expressing How You Like Something More

This question helps us to get started, and this is where we’ll discuss nuts.

We mentioned pistachio nuts, almonds, walnuts, cashews in an example.

So how can you say that you like something better than something else?

We have touched on this before Confused By Your English Teacher’s Reponse? What To Do

You can use this as a great point of reference so that you have some basic understanding.

There are going to be plenty of times where you like one thing better than another.

You want to know how to express this, and that’s where comparatives come in.

You have learned a little bit about these before, but you are going to see how you can say that you like something better or that something is greater.

We’re going to touch on this using the nut analogies to convey this aspect of English conversation.

Discussing Comparatives

We’re covering a lot because there’s much for you to learn in this area.

Comparatives are a really important aspect of conversation, and one that you want to understand well.

Let’s touch on this briefly since there are other things to discuss, but you will have a good understanding of how this works.

  • Generally we add “-er” sound: You are using this to show that something is greater, lesser, or more distinct. It essentially takes things to the next level, and therefore it works to compare and show that something is more or less significant. You could say- “Almonds are smaller than walnuts.”
  • Or if it’s w two syllables end with “y”: You are trying to add to the adjective or describing word. You are trying to say it is more profound or more of that adjective. You could say something like “Almonds are healthier than pistachios.”
  • Distinct comparison words: You have certain words to use that are distinct and to the point. You can use words such as better or worse to get your point across, and that’s all you have to say in this instance.
  • Two or more syllables: You can add the word before the word and it helps to set apart the comparison. You might say “Almonds are more delicious than pistachios.”

These can help you to understand and use comparisons in the right way.

This is an important and often used aspect of conversation in English, and so it can be quite helpful to understand.

How Else Can We Do This?

So this brings you to the point of trying to understand how this can all work.

You have looked at comparisons and now you want to see how this can be put to work in conversation.

There are other ways to address this or include it in your conversation, and that’s what you can learn here.

  • I like X WAY more than Y. You could also say I like something “way better”, or just use WAY in general to be more intense. It helps to further accentuate something. You could say something like “Cashews are WAY saltier than pistachios.”
  • Run(s) circles around: This is a fun one to say, and it means better too. You can use this for a fun and humorous addition to your conversation. You might say something like “I can’t believe you like walnuts, Lindsay. Pistachios run circles around walnuts!”
  • I prefer: This is a bit more formal sounding but it is straight to the point. It tells others what your preference is, and there’s no disputing it because you put it all out there. You can say “I prefer walnuts to cashews.”

All of these work well and take your comparisons to another level.

These are all great ways to bring them into your conversations.


It’s important to be able to talk about your preferences, because we all have favorites and things that we like.

You may like to talk about the things that you like in degrees, and that’s a good point of comparison.

Today we talked about how to compare things with grammar and phrases, and this is a great starting point. You should also know grammar like this if you are taking IELTS.

We’ll do follow ups on comparatives, superlatives, and more nut idioms too.

This is a helpful and fun aspect of English conversations, so take what you’ve learned and apply it to see how it works for you.

If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

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