Just like in English, the word ‘good’ is very useful and it can be applied to many different contexts. Since depending on what you want to say, you will need to use a different term, people often wonder how to say good in Spanish.
The most common ways to say good in Spanish include:
- Bien – Good / Well
- Bueno – Good
- Válido – Valid / Good
- Rico – Good / Delicious
- Apropiado – Appropriate / Good
- Producto – Good
Just like in English, depending on how they are being used, these words can either work as adjectives or nouns.
Knowing different words to express an idea will really take your Spanish to another level as you’ll be able to add diversity and specificity to your conversations. So if you’re interested in those things, keep reading, because in this article I’ll show you 6 ways to say good in Spanish.
1. Bien – Well
Bien is an incredibly useful word because, as a standard term, it can be used in multiple scenarios. It frequently carries a similar meaning as the words ‘well’, ‘good’, ‘okay’, ‘properly’ or ‘correctly’. In this sense, you can use it whenever you’re talking about health or a good performance.
To talk about health you’ll need to add a reflexive pronoun before the verbs ‘sentir’ or ‘encontrar’.
[Noun] + [reflexive pronoun] + [verb conjugated] + (adverb) + bien
No me siento bien.
I don’t feel well.
Mamá, ¿te sientes bien?
Mom, do you feel okay?
Mi abuela no se encuentra bien.
My grandmother is not feeling well.
As established before, one of the most common uses of ‘bien’ is to describe or qualify how well someone does a certain activity. In this case, you can use adverbs to intensify it.
[Noun] + [verb conjugated] + (advb) + bien
Tu amiga canta muy bien.
Your friend sings very well.
La mamá de Paty cocina bastante bien.
Patty’s mom cooks very well.
La lavadora ya no funciona bien.
The washing machine is not working properly.
Another common use of ‘bien’ is when referring to the morality of actions, as a translation of ‘right’, ‘okay’ or ‘nice’.
[Complement] + [‘estar’ conjugated] + bien
Lo que hiciste no estuvo bien.
What you did was not okay.
Mentir no está bien.
Lying is not right.
Just like in English, ‘bien’ also works as a noun. In this case, it translates as ‘own good’, ‘sake’ or ‘benefit’.
[Complement] + por + [possessive adjective] + bien
Te lo digo por tu bien.
I’m telling you for your own good.
Lo hice por su bien.
I did it for his own good.
A veces los padres son estrictos por nuestro bien.
Sometimes parents are strict for our own good.
2. Bueno – Good
If you ever want to compliment someone’s food, describe how good the character and skills of a person are, talk about the benefits of an activity, or just rate anything in general, knowing the word bueno will make things easy for you. In these contexts, bueno translates as ‘good’ or ‘great’.
Notice that you can add ‘muy’ before ‘bueno’ and also intensify or exaggerate your sentence by adding ‘ísimo’ or ‘ísima’ to ‘buen’.
[‘Ser’ conjugated] + (muy) + bueno/a + [noun]
Eres muy buena persona.
You are a very good person.
Luisa es muy buena maestra.
Luisa is a very good teacher.
Fernando es muy buen papá.
Fernando is a very good dad.
If instead of describing a person you want to provide your opinion about an object, activity or event, you can use the following phrase structures.
[Noun] + [‘estar’ conjugated] + bueno/a
Este chocolate está buenísimo.
This chocolate is so good.
Estas enchiladas no están tan buenas como las de mi abuela.
These enchiladas are not as good as my grandmother’s.
[Complement] + [‘ser’ conjugated] + (muy) + bueno/a + para + [complement]
La linaza es buenísima para la digestión.
Flaxseed is great for digestion.
Caminar una hora al día es bueno para la salud.
Walking for an hour a day is good for your health.
Take note: The plural buenos can be used to say ‘buenos días’, ‘buenas tardes’ and ‘buenas noches’, which mean ‘good morning’, ‘good afternoon’ or ‘good evening’ and ‘good night’, respectively.
3. Válido – Valid
As you can imagine, válido is the direct translation of ‘valid’ or ‘good’. With this word you can express that something has validity for a certain time, for certain benefits and other specificities. As a result, you’ll usually see this word when people are talking about things like documents, promos, and tickets among other things.
[Noun] + [‘ser’ conjugated] + válido/a + [complement]
Mi pasaporte es válido por cinco años.
My passport is good for five years.
Esta promoción es válida hasta el 8 de septiembre.
This promo is good until September 8.
Su membresía sólo es válida en los Estados Unidos.
Your membership is only good in the United States.
4. Rico – Delicious / Good
Although you can also use ‘bueno’ in this context, if you want to sound like a native speaker when describing food and flavors, you need to master the word rico. As you probably guessed by now, ‘rico’ is translated as ‘delicious’, ‘good’ or ‘tasty’ but it has a slightly more informal connotation.
Also, it’s very common to just use the expression ‘qué rico’ to indicate that you think something is really good, but if you want to specify what you’re talking about you can use the next phrase structures.
Just like with ‘bueno’ you can add the adverb ‘muy’ or change rico to riquísimo in order to give emphasis to the sentence.
Qué + rico/a + (‘estar’ conjugated’) + [noun]
Qué rica estaba la cena.
Dinner was delicious.
Qué ricos tacos, ¿quién los hizo?
These tacos are delicious, who cooked them?
Qué ricos postres venden en este restaurante.
The desserts they sell in this restaurant are delicious.
Here is another phrase structure that you can use. Notice that in this case, this formula is used to introduce the dish that you’re referring to.
[Noun] + [‘estar’ conjugated’] + (advb) + rico
Este café está riquísimo.
This coffee is delicious.
Las papas a las francesa no estaban tan ricas.
The French fries weren’t as good.
El arroz que hizo tu mamá estuvo muy rico.
The rice that your mother made was very good.
Take note: If used to talk about people, rico works as the direct translation of ‘rich’. Since we don’t taste people (hopefully), in this context, rico is used to describe a wealthy person.
Mis primos son muy ricos.
My cousins are very rich.
5. Apropiado – Appropriate / Good
Imagine that you want to ask if what you’re doing is suitable or good for the occasion. In this context, you can use the word apropiado, which is the direct translation of ‘appropriate’. This word describes something that results suitable for the circumstances or the goal you want to achieve. So it can also be translated as ‘good’, ‘best’ or ‘suitable’.
This Spanish word for good is a little formal, but it can be used in casual conversations as well. Keep in mind that, ‘apropiado’ is an adjective, so you’ll need to change it to match the gender or number of the thing or person that you’re referring to. Here are some examples:
[Noun] + [‘ser’ conjugated] + apropiado/a
¿Este vestido es apropiado para una cita?
Is this dress appropriate for a date?
La comida fue apropiada para ese tipo de fiesta.
The food was appropriate for that kind of party.
Esta computadora es apropiada para mi trabajo.
This computer is good for my work.
La manera en la que te comportaste no fue la más apropiada.
The way you behaved was not the best.
6. Producto – Product / Good
Just by reading this word, you can probably tell that producto is the direct translation of ‘product’. So, we use it to refer to goods, which are items that are usually manufactured (“goods and services”). Unlike other words from this list, this Spanish word for ‘good’ only works as a noun.
You’ll notice that this ‘producto’ is usually applied in ads or in places like stores and online shops. So if you like shopping or you work in sales, I bet you’ll encounter this word very frequently.
[Determiner] + producto + [complement]
Ofrecemos gran variedad de productos.
We offer a wide variety of goods.
Tendremos que liquidar estos productos.
We’ll have to sell off these products.
Los productos que venden en esa tienda son de alta calidad.
The goods they sell in that store are of high quality.
Now that you know that there are more ways to say good in Spanish than ‘bueno’, you’re ready to put your knowledge into practice. Now, you’ll be able to compliment people’s dishes, skills, and character and grade how good things are. So this means that you’ll also be able to develop your opinions a bit more and also understand other people’s opinions a lot better.
If you constantly use these words, people will notice that your conversational skills have improved and that you have a better understanding of the language. So keep it up and soon hablarás español muy bien.
Related Resource: Difference Between ‘Bien’ and ‘Bueno’