How to Pronounce ‘CH’ in French?

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In this article, I am going to explain, How to Pronounce ‘CH’ in French?

How do you say “CH” in a French word? Well, in French, it sounds like “SH,” not “CH” as in English. There are different ways to pronounce “CH” in French, and this lesson will help you understand them.

Check also: Mastering French Demonstrative Pronouns (Pronoms démonstratifs)

How to Pronounce ‘CH’ in French

In French, “CH” can be pronounced in two ways:

  1. The most common pronunciation is like “SH” in English, as in the word “sheep.”
  2. In a few words, “CH” sounds like “K.”
  3. There’s a rare use for “CH” found in borrowed words from other languages, and it sounds like the English “CH,” as in “cheap” or “match,” represented by [tʃ] in the IPA.


  1. SH Pronunciation:
    • Château (castle) – Pronounced like “shato.”
    • Chocolat (chocolate) – Pronounced like “shokola.”
    • Chanson (song) – Pronounced like “shansohn.”
  2. K Pronunciation:
    • Anarchie (anarchy) – Pronounced like “anarky.”
    • Kiosque (kiosk) – Pronounced like “keeyosk.”
  3. TCH Pronunciation:
    • Match (match) – Pronounced like “match.”
    • Sandwich (sandwich) – Pronounced like “sandweesh.”

French Words With ‘CH’

You’ve learned the different pronunciations of “CH” in French, so let’s apply your knowledge. Can you determine whether the “CH” in the following words is pronounced like “SH” or “K”? Try guessing before listening to the correct pronunciation by clicking on each word.

  1. chaise (chair)
  2. chanson (song)
  3. château (castle)
  4. chemin (path)
  5. choix (choice)
  6. chocolat (chocolate)
  7. chouette (owl)
  8. clou (nail)
  9. marcher (to walk)
  10. moucher (to blow one’s nose)
  11. perché (perched)
  12. cacher (to hide)
  13. cherche (looking for)
  14. échange (exchange)
  15. chaîne (chain)
  16. machine (machine)
  17. tache (stain)
  18. pochette (pocket)
  19. mouche (fly)
  20. cachet (stamp)
  21. chaud (hot)
  22. chapeau (hat)
  23. anchois (anchovies)
  24. chaos (chaos)
  25. krach (crash)


Mastering the pronunciation of “CH” in French is essential to speaking the language accurately. With the knowledge of its two distinct sounds, you’ll confidently navigate the subtleties of French pronunciation.

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