Is there an American version of “You really take the biscuit!”? As in taking the last biscuit, i.e. it's incredible how selfish you are.

  • 6
    I'm afraid "you really take the biscuit" has about as much to do with "taking the last biscuit" as incredible has to do with incredulous, there with their, and it's with its. (Not to mention that including false etymologies in your question when all you really need to mention is the meaning is uncalled for.) But to reply to your P.S.: you post answers on this site by typing your answer in the "Your Answer" field followed by clicking on the "Post Your Answer" button.
    – RegDwigнt
    Jan 9, 2013 at 10:16
  • 1
    I think you've confused matters by mentioning a biscuit in your explanation of the phrase "take the biscuit". Either that or you've misunderstood what "taking the biscuit means".
    – Urbycoz
    Jan 9, 2013 at 10:46
  • I'm not sure about the US, but equivalents to "taking the biscuit" in the UK that I know are: "taking the Mickey/Michael" and "taking the piss".
    – Urbycoz
    Jan 9, 2013 at 10:49
  • @Urbycoz - no it has nothing to do with taking the piss. One can say: When it comes to taking the piss you really take the biscuit
    – mplungjan
    Jan 9, 2013 at 12:26
  • related: english.stackexchange.com/questions/70685/…
    – SF.
    Jan 9, 2013 at 15:15

4 Answers 4


We do have the expression "you really take the cake" which could be used in the same context, but also means to be the best at something one does. E.g. "When it comes to comedy, he really takes the cake."

As for "take the biscuit", I've never heard it in the US.

  • I guess that comes down to the totally different meaning of biscuit.
    – neil
    Jan 9, 2013 at 16:00

In Britain, something "takes the biscuit" if it is annoying and somewhat unexpected. For instance, if you were waiting to get into a parking spot and someone else nipped in before you--that would "really take the biscuit."


Take the biscuit or cake is excelling in something - positive or negative

So on its own it means nothing; after some act or some expression, it means you surpassed whatever was expected.

Here is my take

When it comes to selfishness, you really take the biscuit/cake

That was amazingly kind of you, you really take the biscuit

http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-tak3.htm has a rundown of etymology.


Take the cake is closest, though take the biscuit is used in a more uniformly negative manner.

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