can·​dy | \ ˈkan-dē How to pronounce candy (audio) \
plural candies

Definition of candy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : crystallized sugar formed by boiling down sugar syrup
2a : a confection made with sugar and often flavoring and filling
b : a piece of such confection
3 : something that is pleasant or appealing in a light or frivolous way visual candy


candied; candying

Definition of candy (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to encrust in or coat with sugar specifically : to cook (something, such as fruit or fruit peel) in a heavy syrup until glazed
2 : to make attractive : sweeten candying up the duke's reputation
3 : to crystallize into sugar

intransitive verb

: to become coated or encrusted with sugar crystals : become crystallized into sugar

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from candy


candy adjective

Synonyms for candy

Synonyms: Verb

dress up, enhance, sweeten

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of candy in a Sentence


The cough syrup tastes like candy.


the publisher hopes the flashy cover will candy up the novel for impulse buyers

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

At Balenciaga, there were rounded shoulders, and at Givenchy, candy-cane curves that projected jackets up to the ears. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "The 7 Biggest Trends of the Fall 2019 Season," 12 Mar. 2019 In a medium saucepan fitted with a candy thermometer, bring sugar, corn syrup, and 2 Tbsp water to a boil on medium, stirring occasionally to dissolve sugar, 1 to 2 minutes. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Matzo Brittle," 7 Mar. 2019 Massachusetts owns the brick buildings, which were once the home of candy maker Necco and under renovation, and GE owns the property where the new tower was planned. Jon Kamp, WSJ, "GE to Scale Back Boston Headquarters, Return $87 Million of Incentives," 14 Feb. 2019 Tint remaining frosting and use, with marshmallows and candy pebbles, to decorate as desired. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Desert Bloom Cupcakes," 15 Feb. 2019 Other e-liquid flavors seemed to be squarely aimed at kids, with packages that resembled frosted cookies and sour candies. Karen Kaplan, The Seattle Times, "Vaping among teens spikes, luring new generation of kids into tobacco use," 18 Dec. 2018 Its production quality, to my eye at least, is also lower than the original Azul with its chunky bakelite tiles; the new glass pieces look like cheap plastic candies. Nate Anderson, Ars Technica, "Eight great board games we played at PAX Unplugged," 8 Dec. 2018 Stiff Little Butterfingers Chick-O-Stick is the candy at 7-Eleven that’s collecting dust because no one’s gone near it in years. Steffi Victorioso, Los Angeles Magazine, "Every Signature Doughnut at Donut Friend, Ranked," 1 June 2018 Officials are not saying yet how the candy came to be tainted. Howard Cohen, miamiherald, "Two girls hospitalized after eating liquid marijuana in chocolate at high school," 31 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

That weekend, nausea is my near-constant companion, and ginger its only foil, candied, in cookies and gum all day long. Daphne Beal, Vogue, "After One Writer Finds Out She Has a Brain Tumor, She Confronts It Head On," 10 Aug. 2018 This was a barley salad served in a big white bowl with arugula and bits of butternut squash, candied walnuts, and Craisins (dried cranberries)., "A new addition to the Newburyport restaurant scene," 1 June 2018 Or top it with crushed cookies, candied nuts, jammy cherries — something for everyone at your holiday table. Bonnie S. Benwick, The Seattle Times, "For a different Thanksgiving dessert, swap pie for parfaits," 13 Nov. 2018 Few desserts are as refreshing as the viola and rue sorbet with its pale lavender color and its garnish of sunflower butter, candied kumquats and granola. Michael Bauer, San Francisco Chronicle, "The Perennial makes environmental activism taste good," 25 May 2018 Place lettuce and peaches on plate and top with dressing and candied pecans. Lauren Delgado,, "Where to pick peaches in Central Florida," 16 Apr. 2018 Add pinch of cayenne pepper and garnish with a lemon slice and candied ginger. Ann Maloney,, "#AlcoholFreeFor40: Mocktails made easy at New Orleans bars, restaurants," 20 Feb. 2018 With five flavors currently on the market, including lemon-mandarin and pink lemonade, the chews combine a fruit-flavored base and candied piece fruit. Heidi Groover, The Seattle Times, "Washington to ‘reevaluate’ marijuana edibles, crack down on products that might appeal to kids," 5 Oct. 2018 The nose is immediately fresh and beguiling, with notes of candied lemon, citrus flowers and subtle hints of spice. Lauren Sheffield, Harper's BAZAAR, "Forget Rosé: These Are the Wines You Need to Be Sipping," 26 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'candy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of candy


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1533, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for candy


Middle English sugre candy, partial translation of Middle French sucre candi, from Old French sucre sugar + Arabic qandī candied, from qand crystallized sugar

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about candy

Dictionary Entries near candy


C and SC

C and W


candy apple


candy cane

Statistics for candy

Last Updated

20 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for candy

The first known use of candy was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for candy



English Language Learners Definition of candy

US : a sweet food made with sugar or chocolate


can·​dy | \ ˈkan-dē How to pronounce candy (audio) \
plural candies

Kids Definition of candy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a sweet made of sugar often with flavoring and filling


candied; candying

Kids Definition of candy (Entry 2 of 2)

: to coat or become coated with sugar often by cooking

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on candy

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with candy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for candy

Spanish Central: Translation of candy

Nglish: Translation of candy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of candy for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about candy

Comments on candy

What made you want to look up candy? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to boil down or concentrate

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt-painting-a-young-scholar-and-his-tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!