chop·​stick ˈchäp-ˌstik How to pronounce chopstick (audio)
plural chopsticks
: one of a pair of slender sticks (as of wood or plastic) held between the thumb and fingers and used to lift food to the mouth
Never spear food with a chopstick! If you're having trouble picking up your food, a spoon is your plan B.Laura Barry
usually used in plural
To eat rice, both etiquette and practicality dictate that you use chopsticks to pick up a morsel of meat, fish, or whatever …; position it over the rice bowl, allowing its juices or sauce to drip into the rice; eat the morsel; then shovel some rice into your mouth with the chopsticks.Saveur
"… I do get uncomfortable when people use chopsticks for every Asian food. Traditionally, I may use chopsticks when my food is served in a soup bowl with noodles or rice, but we often use forks and spoons for our dishes. …"Darrell Loo, quoted in Feast

Illustration of chopstick

Illustration of chopstick

Examples of chopstick in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The use of her chopsticks at a restaurant in Guangzhou has also been a particular observation. Fatima Hussein, Quartz, 8 Apr. 2024 The breathless state media coverage of her dining choices or dexterity with chopsticks reflects an effort by Beijing to cast Yellen’s visit in a positive light, especially to an increasingly anti-American Chinese public. Lily Kuo, Washington Post, 5 Apr. 2024 Light-Up Lightsaber Chopsticks, $12 To lock down some stocking stuffers that are far more interesting than a bar of chocolate, add these light-up lightsaber chopsticks. Melissa Epifano,, 9 Dec. 2023 This easy trick to pitting cherries only requires two tools: a bottle and a chopstick. Abigail Wilt, Southern Living, 17 Sep. 2023 The utensils gave these cooks the same control their Asian counterparts had enjoyed for centuries with chopsticks but were easier to master. The Editors, Robb Report, 28 Mar. 2024 Zuckerberg could be seen holding a string of noodles in his chopsticks, smiling at his youngest daughter, who had a mess of noodles and other food on her high chair. Hannah Sacks, Peoplemag, 18 Jan. 2024 Then, just as Cecilia did, steam the fish in the microwave on a pair of chopsticks, raised from the surface of the plate. Lucas Sin, Bon Appétit, 20 Mar. 2024 Chinese users assailed Dolce & Gabbana in 2018 for an advertisement featuring a Chinese woman eating Italian food with chopsticks; the fashion brand is still dealing with the repercussions today. Lionel Lim, Fortune Asia, 12 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'chopstick.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Chinese Pidgin English chop fast + English stick

First Known Use

1699, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of chopstick was in 1699

Dictionary Entries Near chopstick

Cite this Entry

“Chopstick.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


chop·​stick ˈchäp-ˌstik How to pronounce chopstick (audio)
: one of a pair of slender sticks used chiefly in Asian countries to lift food to the mouth

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