\ ˈku̇k How to pronounce cook (audio) \

Definition of cook

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a person who prepares food for eating
2 : a technical or industrial process comparable to cooking food also : a substance so processed


cooked; cooking; cooks

Definition of cook (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to prepare food for eating especially by means of heat French cooking
2 : to undergo the action of being cooked the rice is cooking now
3 : occur, happen find out what was cooking in the committee
4 : to perform, do, or proceed well the jazz quartet was cooking along the party cooked right through the night

transitive verb

1 : concoct, fabricate usually used with up cooked up a scheme
2 : to prepare for eating by a heating process
3 : falsify, doctor cooked the books with phony spending cuts and accounting gimmickry— Colleen O'Connor
4 : to subject to the action of heat or fire
cook one's goose
: to make one's failure or ruin certain


biographical name
\ ˈku̇k How to pronounce Cook (audio) \

Definition of Cook (Entry 3 of 3)

James 1728–1779 English navigator and explorer

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Other Words from cook


cookable \ ˈku̇-​kə-​bəl How to pronounce cookable (audio) \ adjective

Examples of cook in a Sentence


the hearty meals prepared by the cook at summer camp


Cook the onions over low heat. She cooked a great meal. The fish was cooked in a white wine sauce. Carrots can be cooked, but they are often eaten raw. We're too busy to cook at home. He enjoys cooking on the weekends. The rice is still cooking, but it will be ready in 10 minutes. There's something cooking, but he won't say what.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The bouzouki players are warming up, and cooks are busy gathering ingredients to prepare their favorite spinach pie, baklava and pastitsio for this weekend’s ASSUMPTION GREEKFEST at Assumption Greek Orthodox Church in St. Clair Shores. Greg Crawford, Detroit Free Press, "The weekend: Dream Cruise, Renaissance fest in Holly, Michigan Comic Convention at Cobo," 14 Aug. 2019 If they are grown above ground, put them in boiling water and cook. Heloise, Washington Post, "Hints From Heloise: For cooking veggies, remember how they grow," 14 Aug. 2019 Note: For crisscross grill marks, cook steaks for 2 ½ minutes then using tongs, turn 90 degrees and cook 2 ½ minutes more., "Recipe: Grilled Wagyu Rib-Eye Steak," 12 Aug. 2019 Bring pineapple juice, honey, vinegar, mustard, red pepper flakes, sesame oil, and turmeric to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat and cook, swirling occasionally, until reduced to ¾ cup, 10–15 minutes. Carrie Knauer,, "Carrie’s Kitchen: Trio of grilling recipes to get us through the end of summer," 12 Aug. 2019 Heat 1 teaspoon oil in small skillet and cook in 2 to 3 batches, turning occasionally, until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. The Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen, Good Housekeeping, "Salmon with Grilled Eggplant and Chickpea Croutons," 9 Aug. 2019 To mark Norwich City’s return to the top flight, TV cook and long-standing Norwich City supporter and director Delia Smith relives her infamous rallying cry from 2005, in the form of her famous fish pie., "Lamprey 'Addock You! Delia Smith's Face Appears in a Fish Pie in New Coca-Cola Premier League Advert," 7 Aug. 2019 The literature of interwar Britain is full of bad food, dirty floors, and surly amateurish cooks and cleaners. Charlotte Mendelson, The New Yorker, "The Stunning Grounds, and Tragic History, of the Lost Gardens of Heligan," 2 Aug. 2019 Ember-roasting endows cabbage — and the eventual slaw — with an intense and inimitable smoke flavor, a fiery technique cooks in the Middle East have used for centuries to transform eggplant into smoky baba ghanouj. Steven Raichlen, New York Times, "Coleslaw Kissed by Fire," 2 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Diners build their bowls from there, adding ingredients, blast cooking them and eating at their own pace, similar to Chinese Hot Pot or Japanese Shabu Shabu., "Dagu Rice Noodle in Cleveland’s AsiaTown plans Aug. 31 grand opening," 15 Aug. 2019 Three visiting Midwestern chefs who focus on local foods and sustainability will cook Sunday suppers and chat with guests at Braise restaurant in Walker’s Point. Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Have Sunday supper and chat with Midwestern chefs during Braise restaurant's Leaders in Local Food series," 14 Aug. 2019 Women cleaned, cooked and cared for the children far more then the men did. Laurie Derose, The Conversation, "Gender equality at home takes a hit when children arrive," 8 Aug. 2019 Sue loved to cook and had a fantastic collection of cook books and kitchen gadgets., "Susan Foster," 4 Aug. 2019 McNamee has cooked in exclusive clubs around the world. Christopher Rugaber, The Seattle Times, "Richer U.S. households fueling a hot job sector: ‘wealth work’," 30 July 2019 Gone were the days where mom stayed home to cook and clean while dad paid the bills with a full-time gig. Lindsay Schnell, USA TODAY, "Oregon could soon have nation's most progressive paid family leave law, will the US follow?," 28 July 2019 Today, they are fried and eaten as snacks or cooked and used as taco fillings. Stephanie Bailey, CNN, "This luxury ice cream is made from insects," 25 July 2019 Her projects left her with plenty of beans ready to cook and eat. Domenica Bongiovanni, Indianapolis Star, "These paintings create voltage. And this Indianapolis artist uses black beans to do it.," 19 July 2019

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

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First Known Use of cook


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for cook


Middle English, from Old English cōc, from Latin coquus, from coquere to cook; akin to Old English āfigen fried, Greek pessein to cook

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Learn More about cook

Dictionary Entries near cook






Cook's tour


Statistics for cook

Last Updated

17 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cook

The first known use of cook was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for cook



English Language Learners Definition of cook

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: someone who prepares and cooks food for eating at home, in a restaurant, etc.



English Language Learners Definition of cook (Entry 2 of 2)

: to prepare (food) for eating especially by using heat
: to go through the process of being cooked
informal : to happen or take place


\ ˈku̇k How to pronounce cook (audio) \

Kids Definition of cook

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who prepares food for eating


cooked; cooking

Kids Definition of cook (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to prepare food for eating by the use of heat
2 : to go through the process of being heated in preparation for being eaten Dinner is cooking.
3 : to create through thought and imagination usually used with up The boys are cooking up a scheme to earn money.

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More from Merriam-Webster on cook

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cook

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cook

Spanish Central: Translation of cook

Nglish: Translation of cook for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cook for Arabic Speakers

Comments on cook

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


a usually brief trip or an expedition

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