\ ˈkrənch How to pronounce crunch (audio) \
crunched; crunching; crunches

Definition of crunch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to chew or press with a crushing noise
2 : to make one's way with a crushing noise

transitive verb

1 : to chew, press, or grind with a crunching sound
2 : process especially : to perform mathematical computations on crunch numbers



Definition of crunch (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of crunching
2 : a sound made by crunching
3 : a tight or critical situation: such as
a : a critical point in the buildup of pressure between opposing elements : showdown
b : a severe economic squeeze (as on credit)
c : shortage an energy crunch
4 : a conditioning exercise performed from a supine position by raising and lowering the upper torso without reaching a sitting position

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from crunch


crunchable \ ˈkrən-​chə-​bəl How to pronounce crunchable (audio) \ adjective

Examples of crunch in a Sentence


We could hear the truck's tires crunching along the gravel road. When she crunched the numbers, she found that the business's profits were actually much lower than the company had said.


the crunch of someone eating a carrot We could hear the crunch of the truck's tires on the gravel road. The crunch came when the computer stopped working.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The region soon froze over, but when a second wind storm hit, the slabs of ice that were previously separated crunched together to form ridges, one of which boosted a garage full of snowmobiles 12 feet into the air. Shannon Hall, Scientific American, "Marooned: Researchers Will Freeze Their Ship into Arctic Ocean Ice for a Year," 17 Sep. 2019 Once a conversation is whizzed over to Mei's servers, it's crunched through a series of algorithms that search for clues. Wired, "Flirty or Friendzone? New AI Scans Your Texts for True Love," 16 Sep. 2019 The next hours Smith spent crunched in her bathtub, praying to stay alive. Victor Blackwell And Christina Maxouris, CNN, "Bahamas resident spent more than 18 hours in her bathtub as violent winds ripped through her home," 7 Sep. 2019 Each year, Yelp crunches brunch numbers and sends out a top 100 list of the best breakfast spots in the nation, based on diner reviews. Jackie Burrell, The Mercury News, "Yelp’s top 10 Northern California brunch spots — do you agree?," 2 Sep. 2019 Yeah, someone crunched those numbers because of Definitely Maybe. William Goodman, Billboard, "Oasis' 'Definitely Maybe' Turns 25: Here's Where the Rock 'N' Roll Stars Were Born," 29 Aug. 2019 As well as speaking with these analysts, NBC News has crunched the numbers into a series of graphics and maps that show just how bad things are. Alexander Smith, NBC News, "Amazon wildfires could be 'game over' for climate change fight: The Morning Rundown," 23 Aug. 2019 The Guns in Alameda County report crunched gun data culled from criminal cases in the county and research on guns from 2012 to 2018. Matthias Gafni,, "Only half of guns used in Alameda County crimes last year registered in California," 20 Aug. 2019 Wall Street economists are also crunching data on how trade-policy uncertainty is altering companies’ behaviour. The Economist, "The trade war is leading some firms to crimp investment," 15 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Northern Ireland host Germany in a crunch Euro 2020 qualifying match in Group C on Monday evening, with both sides in need of the points., "Northern Ireland vs Germany Preview: Where to Watch, Live Stream, Kick Off Time & Team News," 7 Sep. 2019 Muted consumer sentiment and a credit crunch that has crippled lending at India’s non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) are believed to be the reasons behind the slowdown. Kuwar Singh, Quartz India, "India’s automobile slowdown is trickling down to a host of allied sectors," 14 Aug. 2019 Amid last year’s financial crunch, the organization cut funds for gun training, a key purpose spelled out in the NRA charter. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "A look inside the finances of the NRA," 14 June 2019 At the time, state government was facing a financial crunch because a temporary income tax hike had begun rolling back, leaving a hole that needed to be filled with new taxes or spending cuts. Kim Geiger,, "Thursday state budget deadline looms in first year of talks after historic stalemate," 25 May 2018 In recent years, Sears has had often to take big steps such as sell off key assets like some of its best stores as well as brands like Kenmore, and borrow money from CEO Eddie Lampert to ward off a financial crunch. Phil Wahba, Fortune, "Sears Lines Up $100 Million In New Financing After Holiday Season Bloodbath," 10 Jan. 2018 Such estimates arrive at a time when the International Energy Agency in Vienna is warning of a possible cobalt supply crunch by 2030, caused in part by the growing production of battery-powered cars. Warren Cornwall, Science | AAAS, "Mountains hidden in the deep sea are biological hot spots. Will mining ruin them?," 12 Sep. 2019 But the Saints hung in there and the crunch-time greatness of Drew Brees, not to mention the long-range kicking of Wil Lutz, gave them a pulsating victory Monday night. Mark Maske,, "NFL power rankings, Week 2: Antonio Brown will make Patriots next to unbeatable or ruin them," 10 Sep. 2019 During this year's regular football season, on Sunday, Monday and Thursday guests can get the deal and pick from boneless or double crunch bone-in wings with unlimited fries. Sarah Brookbank,, "Want all you can eat Applebee's wings? 3 NKY restaurants have you covered," 6 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crunch.' 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 crunch


1706, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1832, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for crunch


alteration of craunch

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about crunch

Statistics for crunch

Last Updated

1 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for crunch

The first known use of crunch was in 1706

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for crunch



English Language Learners Definition of crunch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make the loud sound of something being crushed
: to move along a surface that makes the loud sound of something being crushed
: to process (numbers, information, etc.) : to examine and analyze (numbers, information, etc.)



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

: the sound made when something hard is being chewed or crushed : a crunching sound
: the quality of a food that produces a loud sound when it is chewed : a crunchy quality
: a very difficult point or situation


\ ˈkrənch How to pronounce crunch (audio) \
crunched; crunching

Kids Definition of crunch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to chew or grind with a crushing noise He is crunching on hard candy.
2 : to make the sound of being crushed or squeezed The snow crunched underfoot.



Kids Definition of crunch (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act or sound of crushing She bit into the apple with a loud crunch.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on crunch

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crunch

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for crunch

Spanish Central: Translation of crunch

Nglish: Translation of crunch for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crunch for Arabic Speakers

Comments on crunch

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


a bell tower

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Where in the World? A Quiz

  • peter bruegel tower of babel painting
  • What language does pajama come from?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

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!