dump·​ling | \ˈdəmp-liŋ \

Definition of dumpling 

1a : a small mass of dough cooked by boiling or steaming

b : a usually baked dessert of fruit wrapped in dough

2 : something soft and rounded like a dumpling especially : a short fat person or animal

Examples of dumpling in a Sentence

We had vegetarian dumplings as an appetizer.

Recent Examples on the Web

The magical journey of a 10-year-old girl includes an assortment of spirits, a witch, a magic dumpling and a sense of fear and discovery. Peter Hartlaub, SFChronicle.com, "Animated classic ‘Spirited Away’ comes to Balboa Theatre," 12 July 2018 The menu also features a variety of creative Southern dishes, such as a muffaletta burger, smoked chicken and biscuit dumplings, Southern antipasto salad and dirty rice balls. Kellie Hwang, azcentral, "It's National Fried Chicken Day! Phoenix restaurants for best fried chicken," 6 July 2018 The extensive makeover brought a Larsen’s Steakhouse, Shake Shack burger stand and -- soon -- a Din Tai Fung dumpling and noodles restaurant to the La Jolla-adjacent shopping center. Brady Macdonald, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Raised by Wolves brings hidden bar concept to suburban mall," 11 May 2018 Another young lady gets a mention among the entrees — Miss Margaret’s chicken and dumplings. Tim Smith, baltimoresun.com, "Interesting menu, enjoyable view at Ampersea," 22 Mar. 2018 Buffet features a traditional country platter with fried chicken, Huber honey ham, real mashed potatoes with gravy, green beans, corn, chicken and dumplings, fried biscuits with apple butter, slaw and broccoli salad. Gege Reed, The Courier-Journal, "Treat your family to Easter brunch in Louisville at these restaurants," 20 Mar. 2018 The dumplings, vaguely Asian and served five to an order, in broth or, in the case of the shrimp variety, melted butter, are mostly bland, with mealy filling. Hannah Goldfield, The New Yorker, "Tom Valenti Returns with Oxbow Tavern, and Gimmicks to Go at Lucky Pickle," 21 June 2018 This one of the rare places in Charlotte that sometimes has xiao long bao (soup dumplings). Kathleen Purvis, charlotteobserver, "Charlotte has three great Chinese restaurants? Yes, and here's what to order at each," 29 May 2018 When Binita Pradhan and her crew at Bini’s Kitchen work together to fold momo (Nepalese dumplings), toast spices and braise fragrant stews, the conversation flows in Nepali, Tibetan and Hindi, punctuated with a little English. San Francisco Chronicle, "The chain of service: How a restaurant powers a community here and abroad," 25 May 2018

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

circa 1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for dumpling

perhaps alteration of lump

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Statistics for dumpling

Last Updated

9 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dumpling

The first known use of dumpling was circa 1600

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More Definitions for dumpling



English Language Learners Definition of dumpling

: a small lump of dough that is boiled or steamed

: a piece of food that is wrapped in dough and cooked


dump·​ling | \ˈdəmp-liŋ \

Kids Definition of dumpling

1 : a small amount of dough cooked by boiling or steaming

2 : a dessert of fruit wrapped in dough

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More from Merriam-Webster on dumpling

Spanish Central: Translation of dumpling

Nglish: Translation of dumpling for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about dumpling

Comments on dumpling

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