variants or less commonly flakey
flakier; flakiest
: consisting of flakes
flaky snow
: tending to flake
a flaky crust


2 of 2

adjective (2)

flakier; flakiest
: markedly odd or unconventional : offbeat, wacky
has some flaky ideas
He's nice, but a bit flaky.
informal : not reliable in performance or behavior : undependable
a flaky mechanism
You'll want to make sure that all the technology tools you need to effectively and efficiently serve clients are in full working order and that you won't need to worry about wasting time and money fixing broken hardware or flaky software.Henry B. Chace
… digital crutches trump face-to-face talking (even phone calls), encouraging people to be flaky and evasive …Charlotte Liberman

Examples of flaky in a Sentence

Adjective (1) a tender but flaky crust on the pastry
Recent Examples on the Web
Coat top and sides of cake with frosting, and garnish with flaky salt and lime slices as desired. Lisa Cericola, Southern Living, 15 May 2024 This flaky, white fish is an excellent source of vitamin B12. Bethany Thayer, Detroit Free Press, 11 May 2024 For a flaky crust, mix until butter pieces are about the width of walnut halves. Erin McDowell, Better Homes & Gardens, 6 May 2024 My skin turns into a dry, flaky, itchy mess as soon as temperatures drop. Kayla Greaves, Essence, 6 May 2024 The crust on the patty was the flakiest in recent memory, buttery and nearly melting into the ground beef filling. Jenn Harris, Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2024 Orcas Island Beat the crowds that gather early on the porch of Eastsound favorite Brown Bear Baking and score a flaky kouign-amann and a morning bun. Jesse Ashlock, Condé Nast Traveler, 4 May 2024 Ingredients for Asparagus Quiche Fresh asparagus shines in this quiche, especially when complemented by creamy Gouda, fresh tarragon, chives, spring onions, a rich custard, and buttery, flaky piecrust. Southern Living Test Kitchen, Southern Living, 3 May 2024 The watercress needs nothing more than olive oil and flaky salt. Bon Appétit, 3 May 2024

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

Word History


Adjective (1)

see flake entry 1

Adjective (2)

flake entry 4

First Known Use

Adjective (1)

1580, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective (2)

circa 1963, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of flaky was in 1580

Dictionary Entries Near flaky

Cite this Entry

“Flaky.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


flakier; flakiest
: consisting of flakes
: tending to flake
pie with a crisp flaky crust
: odd or strange in behavior
informal : not reliable : undependable
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