\ˈmēt \

Definition of meat 

1a : food especially : solid food as distinguished from drink

b : the edible part of something as distinguished from its covering (such as a husk or shell)

2 : animal tissue considered especially as food:

a : flesh sense 2b also : flesh of a mammal as opposed to fowl or fish

b : flesh sense 1a specifically : flesh of domesticated animals

3 archaic : meal entry 1 sense 1 especially : dinner

4a : the core of something : heart

b : pith sense 2b a novel with meat

5 : favorite pursuit or interest

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Other Words from meat

meated \ ˈmē-​təd \ adjective
meatless adjective

Synonyms for meat


bread, chow, chuck [chiefly West], comestibles, eatables, eats, edibles, fare, food, foodstuffs, grub, provender, provisions, table, tucker [chiefly Australian], viands, victuals, vittles

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Examples of meat in a Sentence

The restaurant serves a variety of meats. The real meat of the book is found in its discussion of his economic plan.

Recent Examples on the Web

Cover and cook until meat is very tender, 4 to 5 hours on high or 7 to 8 hours on low. Anna Helm Baxter, Country Living, "Smoky Slow Cooker Beef Tacos," 30 Oct. 2018 Try to stay away from processed food and meat or food your doctor has advised you not to eat. Jen Juneau,, "New Mom Kym Johnson Herjavec Spotted Out Two Weeks After Giving Birth to Twins," 8 May 2018 The recipes are all vegetarian, to avoid any cultural conflict with meat or pork, and for reasons of food safety. Anya Van Wagtendonk,, "For these immigrants, flipping pancakes and learning English go hand-in-hand," 12 July 2018 The meals meet federal nutrition guidelines and are comprised of milk, fruits, vegetables, grains and meat or another protein. Courant Community, "Community," 10 July 2018 In order to keep the menu as inclusive as possible, for those that aren’t keen on beer or can’t eat meat or dairy, there will be vegan and vegetarian food options. Ita Tsai, Hoy, "First ever Michelada Fest in Chicago to donate portion proceeds to ‘Dreamer’ fund," 29 June 2018 All these iterations can be had with a wide variety of meats or seafood. Larry Olmsted, USA TODAY, "Where to try Hawaiian plate lunches on the mainland," 28 June 2018 But practicing yoga benefits every activity and is not off-limits to hunters any more than consuming meat or the products of industry is off-limits to Buddhism. Author: Christine Cunningham, Anchorage Daily News, "How the Cow Face Pose can make you a better duck hunter," 19 June 2018 No one should have an issue with someone who doesn’t do meat or cocktails, but bringing it up can be a good litmus test for closed-minded, insecure jerks. Beca Grimm, GQ, "15 Things You Should Disclose on a First Date," 14 June 2018

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

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

History and Etymology for meat

Middle English mete "food, meal," going back to Old English, going back to Germanic *mati- (whence Old Saxon meti, mat "food," Old High German maz, Old Norse matr, Gothic mats), perhaps going back to Indo-European *mod-i-, derivative of a verbal base *med- "become full," whence Greek mestós "full, satiated"

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Statistics for meat

Last Updated

12 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for meat

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

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More Definitions for meat



English Language Learners Definition of meat

: the flesh of an animal used as food

: a type of meat

: the part of something (such as a nut) that can be eaten


\ˈmēt \

Kids Definition of meat

1 : the flesh of an animal used as food

Hint: The word meat often does not include the flesh of fish or seafood.

2 : solid food as distinguished from drink

3 : the part of something that can be eaten nut meats

4 : the most important part : substance Get to the meat of the story.

Other Words from meat

meatless \ -​ləs \ adjective

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Comments on meat

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


full of whispering sounds

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