\ ˈmēt How to pronounce meat (audio) \

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

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from meat

meated \ ˈmē-​təd How to pronounce meated (audio) \ adjective
meatless adjective

Synonyms for meat


Visit the Thesaurus for More 

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 Strikingly orange-red, a bit of an oil sheen at the top from the fat of the meat, perhaps with bits of herbs or onion. Amy Drew Thompson,, "Quick & dirty: QuesaLoco food truck rides the birria wave," 19 Nov. 2020 The disruption forced some consumers to temporarily switch to other types of meat. Michelle Toh, CNN, "Beyond Meat launches plant-based minced pork in China," 18 Nov. 2020 One of them actually took the tongs and dish of meat right out of my hands! Washington Post, "Miss Manners: Male friends keep taking over my grill," 18 Nov. 2020 There is at least one recipe in each book for a piece of meat that will cost more than anything else on your table, including the silverware. Julia Moskin, New York Times, "How Does Ina Do It?," 16 Nov. 2020 The 10-tray Deluxe Dehydrator is easy to use and can crank out consistent, tasty, flavorful chunks of meat with a few simple settings. The Editors, Outdoor Life, "The Best Cabela’s Cyber Monday Deals: Early Bargains on Fishing, Hunting, and Other Outdoor Gear," 16 Nov. 2020 Chef biography or historical education come second to the hindbrain visual pleasure of meat bouncing on a grill. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, "“Emily in Paris” and the Rise of Ambient TV," 16 Nov. 2020 All along the way scraps of meat were accumulated for grinding. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Do-it-yourself deer processing is gaining popularity for all sorts of reasons," 14 Nov. 2020 White Castle, which has an Impossible Slider, started testing meat-free burgers in 2018. al, "McDonald’s, Pizza Hut adding meatless items: Would you try these?," 10 Nov. 2020

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.

See More

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"

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about meat

Time Traveler for meat

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for meat

Last Updated

25 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Meat.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Nov. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for meat


How to pronounce meat (audio)

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 How to pronounce meat (audio) \

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

Keep scrolling for more

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).


Test Your Vocabulary

A Thanksgiving Word Quiz

  • a traditional thanksgiving dinner
  • November comes from a word for which of the following numbers?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

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!