nut·​meg | \ ˈnət-ˌmeg How to pronounce nutmeg (audio) , -ˌmāg\

Definition of nutmeg

1 : an aromatic seed produced by an evergreen tree (Myristica fragrans of the family Myristicaceae, the nutmeg family) native to the Moluccas also : the ground seed used as a spice — compare mace sense 2
2 : a tree yielding nutmeg

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Did You Know?

Nutmeg is native to the Moluccas, Indonesian islands in the Malay Archipelago of Southeast Asia. The word nutmeg, however, comes from Old Occitan, a Romance language spoken in southern France during the latter half of the Middle Ages. Old Occitan "noz muscada" combines "noz" ("nut"), from Latin nuc-, nux, with "muscada," a feminine form of muscat, meaning "musky." The history of "muscat" can in turn be traced back through Late Latin, Greek, and Middle Persian to a Sanskrit word meaning "mouse."

Examples of nutmeg in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Senior Blue Curaçao 11⁄2 oz. pineapple juice 11⁄2 oz. Coco Lopez 11⁄2 oz. coconut water 11⁄2 cups ice Grated nutmeg and pineapple wedge for garnish Directions: Add first 6 ingredients to a blender and blend on high until smooth. Priya Krishna, Marie Claire, "6 Boozy Frozen Drinks You Can Make at Home," 24 May 2017 Inside the bakery last month, the aroma of nutmeg and cinnamon wafted from an area labeled Cake Room. Corinne Ramey, WSJ, "Who Serves the Best Holiday Carrot Cake? Hint: It Has a Captive Audience," 25 Dec. 2018 In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Apple Cinnamon Pull-Apart Bread," 13 Feb. 2015 Roll the piecrust onto a pie tin and sprinkle the cinnamon and nutmeg over it. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "The Hot and Hearty Pie Recipes to Kick Off Autumn in Your Kitchen," 21 Sep. 2018 Boasting full-bodied, malty flavor along with classic autumn ingredients like pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg, these seasonal sippers are sure to warm you up on a brisk fall evening. Fox News, "Top 5 fall beers," 14 Oct. 2015 High Wire Lowcountry Agricole, 44% ABV, $80 for 750ml Ten months in toasted new oak emphasizes the honeyed notes in this South Carolina spirit and mellows without obscuring the funkier scents of ripe banana and nutmeg. Matthew Kronsberg, WSJ, "‘Grass-to-Glass’ Rums: What You Need to Know," 3 Aug. 2018 Tyler and his team measured the pineapple, coconut, orange and nutmeg in roughly the same ratio used in the Jungle Bird cocktail, leaving out only the cinnamon. Daniel Barnes, sacbee, "Forget hops. In Northern California’s craft-beer world, malt is having a moment | The Sacramento Bee," 19 Jan. 2018 Beat cream cheese, sour cream, heavy cream, molasses, cornstarch, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and remaining 3/4 cup sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Kate Merker And Talyor Murray, Country Living, "Gingerbread Cheesecake With Pecan-Graham Crust," 7 Dec. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for nutmeg

Middle English notemigge, notemuge, ultimately from Old Occitan noz muscada, from noz nut (from Latin nuc-, nux) + muscada, feminine of muscat musky — more at muscat

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Statistics for nutmeg

Last Updated

24 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for nutmeg

The first known use of nutmeg was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for nutmeg



English Language Learners Definition of nutmeg

: a spice made from the hard seed of a tropical tree and used in cooking and baking


nut·​meg | \ ˈnət-ˌmeg How to pronounce nutmeg (audio) \

Kids Definition of nutmeg

: a spice made from the ground seeds of a small tropical evergreen tree


nut·​meg | \ ˈnət-ˌmeg, -ˌmāg How to pronounce nutmeg (audio) \

Medical Definition of nutmeg

1 : an aromatic seed that is used as a spice and is produced by a tree of the genus Myristica (M. fragrans of the family Myristicaceae, the nutmeg family) native to the Moluccas

called also myristica

2 : a tree that produces nutmegs

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More from Merriam-Webster on nutmeg

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with nutmeg

Spanish Central: Translation of nutmeg

Nglish: Translation of nutmeg for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of nutmeg for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about nutmeg

Comments on nutmeg

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


grandiloquent, ostentatious, or bombastic

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