pou·​tine pü-ˈtēn How to pronounce poutine (audio)
chiefly Canada
: a dish of French fries covered with brown gravy and cheese curds

Did you know?

Although the earliest evidence of the word poutine in an English publication is from 1982, historical accounts of the dish itself date to several decades earlier when someone had the brilliant idea to add rural Quebec's much-loved fresh cheese curds to (also much-loved) French fries. Whether the gravy came a few years later or was present ab ovo is disputed. Also unclear is the origin of the word by which the dish is known. Some assert that poutine is related to the English word pudding, but a more popular etymology is that it's from a Quebecois slang word meaning "mess." The dish has in recent years been making inroads on American menus.

Examples of poutine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Bard's Burgers, Covington Widely known for its creative burgers and poutine, Bard's offers a new-school take on Cincinnati chili that's made with wagyu beef and is a bit spicier than what you might be used to. Keith Pandolfi, The Enquirer, 23 Feb. 2024 Other menu items include an Angus beef patty melt ($15), poutine ($10) and a Cubano ($14). The Enquirer, 25 Jan. 2024 Go with the Louisville hot chicken sandwich, perhaps some poutine. David Hudnall, Kansas City Star, 24 Jan. 2024 One great place to try them is the gastropub Fire & Hops, which tops its poutine with bacon, green chile, and white gravy. Katrina Brown Hunt, Travel + Leisure, 28 July 2023 But Toronto, where standing ovations are more popular than poutine, tends to be a welcoming environment. Brent Lang, Variety, 6 Sep. 2023 Bloody Snowball Like the poutine, the Bloody Snowball does not contain real blood, but does go along with the same snowy theme from the YETI house — and is perfect for those who want a little something sweet along with their savory snacks. Jen Juneau, Peoplemag, 17 Aug. 2023 The event takes place throughout the concourse at Nationals Park (including Centerfield Plaza, Budweiser Brew House, Bud Light Loft and Budweiser Terrace), and over a dozen food trucks with offerings of poutine, empanadas and other snacks can be found throughout the stadium. Chris Kelly, Washington Post, 2 Nov. 2023 In addition, there'll be peri peri chicken, pretzels, pickles, naan, nyama, gumbo, jambalaya, burgers, poutine, egg rolls, sushi and scones. Frank E. Lockwood, Arkansas Online, 28 Oct. 2023

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

Word History


Canadian French

First Known Use

1982, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of poutine was in 1982


Dictionary Entries Near poutine

Cite this Entry

“Poutine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/poutine. Accessed 16 Apr. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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