\ ˈsȯl-tē How to pronounce salty (audio) \
saltier; saltiest

Definition of salty

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, seasoned with, or containing salt salty foods
b : being, inducing, or marked by the one of the five basic taste sensations that is suggestive of seawater — compare bitter entry 1 sense 1a, sour entry 1 sense 1, sweet entry 1 sense 1, umami entry 2
2 : smacking of the sea or nautical life
3a : piquant
b : earthy, crude salty language
4 informal : feeling or showing resentment towards a person or situation : bitter I completely forgot about our date and left my girlfriend waiting at the restaurant for over an hour. Now she's all salty.— Nicole Lane They made me shave my beard and cover up my tattoos, which I was a little salty about.— Jon Niccum



Definition of salty (Entry 2 of 2)

: the taste sensation that is suggestive of seawater — compare bitter entry 2 sense 1b, sour entry 2 sense 1b, sweet entry 3 sense 2, umami entry 1

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Other Words from salty


saltily \ ˈsȯl-​tə-​lē How to pronounce saltily (audio) \ adverb
saltiness \ ˈsȯl-​tē-​nəs How to pronounce saltiness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for salty

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of salty in a Sentence

Adjective I think the soup tastes salty. salty sea water is safe to swim in, but you really shouldn't swallow it
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The process High concentrations of lithium are found in a salty brine pumped 30 meters below the surface of the desert floor. Calum Trenaman, Stef Blendis And Nicki Shields, CNN, "Remote desert powering electric car revolution," 10 Feb. 2020 Mackmyra Whisky Intelligens This Swedish single malt whiskey, master blended by AI with supervision from D’Orazio, is described as fruity, oaky, and slightly salty with a dryish end. Sarah Kloepple, Popular Mechanics, "Artificial Intelligence and Robots Can Make Your Next Cocktail. But Should They?," 3 Feb. 2020 That means one single, precious 10-gallon cooler of salty secretion—with a bonus gallon to make the dunking all the sweeter. Erin Blakemore, Popular Science, "We calculated how much sweat will come out of the Super Bowl and oh boy," 1 Feb. 2020 The song is Dropkick Murphys at their best, hammering drums and guitar coupled with a call-and-response chorus and salty lyrics that make for a perfect three-pints deep sing-along anthem. Dave Brooks, Billboard, "Dropkick Murphys Bring Down the House in New 'Smash Sh*t Up' Video," 31 Jan. 2020 Over decades, the pumping has drawn seawater into the groundwater, making it too salty for crops. Ian James, azcentral, "In the Middle East, countries spend heavily to transform seawater into drinking water," 29 Nov. 2019 Don’t forget to rinse the capers and anchovies, which otherwise can make the salsa verde too salty. Christopher Kimball,, "Recipes: A hearty Father’s Day menu, starring steak," 12 June 2019 Saying something like the food was too salty or the temperature was off is helpful. Rasha Ali, USA TODAY, "How to send food back at a restaurant without making things awkward," 18 Mar. 2019 Around an hour and 15-minutes in, Griz hopped on the deck with his saxophone in hand, ready to rip some live grooves through the sunny, salty air. Kat Bein, Billboard, "Destructo Shares 4-Hour FriendShip Set Feat. Griz, Boys Noize, Bob Moses & Danny Daze," 22 Jan. 2020

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1912, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for salty

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for salty

Last Updated

14 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Salty.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for salty


How to pronounce salty (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of salty

: containing salt or too much salt
US, old-fashioned : somewhat rude or shocking


\ ˈsȯl-tē How to pronounce salty (audio) \
saltier; saltiest

Kids Definition of salty

: of, tasting of, or containing salt salty food


\ ˈsȯl-tē How to pronounce salty (audio) \
saltier; saltiest

Medical Definition of salty

: of, seasoned with, or containing salt

Other Words from salty

saltiness \ -​tē-​nəs How to pronounce saltiness (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on salty

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for salty

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with salty

Spanish Central: Translation of salty

Nglish: Translation of salty for Spanish Speakers

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