\ 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

brackish, briny, saline, salt

Antonyms: Adjective


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Examples of salty in a Sentence


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 lobster cheese dip ($14.99), served with toasted pita chips, was a bit salty. Michael Mayo,, "Review: Hot and bothered at Black Rock in Fort Lauderdale, home of DIY steaks and mystery drink prices," 11 Sep. 2019 The crunchy salad is dressed with salty fish sauce and an aromatic medley of mint, cilantro, and Thai basil. Eric Velasco,, "Ollie Irene restaurant is back and better than ever," 20 Mar. 2018 The saucing is more acidic than salty soy sauce, but also resets the palate. Krista Simmons, Condé Nast Traveler, "15 Best Sushi Restaurants in Los Angeles," 27 Feb. 2018 The shoreline location accounts for the attribution of the bread’s canoe-like shape, its hull filled with salty cheese; butter and an egg or egg yolk are added right after the khachapuri is pulled from the oven. Los Angeles Times, "Will everyone in America soon be eating the khachapuri cheese boat?," 7 Sep. 2019 Dear ocean, Thank you for making us feel tiny, salty, humble, and inspired, all at once. Lizz Schumer, Good Housekeeping, "40 Perfect Beach Captions for Instagram to Document Your Amazing Vacation," 4 Sep. 2019 Follow Your Nose to Flavor The tongue detects at least five distinct tastes—sweet, salty, sour, bitter, and umami (a savory, meaty taste). Jeff Csatari, Popular Mechanics, "The Ultimate Grilling Guide," 30 Aug. 2019 The following blends aim to combine sweet with salty, spicy and tangy flavors. Susan Clotfelter, The Know, "Bored with raisins? Try these 5 “fancy” trail mix recipes," 27 Aug. 2019 The result is an incredibly complex sausage with a texture that’s somewhere between crumbly and creamy and a flavor that juxtaposes lively, fresh herbs with salty, fatty pork. Alex Delany, Bon Appétit, "I’m a Self-Dubbed Sausage Expert and This Sausage Is the Best," 23 Aug. 2019

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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Statistics for salty

Last Updated

10 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for salty

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

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More Definitions for salty



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

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with salty

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for salty

Spanish Central: Translation of salty

Nglish: Translation of salty for Spanish Speakers

Comments on salty

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


involving a confidence or trust

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