ses·a·me | \ˈse-sə-mē also ˈse-zə- \

Definition of sesame 

1 : a widely cultivated chiefly tropical or subtropical annual erect herb (Sesamum indicum of the family Pedaliaceae) also : its small seeds used especially as a source of oil and a flavoring agent

Illustration of sesame

Illustration of sesame

sesame 1

Examples of sesame in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Shipped in ready-to-heat cups (simply microwave for one to two minutes), the preservative-free vegetable medleys are available in three refreshing flavors: chickpea and za’atar, beet and sesame, and kale and lemongrass. Zoe Ruffner, Vogue, "5 New Healthy Meal-Delivery Programs, Just In Time for Summer," 11 July 2018 Flavors include green tea, black sesame, Thai tea and banana. Pam Kragen,, "22 San Diego ice cream shops where you can cool off on this very hot day," 6 July 2018 The Chinatown locale also offers an inky black sesame, along with matcha, honeydew, and other unusual flavors, all of which can be paired with unlimited toppings. Grace Dickinson,, "6 cool ways to get out of the heat this summer in Philadelphia," 3 July 2018 There are patches of sesame, kitchen gardens of watermelon and papaya, and a lot of uncertainty in the air. Somini Sengupta, New York Times, "Why Build Kenya’s First Coal Plant? Hint: Think China," 27 Feb. 2018 Striped bass wears a tiny dab of chile sauce with a sesame punch and crisp chile flakes. Dominic Armato, azcentral, "No-frills Sushi Nakano one of the best casual sushi restaurants in Phoenix," 10 July 2018 The signature smoked pork ribs can be had in three different styles: American barbecue, al pastor and sesame-gochujang. Greg Morago, Houston Chronicle, "First Look: International Smoke at CityCentre," 3 July 2018 In Carmel, find a New Orleans-style muffaletta with mortadella, city ham, salame cotto, provolone, mozzarella, olive salad and giardiniera on a sesame roll. Liz Biro, Indianapolis Star, "Sun King Distillery in Carmel: What to know before you go," 3 July 2018 Warm Sweet Potato-Chopped Salad with Fish You've never had potato salad like this before. Ditch the typical mayonnaise base for creamy sesame dressing for an inventive new take on a summer staple. Danielle Page, USA TODAY, "Inventive summer salads for a fresh take on dinner," 2 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sesame

alteration of earlier sesam, sesama, from Latin sesamum, sesama, from Greek sēsamon, sēsamē, of Semitic origin; akin to Akkadian šamaššamu sesame

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Dictionary Entries near sesame





sesame grass

sesame oil


Statistics for sesame

Last Updated

17 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for sesame

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

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English Language Learners Definition of sesame

: a plant that is grown in warm regions and that produces small flat seeds that are used in cooking and as a source of oil


ses·a·me | \ˈses-ə-mē also ˈsez-\

Medical Definition of sesame 

: a widely cultivated annual erect herb (Sesamum indicum synonym S. orientale of the family Pedaliaceae) also : its small somewhat flat seeds used as a source of sesame oil and a flavoring agent

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More from Merriam-Webster on sesame

Spanish Central: Translation of sesame

Nglish: Translation of sesame for Spanish Speakers

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

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a state of commotion or excitement

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