ses·​a·​me | \ ˈse-sə-mē How to pronounce sesame (audio) also ˈse-zə- How to pronounce sesame (audio) \

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 The bright orange mango half is topped with some sesame seeds, which add a unique flavor and crunch. Bon Appétit Contributor, Bon Appétit, 23 Sep. 2022 Both versions arrive with two thick, crisped slices of challah crusted with black and white sesame seeds. Los Angeles Times, 9 Sep. 2022 It's topped with an orange drizzle of gochujang and sprinkled with black sesame seeds. Alexandra Schonfeld, Peoplemag, 31 Aug. 2022 Sprinkle with sesame seeds, if using, and toss again. People Staff,, 1 Aug. 2022 Eric seasons chickpeas with salty, nutty roasted seaweed and a sesame mayonnaise. New York Times, 20 July 2022 After a long day of typing, driving, washing, and doing chores, slather your hands with Kiehl's Ultimate Strength Hand Salve, which is formulated with glycerin, olive oil, shea butter, and sesame seed oil to intensely hydrate and soothe skin. Sarah Han, Allure, 18 July 2022 Crunchy sesame rice crackers act as both your vessel and utensil, making this a great finger food with a contrast in both textures and flavors. Christina Liao, Vogue, 8 July 2022 The final coating helps sesame seeds or scallions — or both — adhere to the chicken. Christopher Kimball, USA TODAY, 3 June 2022 See More

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.

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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Time Traveler for sesame

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

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Dictionary Entries Near sesame



sesame grass

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Last Updated

27 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Sesame.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Oct. 2022.

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More Definitions for sesame


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

More from Merriam-Webster on sesame

Nglish: Translation of sesame for Spanish Speakers

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


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