\ ˈyōk How to pronounce yolk (audio) , ˈyelk (in cultivated speech especially Southern US) also ˈyōlk, ˈyȯlk, ˈyälk, ˈyəlk \
variants: or less commonly yoke \ ˈyōk How to pronounce yoke (audio) \

Definition of yolk

1a : the yellow spheroidal mass of stored food that forms the inner portion of the egg of a bird or reptile and is surrounded by the white — see egg illustration
b archaic : the whole contents of an animal ovum consisting of a protoplasmic formative portion and an inert nutritive portion
c : material stored in an animal ovum that supplies food to the developing embryo and consists chiefly of proteins, lecithin, and cholesterol
2 [akin to Middle Dutch ieke yolk (of wool), Old English ēowu ewe] : oily material in unprocessed sheep wool consisting of wool fat, suint, and debris

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from yolk

yolked \ ˈyōkt How to pronounce yolked (audio) , ˈyelkt , (in cultivated speech, especially Southern US)  also  ˈyōlkt , ˈyȯlkt , ˈyälkt , ˈyəlkt \ adjective
yolky \ ˈyō-​kē How to pronounce yolky (audio) , ˈyel-​ (in cultivated speech, especially Southern US) also  ˈyōl-​ , ˈyȯl-​ , ˈyäl-​ , ˈyəl-​ \ adjective

Examples of yolk in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web To make a half-batch of aioli, whisk it by hand and use 1 egg yolk rather than half of a whole egg. Sunset Magazine, "21 Recipes You Should Be Cooking This September," 1 Sep. 2020 Making sure there is no yolk in the whites, Mussi says. Lesley Kennedy, CNN Underscored, "What is cloud bread? TikTok’s latest colorful food trend, explained," 26 Aug. 2020 Whisk in the milk, heavy cream, coconut milk, egg and egg yolk; then add the shredded coconut and whisk again. Jessie Sheehan, Washington Post, "This no-bake coconut cream pie plays it cool with a chocolate cookie crust," 12 Aug. 2020 The tortello d’uovo — a giant pasta pocket sheathing a gooey egg yolk — is Trattoria Monti's signature dish. Hannah Walhout, Travel + Leisure, "Rome's Esquilino Neighborhood Is Home to More Than Just the Famous Termini Train Station — Here's What to Explore," 15 Aug. 2020 Next, when cracking the eggs, be very careful to completely remove any yolk. Tirion Morris, The Arizona Republic, "Here's how to make cloud bread, the TikTok famous recipe that's taking over the Internet," 14 Aug. 2020 Lay on top, crimp edges, slice steam holes and baste with an egg yolk. Nicole Sours Larson, San Diego Union-Tribune, "30 pies in 30 days: San Diego author bakes up unique goal amid creative writing challenge," 12 Aug. 2020 Park’s version of mazesoba (a relatively recent dry noodle dish invented in Japan, inspired by Taiwanese ramen) tops thin and silky Inaniwa udon noodles with spicy ground pork, fine fresh garlic and a raw egg yolk. Louisa Chu, chicagotribune.com, "How Chicago restaurants are adapting to draw you back in: When a multi-course sit-down French menu no longer works, it’s time to pivot," 4 Aug. 2020 Stop by the rustic Thurman Café, serving over-the-top burger masterpieces dripping with egg yolk and melted cheese. Caitlin Morton, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Best Place to Visit in Every U.S. State," 28 July 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'yolk.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of yolk

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for yolk

Middle English yolke, from Old English geoloca, from geolu yellow — more at yellow

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about yolk

Time Traveler for yolk

Time Traveler

The first known use of yolk was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for yolk

Last Updated

11 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Yolk.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/yolk. Accessed 20 Sep. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for yolk


How to pronounce yolk (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of yolk

: the yellow part in the center of an egg


\ ˈyōk How to pronounce yolk (audio) \

Kids Definition of yolk

: the yellow inner part of the egg of a bird or reptile containing stored food material for the developing young


\ ˈyōk How to pronounce yolk (audio) \

Medical Definition of yolk

: material stored in an ovum that supplies food to the developing embryo and consists chiefly of proteins, lecithin, and cholesterol

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on yolk

Nglish: Translation of yolk for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of yolk for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about yolk

Comments on yolk

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Homophone Quiz

  • three bears two of them look like theyre whispering to a third bear who looks chuffed to be the center of attention
  • In order to judge how people felt, the senator's office hired a firm to take a ______.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!