chop·​stick ˈchäp-ˌstik How to pronounce chopstick (audio)
plural chopsticks
: one of a pair of slender sticks (as of wood or plastic) held between the thumb and fingers and used to lift food to the mouth
Never spear food with a chopstick! If you're having trouble picking up your food, a spoon is your plan B.Laura Barry
usually used in plural
To eat rice, both etiquette and practicality dictate that you use chopsticks to pick up a morsel of meat, fish, or whatever …; position it over the rice bowl, allowing its juices or sauce to drip into the rice; eat the morsel; then shovel some rice into your mouth with the chopsticks.Saveur
"… I do get uncomfortable when people use chopsticks for every Asian food. Traditionally, I may use chopsticks when my food is served in a soup bowl with noodles or rice, but we often use forks and spoons for our dishes. …"Darrell Loo, quoted in Feast

Illustration of chopstick

Illustration of chopstick

Examples of chopstick in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Using chopsticks or a spoon, stir until stringy and viscous. Megan Zhang, Saveur, 13 Sep. 2023 The noodles are picked up with chopsticks, dipped in the sauce and then eaten, solemnly, with a kind of reverence to their purity. Yotam Ottolenghi, New York Times, 13 Sep. 2023 Previously:Freddie Mercury's beloved piano, Queen song drafts, personal items on display before auction A collection of chopsticks once estimated to fetch 40-60 British pounds had a current bid 1,200 pounds ($1,500) on Wednesday. Brian Melley, USA TODAY, 7 Sep. 2023 Use a chopstick or dibber to gently create a small hole, sowing no more than two seeds per block. 3. Kristin Guy, Sunset Magazine, 28 Feb. 2023 Next, hot glue 12 black chopsticks, evenly spaced, to the center of the metal circle with a good amount of hot glue and let dry. Charlyne Mattox, Country Living, 9 Aug. 2023 New Yorkers with takeout-heavy diets soon won’t have to contend with an overwhelming array of unwanted plastic spoons and chopsticks. Laura Nahmias, Fortune, 20 June 2023 Give them a drink once every week or two, but only if a chopstick inserted into the soil comes out with no soil sticking to it, says Baldwin. Hadley Mendelsohn, House Beautiful, 12 June 2023 Consumers would be asked to later return their reusable food containers, knives, forks and chopsticks either through delivery or logistics partners who come to pick them up or in person via receptacles at participating restaurants. Katie Deighton,, 19 Apr. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'chopstick.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Chinese Pidgin English chop fast + English stick

First Known Use

1699, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of chopstick was in 1699

Dictionary Entries Near chopstick

Cite this Entry

“Chopstick.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Oct. 2023.

Kids Definition


chop·​stick ˈchäp-ˌstik How to pronounce chopstick (audio)
: one of a pair of slender sticks used chiefly in Asian countries to lift food to the mouth

More from Merriam-Webster on chopstick

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