Definition of pestle in English:


Syllabification: pes·tle
Pronunciation: /ˈpestl, ˈpesəl


  • 1A heavy tool with a rounded end, used for crushing and grinding substances such as spices or drugs, usually in a mortar.
    More example sentences
    • And I used cardamom seeds that I crushed in my pestle and mortar, rather than ready-ground.
    • With a mortar and pestle, crush the thyme, garlic, and peppercorns and place in a large saucepan.
    • In indigenous villages, women often make the tortillas the traditional way by grinding corn with a rounded pestle on a flat lava stone called a piedra or metate.
  • 1.1A mechanical device for grinding, pounding, or stamping something.
    More example sentences
    • The homogenate was further macerated with quartz sand (at a ratio of quartz sand to denaturing solution of 16.7-33.3 mg ml - 1) in a mortar with a pestle in a draft chamber.
    • The dolomite powder was milled in a mechanical mortar and pestle for several hours, resulting in an average grain size of about 2 ìm.


[with object] Back to top  
  • Crush or grind (a substance such as a spice or drug) with a pestle: she measured seeds into the mortar and pestled them to powder
    More example sentences
    • When well done, sticky rice is placed in mortar to pestle.
    • So then I fried the bacon until impossibly crisp, crumbled some on my salad, placed the rest in a mortar and proceeded to pestle the remainder.


Middle English: from Old French pestel, from Latin pistillum, from pist- 'pounded', from the verb pinsere.

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