Definition of vegetable in English:


Syllabification: veg·e·ta·ble
Pronunciation: /ˈvejtəbəl, ˈvəjətə-


  • 1A plant or part of a plant used as food, typically as accompaniment to meat or fish, such as a cabbage, potato, carrot, or bean.
    More example sentences
    • Both dishes came with a mountain of fresh vegetables - spinach, carrots and green beans.
    • Why not consider taking on an allotment and growing your own fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs.
    • Scottish diets are high in fat and there is a marked deficiency of fruit and vegetables.
  • 2 informal A person with a dull or inactive life: I thought I’d sort of flop back and be a vegetable for a bit
  • 2.1 offensive A person who is incapable of normal mental or physical activity, especially through brain damage.


[attributive] Back to top  
  • 1Of or relating to vegetables as food: a vegetable garden vegetable soup
    More example sentences
    • Set up a buffet to serve simple foods such as vegetable soup, bread, cheese, and fresh fruit, plus hot coffee and tea.
    • The children received cooking classes from local chefs who introduced them to cooking healthy foods such as vegetable soup and home made pizzas.
    • Add the peas, fava beans, carrots, leeks, and vegetable stock.
  • 1.1Of or relating to plants or plant life, especially as distinct from animal life or mineral substances: vegetable matter
    More example sentences
    • However, the commercial fish food is designed to offer a nutrient-rich and balanced diet, and it contains both animal and vegetable matter.
    • Natural fibers may be of animal, vegetable, or mineral origin.
    • Seeds and insects are part of their diet year round, but the ratio of animal and vegetable matter fluctuates throughout the year.


late Middle English (in the sense 'growing as a plant'): from Old French, or from late Latin vegetabilis 'animating', from Latin vegetare (see vegetate). The noun dates from the late 16th century.

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