Share this entry

Share this page


Syllabification: yolk
Pronunciation: /yōk

Definition of yolk in English:


1The yellow internal part of a bird’s egg, which is surrounded by the white, is rich in protein and fat, and nourishes the developing embryo.
Example sentences
  • These new noodles substitute soy flour for semolina flour and may contain egg whites or yolks to boost protein.
  • Whole egg protein contains yolks and whites, providing a high ratio of indispensable amino acids.
  • Fold the egg whites into the egg yolk and sugar mixture.
1.1 Zoology The corresponding part in the ovum or larva of all egg-laying vertebrates and many invertebrates.
Example sentences
  • In contrast to the fluid yolk of atherinomorphs, yolk is organized into globules in other taxa.
  • An estimate of the daily amount of yolk deposited on developing ova and the sequence of laying are important when evaluating the total cost of egg production.
  • In this study, we investigated differences in maternally deposited yolk testosterone and DHT in relation to diet quality.


Old English geol(o)ca, from geolu 'yellow'.



[also in combination]
Example sentences
  • Females are ovoviviparous, retaining yolked embryos without nourishing them.
  • This effect is most pronounced in the heavily yolked eggs of birds and zebrafish.
  • But while Lincoln and Washington are yolked in the generic President's Day holiday, King has that third Monday of January to himself.


Example sentences
  • The mean diameter for yolkless egg ranges from below 40 mm to above 55 mm.
  • A harness with a satellite transmitter was applied after she finished laying 88 eggs and 20 yolkless eggs.
  • It was my turn to catch the eggs. 69 yolked and 67 yolkless, a somewhat unusual proportion.


Example sentences
  • Female hagfish produce between 20 and 30 yolky, shelled eggs at a time.

Definition of yolk in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day ingratiate
Pronunciation: ɪnˈɡreɪʃɪeɪt
bring oneself into favour with someone through flattery…