Definition of zest in English:

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Pronunciation: /zest/


1Great enthusiasm and energy: they campaigned with zest and intelligence [in singular]: she had a great zest for life
More example sentences
  • Physically, he looks no older than any man who will be 70 in February, but the spark, the MacLeod zest for life, has painfully and obviously gone.
  • The eleven-year old retains his zest for the game and he responded gamely to Ruby's urgings and stayed on well to beat Frezenium by three lengths.
  • The five-year-old has become a celebrity since her rescue from a Ukrainian orphanage, her zest for life and beaming smile winning her many friends.
enthusiasm, gusto, relish, appetite, eagerness, keenness, avidity, zeal, fervor, ardor, passion;
verve, vigor, liveliness, sparkle, fire, animation, vitality, dynamism, energy, brio, pep, spirit, exuberance, high spirits, joie de vivre
informal zing, zip, oomph, vim, pizzazz, get-up-and-go
1.1A quality of excitement and piquancy: I used to try to beat past records to add zest to my monotonous job
More example sentences
  • In fact, the emphasis on sex and its supposed sin can actually give the whole thing an atmosphere of wonderful piquancy and zest.
  • Tiny strips of lime zest added an occasional extra tang to the mix.
  • Velvet brocade, print and lace added extra zest to some jean styles.
piquancy, tang, flavor, savor, taste, spice, spiciness, relish, bite;
excitement, interest, an edge
informal kick, punch, zing, oomph
2The outer colored part of the peel of citrus fruit, used as flavoring.
Example sentences
  • Add the yogurt cheese, cream cheese, sugar, flour, lemon and orange zests.
  • Add the orange and lemon zests, as well as the pepper and the vanilla.
  • In a container, combine the syrup, Lime leaf, and zests of the lemon, orange, and lime.
rind, peel, skin


[with object]
Scrape off the outer colored part of the peel of (a piece of citrus fruit) for use as flavoring: zest the orange and lemon, taking care to discard all of the white pith
More example sentences
  • Chop the bacon and onion, zest the lemon.
  • Zest the rind of a lemon to produce one teaspoon of zest.
  • For the crab: Using a grater, zest the lemon and remove the segments.



Pronunciation: /ˈzes(t)f(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • The film holds up as a zestful paean to youthful high spirits.
  • Indulge in a zestful evening of fun, great entertainment, great food and great lucky draw prizes at the perfect venue for the whole family and friends to enjoy and cherish.
  • A zestful approach was the preserve of Rangers.


Pronunciation: /ˈzes(t)fəlē/
Example sentences
  • They talked zestfully and this made me uncomfortable.
  • You can look zestfully clean with this white fashion apparel.
  • John Tillinger has directed zestfully, although a coffee-cup-stirring sequence is stretched beyond endurance.


Pronunciation: /-fəlnəs/
Example sentences
  • The sweetly tart zestfulness in the mouth is underscored by a clean, almost minty hop bitterness.
  • As with children throughout the South, his natural zestfulness and affection for others had been killed.
  • To enjoy Spanish cuisine is to partake in the Spanish culture, both offering zestfulness, richness, and happiness.


Pronunciation: /ˈzestē/
Example sentences
  • Mathematical physics is like music, which a young and zesty spirit can best seize and use, as did Mozart.
  • We like her and the zesty and enthusiastic way she approaches life seems to have a stimulating effect on those around her.
  • This zesty, youthful craze is a happy financial coincidence for many New World wineries.


Late 15th century: from French zeste 'orange or lemon peel', of unknown origin.

Words that rhyme with zest

abreast, arrest, attest, beau geste, behest, bequest, best, blessed, blest, breast, Brest, Bucharest, Budapest, celeste, chest, contest, crest, digest, divest, guest, hest, infest, ingest, jest, lest, Midwest, molest, nest, northwest, pest, prestressed, protest, quest, rest, self-addressed, self-confessed, self-possessed, southwest, suggest, test, Trieste, unaddressed, unexpressed, unimpressed, unpressed, unstressed, vest, west, wrest

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: zest

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