There are 2 main definitions of mash in English:

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mash 1

Pronunciation: /maʃ/


[with object]
1Reduce (a food or other substance) to a pulpy mass by crushing it: mash the beans to a paste (as adjective mashed) mashed banana
More example sentences
  • With a potato masher, mash the tomatoes and bread together.
  • In a large bowl or food processor, mash bananas until mushy.
  • You may use steamed and mashed homemade foods or baby foods from jars.
1.1Crush or smash (something) to a pulp: he almost had his head mashed by a slamming door
More example sentences
  • Companies purchase thousands of tons of old newsprint every year: they mash it into a pulp, skim the ink off the top, and make more newsprint.
  • They'd take it, mash the flowers into pulp and use it to dye their fabrics for the village.
  • And now here they lie, in an echo of the little boy and the snowman, just a little mashed lifeless pile proving that the episode wasn't a dream at all.
pulp, crush, purée, cream, smash, squash, pound, beat, macerate, liquidize, liquefy, whip, grind, mince, soften, mangle, chew
1.2US & West Indian informal Press forcefully on (something): the worst thing you can do is mash the brake pedal
More example sentences
  • She forcefully reached over and mashed the play button, storming out of the room as the message began to play for her boss.
  • It's smooth and responsive, quickly downshifting when the gas is mashed, and upshifting late or early depending on what the driver is doing with the throttle.
  • Half the action scenes felt like someone was mashing the gas pedal while the parking brake was still engaged.
1.3US & West Indian informal Attack or assault: they both got mashed up pretty bad
More example sentences
  • I mean, come on, who would really run to the cameras with their face completely mashed up just to make her sales go up?
2(In brewing) mix (powdered malt) with hot water to form wort: the barley is dried out over peat fires and mashed with water which flows through peat ground
More example sentences
  • The materials to be distilled are mashed in water.
  • We have inherited two mighty tubs intended, probably, for mashing illicit whisky, but since we took over the quondam pig and Christmas tree empire, each of them contains a geranium.
  • It’s full of the rich, complex malt flavors that only mashing will give you.
3Northern English (With reference to tea) brew or infuse: I’ve just mashed a pot of tea [no object]: we’d let the pot mash for ten minutes
More example sentences
  • They decided to wait, so we asked them to take a seat and mashed a pot of tea in preparation for a chat.
  • She fried me two eggs and mashed a pot of tea.
  • I bit my tongue, and mashed a cup of tea to silence the rumbling of our stomachs.


1A soft mass made by crushing a substance into a pulp, sometimes with the addition of liquid: pound the garlic to a mash
More example sentences
  • Mash all of this together, season with pepper and pour over it enough of the meat stock to produce a mash of soft consistency.
  • The Panchara Patta is eaten by being crushed by hand into flakes, adding to a banana mash and mixing the two well.
  • We followed with fillet of cod coated in a herb and Parmesan crust served on a parsnip mash, and French onion, mushroom and Gruyère cheese tart.
pulp, purée, mush, paste, pâté, crush, slush, liquid
derogatory pap
1.1 [mass noun] British informal Mashed potato: for supper there was sausages and mash
More example sentences
  • This dish is perfect served with creamy mash and buttered cabbage.
  • She did sausages and mash and toad in the hole - that was one of our favourites.
  • Opt for simple comforting English fare like fish-finger sarnies with ketchup, or Cornish pasties and sausage and mash.
1.2 [mass noun] Bran mixed with hot water, given as a warm food to horses and other animals: a bucket of mash
More example sentences
  • If no pasture is available then the mare will have to be fed a bran mash to keep the feces loose.
  • Protein-rich worm feed and chicken mash are added for supplements.
  • She slowly transferred them to Pro-nutro then growing mash and finally garden bird seed.
1.3 [mass noun] (In brewing) a mixture of powdered malt and hot water, which is left to stand until the sugars dissolve to form the wort: the brewer now transfers the mash to a mash tun
More example sentences
  • I suspect that the reason the recipe calls for a large amount of sugar in the wort is that this mash doesn't produce enough fermentable sugars to make beer.
  • The ideal pH of the wort, which is the mash soaked in hot water, is about 4.7.
  • To make the mash, the malted barley is crushed between rollers and then wet with hot water, at around 65°C.

Phrasal verbs

mash something up

informal Mix or combine two or more different elements: in my films I’ve always tried to artfully mash up genres Dinsdale mashes up dance styles like UK garage, house, and hip-hop with masterful aplomb
More example sentences
  • Mashing up the superhero genre with the high school comedy, Mike Mitchell's Sky High is the kind of movie Disney should produce more often.
  • They toyed with Afro-Brazilian hoo-hah for a good few years before they started mashing up ragga, noise, punk, and R&B.
  • The London-born outfit emerged a few years ago and have spent their time since then mashing up an eclectic set of influences in a sound which can best be described as thrilling.


Old English māsc (as a brewing term), of West Germanic origin; perhaps ultimately related to mix.

  • Brewing provides the earliest context of mash. The mash is a mixture of ground malt and hot water which is left to stand to form the infusion called ‘wort’. The first example of mash meaning ‘mashed potatoes’ is from 1904, by the British MP and novelist A. E. W. Mason: ‘I…go into a public-house…and have a sausage and mash and a pot of beer.’ The word may ultimately be related to mix. This is from Latin mixtus which became mixte in Old French. This was heard by English speakers as ‘mixed’ and a new verb, to mix, was formed. As an abbreviation for ‘mobile army surgical hospital’ MASH goes back to 1950. The term was made famous in the 1970 film M*A*S*H, set in a field hospital during the Korean War. The film gave rise to a long-running TV series (1972–83).

Words that rhyme with mash

abash, ash, Ashe, bash, brash, cache, calash, cash, clash, crash, dash, encash, flash, gnash, hash, lash, Nash, panache, pash, plash, rash, sash, slash, smash, soutache, splash, stash, thrash, trash

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Line breaks: mash

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There are 2 main definitions of mash in English:

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Pronunciation: /maSH/

Entry from US English dictionary


Mobile army surgical hospital.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: MASH

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