Definition of sauce in English:

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Pronunciation: /sɔːs/


[mass noun]
1A liquid or semi-liquid substance served with food to add moistness and flavour: tomato sauce [count noun]: the stock cubes can be added to soups and sauces
More example sentences
  • It us used as a thickener in ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet, cheese, low-fat salad dressings, ketchup, sauces and many other food products.
  • The organic farmers and food processors who supply ingredients for his hot sauces and salad dressings generally share his commitment to high-quality, eco-friendly food.
  • No longer could the shortcomings of a meal be disguised with sauces: nouvelle cuisine required wonderfully fresh ingredients and a great deal of culinary skill.
relish, dressing, condiment, ketchup, flavouring;
French jus, coulis
1.1North American Stewed fruit, especially apples, eaten as dessert or used as a garnish.
Example sentences
  • Try making your own apple sauce and pear sauce; don't add any sugar, as these fruits are sweet enough on their own.
  • Meanwhile, you do know how to make delicious homemade cranberry sauce, don't you?
2 (the sauce) informal Alcoholic drink: she’s been on the sauce for years
More example sentences
  • He'd self-destructed with an alcohol problem, he explained, and had turned out a number of turkeys while on the sauce.
alcohol, liquor, alcoholic drink, strong drink, intoxicating drink, spirits
informal booze, the bottle, the hard stuff, mother's milk, hooch
British informal wallop
Northern English & Irish informal sup
North American informal juice
Australian/New Zealand informal grog
3 informal, chiefly British Impertinence; cheek: ‘None of your sauce,’ said Aunt Edie
impudence, impertinence, cheek, cheekiness, effrontery, irreverence, sauciness, pertness, freshness, flippancy, insolence, rudeness, disrespect, disrespectfulness, familiarity, presumption, presumptuousness, audacity, audaciousness, boldness, brazenness, forwardness, cockiness, shamelessness
informal mouth, lip, neck, brass neck, nerve, face
British informal backchat
Scottish informal snash
North American informal sassiness, sass, chutzpah, smart mouth, back talk
archaic malapertness, contumely
rare procacity


[with object]
1Provide a sauce for (something); season with a sauce: the vegetables were deliciously spiced and sauced
More example sentences
  • Crunchy, pale, looking like a cross between retractable antennae and geometric Aztec art, they're sauced with chili oil, ginger, garlic, and fresh slices of scallion, and have all the crunchy appeal of summertime picnic food.
  • Early the next morning, the dough is sauced, cheese is added, and it is baked for 15 to 20 minutes at 430 degrees in a revolving shelf oven.
  • An unusually light tete de veau is sauced with an unusually well-gauged sauce greibish - a standard dish, of course, but rendered with expertise.
1.1Make more interesting and exciting: there was no consolation in saucing his ambition with fantasies of wealth
2 informal Be rude or impudent to (someone): a boy had sauced a monitor who wanted his shoes shined



Example sentences
  • New York pizza, contrary to the reputation, is among the worst in the country; it's usually made hours in advance, and it's generally sauceless.
  • Three enormous, sauceless meatballs made even the mountainous pile of unexceptional potato salad look small in comparison.
  • I was served salmon poached in red wine on a bed of sauceless tagliatelle which was cold.


Middle English: from Old French, based on Latin salsus 'salted', past participle of salere 'to salt', from sal 'salt'. Compare with salad.

  • This is another word that goes back to Latin sal salt, along with sausage (Late Middle English), and salsa (mid 19th century), which is simply the Spanish word for ‘sauce’. The Latin American dance the salsa (late 20th century) is so named because it is ‘saucy’. The expression what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander implies that both sexes should be able to behave in the same way. John Ray, who recorded the saying in his English Proverbs of 1670, remarked that ‘This is a woman's Proverb’. Cups now sit on saucers, but in the Middle Ages a saucer was used for holding condiments or sauces, and was usually made of metal. The description saucy originally simply meant ‘savoury, flavoured with a sauce’. In the early 16th century it began to refer to people and behaviour, meaning at first ‘impudent, presumptuous’, mellowing into ‘cheeky’, then taking on suggestive overtones.

Words that rhyme with sauce

coarse, corse, course, divorce, endorse (US indorse), enforce, force, gorse, hoarse, horse, morse, Norse, perforce, reinforce, source, torse

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: sauce

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