Definition of helping in English:



  • 1A portion of food served to one person at one time.

    ‘there will be enough for six helpings’
    • ‘Eliminate second helpings, high-calorie sauces and cookies made with butter, they say.’
    • ‘It was an area where she could be creative, so she invented and experimented and, judging by Sam's compliments and the second helpings that he served himself with, she was rather good at it.’
    • ‘A quick shower and a good helping of junk food later, we were settling in to watch the final episode of the TV programme.’
    • ‘Their favourite dish is cod and chips, served with a generous helping of salt and vinegar.’
    • ‘This is served with a helping of mashed potatoes, infused with onion for that unique cuisine taste.’
    • ‘Mum always makes sure I get second helpings of food every time we have a meal.’
    • ‘The pâté, pleasingly thick with a hint of orange, was cheerfully presented and came with a healthy helping of salad and grapes.’
    • ‘The remains of my second helping of kielbasa and potato salad sat before me.’
    • ‘Do we eat to live, or live, in part, to dig into that second helping of banana cream pie?’
    • ‘He was up to seven pancakes and six helpings of sausage when I stopped counting.’
    • ‘It's easy to say no publicly to second helpings and chocolate cake when you have eaten sweets before the meal.’
    • ‘They refuse her every wish - to wear plain, plaid dresses instead of fussy white muslin, to go barefoot outdoors, and to have second helpings of food.’
    • ‘He sat there, gloating as he ate his second helping of dessert.’
    • ‘Their idea of compassion is to ask the guest at the millionaire's banquet if they want an extra helping or a second dessert.’
    • ‘Be sure to politely say no thank you the next time someone offers to serve you large helping of meat pie at the dinner table.’
    • ‘Cafe Bistro serves up a healthy helping of a special summer salad.’
    • ‘At meal times surly British canteen staff allegedly refused to give the Indian marksmen second helpings of food.’
    • ‘I caught him trying to steal some of my food from the extra helpings on the plate.’
    • ‘Mania is about desperately seeking to live life at a more passionate level: taking second and sometimes third helpings on food, alcohol, drugs, sex and money.’
    • ‘The glass lifts rush up to the summit of this slim building at such a rate I regretted having a second helping of waffles with the obligatory maple syrup at breakfast.’
    portion, serving, piece, slice, share, spoonful, plate, plateful, bowlful, ration, allocation
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A quantity of something.
      ‘it's a powerful ballad tinged with a huge helping of gospel vibes’
      • ‘Imagine PJ Harvey with double the lung capacity and extra helpings of bile and angst.’
      • ‘Over the top of this whole unappetizing mess is lavished a huge helping of gore.’
      • ‘A triple helping of business advice and a generous amount of wine will be served up at the next meeting of the business forum.’
      • ‘Never one to do things by halves, Harvey takes the violence that popular novels use as a titillating spice, and lashes huge helpings of it on to the reader's plate.’
      • ‘Take those daily headlines of abruptly shifting trends with a huge helping of salt.’
      • ‘The collection includes a strong helping of 1930s blues and gospel, as well as a few early jazz records.’
      • ‘Even if the majority of the industry treat the concept as a joke, with huge helpings of cynicism added in, the average bloke on the street still believes in it.’
      • ‘It was clear that the evidence would be met with a huge helping of scepticism in Washington.’
      • ‘It often feels like Woody Allen (minus the expected helpings of angst), but it's not.’
      • ‘When the soap dries again, it is coated with a milky film, and I'll bet dollars to doughnuts that it will leave a huge helping of soap scum.’
      • ‘The increasing response of the dealers to their rivals claiming ever more generous helpings of the retail art market is to mount a powerful rearguard action in the shape of a spectacular or specialist art fair.’
      • ‘If you doubt the infallibility of the cookbook, these sample recipes should serve up a healthy helping of faith.’
      • ‘The game got off to a brisk start and there had already been a few helpings of excitement before Kenny Clark blew his whistle to award the team a penalty.’
      • ‘Well the most obvious difference is the huge helping of cache that Intel has added to the Extreme Edition.’
      • ‘There are some interesting autobiographical reflections, but also the expected helping of racial and class resentment.’
      • ‘A less driven woman might have been content with such generous helpings of immortality, but she was not that placid woman.’
      • ‘A mixture of mostly Gaelic sung tunes, these traditional helpings are served up using mainly harp, guitar, mandola, double bass, tin whistle and vocal and it's the tracks using this orchestration which probably stand out the most.’
      • ‘Linda said changing three sets of nappies, putting a trio of youngsters through school and dealing with triple helpings of teenage tantrums had not always been easy.’
      • ‘Kendal's Brewery Arts Centre serves up a double helping for jazz fans during the next month.’
      • ‘We were granted a few helpings of caramel sunshine, its rarity making it all the more delicious, but the day we went to Galway for the Arts Festival turned out to be deluge day.’