Definition of kosher in English:



  • 1(of food, or premises in which food is sold, cooked, or eaten) satisfying the requirements of Jewish law.

    ‘a kosher kitchen’
    • ‘But my mother was worried about how she would feed and care for four kids who could eat only kosher food.’
    • ‘Sara Goldstein, of Long Island, New York, has the added requirement of finding kosher foods suitable for her Weight Watchers diet.’
    • ‘The soldier related that he was assigned to a remote base where there were no Jewish soldiers, no religious services, no kosher food and where it was impossible to keep Shabbat or any mitzvah at all.’
    • ‘Being hungry, I stopped at the cafeteria and asked if they had kosher food.’
    • ‘Then he added it to a bowl with cayenne pepper, kosher salt, and brown sugar.’
    • ‘‘Our wedding meal was the first kosher food we ever ate,’ recalled Sarah years later.’
    • ‘Since customers would normally assume the meat is kosher, the defect must be revealed to all customers, even non-Jewish ones, to avoid misleading them.’
    • ‘Or, scrub the pot with half a lemon sprinkled with kosher salt, and rinse thoroughly.’
    • ‘For kosher meat, Kashrut law stipulates that all meat must be consumed within 72 hours of slaughter.’
    • ‘They visit the kitchens to certify that the food is kosher, that is, cooked in accordance with Jewish law.’
    • ‘The Army lost all the kosher food I'd brought with me, and my wife had to work hard back in the States just to make sure I was fed.’
    • ‘Paul and James soon came into conflict as Paul gradually dropped the basic Jewish ceremonies and rituals, such as the eating of kosher foods and the circumcision.’
    • ‘Animals killed for Muslim halal and Jewish kosher meat are exempt from the rule that ensures all animals are stunned before being slaughtered.’
    • ‘An American film crew, with Jewish producers, ‘just happened’ to be in post-production at the time, and they insisted on kosher food.’
    • ‘Having placed their beliefs and trust in the national union, Jewish students expected, as promised, their religious requirements of kosher food to be met.’
    • ‘Now, thank God, we have two beautiful Jewish children attending Jewish day school, keep Shabbat and have a kosher kitchen.’
    • ‘The center, which prepares kosher food for needy Jews, occupies the ground floor of a five-story residential building.’
    • ‘KosherPets was founded by a Florida couple who started feeding kosher meat to their dog for health reasons.’
    • ‘No less a part of Jewish tradition than kosher food or circumcision, faith in the coming of the Messiah is a central pillar of Judaism.’
    • ‘That's when you combine kosher salt, brown sugar, juniper berries, and a lot of water.’
    allowable, allowed, permissible, permitted, acceptable, passable, tolerable, satisfactory, justifiable, defensible, supportable, well founded, tenable, sound, sensible, reasonable
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    1. 1.1 (of a person) observing Jewish food laws.
  • 2informal Genuine and legitimate.

    ‘she consulted lawyers to make sure everything was kosher’
    • ‘‘I recognised from the beginning that it wasn't kosher,’ she told the inspectors.’
    • ‘I know this isn't kosher, this isn't how you're supposed to read books!’
    • ‘Despite its widespread popularity among Florida's politicians, the bond cap statute was not entirely kosher from a constitutional point of view.’
    • ‘Yet I had always felt something wasn't quite kosher.’
    • ‘I've talked to real witch hunters, kosher ones, who spent years and years going through real witchcraft trial evidence in France to see what the real witches were like but a lot of them were male.’
    • ‘Something else about his movements wasn't kosher.’
    authentic, real, actual, original, pukka, bona fide, true, veritable, unfeigned, unadulterated, unalloyed
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Restrictions on the foods suitable for Jews are derived from rules in the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy. Animals must be slaughtered and prepared in the prescribed way, in which the blood is drained from the body, while certain creatures, notably pigs and shellfish, are forbidden altogether. Meat and milk must not be cooked or consumed together, and separate utensils must be kept for each. Strict observance of these rules is today confined mainly to Orthodox Jews


[with object]
  • Prepare (food) according to the requirements of Jewish law.

    • ‘Pot and utensils that cannot be koshered are put away and replaced with Passover dishes.’
    • ‘The consumer is advised to check this with the butcher to determine if the meat has been koshered.’
    • ‘Foods that are made with fire - barbecue, anything baked in an oven - have to be koshered with fire.’
    • ‘Livers are koshered by being salted and grilled until cooked through, instead of being soaked.’
    • ‘Meat and poultry must be properly slaughtered and koshered in the manner outlined in the Jewish dietary laws.’
    • ‘Liver may only be koshered through broiling, because of the preponderance of blood in it.’
    • ‘All other oils not marked with a ` K’ have been made on equipment that may have been used for animal products and have been koshered in an acceptable manner.’
    • ‘Some organs can not be koshered merely by salting and rinsing; they require special treatment.’
    • ‘Nowadays, most meat is koshered before sale by the butcher, thus sparing the consumer the trouble.’
    • ‘Meat to be koshered must come from animals that have split hooves and chew their cud.’
    • ‘Those who are strict about eating only glatt kosher meat eat only meat that is koshered within the three days of Shechita.’
    • ‘Liver may only be koshered by the broiling method, because it has so much blood in it and such complex blood vessels.’


  • keep (or eat) kosher

    • Observe the Jewish food regulations (kashrut).

      • ‘As an orthodox Jew, he observes Shabbat, eats kosher, and prays three times a day.’
      • ‘His family kept kosher, went to services and developed its community around the temple.’
      • ‘He explained the rituals of eating kosher and keeping Shabbat as spiritual practices.’
      • ‘I worked at the Hebrew Academy Day Camp; many of the girls I dated in high school kept kosher.’
      • ‘I figured there was no reason to mention that I now kept kosher and make a scene.’


Mid 19th century: from Hebrew kāšēr ‘proper’.