Definition of main course in English:

main course


  • 1The most substantial course of a meal.

    ‘it is vital to have a light first course and pud on either side of a heavy main course’
    • ‘Add a rice vegetable salad to round out the main course and top off the meal with an irresistible chocolate dessert.’
    • ‘In addition to all the standard pizza and pasta dishes, there were main courses of veal, lamb, chicken, pork and beef to choose from, plus fish dishes and even grills.’
    • ‘We have a huge range of dishes, from appetisers to soups, to main courses, European dishes and side orders.’
    • ‘I had four starters, five main courses, one vegetable dish, two accompaniments and two desserts.’
    • ‘By the end, you'll have mastered one starter, two pasta dishes, two main courses and one dessert.’
    • ‘There are no pork dishes as a main course and the fish soup is made without shellfish.’
    • ‘You cannot eat Boston cream pie as your main course and then have lettuce for dessert and claim you are on a diet!’
    • ‘In fact different kinds of bread made in different ways accompanied the main course at meals.’
    • ‘We decided to choose a three-course meal, including a main course from the carvery, for £18 each.’
    • ‘Meat and fish main courses were exemplary and made imaginative use of local ingredients.’
    • ‘The dishes will then be delivered at home five times a day, which includes main courses, drinks, vegetables, fruit, dim sum and Chinese herbs.’
    • ‘She promptly ordered a tuna steak for her main course while I busied myself with the wine list.’
    • ‘The variety of food is extremely wide - from salads, cold and hot starters and pizzas to main courses of lamb, pork, chicken, or fish.’
    • ‘The main courses that anchor the meal can be divided into a variety of types in addition to the simple grills and roasts that are as popular in Mexico as anywhere else.’
    • ‘The restaurant serves antipasto dishes and main courses with pasta or risotto.’
    • ‘If our starters were a splendid beginning to our meal, the main courses were even better.’
    • ‘The darker evenings have succeeded in pointing me towards more substantial main courses, deeper flavours and a bit of long, slow cooking at the weekend.’
    • ‘The Thai entrées include main courses, desserts and vegetarian meals, with the calorie count identified on each package.’
    • ‘They will be making lemon pepper chicken for the main course and banana and lemon cake for the dessert.’
    • ‘There were also extremely long intervals between individual salads and main courses and the desserts also took an inexplicably long time to arrive.’
    main dish, main meal
    View synonyms
  • 2The mainsail of a square-rigged sailing ship.

    • ‘The yard arm could carry a maximum of 30 men so the size of the largest sail (the Main Course) was limited to the weight that could be lifted by 30 men working together on the main yard.’
    • ‘Once the size of the main course was set, the sizes of the other sails followed, graded according to the mast and height above deck.’