Definition of kipper in English:



  • 1A kippered fish, especially a herring.

    • ‘Oily fish such as herring, kippers, mackerel, pilchards, salmon, sardines and trout, contain oils that can lessen the risk of thrombosis.’
    • ‘Here you can purchase a range of specially selected, finest quality seafood, and also find out why this unique family business has been producing some of the world's finest smoked salmon and kippers for almost 100 years.’
    • ‘Decent dietary sources of vitamin D to include in the diet include kippers, mackerel, sardines and salmon.’
    • ‘I actually think the offer of a kipper was just a bluff, and doubt that the ‘chef’ in those guest houses would've been able to scramble an egg.’
    • ‘Smoked fish is now eaten all year round - but juicy kippers, smoked Finnan haddock or delicious Arbroath smokies are still especially tempting round about now.’
    • ‘After surviving on a 1950s diet including kippers and Spam, the lads devoured the WI's homemade cakes, sandwiches, scones, sausage rolls and quiche.’
    • ‘‘This smells worse than a pair of over ripe kippers,’ he said.’
    • ‘Parsley sauce isn't right with the kippers so I make a dill mayonnaise instead, or sometimes serve them with just a squeeze of lemon and a generous helping of greens.’
    • ‘One morning, you wake up and you want kippers; the next, you want fish pie.’
    • ‘Breakfast is positively Scottish - porridge (with a wee dram if you like), kippers and haddock are all available, and there's usually a chef's special surprise as well.’
    • ‘The best kippers start with the best herring, freshly caught in the cold waters of the Atlantic or North Sea.’
    • ‘At Craster you can taste the famous oak-smoked kippers, and buy freshly caught fish.’
    • ‘I ate kippers and scrambled eggs, and watched a blind man make jewellery boxes while the waitresses fussed over his dog.’
    • ‘The breakfasts are legendary, with proper pinhead-oatmeal porridge, home-baked croissants and main courses including black pudding, kippers and local smoked fish.’
    • ‘For example, the Queen reportedly loved kippers, smoked haddock and Irish stew.’
    • ‘What began as a trestle table selling kippers became a smart, but never off-putting, restaurant offering the best seafood in the world, notably locally nurtured mussels and oysters.’
    • ‘We have a fantastic tradition of smoking fish in this country, and kippers are arguably one of our finest creations.’
    • ‘Many a person has gone away smiling after eating one of Kipperman's red herring, bloaters or kippers.’
    • ‘The staff are as friendly as family, and if you're ever here for a hearty Sunday breakfast, the word is that the kippers rock.’
    • ‘Steamed fish or bony kippers don't feature much in today's childhood diets.’
  • 2A male salmon in the spawning season.

    • ‘The spent or kipper salmon was long and lean, showing an immense head, spotted all over with black and brown spots.’
    • ‘Just as the kipper salmon are bred upriver but must swim to the sea before they can truly be called salmon, so the sins breed in the ear, the eye, and other parts of the body, but only become mortal sins when they reach the heart.’


  • Cure (a herring or other fish) by splitting it open and salting and drying it in the open air or in smoke.

    • ‘Allonby was once an important centre for herring fishing, and some of the old kippering houses can still be seen.’
    • ‘Peel has always been the Island's main fishing port with associated processing and kippering industries.’
    • ‘Simply put, kippered herring are herring that been split open, soaked in a brine solution and then smoked.’
    • ‘Whether it's smoked, pickled or kippered, herring packs more creatine than any other creature on the planet.’
    • ‘They held a huge celebration on the beach, where 15 men were waiting to butcher the animal, its meat later kippered and stewed.’
    conserve, bottle, tin, can, pot, chill, freeze, freeze-dry, quick-freeze, dry, desiccate, dehydrate
    View synonyms


Old English cypera ( kipper), of Germanic origin; related to Old Saxon kupiro, perhaps also to copper.