Main definitions of savory in US English:

: savory1savory2

savory1

(British savoury)

adjective

  • 1(of food) belonging to the category that is salty or spicy rather than sweet.

    ‘fresh pineapple is useful in savory as well as in sweet dishes’
    • ‘As a big fan of fruit as part of the main savoury dish of the meal I thoroughly enjoyed this.’
    • ‘Fruit or savoury foods seem to be better at preventing nausea than sweeter snacks.’
    • ‘It is easy to identify sweets as culprits, but what about the hidden danger of sugar in savoury foods and foods thought to be healthy, such as breakfast cereals, fruit juices, salad dressings, and yoghurts?’
    • ‘In general, most of the salt we consume is not added during cooking or at the table, but comes from processed foods such as bread, cheese, savoury snacks, breakfast cereals and ready-meals.’
    • ‘Maple syrup is no longer relegated to its standard role of sweetening pancakes and waffles; this versatile ingredient adds flavor to both sweet and savory dishes alike.’
    • ‘During the holidays, savoury foods are a welcome change from sweet items that are so much part of festive entertaining.’
    • ‘Pears are one of the few fruits that lend themselves equally happily to sweet and savoury dishes.’
    • ‘In cooking it is often used as a garnish or decoration, both in sweet and in savoury dishes.’
    • ‘Many people, myself included, find bursts of sugar in savory food highly unpleasant.’
    • ‘To capture the essence, split the pods open lengthwise and scrape the seeds into sweet or savory dishes, then add the pods for good measure.’
    • ‘For a complete meal, serve this savory dish with brown rice, quinoa or whole-wheat couscous, and steamed green beans.’
    • ‘Thanks to a tart shallot vinaigrette, bitterish field greens and red onion, the overall effect is savory rather than sweet.’
    • ‘Leanne imagined thin, crispy crust smothered in sweet yet savory tomato sauce, warm cheese, pepperoni, and succulent mushrooms.’
    • ‘Tamarillo chutney recipes include a similar range of ingredients to those for savoury sauces, but don't need to be sieved.’
    • ‘Keep a light snack such as a savoury biscuit or cracker by your bed and eat before getting up in the morning or if you wake in the night, to help prevent sickness in the morning.’
    • ‘A savory bread pudding with tomato marmalade and smoked trout ran as a special on the appetizer menu briefly, and was popular enough to return for a lengthier menu visit a few weeks later.’
    • ‘Nutmeg is as popular a spice for savoury dishes as sweet, lending a mellow flavour to rice puddings, sausages and mash, baked custards and fruit cake.’
    • ‘In medieval times it was a common practice to use a hollowed-out loaf as the container for a sweet or savory dish or as the primary thickening agent next to almonds.’
    • ‘It was tasty enough, but I suspect the chef's talent lies with the savoury dishes.’
    • ‘Toss fresh or dried berries into savory dishes such as salsas, salads, pilafs and couscous.’
    salty, spicy, piquant, tangy
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Having an appetizing taste or smell.
      ‘she carried in a pie from the kitchen, steaming and savory’
      • ‘Romanian cuisine is savory, flavorful, and stimulating to the appetite.’
      • ‘Served in a small wooden bowl painted black on the exterior and red within, the soup was light and savoury.’
      • ‘Since then, I've longed to replicate the delicious, savory, and often quite filling meals that we ate together.’
      • ‘It was braised, succulent, savoury, fat-free, and served in its cooking liquid - which had been only slightly reduced.’
      • ‘The side dishes were, again, delicious and savory.’
      • ‘The wines were immediately recognisable by their elegant, restrained savoury characters.’
      • ‘Spending an evening there is a wonderful way to explore a cuisine rich in spices, savory flavors and creative combinations of ingredients.’
      • ‘The overwhelming feel here is of a big-boned, but savoury southern Rhone wine.’
      • ‘The pate had pistachios in it and bacon wrapped around it and tasted rich and savory and utterly decadent.’
      • ‘Steak, like the venison, is Scottish and very savoury.’
  • 2usually with negative Morally wholesome or acceptable.

    ‘everyone knew it was a front for less savory operations’
    • ‘But the task was becoming a less savory one, the world was annoying him at every turn.’
    • ‘I don't, frankly, think the Royal Family did look on them as particularly pleasant or savory people.’
    • ‘The most savoury of the paintings (if I can use that word without coming across as prudish) are a series of nudes done from life in South Africa.’
    acceptable, pleasant, palatable, wholesome, respectable, honourable, proper, seemly, creditable
    View synonyms

noun

British
  • A savory dish, especially a snack or appetizer.

    • ‘Their glass display counters are full of neatly arranged, creamy-looking biscuits, cakes, homemade sweets, delicious savouries and brightly coloured sweetmeats.’
    • ‘Doors open at 8 p.m. and wine and savouries will be served.’
    • ‘From a list of over 30 different items suggested by Penny, Irene chose some hot savouries, some cold savouries and some sweet desserts.’
    • ‘Guests grazed on savories such as chicken pot stickers, avocado egg rolls, quesadillas and chicken Marsala with mushrooms.’
    • ‘And to ensure uniformity in preparation, the restaurant used about 160 different pre-mixed spices in the elaborate preparation of the savouries.’
    • ‘The calories contributed by most sweets and savouries are listed out and the manager of the stall tells you how many hours you have to exercise to burn them.’
    • ‘Teas will be served during the afternoon and the organisers will welcome donations of food, cakes, and savouries.’
    • ‘I laid out the lasagna, savories, rice dish, baked potatoes, the cake, a selection of drinks and some fruit salad and managed to be on my way back to the kitchen when I heard the first people heading towards the dinner area.’
    • ‘If the food takes a little long to come, just have some savories and dips to ward off the hunger pangs in the guests, and relax and enjoy.’
    • ‘The sections cover sambar and rasam, vegetables, rice, tiffin, savouries, sweets, salads, pachadis, chutneys and pickles, comprising 100 recipes with interesting variations.’
    • ‘Now there's a wide-ranging choice of tasty burgers and crispy savouries, to say nothing of novelties like French fries, ice cream, milk shakes and sundaes.’
    • ‘His father had a shop selling savouries at the local railway station.’
    • ‘Warnings about consuming too much sugar get pushed to the back of the mind during festival time, when everyone is cooking and distributing delicious sweetmeats and savouries.’
    • ‘Around the corner at 27 rue des Rosiers is Boutique Jaune where you'll find all sorts of traditional Jewish, Russian and central European savouries.’
    • ‘All of that I had done myself, and I still had to put approximately 200 savories into the oven to be heated, and cut up some cheese with crackers.’
    • ‘The second day begins with a visit to Natalie's recently opened gourmet food store, with the atmosphere quickly turning from sampling savouries to discussing business.’
    • ‘It is a hot, sweet and sour delight that you can make time and again for use with fish and chicken dishes, or as a dipping sauce for spring rolls, poppadoms and savouries.’
    • ‘The spread was outrageous, she said, from homemade cannolis to cake and back again, not to mention the savories.’
    canapé, hors d'oeuvre, appetizer, titbit
    View synonyms

Origin

Middle English (in the sense ‘pleasing to the sense of taste or smell’): from Old French savoure ‘tasty, fragrant’, based on Latin sapor ‘taste’.

Pronunciation

savory

/ˈsāv(ə)rē//ˈseɪv(ə)ri/

Main definitions of savory in US English:

: savory1savory2

savory2

noun

  • An aromatic plant of the mint family, used as a culinary herb.

    Genus Satureja, family Labiatae: several species, in particular the annual summer savory (S. hortensis) and the coarser flavored perennial winter savory (S. montana)

    • ‘Certain herbs will also grow well in cooler temperatures including cilantro, winter thyme, winter savory & sage.’
    • ‘A versatile culinary herb that belongs to the same plant family as thyme is winter savory.’
    • ‘Harvest culinary and medicinal herbs like lemon balm, mint, French tarragon, summer savory and basil before they go to seed.’
    • ‘Together with dill, sorrel and summer savory, parsley was one of the herbs grown in every garden.’
    • ‘Sprinkle the dish with black pepper and garnish with winter savory.’

Origin

Middle English: perhaps from Old English sætherie, or via Old French, from Latin satureia.

Pronunciation

savory

/ˈsāv(ə)rē//ˈseɪv(ə)ri/