Definition of start off (or start someone/something off) in US English:

start off (or start someone/something off)

phrasal verb

  • 1Begin (or cause someone or something to begin) working, operating, or dealing with something.

    ‘treatment should start off with attention to diet’
    ‘what started you off on this search?’
    • ‘If you are a jazz-rock-fusion fan, I highly recommend starting your musical year off right by getting this CD.’
    • ‘There's that playful, percussive guitar which starts it off, and there are those multiple false endings, and the entire song does actually sound like lots of fun, as long as you don't listen to the words.’
    • ‘The ceremonies were started off with a Catholic mass in the cathedral in Monaco.’
    • ‘Thanks to Nick for starting me off on reading Robert Rankin.’
    • ‘I gave his mother a hug when she began to cry, she started me off too, and just then I noticed that she must have been hurting more than I was.’
    • ‘Kate starts things off singing something called ‘I Wish’.’
    • ‘Our parents started us off in music when we were very young.’
    • ‘He starts things off by revisiting the acoustic song ‘Big Mama's Door’ from his debut, instilling a bit more muscle in the mix - the hard-rock reworking easily transcends his original.’
    • ‘Her senior year had just begun, and she wanted to start it off with a bang.’
    • ‘But the basic story's a hoax newspaper article from Chicago which people don't realise is a hoax, and that's what starts the whole thing off.’
    1. 1.1start off Begin a meal.
      ‘she started off with soup’
      • ‘I started off with the Thai fishcakes with sweet chilli sauce, and was very pleasantly surprised.’
      • ‘I started off with a bowl of steamed mussels with bacon, basil, pine nuts and Parmesan.’
      • ‘You can easily have an entire meal of tapas or start off with tapas and move on to a main course.’