Synonyms of pinch in English:


See definition of pinch


1‘he pinched my arm harder’


nip, tweak, squeeze, compress, grasp

2‘my new shoes pinch my big toe’


hurt, cause pain to, pain

squeeze, crush, cramp, chafe, confine

be uncomfortable, cause discomfort, be painful

3‘if I scraped and pinched a bit, I might manage’


economize, be economical, scrimp, scrimp and save, cut corners, reduce wastage, skimp, stint, be sparing, be frugal, cut back, tighten one's belt, draw in one's horns, retrench, cut expenditure, cut one's coat according to one's cloth

be niggardly, be tight-fisted, be close

informal be stingy, be tight, be mingy

4‘he was pinched for drink-driving’


arrest, take into custody, apprehend, take prisoner, detain, seize, capture, catch, lay hold of, take in, haul in

collar, nab, pick up, pull in, run in, nick, bust, nail, do, feel someone's collar

5‘you shouldn't have pinched his biscuits’


steal, thieve, rob, take, snatch, pilfer, purloin, loot, rifle, abscond with, carry off

embezzle, misappropriate

walk away with, walk off with, run away with, run off with, swipe, nab, rip off, lift, liberate, filch

nick, half-inch, whip, knock off, nobble, bone

North American heist, glom

Australian snavel

West Indian tief

archaic crib, hook


1‘he gave her arm a pinch’


nip, tweak, squeeze

2‘dissolve the yeast in the water with a pinch of sugar’


small quantity, bit, touch, dash, spot, trace, soupçon, speck, taste

informal smidgen, smidge, tad


    at a pinch

      ‘there's room for four adults, five at a pinch’


      if necessary, with difficulty, in case of necessity, if need be, in an emergency, just possibly

      North American

      in a pinch

      British informal

      at a push

    feel the pinch

      ‘the recession hit us hard and many of our customers have been feeling the pinch’


      suffer hardship, have less money, be short of money, be poor, be impoverished, suffer poverty, suffer adversity

    if it comes to the pinch


      if things get bad, if it comes to the push, in an emergency, in a crisis, in times of hardship, if one is in difficulty, in time of need, in case of necessity, if necessary

    take something with a pinch of salt

      ‘take these figures with a pinch of salt in an election year’


      disbelieve, not believe, not credit, give no credence to, discredit, discount, doubt, distrust, mistrust, be suspicious of, have no confidence in, have no faith in, be incredulous of, be unconvinced about

      not accept, reject, repudiate, question, challenge, contradict