When you eat a meal, you sit down and dine on food. Breakfast is usually the first meal of the day, but if you oversleep your first meal might be lunch instead.

You can use the word meal to talk about the occasion (like dinner or brunch), or about the food itself. For example, you might say that chili and cornbread is your favorite meal during the colder months, or that a fast food hamburger eaten in the car is a poor excuse for a meal. Yet another meaning of meal is "edible ground grain or beans," like cornmeal or soybean meal.

Definitions of meal
  1. noun
    any of the occasions for eating food that occur by custom or habit at more or less fixed times
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    type of:
    the time of a particular event
  2. noun
    the food served and eaten at one time
    synonyms: repast
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    a meal eaten in a mess hall by service personnel
    square meal
    a substantial and nourishing meal
    whatever happens to be available especially when offered to an unexpected guest or when brought by guests and shared by all
    a light meal or repast
    the first meal of the day (usually in the morning)
    combination breakfast and lunch; usually served in late morning
    dejeuner, lunch, luncheon, tiffin
    a midday meal
    afternoon tea, tea, teatime
    a light midafternoon meal of tea and sandwiches or cakes
    the main meal of the day served in the evening or at midday
    a light evening meal; served in early evening if dinner is at midday or served late in the evening at bedtime
    a meal set out on a buffet at which guests help themselves
    any informal meal eaten outside or on an excursion
    bite, collation, snack
    a light informal meal
    a large satisfying meal
    ploughman's lunch
    a meal consisting of a sandwich of bread and cheese and a salad
    banquet, feast, spread
    a meal that is well prepared and greatly enjoyed
    Passover supper, Seder
    (Judaism) the ceremonial dinner on the first night (or both nights) of Passover
    snacks and drinks served as a light meal
    continental breakfast, petit dejeuner
    a breakfast that usually includes a roll and coffee or tea
    business lunch
    lunch (usually at a restaurant) where business is discussed and the cost is charged as a business expense
    high tea
    substantial early evening meal including tea
    an informal meal cooked and eaten outdoors
    (Yiddish) a snack or light meal
    coffee break, tea break
    a snack taken during a break in the work day
    an assortment of foods starting with herring or smoked eel or salmon etc with bread and butter; then cheeses and eggs and pickled vegetables and aspics; finally hot foods; served as a buffet meal
    power breakfast
    a meeting of influential people to conduct business while eating breakfast
    type of:
    aliment, alimentation, nourishment, nutriment, nutrition, sustenance, victuals
    a source of materials to nourish the body
  3. noun
    coarsely ground foodstuff; especially seeds of various cereal grasses or pulse
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    coarsely ground grain in the form of pellets (as for pet food)
    Indian meal, cornmeal
    coarsely ground corn
    fine meal made from cereal grain especially wheat; often used as a cooked cereal or in puddings
    matzah meal, matzo meal, matzoh meal
    meal made from ground matzos
    oatmeal, rolled oats
    meal made from rolled or ground oats
    pea flour
    meal made from dried peas
    meal made of finely ground corn mixed with sugar and spices
    type of:
    food product, foodstuff
    a substance that can be used or prepared for use as food
Word Family

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