A kumquat is a very small, sour citrus fruit. Kumquats look like tiny oranges — and you eat them whole, skin and all.

Kumquats are often used to make jam or cooked with sugar to counter their acidic flavor. If you're a fan of sour candy, you might love the taste of a fresh kumquat, and the sensation of biting through its sweet rind to a sour burst of juice at the center. Kumquats originated in China, and their name comes from the Cantonese kamkwat, from kam, "golden," and kwat, "orange."

Definitions of kumquat

n any of several trees or shrubs of the genus Fortunella bearing small orange-colored edible fruits with thick sweet-flavored skin and sour pulp

cumquat, kumquat tree
Fortunella japonica, marumi, marumi kumquat, round kumquat
shrub bearing round-fruited kumquats
Fortunella margarita, nagami, nagami kumquat, oval kumquat
shrub bearing oval-fruited kumquats
Type of:
citrus, citrus tree
any of numerous tropical usually thorny evergreen trees of the genus Citrus having leathery evergreen leaves and widely cultivated for their juicy edible fruits having leathery aromatic rinds

n small oval citrus fruit with thin sweet rind and very acid pulp

Type of:
citrous fruit, citrus, citrus fruit
any of numerous fruits of the genus Citrus having thick rind and juicy pulp; grown in warm regions

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.