Use meat to mean any food that comes from the flesh of an animal. Bacon is meat. Cupcakes are not meat.

You can refer to hamburgers, pork chops, and barbecued ribs as meat. It's okay to call chicken and turkey meat too, although formally it's known as poultry, while the flesh of fish is simply called fish. Sometimes the edible part of a nut is also called meat, although it's 100 percent vegetarian. If your grandmother thinks you're too skinny, she may feed you "to put some meat on your bones." In Old English, mete was just "food."

Definitions of meat
  1. noun
    the flesh of animals (including fishes and birds and snails) used as food
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    stew meat
    tough meat that needs stewing to be edible
    bird, fowl
    the flesh of a bird or fowl (wild or domestic) used as food
    the flesh of wild animals that is used for food
    dark meat
    the flesh of the legs of fowl used as food
    raw meat
    uncooked meat
    red meat
    meat that is dark in color before cooking (as beef, venison, lamb, mutton)
    organs, variety meat
    edible viscera of a butchered animal
    cut, cut of meat
    a piece of meat that has been cut from an animal carcass
    cold cuts
    sliced assorted cold meats
    beef, boeuf
    meat from an adult domestic bovine
    a piece of meat (or fish) that has been scored and broiled
    (Islam) meat from animals that have been slaughtered in the prescribed way according to the shariah
    jerk, jerked meat, jerky
    meat (especially beef) cut in strips and dried in the sun
    pemican, pemmican
    lean dried meat pounded fine and mixed with melted fat; used especially by North American Indians
    veal, veau
    meat from a calf
    horseflesh, horsemeat
    the flesh of horses as food
    mouton, mutton
    meat from a mature domestic sheep
    the flesh of a young domestic sheep eaten as food
    porc, pork
    meat from a domestic hog or pig
    highly seasoned minced meat stuffed in casings
    sausage meat
    any meat that is minced and spiced and cooked as patties or used to fill sausages
    escargot, snail
    edible terrestrial snail usually served in the shell with a sauce of melted butter and garlic
    joint, roast
    a piece of meat roasted or for roasting and of a size for slicing into more than one portion
    a piece of meat (especially a duck) cooked slowly in its own fat
    flesh of chickens or turkeys or ducks or geese raised for food
    flesh of any of a number of wild game birds suitable for food
    giblet, giblets
    edible viscera of a fowl
    a lump or chunk of raw meat
    viscera and trimmings of a butchered animal often considered inedible by humans
    a firm rather dry variety meat (usually beef or veal)
    liver of an animal used as meat
    sweetbread, sweetbreads
    edible glands of an animal
    the brain of certain animals used as meat
    stomach sweetbread
    edible pancreas of an animal
    neck sweetbread, throat sweetbread
    edible thymus gland of an animal
    the tongue of certain animals used as meat
    meat from a deer used as food
    a small cut of meat including part of a rib
    cut of meat or fish including at least part of the backbone
    the limb of an animal used for food
    side, side of meat
    a lengthwise dressed half of an animal's carcass used for food
    the front half of a side of meat
    the back half of a side of meat
    cut of beef
    cut of meat from beef cattle
    cut of meat including one or more ribs
    cut of meat taken from between the ribs
    a cut of meat (beef or veal or mutton or lamb) from the upper part of the leg
    shin, shin bone
    a cut of meat from the lower part of the leg
    a cut of meat from the breast or lower chest especially of beef
    a slice of meat cut from the fleshy part of an animal or large fish
    a cut of meat taken from the side and back of an animal between the ribs and the rump
    the portion of the loin (especially of beef) just in front of the rump
    tenderloin, undercut
    the tender meat of the loin muscle on each side of the vertebral column
    a cut of meat from the neck of an animal
    a cut of meat including the upper joint of the foreleg
    lining of the stomach of a ruminant (especially a bovine) used as food
    meat from an American bison
    ground beef, hamburger
    beef that has been ground
    bully beef, corn beef, corned beef
    beef cured or pickled in brine
    highly seasoned cut of smoked beef
    beef jerky
    strips of dried beef
    meat that is salted and cut into strips and dried in the sun
    cut of veal
    cut of meat from a calf
    calves' feet
    feet of calves used as food; usually jellied
    hare, rabbit
    flesh of any of various rabbits or hares (wild or domesticated) eaten as food
    cut of mutton
    cut of meat from a mature sheep
    cut of lamb
    cut of meat from a lamb
    cut of meat (especially mutton or lamb) consisting of part of the backbone and both loins
    rib section of a forequarter of veal or pork or especially lamb or mutton
    cut of pork
    cut of meat from a hog or pig
    cochon de lait, suckling pig
    whole young pig suitable for roasting
    salt pork
    fat from the back and sides and belly of a hog carcass cured with salt
    pigs' feet, pigs' knuckles
    feet or knuckles of hogs used as food; pickled or stewed or jellied
    chitlings, chitlins, chitterlings
    small intestines of hogs prepared as food
    heart and liver and other edible viscera especially of hogs; usually chopped and formed into a loaf and braised
    black pudding, blood pudding, blood sausage
    a black sausage containing pig's blood and other ingredients
    Bologna sausage, bologna
    a large smooth-textured smoked sausage of beef and veal and pork
    a small thin sausage
    a spicy Spanish pork sausage
    dog, frank, frankfurter, hot dog, hotdog, weenie, wiener, wienerwurst
    a smooth-textured sausage of minced beef or pork usually smoked; often served on a bread roll
    sausage or jellied loaf made of chopped parts of the head meat and sometimes feet and tongue of a calf or pig
    knackwurst, knockwurst
    short thick highly seasoned sausage
    liver pudding, liver sausage, liverwurst
    sausage containing ground liver
    a pork and beef sausage (or a thin slice of this sausage)
    pork sausage
    sausage containing pork
    highly seasoned fatty sausage of pork and beef usually dried
    pork trimmings chopped and pickled and jelled
    lunch meat, luncheon meat
    any of various sausages or molded loaf meats sliced and served cold
    type of:
    food, solid food
    any solid substance (as opposed to liquid) that is used as a source of nourishment
  2. noun
    the inner and usually edible part of a seed or grain or nut or fruit stone
    synonyms: kernel
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    type of:
    plant part, plant structure
    any part of a plant or fungus
  3. noun
    the choicest or most essential or most vital part of some idea or experience
    synonyms: center, centre, core, essence, gist, heart, heart and soul, inwardness, kernel, marrow, nitty-gritty, nub, pith, substance, sum
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    bare bones
    (plural) the most basic facts or elements
    (metaphysics) essential nature or underlying reality
    haecceity, quiddity
    the essence that makes something the kind of thing it is and makes it different from any other
    distillation, quintessence
    the purest and most concentrated essence of something
    a critically important or characteristic component
    type of:
    cognitive content, content, mental object
    the sum or range of what has been perceived, discovered, or learned
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