To saute is to cook food over high heat, usually in butter or oil. Many recipes begin by instructing you to saute onions and garlic in olive oil.

You can saute vegetables, meat, fish, or tofu. The quick, hot method of cooking browns the outer layer of food and keeps the inside flavorful. Sometimes saute is used as an adjective — you might buy your friend who loves to cook a fancy saute pan for his birthday. In French, the word sauté means "jumped" or "bounced," which also describes the way food jumps around the pan when you saute it.

Definitions of saute
  1. verb
    fry briefly over high heat
    saute the onions”
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    type of:
    cook on a hot surface using fat
  2. adjective
    fried quickly in a little fat
    synonyms: sauteed
    having been prepared for eating by the application of heat
  3. noun
    a dish of sauteed food
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    type of:
    a particular item of prepared food
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