Denotation vs. Connotation

cookie cutter

a device, usually of metal, for cutting shaped forms, as circles or stars, for cookies from dough that has been rolled flat.
Origin of cookie cutter
1900-05, Americanism


[koo k-ee-kuht-er] /ˈkʊk iˌkʌt ər/
having the same configuration or look as many others of a given kind; identical:
rows of cookie-cutter houses.
lacking individuality; stereotyped or formulaic:
a novel filled with cookie-cutter characters. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for cookie cutter
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Roll very thin, cut with cookie cutter, lay on Criscoed tins, bake in moderately hot oven five minutes.

    The Story of Crisco Marion Harris Neil
  • Roll out 1/4-inch thick on floured board; cut with cookie cutter.

  • Roll out thin on slightly floured board and cut with cookie cutter.

  • Roll out ¼-inch thick on floured board; cut with cookie cutter.

  • Cut with a cookie cutter a round of bread from a thick slice, then a ring with a doughnut cutter.

British Dictionary definitions for cookie cutter


a shape with a sharp edge for cutting individual biscuits from a sheet of dough
resembling many others of the same kind: a row of cookie-cutter houses
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for cookie cutter



(also cookie-cut) Identical and unoriginal; standardized; stereotyped: Each store is a cookie-cutter copy, laid out according to plans devised at the corporate headquarters/ I'd never want to read that kind of cookie-cut magazine


  1. A police officer's badge; potsy, tin (1920s+ Circus)
  2. A weak and unenterprising person; cookie-pusher, wimp (1950s+)
  3. An inadequate weapon, esp a knife (1950s+)
The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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