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[dih-zurt] /dɪˈzɜrt/
cake, pie, fruit, pudding, ice cream, etc., served as the final course of a meal.
British. a serving of fresh fruit after the main course of a meal.
Origin of dessert
1780-90; < French, derivative of desservir to clear the table. See dis-1, serve
Can be confused
desert, dessert.
deserts, desserts. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for dessert
  • dessert includes cheese followed by cakes, berry and fruit salads, and ice cream.
  • Or leave out the curry powder and throw in some fresh berries to make a colorful sweet slaw that's perfect as a dessert.
  • The winery produces several variations of wine including semi-sweet wines, dessert wines, dry white wines and spiced wines.
  • dessert is a bowl of fruit accompanied with hot sweet, milky tea.
  • The regulation requires that all ice cream and frozen dessert mixes be pasteurized prior to freezing, packaging, and sale.
  • It can also be used to prepare a frozen dessert that resembles soft ice cream.
  • And for dessert, honeyed butter cookies were topped by crystallized rose petals.
  • Like a fine dessert, this light novel leaves a pleasant aftertaste.
  • I've always loved the creamy Italian dessert tiramisu.
  • Serve for breakfast or luncheon, or with a sauce for dessert.
British Dictionary definitions for dessert


the sweet, usually last course of a meal
(mainly Brit) (esp formerly) fruit, dates, nuts, etc, served at the end of a meal
Word Origin
C17: from French, from desservir to clear a table, from des-dis-1 + servir to serve
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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Word Origin and History for dessert

c.1600, from Middle French dessert (mid-16c.) "last course," literally "removal of what has been served," from desservir "clear the table," literally "un-serve," from des- "remove, undo" (see dis-) + Old French servir "to serve" (see serve (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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