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[pot-luhk, -luhk] /ˈpɒtˌlʌk, -ˈlʌk/
food or a meal that happens to be available without special preparation or purchase:
to take potluck with a friend.
Also called potluck supper, potluck dinner, potluck lunch. a meal, especially for a large group, to which participants bring various foods to be shared.
whatever is available or comes one's way:
With fluctuating interest rates, homebuyers are learning to take potluck with the banks.
Origin of potluck
1585-95; pot1 + luck Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for potluck
  • These potluck desserts are the perfect sweets to take to your next party.
  • The presence of sardines must be a powerful drawcard for predators, for they come a long way to dine at the potluck.
  • We hold a summer potluck with our spouses and a winter dinner and theater outing.
  • It provides tips on storage, sanitation and cooking to keep potluck food as safe as possible.
  • The potluck lunch included many southern favorites including ham, beans, and corn bread.
  • Organize a cross-cultural potluck lunch in which students bring in or make foods from their homeland or ancestors' homeland.
  • Park staff will prepare and serve a special potluck lunch for this year's volunteers.
Word Origin and History for potluck

also pot-luck, 1590s, from pot (n.1) + luck; with notion of "one's luck or chance as to what may be in the pot." As an adjective from 1775.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for potluck


adverb phrase

: Come on and dine pot luck


: pot-luck supper

noun phrase

A meal composed of odds and ends of leftovers, or of whatever turns up (1600+)

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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Idioms and Phrases with potluck


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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