or ak·ee

[ ak-ee ]
/ ˈæk i /
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an evergreen tree, Blighia sapida, of the soapberry family, native to tropical West Africa and introduced to Jamaica, where it has become a prominent and valued part of the island’s horticulture: a cultivated grove of ackees.
the fruit of this tree, used in Caribbean cooking: although the black seeds and unripe arils are highly toxic, the fully ripened arils are edible and prized for their palatability: You must come to Jamaica for authentic ackee and saltfish—it’s our national dish.



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Also ac·hee .

Origin of ackee

First recorded in 1785–95; from a dialect of Kru, a West African family of languages
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for ackee



/ (ˈækiː) /


  1. a sapindaceous tree, Blighia sapida, native to tropical Africa and cultivated in the Caribbean for its fruit, edible when cooked
  2. the red pear-shaped fruit of this tree
a sapindaceous tree, Melicoccus bijugatus, that grows on some Caribbean islands and is valued for its timber and edible fruit
the green tough-skinned berry of this tree
C18: of African origin
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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