See more synonyms for dumpling on Thesaurus.com
  1. a rounded mass of steamed and seasoned dough, often served in soup or with stewed meat.
  2. a dessert consisting of a wrapping of dough enclosing sliced apples or other fruit, boiled or baked.
  3. a short or stout person.

Origin of dumpling

1590–1600; dump (of uncertain origin) + -ling1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for dumpling


  1. a small ball of dough cooked and served with stew
  2. a pudding consisting of a round pastry case filled with fruitapple dumpling
  3. informal a short plump person

Word Origin for dumpling

C16: dump-, perhaps variant of lump 1 + -ling 1
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

Word Origin and History for dumpling

c.1600, Norfolk dialect, of uncertain origin, perhaps from some Low German word or from noun dump "lump" (late 18c.). Related: Dumplings.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper