[ aw-fuhl, of-uhl ]
See synonyms for offal on
  1. the edible organs, or organ parts, of a butchered animal; organ meat: Our top three sellers in offal are beef kidney, liver, and tongue.: Compare muscle meat.

  2. the parts of a butchered animal that are considered inedible by human beings; discarded viscera.

  1. refuse; rubbish; garbage: Before the agent comes to appraise the house, let’s get someone to haul away all this offal in the backyard.

Origin of offal

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English offal, offail, orfal “waste material, entrails,” equivalent to of off + fal fall; compare Dutch afval “waste”

Words that may be confused with offal

Words Nearby offal Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use offal in a sentence

  • And then he squats there in the middle of bits of meat and offal and all sorts of horrors—which makes him more terrifying still.

  • They mature early and rapidly for the quantity of food consumed, yielding largely of good beef with little offal.

    Domestic Animals | Richard L. Allen
  • The lion, having sucked the blood of his prey, threw the offal carcass to the jackal in waiting.

  • Once its jar is emptied, the larva is flung aside as worthless offal, a certain sign of a non-carnivorous appetite.

    More Hunting Wasps | J. Henri Fabre
  • These had a grand feast off the offal while the men were regaling themselves with fresh elk steaks.

    Condemned as a Nihilist | George Alfred Henty

British Dictionary definitions for offal


/ (ˈɒfəl) /

  1. the edible internal parts of an animal, such as the heart, liver, and tongue

  2. dead or decomposing organic matter

  1. refuse; rubbish

Origin of offal

C14: from off + fall, referring to parts fallen or cut off; compare German Abfall rubbish

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