[sawr-bit, sawr-bey; French sawr-be]


Origin of sorbet

1575–85; < French < Italian sorbetto < Turkish şerbet cool drink ≪ Arabic; see sherbet
Can be confusedice cream sherbet sorbet Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for sorbet

Contemporary Examples of sorbet

  • The sorbet was tangy and was a tad tart while in the main course the pepper in the yam croquette brought it to life.

    The Daily Beast logo
    What Harry Ate

    Tom Sykes

    March 15, 2012

  • But the beauty of it is that it has the best qualities of both desserts: creamy like a sherbet, refreshing like a sorbet.

    The Daily Beast logo
    What to Eat

    August 11, 2009

Historical Examples of sorbet

  • Sorbet should not freeze hard; it should be a creamy liquid and ice cold.

    Desserts and Salads

    Gesine Lemcke

  • And now the sorbet cools our throats and leads us up to the game.

    The Art of Entertaining

    M. E. W. Sherwood

  • For a sorbet, add a meringue made of the beaten white of egg and sugar to the partially frozen ice.

  • Freeze, and serve in sorbet glasses, with Eau de Vie de Dantzig on top.

  • Outside, by the cracked pool, it was coming on slow twilight and that magic, tropical blood-orange sky like a swirl of sorbet.


    Cory Doctorow

British Dictionary definitions for sorbet



a water ice made from fruit juice, egg whites, milk, etc
a US word for sherbet (def. 2)

Word Origin for sorbet

C16: from French, from Old Italian sorbetto, from Turkish şerbet, from Arabic sharbah a drink
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 sorbet

1580s, "cooling drink of fruit juice and water," from French sorbet (16c.), probably from Italian sorbetto, from Turkish serbet (see sherbet). Perhaps influenced in form by Italian sorbire "to sip." Meaning "semi-liquid water ice as a dessert" first recorded 1864.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper