[ yuhk-ee ]
/ ˈyʌk i /
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adjective, yuk·ki·er, yuk·ki·est.Slang.
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Origin of yukky

First recorded in1965–70; yuk2 + -y1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023


What does yukky mean?

Yukky is a much less common spelling of yucky, which is a very informal adjective meaning gross, disgusting, or unappetizing.

It’s based on yuck (less commonly spelled yuk), which is an informal word you say when you think something is gross or disgusting. Yuck is an interjection, which is a term used to express an emotion or indicate how you feel about something, typically outside of a sentence.

Yukky is primarily used to describe foods that you think are particularly disgusting or unappetizing. It can be used upon actually tasting something or simply upon looking at it, smelling, or maybe even feeling it—you could describe a food as yukky if it feels slimy, for example.

Yukky is also sometimes used to describe other things considered disgusting, such as something filthy or unpleasant weather, as in The humidity is making it really yukky outside. It can also mean just plain bad, as in My day was yukky. 

Yukky is associated with its use by children and is often thought of as a childish word. (While yuck is often used by children, especially those refusing to eat their vegetables, it’s commonly used in many ways that don’t sound childish.)

The word yummy can be thought of as the opposite of yukky, especially in response to food. It’s based on yum, an interjection used to indicate that you think something is delicious or looks appetizing (yum is often thought of as the opposite of yuck). Like yukky, yummy can also be used in contexts other than food, such as to express that something is appealing.

Example: I’d rather eat my own socks than have even one bite of that yukky broccoli. 

Where does yukky come from?

Yukky is an adjective form of the interjection yuck (or yuk). The first written records of both terms come from around the 1960s, but expressions that sound like yuck have certainly been used for much longer. Expressive words like yuck (and ew, which is first recorded around the same time) are formed in imitation of the sounds people make in reaction to things. Yuck is thought to have originated in the U.S., at least in print. The suffix -y is used to make it an adjective.

Yukky is most commonly used to describe foods considered disgusting, but it can be used in all kinds of contexts. You could say you’re feeling yukky when you have a bad cold. You could use it to describe something filthy, like the inside of a dumpster, or something really gross, like the smell of someone’s burp (I know—yuck!). Yukky can also be used in other less traditional ways, such as to describe something as extremely unappealing, as in I have to spend the whole weekend doing this yukky homework.

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What are some other forms related to yukky?

  • yucky (primary spelling)
  • yuchy (rare alternate spelling)
  • yukkier (comparative adjective)
  • yukkiest (superlative adjective)
  • yuk (interjection, adjective)

What are some synonyms for yukky?

What are some words that often get used in discussing yukky?


How is yukky used in real life?

Yukky is very informal and often considered childish. It’s typically used to describe foods as disgusting. The spelling yucky is much more commonly used.



Try using yukky!

Is yukky used correctly in the following sentence?

I’m feeling yukky today so I’m going to take a sick day.