Definition of ACIDULOUS


Acidulous is an adjective that primarily refers to something having a slightly acidic or sour taste, often characterized by a refreshing tanginess or tartness. It can be understood in various contexts:

Slightly Acidic: As an adjective, acidulous describes foods, beverages, or substances that have a mildly acidic taste, with a subtle tanginess or tartness that stimulates the taste buds.

Refreshing Tanginess: Acidulous flavors provide a refreshing sensation on the palate, imparting a lively, zesty quality that enhances culinary enjoyment and adds complexity to dishes.

Acidulated Beverages: Acidulous beverages, such as citrus juices, sour cocktails, or fermented drinks, are prized for their tart, invigorating taste, offering a pleasant contrast to sweetness and contributing to thirst-quenching properties.

Salad Dressings and Sauces: Acidulous dressings and sauces, made with vinegar, citrus juice, or acidic fruits, elevate the flavor profile of salads, vegetables, and savory dishes, balancing richness and adding brightness to the palate.

Taste Sensation: Acidulous foods and beverages stimulate taste receptors, triggering sour or acidic sensations that create a sensory experience characterized by complexity, balance, and harmony.

Appetite Stimulation: Acidulous flavors are known to stimulate appetite and refresh the palate, awakening the senses and enhancing the overall dining experience by providing a burst of flavor and vitality.

Digestive Aid: Acidulous foods and beverages, particularly those containing natural acids like citric acid or acetic acid, may aid digestion by promoting gastric acidity and facilitating nutrient absorption.

Hydration and Refreshment: Acidulous beverages, such as fruit-infused water, lemonade, or kombucha, offer hydration and refreshment with added flavor and health benefits, making them popular choices for quenching thirst and supporting wellness.

In summary, acidulous is an adjective that describes something with a slightly acidic or sour taste, characterized by a refreshing tanginess or tartness, with applications in taste and flavor, culinary and beverage preparations, sensory perception, and health promotion, contributing to culinary enjoyment and well-being.

Examples of ACIDULOUS in a sentence

  • She enjoyed the acidulous flavor of the lemonade on a hot summer day.
  • The chef added a squeeze of lime juice to the salsa for an acidulous zing.
  • The wine had a pleasantly acidulous taste that paired well with seafood.
  • Her grandmother’s recipe for cranberry sauce had just the right balance of sweetness and acidity, giving it an acidulous edge.
  • The salad dressing had an acidulous tang that awakened the taste buds.
  • The acidulous notes of the vinegar gave the dish a delightful complexity.
  • He preferred his cocktails with an acidulous twist, opting for drinks with citrusy flavors.
  • The dessert had a subtle, acidulous undertone that balanced the richness of the chocolate.


The word “acidulous” has its etymology rooted in Latin and shares connections with acidity. Here’s a brief overview:

  • Latin Origin: “Acidulous” is derived from the Latin word “acidulus,” which is the diminutive form of “acidus,” meaning “sour” or “acidic.”
  • Adoption into English: The term entered the English language from Latin, retaining its original meaning of being somewhat sour or acidic.
  • Semantic Meaning: In English, “acidulous” is used to describe flavors, tastes, or remarks that are slightly acidic or tart. It implies a mild acidity, less intense than what might be found in stronger acids like vinegar.
  • Usage: “Acidulous” can be applied to describe certain foods or drinks that have a subtle tang or tartness, as well as to characterize language or commentary that is sharp, pungent, or mildly critical.

Overall, the etymology of “acidulous” reflects its origins in Latin and its association with acidity, conveying a sense of mild sourness or tartness.


  • Acerbic
  • Tart
  • Sour
  • Sharp
  • Biting
  • Acidic
  • Caustic
  • Cutting


  • Sweet
  • Mild
  • Gentle
  • Amiable
  • Kind
  • Soft
  • Mellow
  • Pleasant


  • Acidic
  • Acidity
  • Sarcasm
  • Bitterness
  • Acrid
  • Sourness
  • Tartness
  • Vitriolic

🌐 🇬🇧 ACIDULOUS in other languages

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