Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “sift”

sift

verb [T] uk   /sɪft/ us  

sift verb [T] (SEPARATE)

to put flour, sugar, etc. through a sieve (= wire net shaped like a bowl) to break up large pieces: When the cake is cooked, sift some icing sugar over the top of it.

sift verb [T] (EXAMINE)

to make a close examination of all the parts of something in order to find something or to separate what is useful from what is not: The police are sifting the evidence very carefully to try and find the guilty person. After my father's death, I had to sift through all his papers. The police are trying to sift out the genuine warnings from all the hoax calls they have received.
(Definition of sift from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of sift?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Preparing food, but you might be interested in these topics from the Cookery topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “sift” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

for starters

used to say that something is the first in a list of things

Word of the Day

Countability – grammar codes

by Dom Glennon​​,
November 26, 2014
Advices and informations Have you ever noticed strange codes in square brackets on entries in Cambridge Dictionaries Online and wondered what they mean? These are grammar codes, giving you a brief summary of how that word behaves grammatically. More information can be obtained by hovering your cursor over the code, and there’s

Read More 

ped-text verb

November 24, 2014
to text someone while walking I’m ped-texting, I’m looking down at my phone, 75 percent of the time.

Read More