- with thumb and finger
- 1an act of squeezing a part of somebody’s skin tightly between your thumb and finger, especially in order to hurt them She gave him a pinch on the arm to wake him up. small amount
- 2the amount of something that you can hold between your finger and thumb a pinch of salt Word Origin Middle English (as a verb): from an Old Northern French variant of Old French pincier
used to say that something could be done or used in a particular situation if it is really necessary We can get six people round this table at a pinch. The recipe is for beef, but at a pinch you could use chicken. (informal) to not have enough money Lots of people who have lost their jobs are starting to feel the pinch. to be careful about believing that something is completely true If I were you, I’d take everything he says with a pinch of salt.