Half-baked is an idiom that has been in use since the 1600s. An idiom is a figure of speech that is a word, group of words or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is not easily deduced from its literal definition. We will examine the definition of half-baked, where it came from and some examples of its use in sentences.

Half-baked describes something that has not been properly thought through, something impractical or based on false assumptions, something foolish or poorly conceived. The idea behind the term half-baked is of something that is unfinished or still raw. Obviously, it is a disparaging term. Half-baked has been in use since the 1600s, though its original meaning was a bit different. At that time, half-baked referred to an immature person or a person who was foolish or silly. Note that the idiom half-baked is a hyphenated compound word.


“Half-baked” is definitely the best word to describe them, with the Last Act clearance departments wedged into random spaces depending on the layout of that particular store, and cosmetic departments that look like an old-school Estee Lauder layout smashed into a Sephora. (Forbes Magazine)

“It’s a half-baked idea that hasn’t even worked in the most liberal of states,” House Speaker Linda Upmeyer, R-Clear Lake, said in a press release Friday afternoon. (The Des Moine Register)

“While Republicans ambush the American people with this half-baked tax bill, written in the dark to be raced through Congress before it is understood, we already know some of what to be the truth,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said. (U.S. News & World Report)

Half-baked calls to boycott Chinese goods in India must keep in mind this reality and give credit where it is due. (The South China Morning Post)

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