Tried and true

Tried and true is an idiom with an uncertain origin. We will examine the meaning of the common saying tried and true, where it may have come from, and some examples of its idiomatic usage in sentences.

Tried and true describes something that has worked in the past and is expected to work again; something that is dependable; something that is reliably effective. The expression tried and true is hyphenated when it appears before a noun, for example: a tried-and-true method or a tried-and-true technique. Various sources say that the expression tried and true came into use in the 1900s, 1700s, or 1400s. The origin of the expression tried and true is unknown; one source believes it is derived from finishing a piece of wood so that it is straight or “true.”


While he is using his family’s tried-and-true, decades-old recipes, the cooking process in the USDA commissary kitchen is much different than at the restaurant. (The Commercial Appeal)

They followed the tried-and-true pattern of posting and sharing about everything from the flight experience, the restaurants, the hotels. (Travel Weekly)

Mixologists are experts at making even the most tried-and-true drink taste sensational, so we leveraged their expertise on a whole host of aperitifs and mocktails that radiate the reason for the season in beverage form. (The Huffington Post)