Synonyms of pinch in English:


See definition of pinch


1‘he pinched my arm harder’

nip, tweak, squeeze, compress, grasp

2‘my new shoes pinch my big toe’

hurt, cause pain to, pain
squeeze, crush, cramp, chafe, confine
be uncomfortable, cause discomfort, be painful

3‘if I scraped and pinched a bit, I might manage’

economize, be economical, scrimp, scrimp and save, cut corners, reduce wastage, skimp, stint, be sparing, be frugal, cut back, tighten one's belt, draw in one's horns, retrench, cut expenditure, cut one's coat according to one's cloth
be niggardly, be tight-fisted, be close
informal be stingy, be tight, be mingy

4‘he was pinched for drink-driving’

arrest, take into custody, apprehend, take prisoner, detain, seize, capture, catch, lay hold of, take in, haul in
informal collar, nab, pick up, pull in, run in, nick, bust, nail, do, feel someone's collar

5‘you shouldn't have pinched his biscuits’

steal, thieve, rob, take, snatch, pilfer, purloin, loot, rifle, abscond with, carry off
embezzle, misappropriate
informal walk away with, walk off with, run away with, run off with, swipe, nab, rip off, lift, liberate, filch
British informal nick, half-inch, whip, knock off, nobble, bone
North American informal heist, glom
Australian informal snavel
West Indian informal tief
archaic crib, hook


1‘he gave her arm a pinch’

nip, tweak, squeeze

2‘dissolve the yeast in the water with a pinch of sugar’

small quantity, bit, touch, dash, spot, trace, soupçon, speck, taste
informal smidgen, smidge, tad


    feel the pinch

    ‘the recession hit us hard and many of our customers have been feeling the pinch’


    suffer hardship, have less money, be short of money, be poor, be impoverished, suffer poverty, suffer adversity

    at a pinch

    ‘there's room for four adults, five at a pinch’


    if necessary, with difficulty, in case of necessity, if need be, in an emergency, just possibly

    North American

    in a pinch

    British informal

    at a push

    take something with a pinch of salt

    ‘take these figures with a pinch of salt in an election year’


    disbelieve, not believe, not credit, give no credence to, discredit, discount, doubt, distrust, mistrust, be suspicious of, have no confidence in, have no faith in, be incredulous of, be unconvinced about

    not accept, reject, repudiate, question, challenge, contradict



    if it comes to the pinch


    if things get bad, if it comes to the push, in an emergency, in a crisis, in times of hardship, if one is in difficulty, in time of need, in case of necessity, if necessary