verb (used with object), ten·der·ized, ten·der·iz·ing.
- to make (meat) tender, as by pounding or by a chemical process or treatment.
- a substance, such as the plant enzyme papain, rubbed onto meat to soften the fibres and make it more tender
- (tr) to make (meat) tender by pounding it to break down the fibres, by steeping it in a marinade, or by treating it with a tenderizer
n.1942, agent noun from tenderize. v.1733, from tender + -ize. Specifically of food, recorded by 1935, originally American English. Related: Tenderized; tenderizing.